Just My Luck

Just My Luck

by Cammie McGovern


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Critically acclaimed author Cammie McGovern's powerful and heartwarming middle grade novel will appeal to readers who loved R. J. Palacio's Wonder, Holly Sloan's Counting by 7s, and Lynda Mullaly Hunt's Fish in a Tree. "This brave story, told with wry humor, is inspirational," raved Ann M. Martin, New York Times bestselling author of Rain Reign.

Fourth grade is not going at all how Benny Barrows hoped. He hasn't found a new best friend. He's still not a great bike rider—even though his brother George, who's autistic, can do tricks. And worst of all, he worries his dad's recent accident might be all his fault. Benny tries to take his mom's advice and focus on helping others, and to take things one step at a time. But when his dad ends up in the hospital again, Benny doesn't know how he and his family will overcome all the bad luck that life seems to have thrown their way.

Just My Luck is a deeply moving and rewarding novel about a down-on-his-luck boy whose caring heart ultimately helps him find the strength to cope with tragedy and realize how much he truly has to offer his friends and family.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062330659
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 02/23/2016
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 512,083
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)
Lexile: 790L (what's this?)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Cammie McGovern is the author of Say What You Will as well as the adult novels Neighborhood Watch, Eye Contact, and The Art of Seeing. Cammie is also one of the founders of Whole Children, a resource center that runs after-school classes and programs for children with special needs. She lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, with her husband and three children.

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Just My Luck 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
MBMullin More than 1 year ago
Benny and his family are going through some tough times. Tough times can take brutal honesty, and a little help from your friends can make things so much better. We don't always know who our friends are, though. This poignant and realistic tale helped me understand 4th grade friendships in a new way, just as Benny learned new and surprising things about himself and his peers. Upper elementary and early middle school kiddos who are sensitive to social nuances will enjoy this window into Benny's life: his autistic brother, his Lego-movie passion, his uncertainty about friends at school, and his questions about his dad's future.
This_Kid_Reviews_Books More than 1 year ago
Synopsis- Benny still blames himself, even though everyone keeps saying that it isn’t his fault. His dad was jogging next to him while he was biking, and Benny’s helmet crashed into his father’s head. Now his father has internal bleeding in his brain, and may never be the same again. Pair that with the fact Benny’s best friend moved away, his autistic brother is a WAY better bike rider than him, fourth grade is not that great and Benny’s family is barely hanging in there. Somehow Benny keeps going through all this bad luck. What I Thought- This is a great book about learning to see the positive things in life even when it all appears going terribly wrong. Benny is the youngest sibling, has some heavy weights on his shoulders to begin with his dad is recovering after a brain operation that Benny blames himself for. You really feel for Benny as he tries to make sense of his life. I think many kids will relate to Benny even if his problems are larger (or smaller) than the ones they face. The book has a great message of perseverance that will resonate with kids. The dialogue and relationships in the book are well thought out and ring true. The writing is perfect for the age it is written for. I like the way Ms. McGovern wrote a heartfelt story about some very big life issues that always has a slice of hope between the lines – maybe hope isn’t the right word. I think the reader can feel Benny’s fortitude. This is a thoughtful book about learning to live with the bad days in your life, and making them better. *NOTE* I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book
KateUnger More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! I was a little hesitant to read it because middle grade doesn't always work for me, but I couldn't pass up a Cammie McGovern book. I love her writing so much, and this book did not disappoint. Benny is in 4th grade, and his best friend moved away at the end of last year. He is struggling to find new friends. He is also struggling at home. He feels responsible for his father's accident over the summer that has left his brain more than a bit muddled. His family is dealing fairly well. After all they have some experience given Benny's older brother, George, who is autistic. Then Benny's school starts a program to catch kids doing good deeds. Benny is determined to be recognized, but he is continually ignored. His teacher tries to explain that he's so good already; he shouldn't need the extrinsic motivation. But Benny does. This book is all about friendship and kindness. It has wonderful characters and terrific messages, but it never feels preachy. There were some many fun details as well: Benny's obsession with making Lego stop motion movies, his friend Olga and her hand drawn comic books, George's antics, and Benny's teacher. This book would make a great read aloud for children ages 8-10, and it is of course a great read for middle grade and up. I highly recommend it! http://www.momsradius.com/2016/04/book-review-just-my-luck-mg.html
Sandy5 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this novel. It was a story with characters that you could relate to and a story which stole your heart. Benny is starting fourth grade and he’s was happy because he heard wonderful things about Mr. Norris, his teacher. Mr. Norris was fun and exciting and Benny needed that as he was starting the year off without a best friend. Kenneth had moved away and he needed to find a replacement. Benny situation at home was different than his peers. His brother was autistic and his father had just suffered a brain aneurysm for which Benny was blaming himself for. Benny found comfort at school and he was hoping Mr. Norris would help him forgot his issues at home. The school year started out fine but soon Mr. Norris started to change. He was not the person others projected him to be, nor was he the person the students knew from the beginning of the school year, something was different. Benny and Olga noticed this change immediately and wondered why. I liked Benny’s relationship with Olga. She was comfortable in her own shoes and she did her own thing. She wasn’t looking for anyone’s approval yet Benny wondered about his relationship with her. I loved Benny relationship with his brother George. George is autistic, a high functioning autistic individual who is happy most of the time. Benny is very patient with George and there is definitely love between these two brothers. Benny knows George is special and he cares for him deeply, you can see that is his mannerism and in the language that he uses with him. There are times when Benny is frustrated with George but most sibling get this way with each other. It’s the stories with his family that touched me the most: the frustration, the love, the commitment, the embarrassment, there were many emotions that were tied to these stories. His father’s recent illness how this affected Benny and his family was moving and powerful and made for a wonderful read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so interesting!!!
Elizabeth5713 More than 1 year ago
I love all of Cammie McGovern's books because of the richness and depth to her writing, and this book is certainly no exception! My favorite aspect to Just My Luck is the inclusion of characters with disabilities, in this case, both an adult and children. I love the way that George and his father interact, especially toward the end of the book. Benny is wonderfully written, a complex character with a lot of heart to share with the world.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A vewy goob bookzies.