Sunday, March 15, 2009

Ruby Lu, Brave and True - by Lenore Look

Kids who are new to reading chapter books love funny stories that they can relate to. With a sheer love of life and the courage to take risks, Ruby Lu brings the reader right into the joys and fears of being a kid, especially growing up in a Chinese-American family.
Ruby Lu, Brave and True
by Lenore Look, illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf.
Atheneum Books for Young Readers, c2004.
ages 7 - 9
Ruby Lu is a happy kid. She likes her house. She likes her street and neighbors. Now that she is almost eight, she's allowed to walk to school by herself, and that is great. Ruby loves her life – she has a great, positive outlook. But there are days when it's very hard being Ruby. Like the day when her neighbor's baby brother starts talking and Ruby’s baby brother Oscar won’t say anything. Or the day when her parents want her to go to Chinese school on Saturdays so that she could talk with her grandparents. “But Ruby understood her grandparents just fine. They loved her and she loved them. They brought her treats and she ate them. They took walks in the park and Ruby led the way.” Ruby takes all sorts of paths dealing with the frustrating things in her life. Just like the kids I know, she changes her mind from hating something to absolutely loving it as quick as can be.

Lenore Look focuses on home, family and her Chinese-American culture in a way that shares her unique viewpoint, making it both universal and personal at the same time. Ruby’s creativity and voice will engage readers from any background, bringing in outsiders and welcoming Chinese-Americans. She will have readers laughing at Ruby's quirks, and nodding when they see her change her mind about what she loves and hates. Young readers will also appreciate the quick pace of the novel and the funny, frequent illustrations. This is a great book for 2nd and 3rd graders as they become more comfortable with chapter books.

You can find it at the Oakland Public Library and the Berkeley Public Library.

If you like Ruby Lu, check out the second in the series: Ruby Lu, Empress of Everything.

This review was written by Mary Ann Scheuer, for Great Kid Books. Copyright 2009.

1 comment:

  1. This sounds really good. Great review. Love the cover and think it will appeal to young readers.