cover image LUCY ROSE: Here's the Thing About Me

LUCY ROSE: Here's the Thing About Me

Katy Kelly, , illus. by Adam Rex. . Delacorte, $12.95 (144pp) ISBN 978-0-385-73203-1

At the start of Kelly's entirely engaging first novel, third grader Lucy Rose introduces herself with appealing self-assuredness: "Here is the thing about me: According to my dad, I am one smart cookie. And according to my grandfather, I have the kind of life that is called eventful, which means not boring." Though readers will easily identify with the events in Lucy Rose's life, this candid heroine's energetic delivery of the boundless "things" she shares about herself makes them sound unique—and highly entertaining. Since her parents' recent separation, Lucy Rose has moved from Michigan to Washington, D.C., with her mother, whose own parents live nearby. Appropriately named Madam and Pop (given the girl's penchant for palindromes), Lucy Rose's wise and witty grandparents play a significant role in her life. The red-haired, freckled youngster narrates in breathless run-on sentences that call to mind Eloise's endearing chatter ("Here are some things about Mr. Welsh [my teacher]: He has a nice look of not too much hair and little round eyeglasses and he is skinnier than my dad and my grandfather, probably because he is one for good eating habits"). The incidents Lucy Rose recounts range from comical to genuinely affecting, as she begins to settle into her new surroundings. Her father tells her she has a "one-of-a-kind mind." Readers will resoundingly agree: she has a truly original perspective—and voice—and they will hope Lucy Rose returns to reveal more "things" about herself. Ages 8-12. (Sept.)