Eleanor knows she's a mess. But today, she will tackle the little things. She will shower and get dressed. She will have her poetry and yoga lessons after dropping off her son, Timby. She won't swear. She will initiate sex with her husband, Joe. But before she can put her modest plan into action, life happens. Today, it turns out, is the day Timby has decided to fake sick to weasel his way into his mother's company. It's also the day Joe has chosen to tell his office, but not Eleanor, that he's on vacation. Just when it seems like things can't go more awry, an encounter with a former colleague produces a graphic memoir, the dramatic tale of which threatens to reveal a buried family secret.
Bernadette Fox has disappeared. It began when her daughter, Bee, aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette's intensifying allergy to Seattle --- and people in general --- has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands. To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents and secret correspondence.