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Lulu's Hat
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Lulu's Hat

5.0 1
by Susan Meddaugh
 

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In True Magic Families, one person of each generation is born with the gift of real magic. Lulu could never inherit this gift because she was adopted. Then she discovers an old hat in her uncle’s costume trunk, and suddenly finds herself on a magic journey.

Overview

In True Magic Families, one person of each generation is born with the gift of real magic. Lulu could never inherit this gift because she was adopted. Then she discovers an old hat in her uncle’s costume trunk, and suddenly finds herself on a magic journey.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Meddaugh's (Martha Speaks) illustrated tale of a girl magician offers comic relief for those boy-centered, multi-volume sorcery novels. Per the wizard-book formula, Lulu is 12, ordinary looking but for her strange blue eyes and adopted by a regular family that includes a career magician, Uncle Jerry. "Lulu's parents had often told her how Uncle Jerry had discovered her during a performance in Atlantic City," wearing a sealed locket. One summer, Lulu goes on the road with her uncle's Traveling Magic Show and discovers her knack for hat tricks. Her unpredictable top-hat produces rabbits, "giant cane toads" and a thick-set, Martha-esque dog, "and that was lucky too, because no matter what came out of Lulu's hat, the dog could always round it up." When the dog vanishes into the hat and won't come out, Lulu follows him into Deep Magic Space, where she learns the secret of her original family. In concise chapters and humorous black-and-white drawings, Meddaugh flashes between the parallel universe and the everyday world, where a boy's shenanigans land the magic hat in a pond (Lulu gets caught in a flood) and under a hair dryer ("In Deep Magic Space, a dry hot wind was blowing"). Lulu doesn't have much personality as she goes through the plotted motions, but the suspense develops nicely and the puzzle pieces snap into place for a witty outcome. Ages 6-10. (Mar.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
Only one member of each generation in True Magic Families has the touch. Even though she is adopted and has no chance of becoming a real magician, Lulu wants to tour the summer as Uncle Jerry's assistant. In her uncle's wardrobe trunk, Lulu finds a black top hat to wear onstage. It seems made for her. When Lulu wears the hat, she can perform the tricks her uncle taught her. The show is a hit as Lulu pulls all kinds of interesting things out of the hat. When a dog dives into the hat, Lulu goes after him. Like Alice plunging down the rabbit hole, Lulu enters Deep Magic Space where strange things happen. The story splits like a lady being sawed in half. The hat is picked up by a bratty boy who drops the hat in a pond, sticks it in the refrigerator and more. Meanwhile, in Lulu's parallel universe, she experiences a flood and freezing weather. At the end of the journey, she finds out the truth about her real family. Meddaugh didn't weigh down her story with adoption issues or character studies. Her breezy drawings are in keeping with the light-hearted style. 2002, Houghton Mifflin,
— Candice Ransom
School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-In a True Magic Family, only one child of each generation is born with the ability to be a real magician. Since Lulu is adopted and displays no aptitude for magic at all, her cousins regard it as a "wasted summer" when the 12-year-old is tapped to be Uncle Jerry the Great's assistant. A shiny black top hat she finds soon gives her the power and confidence to perform tricks. When Hereboy, a dog, disappears into it, Lulu bravely steps in after him. While she is meeting lost apprentices in Deep Magic Space, the topper is purloined by Earl, a nasty boy who uses it for mischief. In a number of hilarious vignettes, he struggles to find the right combination of magic words to make the hat work, releasing chaos. In an amazing series of final twists, Earl, his overbearing mother, Lulu, her long-lost brother, and Hereboy come together in a satisfying conclusion that solidifies the girl's credentials, reveals her True Family identity, and wrests the chapeau from the bad boy. With plot twists, cliff-hanger chapter endings, a large dose of originality, sparkling humor, and even an epilogue, this witty chapter book will hold readers' attention. Throughout, Meddaugh's accessible, black-and-white wash illustrations add to the child appeal and create visual punctuation for this dizzy tale of a good-hearted, plucky girl who discovers not only her magic, but friendship and family as well. Hats off to Lulu.-Marge Loch-Wouters, Menasha's Public Library, WI Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
From the Publisher
"This is fast and funny; Meddaugh's plot is satisfyingly farfetched, and there is just the right amount of tension and suspense." The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"In concise chapters and humorous black-and-white drawings, Meddaugh flashes between the parallel universe and the everyday world."—Publishers Weekly Publishers Weekly

"With plot twists, cliff-hanger chapter endings, a large dose of originality, sparkling humor, and even an epilogue, this witty chapter book will hold readers' attention. . . . Hats off to Lulu."—School Library Journal School Library Journal

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618771271
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
09/25/2006
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
80
Product dimensions:
7.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.13(d)
Age Range:
8 - 10 Years

Meet the Author

Susan Meddaugh was born and raised in Montclair, New Jersey. She graduated from Wheaton College, where she studied French literature and fine arts. After working briefly with an advertising agency in New York, she moved to Boston and worked at a publishing company for ten years, first as a designer, then art editor, and finally as art director. While there, she did the illustrations for GOOD STONES (Houghton Mifflin) by Anne Epstein, and then decided to strike out on her own as a freelance illustrator and creator of children's books. Since that time, Susan has written and illustrated many popular books for children, including MARTHA SPEAKS, which was chosen as a NEW YORK TIMES Best Illustrated Book for 1992. In 1998 she was awarded the New England Book Award, given by the New England Booksellers Association to recognize a body of work. Her work also was acknowledged with a New York Times Best Illustrated Award. She lives in Sherborn, Massachusetts.

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Lulu's Hat 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An imaginative journey that keeps my kids gripped, amused and reading late at night! My daughter's favorite!