LILLAN by Gunilla B. Norris

LILLAN

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KIRKUS REVIEW

First it meant living with Morfat (grandfather); then it was salty and lumpy food; now, back in Stockholm, Mama says she must rent out the living room and library for added income. Her parents' divorce brings Lillan other unpleasant associations--eating lunch at school when everyone else goes home--and irresistible urges--stealing her mother's carfare, then from a store (once for her mother's present). At school Britta, who almost loses a bracelet to Lillan's mixed impulses, starts to bring her lunch after the two share a joking session about how long it takes adults to make decisions. Just beginning to enjoy loving with her mother, she resents the first visit, then the first kiss of Mama's friend Jon; Mama reassures her and Jon telephones to invite Lillian and a friend for a day of amusement parking. Slowly she accepts, although ambivalence and confusion do not disappear at once. The personality of the father, now somewhere in South America, is properly suggested by the girl's memory--extravagant meals instead of ""horrid porridge"" and reaction to a birthday present: how nice that he remembered, but dolls are not for eleven-year-olds. The adults ""understand"" by doing just what they should, and Lillan benefits accordingly.

Pub Date: Sept. 6th, 1968
Publisher: Atheneum