The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl

Stacy McAnulty. Random House, $16.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-5247-6757-0
When 12-year-old Lucy was struck by lightning at age eight, her brain was damaged, resulting in her acquired savant syndrome. She becomes a mathematical genius and develops obsessive-compulsive disorder; she’s been homeschooled ever since. She feels safe at home with her uncle and grandmother, but Nana wants Lucy to become better integrated with her peers and enrolls her in seventh grade. Lucy hides her math abilities to blend in, and she’s bullied by popular girl Maddie, but when she and another student, Windy, team up with classmate Levi for a community service project, a true friendship grows. The three help out at the Pet Hut, a no-kill shelter where Lucy, who has never liked animals, bonds with Cutie Pi. After Cutie Pi is diagnosed with cancer—which means that she will likely be transferred to a state shelter and put down—and Windy betrays Lucy by revealing a secret, Lucy must learn how to solve problems of the heart. McAnulty realistically portrays Lucy’s OCD, and her struggles in middle school also ring true. Every character is fully formed, and Lucy’s journey is beautifully authentic in this debut brimming with warmth, wisdom, and math. Ages 8–12. Agent: Lori Kilkelly, Rodeen Literary Management. (May)
Reviewed on: 04/02/2018
Release date: 05/01/2018
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-1-5247-6760-0
Library Binding - 304 pages - 978-1-5247-6758-7
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Audio book sample courtesy of Penguin Random House Audio
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