Friday, September 11, 2009

Lily and the Creep by Nancy Rue

Lily and the Creep

Lily and the Creep
by Nancy Rue

Trade Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: ZonderKids
First Released: 2001

Author Website
Buy from Amazon

Source: Bought from

Back Cover Description:
Lily and Shad are into it again. But this time, Lily and her friends are fed up with his teasing and decide to give Shad a taste of his own medicine. When Lily and her friends play the ultimate prank on Shad, guess who’s left to take the fall? Lily.

Lily and Shad get assigned a project that they must complete TOGETHER after school. Will this finally bring an end to the infamous feud between Lily and Shad? Or is it the beginning of something much worse? See what happens when Lily makes an unpleasant discovery and has to decide what’s important—becoming someone she can like or someone God can like.

Lily and the Creep is a humorous fiction book for ages 8-12. This definitely is a book with a message to it, and Lily's bound and determined to learn it the most difficult way possible. It's a Christian message, but the story isn't condescending or preachy.

I got this book for my just-turned-12-years-old goddaughter. (Technically, I'm her mentor, but "goddaughter" better describes our relationship.) She feels like she's picked on a lot at school, though I've seen that she's sometimes the one who starts the trouble. She loves to read, and she sometimes listens to suggestions better if she sees a fictional character going through the same problems, trying several realistic solutions, and finally finding one that works. So I tried this book.

I liked the characters, and it kept me (an adult) reading straight through to the end because I wanted to find out how she got out of all her scraps. My young friend also enjoyed it. By the end, Lily's learned about God-esteem (rather than self-esteem) and has started to relate better to Shad even if they aren't exactly friends.

Overall, I'd recommend this well-written book to Christian kids, especially those who feel like they're teased a lot at school.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt from Chapter One
Hey, Robbins,” Leo Cooks hissed in Lily’s ear.

Don’t answer, Lily Robbins told herself sternly. It’s a trick.

She concentrated on not touching his sweaty hand — even though Ms. Gooch had said “join hands with your partner.”

“Ms. Gooch is lookin’ at ya,” Leo whispered.

His breath was hot, and it made Lily want to slap her hand over her ear, but she ignored him.

“She’s givin’ you the eyebrow,” Leo persisted.

That was not a good thing. The teacher’s eyebrow was usually the last warning sign before a name went on the board or something. Don’t fall into this absurd little creep’s trap, Lily thought.

Leo wasn’t actually little. He was even bigger than his buddy Shad Shifferdecker, who was at this very moment managing to step all over the feet of his partner — Lily’s best friend, Reni Johnson. Even as Lily watched, he caught Reni on the side of her Nike with his left shoe. She jabbed him in the ribs with her elbow.

Don’t let him know he’s getting to you, Reni, Lily thought.

Right. Just then Leo jabbed her in the side and hissed, “You better take my hand. Ms. Gooch’s got both eyebrows goin’!”

Both eyebrows and the don’t-start-with-me tone. “Join hands, people,” she called out over the blaring of Italian music. Taking a breath full of dread, Lily slid her hand into Leo’s. He squeezed it like he was wringing out a dishrag, and suddenly, Lily felt a jolt go up her arm. Before she could stop herself, she’d let out a yell.

The music came to an abrupt halt, and Ms. Gooch planted her hands on her hips. Both black eyebrows were in full gear.

“All right, who’s yelling?” she said.

“It was Lily,” Marcie McCleary said.

Lily tucked a curl of red hair behind her ear and otherwise tried to look innocent.

Read the rest of Chapter One.

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