I am so, SO excited to share with you all a book I'd been dying to read since I first heard of its existence. The Luminous Life of Lucy Landry won't be released until March 5 of next year, but I hope you all start pre-ordering and requesting your libraries to buy it as soon as you can, because it's beautiful and poignant and old-fashioned and wonderful.
Here's the publisher's description:
Lucy, a spirited French-Ojibwe orphan, is sent to the stormy waters of Lake Superior to live with a mysterious family of lighthouse-keepers—and, she hopes, to find the legendary necklace her father spent his life seeking…
Selena Lucy Landry (named for a ship, as every sailor’s child should be) has been frightened of the water ever since she lost her father at sea. But with no one else to care for her, she’s sent to foster with the Martins—a large Anishinaabe family living on a lighthouse in the middle of stormy Lake Superior.
The Martin family is big, hard-working, and close, and Lucy—who has always been a dreamer—struggles to fit in. Can she go one day without ruining the laundry or forgetting the sweeping? Will she ever be less afraid of the lake?
Although life at the lighthouse isn’t what Lucy hoped for, it is beautiful—ships come and go, waves pound the rocks—and it has one major It’s near the site of a famous shipwreck, a shipwreck that went down with a treasure her father wanted more than anything . If Lucy can find that treasure—a priceless ruby necklace—won’t it be like having Papa back again, just a little bit?
But someone else is hunting for the treasure, too. And as the lighthouse company becomes increasingly skeptical that the Martins can juggle Lucy and their duties, Lucy and the Martin children will need to find the necklace quickly—or they may not have a home at all.
The Luminous Life of Lucy Landry is a timelessly sweet tale of found family from rising Ojibwe voice Anna Rose Johnson, author of NPR Best Book of the Year The Star That Always Stays . Perfect for fans of L.M. Montgomery and Karina Yan Glaser!
I'd like to say that if any of you aren't at least a little bit tempted by a description that encompasses 1) a heroine reminiscent of and L. M. Montgomery character, 2) a big family story, 3) a treasure hunt, and 4) A LIGHTHOUSE… well, you might be human but are you actually a happy person? ;) Those elements make me very, very happy as a reader. They really made this story so beautiful and so much fun.
I won't write at length today about each of the lovely elements of Lucy Landry. But I do want to focus on the big family aspect, as that's solidly in my wheelhouse. A lot of big family stories capture the chaos and fun of a family of many siblings. Many get the sibling rivalry spot on, and most portray the firm bond of love between brothers and sisters. Few, in my experience, capture the way that it's not just the good things about us, but also our flaws and failures and annoying little habits that allow us to help each other grow. Family is a school of love and a school of life. Without rubbing up against each other's rough edges, we wouldn't have the chance to smooth out our own. The Luminous Life of Lucy Landry portrays this aspect of big family life more accurately than any story I've ever read. Lucy is a very flawed character. The Martins are, too. They don't get along very well at the onset, and it's not just a misunderstanding they grow out of—it's their flaws, front and center, there for everyone to see. But Lucy and the Martins are also, well, wonderful. They are more virtuous than they are flawed, and those virtues do a lot to ease that work of softening edges. And of course, you can't go wrong when you throw in a good adventure and a treasure hunt!
As I said, The Luminous Life of Lucy Landry is available for pre-order now, and releases this coming March. In the meantime, you can check out Always in the Middle for more Marvelous Middle Grade Monday recommendations!
Hi! I'm Faith. I blog about books and creativity, family and faith. Welcome!