Monday, April 23, 2012

MMGM: The Great Wall of Lucy Wu by Wendy Wan-long Shang

(Whoops! This was the one for today...)
About The Book: In this humorous and heartfelt debut about a split cultural identity, nothing goes according to plan for sixth-grader Lucy Wu.Lucy Wu, aspiring basketball star and interior designer, is on the verge of having the best year of her life. She's ready to rule the school as a sixth grader and take over the bedroom she has always shared with her sister. In an instant, though, her plans are shattered when she finds out that Yi Po, her beloved grandmother's sister, is coming to visit for several months -- and is staying in Lucy's room. Lucy's vision of a perfect year begins to crumble, and in its place come an unwelcome roommate, foiled birthday plans, and Chinese school with the awful Talent Chang.

First Line: There is a Chinese story that goes like this: An old man lived at the edge of the northern frontier.

One Great Line: The whole party was becoming a mess wrapped up in a disaster covered in a mistake.(210)

What Other's Have Said: "In Lucy Wu, author Wendy Wan-Long Shang has accomplished something quite difficult: She's made a girl who constantly feels sorry for herself extremely funny and relatable as Lucy attempts to strike a balance between parental expectation and self-fulfillment, her Chinese heritage and the American lifestyle." —Susan Carpenter LA Times

"There’s little in the way of plot twists that experienced readers won’t see coming, but the cultural depiction of the Chinese-American family, Shang’s use of traditional tales and Yi Po’s heart-wrenching story add dimensionality and heft, and the novel’s final scenes are genuinely touching." —Kirkus

What I Thought: I love, love, love Lucy Wu. She is clearly trying to navigate the issues of duel cultures and Shang does an excellent job of contrasting her U.S. upbringing with her heritage. When her Great Aunt comes to live with her you can just feel her embarrassment. Lucy is the perfect mix of teen angst. Complete with sardonic moping and crazy humor, so hilarious you can't help but like her.  

Awards: (Holy jumpin' gummi bears!)

2012-2013 Georgia Children’s Book Award Nominee 2012 Kansas Reading Circle Catalog
2013 Maine State Book Award Nominee
2013 Rhode Island Children's Book Award
2012-2013 Dorothy Canfield Fisher Master List (Vermont)

Many thanks to the Cooperative Children's Book Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for selecting LUCY for its CCBC Choices List and to Bank Street College of Education Children's Book Committee, for including LUCY for its Best Children's Books of the Year list.

The Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association has awarded LUCY its 2012 Children's Literature Award. And my fellow Mixed-Up Files blogger Sheela Chari received Honors in this category for her amazing book, Vanished.

LUCY was a finalist in the CYBILS (Children's and Young Adult Blogger Literary Awards) Middle-Grade Fiction category for 2011!

The Wall Street Journal blog, Speakeasy, mentioned LUCY as part of its "Best of Asia and Asian-America 2011".

The American Booksellers Association has made LUCY a New Voices middle grade book selection! New Voices selections represent ten middle grade and ten young adult books by debut authors. Now I've got some reading to do!

LUCY has received Silver Honors from Parents' Choice! Parents' Choice "honors material that respects a child’s age, interests and abilities, and adheres to universal human values".
Wendy  Shang
About The Author: 
Wendy Wan-Long Shang

Who:I was born in Wilmington, Delaware. After a brief stay in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, my family moved to northern Virginia, outside of Washington, DC, and I live there now. My husband is also from this area, and we feel incredibly lucky to be surrounded by lots of family. We have three kids, one dog and two cats.-Website

When:Like many writers, I loved to write as a kid. I wrote my first book when I was about five - it was called The Big Fight and it was about a bunny and a sheep arguing over who was the fluffiest. Like many writers, I went on to law school. (Well, not right after being five. A little later than that.)-Website


  1. This sounds amazing and I haven't heard of it, so THANK YOU! I'm adding it to my to-read list.

  2. I loved this book--it was a Cybils' finalist this year! Great review--and I hope lots of other people read about Lucy Wu

  3. This sounds awesome. My daughter is adopted from China and sadly is too old for it. But I might have to read it.


I would love to hear from you!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...