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The Higher Power of Lucky

Written by: Susan Patron
Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
Length: 3 hrs and 37 mins

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Publisher's Summary

Lucky, age 10, can't wait another day. The meanness gland in her heart and the crevices full of questions in her brain make running away from Hard Pan, California (population 43), the rock-bottom only choice she has.

It's all Brigitte's fault for wanting to go back to France. Guardians are supposed to stay put and look after girls in their care! Instead, Lucky is sure that she'll be abandoned to some orphanage in Los Angeles where her beloved dog, HMS Beagle, won't be allowed. She'll have to lose her friends: Miles, who lives on cookies, and Lincoln, future U.S. president (maybe) and member of the International Guild of Knot Tiers. Just as bad, she'll have to give up eavesdropping on 12-step anonymous programs, where the interesting talk is all about Higher Powers. Lucky needs her own "higher power" - and quick.

But she hadn't planned on a dust storm, or needing to lug the world's heaviest survival-kit backpack into the desert.

©2006 Susan Patron (P)2007 Random House, Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group

Critic Reviews

  • Newbery Medal Winner, 2007

"Patron's plotting is as tight as her characters are endearing." (Booklist)

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anderman,
  • 29-07-09

Great family read

My kids and I loved this book. Lucky is heartwarming. Her journey towards finding her higher power introduced a wonderful and ecclectic cast of characters. It shows the power of love and how easy it is to misjudge those around us.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Karolin
  • 04-04-07

Wise, Warm & Worthy

In the warmth of a desert town we journey to find the warmth deep inside Lucky! She defines the meaning of finding ones higher power so beautifully. A fact that escapes most adults! Wouldn't it be great if readers of all ages could discover this journey through the eyes of a child?

12 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Anonymous User
  • 21-07-17

Wonderful book, loved it

I never thought I would be so engaged to this story. Great and interesting characters.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mom in Georgia
  • 03-06-15

Best Book Ever!

My daughter did a book report on this book. She loved it. We are so happy she can listen to it on audible now!

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Mary Lynne Jarvis
  • 13-08-12


What would have made The Higher Power of Lucky better?

I naturally am drawn to books that have received the Newbery Medal endorsement, which I understood this book to have received, but there was nothing fun, exciting, mysterious, intriguing, or heartwarming about this book. I'm not sure who would like it, but definitely not this retired children's librarian. I want action, emotion, or magic. This had very little of any of that. Maybe a 4th grade girl who hasn't read much of anything else might find some interest here.

What could Susan Patron have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

More intrigue.

Which character – as performed by Cassandra Campbell – was your favorite?

The best part of this was the whole performance of the book's characters.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Yes. The little boy was found and saved. The town rallied around the children. And Lucky found out she had misunderstood what her caregiver intended to do. But it was all so predictable that only a child would not have missed guessing how it would end.