A twelve-year-old girl tells the story of a season with her large family, her resourceful mother and her country doctor father. When her mother's best friend loses a husband in a jet accident the Austin's routine is interrupted by the arrival of Maggie, the orphan of another man killed in the crash. The child, shocked by her loss, has a disruptive influence on the family, who, one by one, react in a dramatic way. But love, humor and the wisdom of the Austin seniors resolve the difficulty and Maggie, as well as the Austin children, ultimately benefits from the situation. A convincing and attractive picture of a family faced with real and important issues.