The Great Wall of Lucy Wu

( 16 )

Overview

A humorous and heartwarming debut about split cultural identities, and all the ways life fails to go 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, go out for captain of the school basketball team, and take over the bedroom she has always shared with her sister. In an instant, though, her plans are shattered when she finds ...

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The Great Wall of Lucy Wu

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Overview

A humorous and heartwarming debut about split cultural identities, and all the ways life fails to go 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, go out for captain of the school basketball team, 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, a bully who tries to scare Lucy off the basketball team, and Chinese school with the annoying know-it-all Talent Chang. Lucy's year is ruined -- or is it?

A wonderfully funny, warm, and heartfelt tale about the ways life often reveals silver linings in the most unexpected of clouds.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Praise for THE GREAT WALL OF LUCY WU
Winner of the 2011-2012 Asian/Pacific American Library Association Award for Children's Literature

"A delightful story about assimilation and family dynamics . . . sure to appeal to young readers struggling with issues of self-identity, whatever their heritage." --LOS ANGELES TIMES

"[T]hought-provoking, funny, and incredibly heartwarming." --BOOKLIST

"In this humorous and heartfelt novel, debut author Wendy Wan-Long Shang has crafted a poignant and engaging story about learning who you are, and what matters, in the most unexpected ways." -- ASIAN AMERICAN PRESS

"[A] realistic and amusing portrait of family dynamics, heritage, and the challenge of feeling like an outsider." --PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

"[G]enuinely touching." --KIRKUS REVIEWS

"A unique look at the power of family." --DISCOVERY GIRLS MAGAZINE

Publishers Weekly
Sarcastic, attention-seeking, and prone to whining, Lucy Wu has a big personality and plenty of opinions. She is convinced that her sixth-grade year will be the best yet: she's looking forward to having her own bedroom when her older sister leaves for college, and to the upcoming basketball season. Instead, it is one disappointment after another. Her parents invite her late grandmother's long-lost sister, Yi Po, from Shanghai to visit for a few months and share Lucy's room, and instead of basketball practice, Lucy may be forced to attend Chinese school ("The Chinese part of my life just doesn't make sense sometimes," Lucy complains). Additionally, she is dealing with a secret crush and avoiding a bully. First-time author Shang effortlessly interweaves the multiple threads of her story, as Lucy grows tremendously (and rewardingly) while learning about China's turbulent history and the value of sympathy and strength. Bolstered by frequent use of Chinese language and proverbs, this is a realistic and amusing portrait of family dynamics, heritage, and the challenge of feeling like an outsider--even in one's own family. Ages 8–12. (Jan.)
Children's Literature - Jody Little
Lucy Wu thinks sixth grade is going to be the best year ever. Her older sister is moving away to go to college, which means Lucy gets her own room for the first time. She may become captain of the sixth grade basketball team, and the cute new boy at her school, Harrison Miller, will be in her class. But when Lucy learns that her great aunt Yi Po, is coming to stay with the family, Lucy must share her room. She builds a wall between her side of the room and Yi Po's side with her desk and bookshelf. To make matters worse, Lucy's mom tells her that she must attend Chinese school on Saturdays which means she cannot play on her league basketball team with her best friend, Madison. At school, the popular girl, Sloan, has decided she wants to be captain of the sixth grade team. Lucy worries that no one will pick her as captain over Sloan. Things gradually get better for Lucy as she discovers Harrison is also in her Chinese class, and Yi Po takes an interest in Lucy's love of basketball which makes Lucy rethink the wall she has put up between herself and her great aunt. Written in Lucy's point of view with humor, warmth and honesty, this coming-of-age story focuses on true friendship and the importance of family and pride in one's culture. Reviewer: Jody Little
School Library Journal
Gr 4–6—Lucy knows that sixth grade is going to be the best year ever: she finally gets her own room now that her older sister is off to college, and she and her friend Madison are ready to rule the basketball courts. But Lucy's parents put a glitch in those plans when her father returns from a business trip to China with Lucy's great-aunt, who will visit until Christmas. Lucy again has a roommate, and resents this elderly lady who does not speak English and cooks only Chinese food for a family used to pizza and burgers. To make matters worse, her parents insist that she attend Chinese school on Saturday mornings, which means forgoing basketball practice. She is busy with her suburban American life and doesn't feel the need to converse in Chinese or to dwell on Chinese traditions. Slowly, though, she comes to appreciate all that Yi Po has lived through and the quiet ways that her great-aunt shows her love for the family. When Lucy is bullied by a popular girl, she thinks about what her brother told her about Yi Po's life during China's Cultural Revolution and determines that she will act with similar courage and conviction. Lucy is an engaging character, and Shang skillfully weaves in Chinese history and legend as she brings the relationships between Lucy and her family and friends to life. Fans of Grace Lin's Year of the Dog (2006) and Year of the Rat (2008, both Little, Brown) will enjoy meeting this feisty protagonist as she learns to dismantle some walls she has built around herself.—Kim Dare, Fairfax County Public Schools, VA
Kirkus Reviews

Lucy Wu may only be 4 feet tall, but she has big (and brilliantly on-the-money kidlike) dreams: to play professional basketball for the WNBA and then create a design shop aimed at sports-loving gals. When the story opens, sixth grade is about to start, and Lucy is on top of the world. She comes down with a bang when she learns that Yi Po, her grandmother's long-lost sister, is coming from China for a long visit and will be sharing her room. Worse, Lucy is stuck attending Chinese school and must compete to be captain of the basketball team with a girl who doesn't believe in fair play. Readers may initially want to tell Lucy to stop whining, but as the character evolves, she becomes sympathetic and worth rooting for. 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.(Fiction. 8-12)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780545162166
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/1/2013
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 128,616
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 700L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Wendy Wan-Long Shang is the extremely grateful recipient of a Work-in-Progress Grant from the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. THE GREAT WALL OF LUCY WU is her first book. She lives with her family in suburban Washington, DC.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 16 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(13)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 16 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2013

    Read

    I loved it. Great plot and the author really knows how a sixth grader likes to think
    Lina Stein

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2013

    NayNays Reveiw

    The great wall oof lucy wu is rhe best book i have ever read.When i first read it i couldnt stop at all i had to keep reading i hope my review would in courage u to read the book

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 13, 2013

    Love it!

    Great book! Very suspensive; kept me on the edge of my chair
    the whole time! ; )

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2013

    GREAT BOOK


    GREAT BOOK

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2014

    Please read this review

    I am in the same area. My grandma is full chinese and wants me to be like a chinese girl. What should i do? Love the book,
    ALYSSA FORTSON

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2014

    This book is so good I really like it I THINK THAT THIS is a really good book.

    This is a realy good book and im glad I read it. Rating and review By Carolina Noguera

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2013

    Great story

    I really liked this book. It wasn't predictable unlike many other books. This book was a great read and I highly reccomend it to anyone who is interested. I loved this book!!!!!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2013

    Lucy Wu...I love you

    Purchased for my daughter, but found myself reading the book to the end. Lucy Wu is a lovable kid who brought me back to my own 6th grade memories. You will find yourself smiling and laughing at times about the things this kid thinks and says. VERY ENJOYABLE!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 30, 2013

    Great book Great book

    I totally love this book

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2013

    Great book!

    Teaches about chinese culture in a really fun way.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2013

    Beth

    278

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 8, 2013

    ?

    It won't let me read it. why???

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 16 Customer Reviews

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