by Jerry Spinelli
The West Enders
Mrs. Pickwell, Mr. Pickwell, Grandmother Pickwell, Grandfather Pickwell, Great-Grandfather Pickwell, baby Didi, Dominic, Duke, Donald, Dion, Deirdre, Dolly Pickwell. Plus a few more Pickwells, and whoever else needs a helping hand at the moment. That's who's sitting around the Pickwell table on any given day (don't forget Mars Bar Thompson!), and that's why the Pickwells form Maniac's West End example of what a family should look like: big, boisterous, and accepting.
Yuck. It's not always easy, but we can generally find a good side to just about everybody in this story. Not Papa McNab. He's mean, drunk, violent, a bad father, and a racist. He's also a good reminder to Maniac that living with family members is not the same as having a family.