Book Review of Lucky Strike
Sponsored by Virtual Book Tours
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(February 24, 2015)
Category: Children's Fiction, Middle Grade, Fantasy, Magic, Friendship, Bullies
Tour Date: April 1-May29, 2015
Available in: Print & ebook, 272 Pages
By the award winning author of 'The Dogs of Winter', Bobbie Pyron.
A rich, southern voice tells the unforgettable story of two vulnerable outsiders, the lightning strike that turns their world upside down and the true meaning of lucky. Nate Harlow has never had a lucky day in his life. He's never won a prize, he's never been picked first, he's never even won a coin toss. His best friend, Genesis Beam (aka Gen), believes in science and logic, and she doesn't think for one second that there's such a thing as luck, good or bad. But only an extremely unlucky person could be struck by lightning on his birthday... and that person is Nate Harlow.
By some miracle, though, Nate survives, and the strike seems to have changed his luck. Suddenly, Nate's grandpa is the busiest fisherman in their small, beachside town. And Nate finds himself the center of attention, the most popular kid at school, the one who hits a game-winning home run! This lucky streak can't last forever, though, and as a hurricane draws close to the shores of Paradise Beach, Nate and Gen may need more than just good luck to save their friendship and their town: They need a miracle.
Praise for Lucky Strike by Bobbie Pyron:"This well-told story of growth, friendship, and small-town life hits all the right notes. The quirkiness of the characters and the town never goes too far, and there is an overall cozy feeling to the book. Genesis’s dad is the preacher at The Church of the One True Redeemer and Everlasting Light, but she is a scientist through and through, which adds complexity to the text, including musings on destiny, fate, probability, and weather. Fans of Susan Patron’s Higher Power of Lucky (S. & S., 2006), Sheila Turnage’s Three Times Lucky (Dial, 2012), and Ingrid Law’s Savvy (2008; both, Dial) will find something new for their to-read shelves."- School Library Journal starred review
"Even lightly sketched characters leap off the pages, adding rich depth to an already satisfying tale. In the slightly fantastical Gulf Coast world that Bobbie Pyron (The Dogs of Winter, 2012) has imagined, people can change in unexpected ways. With just a spark of magic, bullies can become true friends, those without humor can learn to giggle, and perennial victims can emerge victorious. Amusing, endearing and sometimes even electrifying."- Kirkus starred review
"Bobbie Pyron offers a gentler take on survival and friendship than in her gritty novel The Dogs of Winter. A dramatic and sweetly poignant story, enlivened by a dash of magical realism."- Publisher Weekly
Praise for The Dogs of Winter:Junior Library Guild Selection Kirkus Best Books of the Year!
"Packs plenty of punch.” The New York Times
"This story is amazing. I read it in one sitting, I couldn't put it down. The writing is captivating and the story is heartbreaking. The characters are wonderful, both the good and the bad. The writing is descriptive and filled with emotion. An absolute MUST read."-Bev Sharp, The Wormhole
"An amazing story that was emotional and realistic? The book is written in first person, and I think this is a perfect story for young adults and older adults alike. The tenacity of the dogs and the boy will enthrall you. There were no boring portions of the story, and I believe that the author captured the emotions of the characters perfectly. I look forward to reading more by this author in the future."-Ruth A. Hill, My Devotional Thoughts
" I loved this book. I loved the writing. I loved the characters. The book is adventurous, engaging, happy, sad, and an overall emotional roller coaster all rolled into one."-BookAngel, As I Turn the Pages
"Bobbie Pyron has a gift for creating characters that live in my heart. She did it with A Dog's Way Homeand she's done it with this one, The Dogs of Winter. I wanted to dive into the story, take Mishka in my arms and just love him. Bobbie Pyron has created an emotionally powerful story about survival, love, and healing. This is not a story I will ever forget. It is a truly thought-provoking and unforgettable read."-Heidi, GEO Librarian
About Bobbie Pyron:Bobbie Pyron was born in Hollywood, Florida and spent her growing up years up in the panhandle, swimming in the Gulf of Mexico and dreaming of being a mermaid. She has degrees in Psychology and Anthropology, and a Masters degree in Library Science, and has worked as a librarian for over twenty-five years.
Her first book, a novel for teens titled The Ring (WestSide Books), was published in October of 2009. Her second book, A Dog’s Way Home (HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books), was published to starred reviews in March of 2011. The Dog Writers Association of America recently awarded Bobbie the Maxwell Medal of Excellence and the Merial Human-Animal Bond Award. It was also named a Banks Street Best Books of the Year. Bobbie Pyron's book, The Dogs of Winter (Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic), came out October of 2012. The Dogs of Winter is a Junior Library Guild Selection and a Kirkus Best 100 Children’s Books of the Year.
Bobbie lives in Park City, Utah with her husband, two dogs, and two cats.
Bobbie Pyron's Website.
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LUCKY STRIKE EXCERPT
Nate wandered to the living room. He’d finally persuaded his grandfather to go back to his fishing boat. “I only have a half day trip today,” his grandpa had said the night before. “I’ll be back in plenty of time for the fish fry.”
Nate plugged in the toaster and dropped in the sacrificial slice of bread. He waited for the smell of burning toast.
Instead, the toaster sang out the prettiest ping! ping! you ever heard. Nate watched wide-eyed as a perfect, golden piece of toast popped up proudly.
“Must be a mistake,” he muttered, and slipped in two more pieces of bread. Again, the toaster popped out the prettiest slices a person could ever want. “Cool.”
Nate ate his perfect toast and listened to the mockingbird in the magnolia tree. Just as the doctor said, the hearing in his left ear had, in fact, returned. He thought that bird had never sounded so sweet.
He got ready to go over to Gen’s house. He pulled on shorts and carefully, very carefully pulled a long sleeve shirt over his bandaged hand and arm. Next week the bandages would come off. The thought of seeing what all the lightning had left behind made the perfect toast flip in Nate’s stomach.
Nate stepped out the front door and studied the morning sky for even the slightest sign of a storm, then headed to Gen’s.
“Where’s everybody?” Nate asked the twin girls dressing up with their cats, Shirley, Goodness, and Mercy (“Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life…Psalms 23:6). Rebecca held tight to Goodness while Ruth tied a tiny straw hat to the cat’s head.
“Up in the kitchen cooking up a storm,” Ruth said.
“For the fish fry,” Rebecca whispered.
Nate found Mrs. Beam in the kitchen chopping cabbages for coleslaw. Gen shredded the carrots while Reverend Beam mixed his secret coleslaw dressing.
“Good morning, Nate,” Mrs. Beam said with a smile. “You ready for your party tonight?’
“I guess,” he said. He eyed the huge bowl of cabbage and carrots. “You’re going to have lots left over, though,” he said in a worried voice. “I don’t think there’s going to be that many people coming.”
“Oh, I don’t know about that,” the Reverend said. “From the talk around town, I think there’s going to be more people coming tonight than you can imagine.”
“Wow!” Leviticus called from his spot on the floor in front of the TV. “Maybe you and your grandpa will be millionaires!”
“I don’t think the odds of becoming millionaires are very likely,” Nate said. “Right Gen?”
Gen shrugged. “Who knows? The odds of you getting struck by lightning are 1 in 650,000, and you did.”
“On a clear day,” Joshua said.
“And your birthday,” Leviticus added.
A shiver raced along the marks the lightning had set upon Nate.
Loved this book. Great story about friendship, the power of hope, and two kids whose lives are changed when one of them gets struck by lightning. Nate is the most unlucky person ever until he survived being struck by lightning. After that his luck changes to good…always. That is good, right? Sometimes good luck is worse than bad luck… and Nate’s good luck may not be so great for his friend, Gen.
I loved the characters in this book. They were so real and likeable. I grew up in a small town where everyone knew my dad who had been raised here. It was rough growing up because I couldn’t get away with anything, but it was also nice to be part of a community. My dad was in construction and times were tough growing up financially. So I could relate to the struggles of the people in this community and also how they came together.
I give this book 4.5 out of 5 clouds.
This product or book may have been distributed for review; this in no way affects my opinions or reviews.