Elfie Oster is ready to leave Cottonwood Elementary. She doesn’t have any friends at the school and she’s tired of having to do group projects all by herself. It doesn’t help that her super popular cousin, Jenna, whom everyone likes, is also in Cottonwood — and also not Elfie’s friend. Thankfully, she’s been admitted at Hampshire Academy, a swanky private school where she knows everything will be different. Unfortunately, after a misunderstanding, Elfie is swiftly expelled from Hampshire and has to return to Cottonwood.
Maggie loves animals and has been waiting patiently to get a dog, only to discover that she’s allergic. She’s also dealing with a changing family in which she feels less and less like she belongs. Her two little brothers are seemingly obsessed with each other and couldn’t care less about her. Her mother is heavily pregnant and excited for the new baby.