Five siblings have to learn to live on their own after their parents die in a terrible car accident caused by a drunk driver.
The Salinger go through all sorts of problems since they have to handle the family business: a restaurant which they have to keep up and running. A long with that they still have to manage school, relationships and growing without parents to support them.
As the eldest brother Charlie has to take care of the family as the legal guardian of his younger brothers and sisters at the age of 24.
Bailey and Julia both jump from one bad relationship to another. But later Bailey and his girlfriend Sarah assume custody of his brother Owen who was only 6 months old when their parents died.
Claudia is a violin player who enters adolescence without her parents and especially without a mother to guide her.
Over the years they deal with cancer, date rape, alcoholism, and gambling problems.
But they learn to stick together as a family and support each other.