Lucy Tucker is one of the nameless, faceless people who roam America’s streets, seeking shelter wherever they can find it. Lucy’s eightieth birthday is looming and over the years she has slept in dumpsters, under freeways and bridges, in parks, and anywhere else she can take refuge from the cold and dangerous streets of Chicago. But a chance meeting with Gabby Fairbanks lands her in Gabby’s penthouse apartment, much to the dismay and annoyance of Gabby’s husband. Eventually, Gabby transports Lucy to Manna House, a shelter for women. Through a remarkable turn of events, Gabby’s mother and even Gabby herself wind up there, too. And their lives become intertwined with Lucy’s in ways that surprise each of them, but none more than Lucy.
How did an elderly woman like Lucy wind up homeless? How long has she been wandering around Chicago with no place to call her own, wheeling her wire cart containing her few belongings? How does she manage to survive and remain so feisty and scrappy year after year? And how much longer can she manage on her own, especially as her age betrays her and makes her more susceptible to any number of ailments and illnesses?