Firmly in her preteen years, Lexie is having a hard time knowing whether it’s sometimes OK to lie.
When she tells the truth about new girl Anastasia’s throwing car keys into the sea during a Greek-community picnic, Lexie’s suddenly unpopular with her peers. Even her cousin/almost-twin, Eleni, seems upset. Lexie begins to realize that people lie all the time. Lexie’s narration is characterized by spunk, indignant annoyance, and endearing bewilderment, and readers will understand her predicament. Things only get worse when Lexie lies, denying that her recently deceased grandmother had previously told Eleni and her that she intended to bequeath an heirloom necklace to Eleni. Yiayia had explained that she had vowed to do so if Eleni, born with a heart problem, survived infancy even though tradition would have dictated that Lexie’s mom receive it. Lexie knows her mother has an emotional attachment to the necklace and doesn’t want her feelings to be hurt. But now, everyone’s upset. If Lexie’s portrayal of her extended Greek-immigrant family is a bit stereotypical, it also makes clear that they are warm and loving. Lexie’s realization that Yiayia’s legacy is how she taught them to be kind, honest, and good prepares both Lexie and readers for the next crisis. Lexi and her family are Greek Cypriot immigrants living in Britain.
Enhanced with black-and-white doodles in the margins, this heartfelt tale demonstrates how families overcome upheavals with wisdom and hope. (Fiction. 8-12)