This is a little gem of a novel. It is really unique and quirky, but at the same time I found it incredible accessibly and charming.
The story follows Frankie, who constantly worries. At 10pm every night it all gets too much and he has to go down the hall and ask his Ma a question - Does he have food poisoning? Is the rash on his chest cancer? Have they replaced the batteries in the smoke alarm? She is the only one who seems to take his worries seriously. When a new girl starts at his school, a girl who has her own constant stream of questions for Frankie, he starts to wonder if he's been asking the right question...
Frankie is such a great character. He's charming, genuine, funny - and I completely adored him. I loved all the other characters too. Frankie's family is awesome - Louie and Gordana are both rather lovable in their own ways - and always provide amusement. Uncle George is also very funny and I loved the interaction between Frankie and his Ma. There really is a strong sense of family in this book and I loved it for that. And, of course, you can't forget Ray Davis - sooo cute!
Gigs and Sydney were the kind of friends I could really picture Frankie having. Gigs actually reminded me a bit of Louie and Syndey seems to be very much like The Aunts - who Frankie spent a lot of his childhood with. Both are very confident and I think this is a strong attraction for Frankie.
The story itself is very character driven - very much an introspection for Frankie - leading to him finally asking the question that has always been left unasked in his family. It deals with some serious issues in an very accessible way - it all felt very genuine and I very much enjoyed all the idiosyncrasies of Frankie's character. A great book!.