I'm Lucy Rose and here's the thing about me: I am eight and according to my grandfather I have the kind of life that is called eventful, which means NOT boring. According to my mom and my grandmother, I'm what they call a handful. And according to my dad, I am one smart cookie.
I say I am one girl who is feeling not-so-sure about things on account of my parents got a separation. Plus my mom and I just moved to Washington, D.C. Plus I haven't met any friends yet, but I do know someone who is not one and that is Adam Melon, who I call Melonhead.
Here's another thing about me: Most of the time, I am plain hilarious.
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.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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March 13, 2006
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Excerpt from Lucy Rose: Here's the Thing About Me by Katy Kelly
SEPTEMBER 14 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. That is probably because my whole family is not boring, except for maybe my baby cousin, Georgie, but I don't think it's fair to judge if a person is boring until after they know how to talk. My grandmother is extremely not boring. Here is the thing about my grandmother: She acts like her dog can tell time. When she is getting ready to go out she says, "Gumbo, I am going out to give a speech and I'll be back home at six-thirty." Then Gumbo, who is the biggest kind of black poodle you can get, clomps around making toenail noises on the hall floor. Then my grandmother says, "His behavior has been much better since I started telling him my schedule." I think this is wacko but it does tell you something about my grandmother. And just so you know, I mean wacko in a good way. Another thing about her is that she has the exact same name as me: Lucy Rose. She is 58 and I am 8. We are both short for our age. Plus she is a writer and starting today, I am too. I am writing about my eventful life. But I am skipping the days that are not so interesting. That way there will be no dull parts. The reason, by the way, that my grandmother makes speeches is that she is an expert on children. She has a column in the newspaper and people write her letters and ask how they can make their kids shape up and she tells them what to do. I am not a bragger so I do not tell that my grandmother is an expert but a lot of grown-ups guess, because the name of her newspaper column is "Dear Lucy Rose" and there is a picture of her at the top plus she comes to pick me up after school when my mother is working overtime. The problem with having an expert for a grandmother is that some people, when they see me doing something that she would definitely NOT recommend, like on the second day of school when I poked Adam Melon with a stick which he deserved, they tell her and then she tells my mother and then I am in for it. When that happens my mom and I have to have a BIG CHAT and she says, "What came over you, Lucy Rose?" Then I make my shoulders go all shruggy. And then she says, "Let's talk about your feelings." Then if I am in a sassy mood I say, "I am feeling like I would like to watch a little TV." And then she says, "This is serious, Lucy Rose." So I say, "Seriously, I am feeling fine." And she says, "Really, Lucy Rose, tell me your true feelings." And that conversation can go on for quite a little while. My mother's name is Lily Reilly and she has light brown hair that is straight as string and she is five feet and one inch tall and she weighs one hundred and ten pounds exactly. She is fond of doing yoga, which is one boring sport if you ask me. Also she is an artist who works for a TV station that mostly shows the news. So a lot of times she draws maps. She would rather be an artist who draws children's books but we have a mortgage to pay. Most kids don't know about mortgages but I do because my mother is a big one for explaining things and one thing she explained is that a mortgage is how you pay for your house. "You have to send a check for it every single month," she told me. But that is A-OK with my mother because she is wild for our house. We moved to Washington, D.C., this summer from Ann Arbor, Michigan, which is where we used to live before my parents got separated. My true feelings about that are NOT fine. They are yuck. My mom says that is to be expected but I am telling you one thing, I didn't expect it at all. In Ann Arbor we lived in the suburbs and our house had a big yard and a garage and a family room. My dad still lives in it. He says my room will always