I’m a sucker for a good memoir and this one has had enduring resonance with me. Jeanette Walls and her three siblings experienced a transient and unstable upbringing, though her rather unconventional parents might reword this statement to be “adventurous and full of surprises”. The Walls children would make their own way, with little help from either parent (one consistently on a drinking or gambling binge, and the other uninterested in parenting and suffering ever more from depression), instead depending on one another. They would experience horrors that no child should have to face, all while being encouraged by their parents to consider these life lessons; the result of curiosity’s quests. Ms. Walls is adept at weaving a Dickensian tale rife with poverty, sinister characters, and fantastical imaginings. Here though, the tale is not fanciful fabrication but reality.