- The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty
Library ed. ISBN 978-1-5247-6758-7 $19.99
Trade ed. ISBN 978-1-5247-6757-0 $16.99
E-book ed. ISBN 978-1-5247-6759-4 $10.99
Reviewed from galleys R Gr. 4-7
Four years ago, Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning, leaving her a math genius and also saddling her with OCD rituals. After long homeschooling, she now wants to go to college, but her grandmother insists the twelve-year-old give East [End Page 438] Hamlin Middle School a one-year trial, wherein she must get involved in at least one activity and make at least one friend. Lucy surprises herself by making new friends relatively easily, but when life’s variables like tragedy and betrayal arise, she finds no easy solution. McAnulty delivers an appealing tale of an adolescent simply trying to figure things out. Lucy spends much of her time trying to hide her gift while her flaws are on full display, making her an easy target for teasing from peers and misunderstanding from teachers. The thoughtful takeaway here is that, even for math geniuses, no formula for meaningful relationships exists and mistakes are inevitable but survivable.