Lucy Castor does not like change, but the weekend before she enters fourth grade her world begins to change anyway. How will Lucy cope?
After spending the summer away, Lucy comes home to find her best friend, Ella, has new friends, and they no longer have anything in common. Her teenage neighbor, Chloe, makes her nervous with her piercings and vibrantly colored hair. And worst of all, Lucy’s mother is expecting twins. Featuring an all-white cast of characters, the story takes place in the small fictional town of Hawthorne, Massachusetts. As the household routines change to accommodate for Mrs. Castor’s difficult pregnancy, Lucy must learn to deal with her anger and anxiety. Though giving up on her friendship with Ella hurts, she also learns to make new friends. And when Chloe comes to work in her house, she learns there is more to a person than appearances. Though the ending is predictable, it is Lucy’s journey toward that end that will keep readers engaged. There is a certain quaint quality to the story, starting with the niceness of all the characters and including some Briticisms here and there—high school teacher Mr. Castor doesn’t grade, he “marks”; the babies wear “nappies”—yet the story manages to avoid saccharine sweetness.
A quietly reassuring story showing that change can be a good thing at times. (Fiction. 8-10)