Review: Lucky Girl by Jamie Pacton
Lucky Girl by Jamie Pacton was released almost a year ago, and our Book Rewind feature is all about reviewing those backlist titles, no matter when you read them. So on this well-known day of luck, we thought Lucky Girl was the book to feature today! It is a short, fast-paced read that is a perfect green book to get swept away in. It’s out now in physical, e-book, and audio (highly recommend!).
Lucky Girlby Jamie Pacton
Published by: Page Street Kids
on May 11, 2021
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
A hilarious and poignant reflection on what money can and cannot fix
58,642,129. That’s how many dollars seventeen-year-old Fortuna Jane Belleweather just won in the lotto jackpot. It’s also about how many reasons she has for not coming forward to claim her prize.
Problem #1: Jane is still a minor, and if anyone discovers she bought the ticket underage, she’ll either have to forfeit the ticket, or worse . . .
Problem #2: Let her hoarder mother cash it. The last thing Jane’s mom needs is millions of dollars to buy more junk. Then . . .
Problem #3: Jane’s best friend, aspiring journalist Brandon Kim, declares on the news that he’s going to find the lucky winner. It’s one thing to keep her secret from the town — it’s another thing entirely to lie to her best friend. Especially when . . .
Problem #4: Jane’s ex-boyfriend, Holden, is suddenly back in her life, and he has big ideas about what he’d do with the prize money.
As suspicion and jealousy turn neighbor against neighbor, and no good options for cashing the ticket come forward, Jane begins to wonder: Could this much money actually be a bad thing.
This short, fast-paced story is about the least likely person to win the big lottery in a small town, and what kind of trouble that could bring onto someone who isn’t legally allowed to purchase the ticket in the first place. Jane has such a unique story that we don’t hear much in YA and I appreciated someone who didn’t have it all handed to her easily. Seriously such a good, inspiring, fun read.
I loved that the characters were lower/middle class and these struggles directly related to how winning a large sum of money can be dangerous, as well as life-changing. So many YA stories are all upper-class kids and towns and this one wasn’t, which makes sense too.
The tough topics of grief, anxiety, compulsion, and poverty were handled well and really affected me – it brought me back to my youth. My parents are hoarders, too. They don’t think they are, but once I tried cleaning out the pantry of expired foods and I almost got chased out of the house. So I know there are kids out there dealing with similar issues that aren’t widely spoken about – and how your parent’s struggles can be your own demons to slay.
Lucky Girl is a lighthearted yet emotional story at its core with issues that pack a punch. You will feel good on the other side.