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Based on a memoir, four siblings must learn to take care of themselves as their responsibility-averse, free-spirit parents both inspire and inhibit them. When sober, the children's brilliant and charismatic father captured their imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he was dishonest and destructive. Meanwhile, their mother abhorred the idea of domesticity and didn’t want to take on the work of raising a family. As the family lived a nomadic existence, the children fed, clothed, and protected one another, eventually finding their way to New York, where their parents soon followed and chose to be homeless while their children began to prosper. The tale explores the intense love of a peculiar but loyal family.