Beginner’s Luck by Laura Pederson

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I would never have known about this book had a friend not sent it me in the mail and demanded that I read it. It is a pure delight.

Laura Pederson, like (YA God) John Greene, showers us with crossword puzzle-y facts that you never knew you really ought to know. Culture, cooking, antiques, literature, religion, and poker are just a few topics you will suddenly become strangely articulate in. And (oh yeah) it’s a beautiful coming-of-age story as well.

Hallie is a charming character, endearing in her struggles to be taken seriously in poker, and heroic in her fight to be allowed to live free from her parents who have proved to be increasingly too busy to notice her. This is a daring journey that Hallie takes on, and we are so glad she does. I wish more people knew about this book, this is one that deserves a U-Turn in time and marketing. If you love quirky YA fiction, here it is.

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