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Lula Bell on Geekdom, Freakdom, & the Challenges of Bad Hair
     

Lula Bell on Geekdom, Freakdom, & the Challenges of Bad Hair

5.0 5
by C.C. Payne
 

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While Lula Bell Bonner tries desperately to fit in by not standing out, her wise and irrepressible Grandma Bernice says: Let your light shine! It's Grandma Bernice who provides the joy that balances Lula Bell’s difficult school life, but when this balance is upended, when Kali Keele turns up the heat on her cruel teasing, and when the talent

Overview

While Lula Bell Bonner tries desperately to fit in by not standing out, her wise and irrepressible Grandma Bernice says: Let your light shine! It's Grandma Bernice who provides the joy that balances Lula Bell’s difficult school life, but when this balance is upended, when Kali Keele turns up the heat on her cruel teasing, and when the talent show—that she should NEVER have signed up for—is about to happen, how in the world can Lula Bell cope?

This funny, heartfelt novel exploring friendship, family, and forgiveness, introduces an unforgettable hero, lost in the wilderness of 5th grade, searching for her own shining light.

The author of Lula Bell has donated this book to the Worldreader program.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Kris Sauer
Fifth-grader Lula Bell is just trying to fit in, but her efforts are failing miserably. The daily target of Kali, former best friend and now the school's number one bully, Lula just tries to get through each day by not standing out. Although completely shunned by the girls in her grade, Lula does have an ally in the geeky but brilliant Alan, whose unwavering friendship Lula takes for granted. Lula's obituary-loving irrepressible quilt-making Grandma Bernice is in her corner as well, constantly urging Lula to "let her light shine!" In a moment of utter insanity, Lula agrees to sign up for the talent show. But when Grandma Bernice unexpectedly passes away, Lula's world is completely torn apart and the talent show is the last thing she means to participate in. Despite the pain, Lula learns to find her balance and deal with the heartache of losing her staunchest ally and cheerleader. In the process, she overcomes her fear of standing out, decides to stand up for herself, and discovers what is true about friends and bullies alike. Lula is an amazingly real character that young readers will instantly identify with. Who, after all, hasn't had a bad hair day, feared performing, or been teased mercilessly by classmates? Readers will laugh, cringe and cry in turn as Lula navigates life with and without her beloved grandmother. An excellent book with a southern flair, tweens will find much to enjoy in Lula's trials, tribulations and eventual successes.
Kirkus Reviews
Fifth-grader Lula Bell longs to escape the attention of strident bully—and former BFF—Kali. In her endeavor to blend in, Lula Bell forgoes her favorite lunches, spurns Alan, her staunchest ally, and dismisses her talents. However, her vivacious Grandma Bernice has different ideas, encouraging Lula Bell to "let [her] light shine no matter who's watchin' " and be true to herself. Lula Bell's desire to embrace anonymity is at odds with her mother and Grandma Bernice's wishes for her to participate in the school's talent show. Grandma Bernice's unexpected death provides the impetus for Lula Bell to reconsider the status quo, leading her to take decisive action and bravely confront her anxieties. A surprising plot development finds Lula Bell demonstrating extraordinary generosity in the true spirit of her beloved grandmother. Ultimately, she realizes that in her quest to be accepted, she has overlooked a true and steadfast friend. Payne thoughtfully examines the grieving process as Lula Bell struggles to accept and adjust to her loss. With an authentic voice, the wryly humorous Lula Bell contemplates life and the nature of true friendship with distinctive candor. Payne's hopeful tale encourages readers to rejoice in what makes them unique. (Fiction. 9-12)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780761462255
Publisher:
Amazon Childrens Publishing
Publication date:
10/02/2012
Pages:
276
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)
Lexile:
790L (what's this?)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

C.C. Payne’s debut novel, Something to Sing About, received a starred, boxed review in Booklist and was chosen a Booklist Top Ten Book for 2008. She lives in Kentucky.

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Lula Bell on Geekdom, Freakdom, & the Challenges of Bad Hair 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Eliza Lockwood More than 1 year ago
Great Read Aloud! My mother has been reading this book to me at night and I love it! I am in 4th grade and I know girls like Kali. Soooo mean. I really like Lula Bell and her family. I think you should read this book.
sienagirl More than 1 year ago
Every once in a while, a book comes along that leaves you wanting for more. Lula Bell on Geekdom, Freakdom & the Challenges of Bad Hair was that book for me. I loved it. I began reading it one evening before bed and didn't stop until I finished! As a public school librarian who is immersed in the lives of middle schoolers, I applaud author C.C. Payne for portraying the life of a fifth grader so realistically. The students I work with can be best friends one minute and bitter enemies the next. They are self conscious and avoid drawing attention to themselves and are unlikely to associate with kids others deem "different." Lula Bell Bonner, bullied by a former friend and uncomfortable with "crazy haired" Alan, her only school ally, is a protagonist that my students can relate to. In fact, Lula Bell's story could be my own. Told with sensitivity and sincerity, C.C. Payne takes readers on a sometimes difficult journey of ostracism and loss but at in the end leaves us uplifted and hopeful. I laughed and I cried and then I cheered for Lula Bell. Simply put, a fabulous read.
JAFinc More than 1 year ago
Lula Bell Bonner just wants to fit in. She doesn't want to, as her Grandma Bernice keeps insisting, let her light shine. All she wants to do is be as invisible as possible, to avoid the bullying of once-friend Kali Keele and her entourage, to make it through the Fifth Grade, and not humiliate herself in the talent show, one inconspicuous step at a time. But when she loses her best friend, Lula Bell realizes that maybe playing turtle-possum isn't the best way get through life, and that sometimes, when you let your light shine, you notice that the people you need have been right there beside you all along. The story is instantly engaging, and even as an adult I connected with Lula and her not-unfounded paranoia about standing out in middle school. It's funny, relatable, with some unexpected heartbreak thrown into the mix, drawing you into the story with a profound but understandable-by-all insight into Lula's mindset.  C. C. Payne also does a brilliant job of teaching readers about coping with bullying and loss at a young age, and overcoming both internal and external obstacles, without preaching. It helps that she throws in little humorous asides, tips from Lula Bell to everyone from Grandmothers to waiters, making it as if you're having a conversation with Lula Bell. All in all, Lula Bell on Geekdom, Freakdom, and the Challenges of Bad Hair, was a quick, highly enjoyable read. I dare you to try and read it without a Southern twang.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My school got an early copy of this and the librarian set it aside for me (I'm her best reader). It was one of the best books I ever read. I laughed out loud. I cried. I got chill bumps. I loved it!