Unfortunately, Lucy’s Chinese skills are limited and she hasn’t been understanding everything her family has been talking about, so she is stunned to find out she will have a new roommate. Yi Po, her grandmother’s long lost sister is coming to stay with them, and she will be sharing the room with Lucy. Her world is turned upside-down, and now all of her plans are ruined. This is when Lucy realizes that her year is not going to be the best ever, but the worst one yet. She builds a wall dividing her room in half, so that she has one side and Yi Po has another. Of course, the bookcase, desk and dresser in the middle of the room make things a little messier, but she doesn’t want Yi Po touching her stuff and invading her privacy. To make matters worse, Lucy finds out she has to go to Chinese school on Saturday with Talent, the school know-it-all, and her chances of playing basketball (her favorite thing in the world) are axed because of it. When she accidently gets on Sloane's bad side, she is afraid her life will be ruined. She has seen Sloane get even and ruin people's lives, almost everyone is afraid of her. Could things get worse? What would you do if you had to share a room with a relative almost 60 years older than you? Would you like to go to Chinese school on the weekends? What will Sloane do to her? Will Lucy have the worst year ever? This 6th grade year is full of surprises!
Throughout The Great Wall of Lucy Wu by Wendy Wan-Long Shang Lucy is reluctantly getting in touch with her Chinese culture while she endures new living arrangements. She tends to complain a lot throughout the book, which seems totally normal for a sixth grader! I could relate to the fact that she felt the world was out to get her and that everything was going wrong. Lucy couldn’t believe her parents didn’t understand how awful things were for her. I loved that Lucy has an awesome best friend who helps her to see her situation for what it is. Watching her grow and learn to accept the changes in her life was great. I like that nothing happened instantly, but took time. Just like real life. Throughout the book I learned a lot about the Chinese culture and many phrases and terms are sprinkled in each chapter. I even had to get sushi for dinner as soon as I finished reading! Lucy is a typical kid who loves basketball and wants school to go smoothly. The funny things that happen to her make her a believable character. I think kids from fourth grade through eighth grade could appreciate this book and relate to Lucy and her friends. Lucy Wu has built a wall, but will she keep it up, make it bigger, or tear it down? You will have to find out for yourself!
Has anyone else read The Great Wall of Lucy Wu? Or have you read another book by Wendy Wan-Long Shang? We would love to hear your thoughts!