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The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  7,459 ratings  ·  1,248 reviews
Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning. She doesn't remember it, but it changed her life forever. The zap gave her genius-level math skills, and ever since, Lucy has been homeschooled. Now, at 12 years old, she's technically ready for college. She just has to pass 1 more test — middle school!

Lucy's grandma insists: Go to middle school for 1 year. Make 1 friend. Join 1 activ
Hardcover, 294 pages
Published May 1st 2018 by Random House
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Lauren They are accurate, and although Lucy doesn't use her ability to resolve the main conflict in the story (which is a social problem anyway), she does us…moreThey are accurate, and although Lucy doesn't use her ability to resolve the main conflict in the story (which is a social problem anyway), she does use her ability to make a meaningful difference in the story.(less)
Eleanor I think that being struck by lightning caused her to have synesthesia which made numbers have colors to her.

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 ·  7,459 ratings  ·  1,248 reviews

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Cristina Monica
This beautiful book is so under the radar that, out of the 700 magnificent friends that I have on here, only four have added it to their to-read list.

And none have read it.

I am not mad – I would never force someone to read a book (too forcefully) – but I am a little disappointed, because I do so wish more people knew about it and gave it a chance. What can I say, I go hard for my babies.

The last middle grade story I read, titled Aru Shah and the End of Time, was underwhelming to the point that
☘Misericordia☘ ~ The Serendipity Aegis ~  ⚡ϟ⚡ϟ⚡⛈ ✺❂❤❣
Acquired number synesthesia made easy. A fun reading for kids.

I’m a reclusive genius. ... As it turns out, I’m more than just numbers. (c)
Life is like an equation, and mine is perfectly balanced.
Nana + Uncle Paul + Math = Happiness.
Other people might need to add in friends or sports or money or something else, but my equation is already solved. (c)
I’ve thought of myself as a genius, a savant, and a freak, but never an orphan. (c)
Savant means that my math skills are far beyond normal, and
⚡ easy reading, short chapters
⚡ plenty of character interactions
⚡ ARITHMETIC! Math was my favorite subject in grade school. Math homework was my favorite homework to work on. I'd even do extra math problems in my free time, for fun :)
"This is actually a hard answer to calculate. What makes someone a friend? A shared interest? Is there a minimum amount of time you need to spend together? Does the other person need to call you a friend, too?"
⚡ relatable, I saw myself in Lucy and saw my B
Lisa Vegan
This is the kind of children’s middle grade novel I can immediately sink into. I did not want to put it down. It helped me realize how I was often reading a book a day in elementary school (middle grade reader) and jr. high (middle school) because I think I was as fast a reader at ages 9-13 as I am now, and kids’ books “read fast” compared to most books written for an adult audience.

This book gets a full 5 star rating from me and would definitely have been a favorite of mine when I was 9-12 yea
Jolene Gutiérrez
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Lucy is brilliant. Not just because she became a math genius after she was struck by lightning, but because of the intricate way in which Stacy McAnulty has crafted Lucy. She is a 3-dimensional, believable character with many strengths, but also quite a few weaknesses, so the reader is instantly pulled into Lucy's mind and world. Her Nana homeschools Lucy, and reclusive Lucy likes it that way. When her uncle and Nana start discussing Lucy's lack of friends, though, Nana decides she's signing Luc ...more
Rachel Reads Ravenously
Mar 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Rachel Reads Ravenously by: Cristina Monica
4.5 stars

A really cute middle grade novel about a girl who was struck by lightning and becomes a math genius. Smart enough to go to college at 12 if she wanted to, her Nana decides that she needs to conquer something else first: middle school.

The child genius in middle grade a trope I am getting a wee bit sick of but this book was still really excellent all around so I enjoyed it. Great for a kid who feels like they don't fit in and may be a little bit different.

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L A i N E Y
“Is that a sign of being real friends? When you know something they say should be followed by “JK””.

Oh how wonderful.

Lucy is so brave. They are all are. They were lonely before, in their own ways, but becoming friends and being together solved that problem for them all.

I love the project with rescued animals. It got me thinking that we should get kids to get close to animals earlier on, it could help instill a lot of compassion in them. It certainly worked for Lucy and the gang. And worked it d
Dani ❤️ Perspective of a Writer
Check out more reviews @ Perspective of a Writer...

What happens when a girl is struck by lightning?! It zaps her to genius level math skills with only a few side issues... Lucy prefers to be homeschooled as she doesn't have to deal with being made fun of for her rigid routines. Now at 12 years old she's got everything ready to go to enroll in college... only her grandma wants her to pass one more test... middle school!

The short review...

I loved Lucy! I think her kind of character is so relatab
Fafa's Book Corner
Mini review:


GR Ultimate Summer Reading Challenge: Beach Bum.

This was recommended to me by Lola! Click on her name to read her review! I was really looking forward to reading this! I didn't hesitate to put it on hold when I saw that it was in my library. Unfortunately it wasn't for me.

I felt that some of the science wasn't accurate. And that really damped my will to complete this book. Alas I DNFed.

This was a personal thing. I'm sure others will enjoy this more than I did.
The world would have us believe that the left brained and right brained amongst us can never see eye-to-eye. Think about it. How many times have you heard a perfectly intelligent person say with a shrug, “I’m bad at math”? This is considered acceptable behavior amongst the literary. In fact, the sentence might, at most, elicit some sympathetic shrugs from listeners. Now imagine the person saying, “I’m bad at reading”. Disbelieving laughter might come, following by stunned silence. Why do we feel ...more
Mar 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
Second book for Middle Grade March is a win and great on Audio! Lucy is a very special girl. She was once struck by lighting, and now she has incredible, genius level math skills. I love that Lucy has a non-traditional family. She lives with her Grandmother and I love her so much. Lucy could technically go to college now, but her Grandmother wants her to attend a normal school, make friends, and have the typical kid experiences. I couldn't agree with her Grandmother more! This book has many impo ...more
Jun 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommended to MissBecka by: Cristina Monica
Thank you Lola for recommending such a cool book!

Well that was a pleasant surprise!
Our main character, Lucy, was struck by lightning when she was younger and as a result has become a math wizard who has a case of OCD to go with it.
As someone with a mild case of OCD it was refreshing to see acceptance and support for Lucy throughout the book. Anyone dealing with any form of OCD will know that it is not easy to get understanding of all our "quirks" and "weird habits" as a lot of my family and fri
mindful.librarian ☀️
Thanks to the author for sharing this review copy with Kid Lit Exchange!

What a heartwarming and unique middle school story! I loved reading about Lucy and her savant brain as she navigated the challenges of middle school, challenges that are daunting even for the most school-savvy tween. The math angle of this book is absolutely fabulous and while the setting is middle school, this book is appropriate all the way down through 4th grade (younger too, but reading level may be challenging - fine fo
Stephanie Fitzgerald
Aug 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Middle-grade readers, teachers, and dog-lovers!
What Stood Out For Me:
Oh, I love it when a book takes me by surprise and turns into a good dog rescue story! I was enjoying the story of Lucy and her middle-school trials, which were spot-on (Stacy McAnulty knows her stuff!) Then in Chapter 19, Lucy visits an animal shelter for a school project and the already wonderful book gets even better!
I think middle- grade readers would absolutely eat this book up! I’m far removed from that age, but this book is on my “ Best Of 2019” list. Can’t wait for
Dec 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing

“Knowing the path can be just as important as knowing the solution.”

The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty really surprised me! It is my #1 biggest surprise of the year actually. It has everything from sitting routines and Clorox wipes to loyalty and love to even *whispers* math. Yes, I said it…math. But trust me! It all comes together to form a big hearted read.

12 year old Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning when she was 8 years old that, as she puts it, “rewired” her brain.
Nicole M. Hewitt
May 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5/5 Stars

This book was a breath of fresh air, with a uniquely intelligent MC who we can truly root for!

What Fed My Addiction:

A mathematical mind.
When Lucy was struck by lightning, she woke up with genius-level mathematical skills: acquired savant syndrome is the technical name for it. This, in itself, is really interesting, but Lucy’s mathematical skills affect the way she sees the world in so many ways. For instance, she “sees” numbers as colors, sees complex geometrical shapes in the world
Mary Lee
I wish this book had been there for my middle school me. No, I'm not a math savant, but like just about everyone else in the universe, I felt like I didn't fit in. News flash -- hardly anyone does.

Great story of friends and family and a great math teacher (bummer that the LA teacher is such a jerk).
Aj Sterkel
Feb 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: middle-grade
Likes: Lucy reminds me of a smarter, middle-school-aged me. She has obsessive compulsive disorder and struggles to get along with kids who don’t understand her routines. Like Lucy, I had a mental illness and was bullied for it in school. I thought I was a freak who no one could understand (and I threw myself many embarrassing, melodramatic pity parties because of it).

Lucy and her friends—Windy and Levi—are well-developed characters with distinctive personalities. I like their friendship dynamic
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book!! I barely used my bookmark because I couldn't put it down! I highly recommend this book to anyone!
Tucker  (TuckerTheReader)
Never has a book touched me so. Lucy Callaghan was struck by lightning and got extraordinary math powers. Honestly, at first this book was uninteresting. I couldn't get into it. But I kept trying. What the beginning lacked in excitingness the End had.
It was such a wonderful touching story filled with friends, dogs, joys and sorrows. The author put so much emotion into the characters and story.
When (view spoiler) I felt Lucy 's pain.
I was really disapp
Afoma Umesi
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh, dear Lucy.

I enjoyed this book so much, which says a lot for a Math hater! Lucy acquires savant Level Math skills after being struck by lightning as a child. She also becomes obsessive-compulsive and reclusive after the incident. So her grandmother insists she goes to middle school for at least a year, in addition to other social requirements.

The narration of this book is so well done! I can’t recommend it enough for math lovers, but everyone will enjoy following Lucy’s social miscalculatio
Liesl Shurtliff
My 10-year-old son and I listened to this on Audible in the car and loved it. Perfect for your summer family road trips!
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
For the past few years of reviewing for Penguin Random House Audio, I’ve tried a lot of books that I otherwise would not have. Some turn out exactly as you might expect: okay but not great because there’s a reason I wasn’t interested in it originally. Sometimes, though, I’m able to enjoy stories I would have missed out on, as is the case with The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl. I really didn’t expect this book to be so entertaining and heart-wrenching.

As a child, Lucy was struck by lightning,
Ms. Yingling
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
E ARC from Netgalley

Lucy lives with her supportive grandmother, and frequently sees her uncle, who is young, fun, and a bit misguided. Lucy has been homeschooled, but her grandmother decides that it is time for Lucy to acquire the social skills that middle school will provide. Why? Lucy was struck by lightning when she was young, and because of the resultant brain damage is now a mathematical savant but also suffers from OCD and social anxiety. Her grandmother's idea of sticking things out for o
Yukari Watanabe/渡辺由佳里
I love the book! I was not a math genius, but I was a bit like Lucy at elementary school. I also had an intense love & hate relationship with my schools. This novel reminded me those days. 12 year old me would've liked this book very much. ...more
Maria Waltner
Apr 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Middle grade to junior high level.

Lucy aka Lightning Girl is anything but normal since she got struck by a bolt of lightning when she was 8. Now Lucy's brain has been rewired for math - along with a few other quirks. Because of her mathematical abilities Lucy has been homeschooled the past few years and Lucy thinks she's ready for college courses even though normally Lucy would only be in 7th grade.

Nana puts her foot down. She knows Lucy has lessons to learn that aren't necessarily math related
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018

Going through middle school can be hard enough as it is, but Lucy Callahan is going to have to face an even bigger challenge. After being struck by lightning at a young age, Lucy now has genius-level math skills, but that's not everything she has to deal with. She now has acquired Savant Syndrome and OCD, which in time turn out to cause Lucy some inconvenience.

Going into this book, I really didn't know what to expect, seeing as I haven't read much middle grade lat
Joy Smith
Apr 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Changing schools can be hard, but Lucy hasn't been to school for years so starting fresh with students, teachers, and classes is challenging--and her compulsive behavior makes her completely strange--even freakish, but she perseveres with her Nana's encouragement and determined nudges. Go to school for a year, make one friend, join one activity and read one book that's not a math textbook. (She reads those for enjoyment.)

I enjoyed watching Lucy grow and make friends--though that has its challeng
Michele Knott
Absolutely loved this one. I fell in love with Lucy and appreciated the challenges in her life in this very realistic middle grade novel.
Jayden A
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
It was a good book I recommend it to people who liked wonder
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Stacy McAnulty is a children’s book author, who used to be a mechanical engineer, who’s also qualified to be a paleontologist (NOT REALLY), a correspondent for The Daily Show (why not), and a Green Bay Packer coach (totally!). She is the 2017 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Honor Recipient for Excellent Ed, illustrated by Julia Sarcone-Roach. Her other picture books include Earth! My First 4.54 Billion ...more

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Contemporary young adult literature has often led the way in depicting the real-life issues facing teens from all backgrounds. To delve into ho...
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“Don’t be afraid of numbers. Use them to compute your solutions. Look at the world as it is intended.” 4 likes
“This is pi to the 500th decimal place: 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510582097494459230781640628620899862803482534211706798214808651328230664709384460955058223172535940812848111745028410270193852110555964462294895493038196442881097566593344612847564823378678316527120190914564856692346034861045432664821339360726024914127372458700660631” 2 likes
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