Things have been difficult for Ruby lately. Her dad left long ago, and her mom is so down that she can hardly get out of bed some days, which means it's up to Ruby to take care of her younger brother. As a result, she can't always go to school—and when she does go, she just seems to end up in trouble. And forget about her real dream, learning to skateboard. There will never be money or time for it.
But Ruby's life changes when Mister P. floats down one day in a hot air balloon. Though Ruby is at first reluctant to be friends, she can't ignore Mister P.—he is a polar bear, after all! With his silly and gentle polar bear ways, huge heart, and plenty of slapstick humor, he teaches Ruby that she doesn't have to take care of everyone on her own—it's OK to let others help sometimes. Ruby is amazed by the number of people willing to lend a hand, and how even a small amount of support can make a big difference.