The Lucky Star

Written by Judy Young
Illustrated by Chris Ellison

Lazy Days of Summer

It's 1933 and the Great Depression has left millions of people without work. Like thousands of families, Ruth's family struggles just to keep food on the table. And now, ten-year-old Ruth has just learned that school is a luxury her town cannot afford. She will not be going on to fifth grade. Ruth sees very little in her life to count as lucky stars. But when Ruth stops focusing on the hardships and focuses on solutions, she discovers the importance of being a lucky star for someone else.

Awards and Kudos

  • 2010/2011 Missouri Show Me Readers Award Nomination
  • 2009 Storytelling World Honor Award for Pre-Adolescent Listeners
  • 2008 Top Five Book selected by Rutgers University's EconKids Project


Kirkus Review: "Counting 'lucky stars' isn't easy when you own the world's ugliest hand-me-down shoes, your school has closed and your dad is permanently out of town. Ruth [ten] wants to pursue her dream of education, but how can she do that during the Great Depression?...Young's positive, feel-good story succeeds in showing how applying a good attitude and creativity will make life shine brighter than a lucky star..."

Rutgers University: "Ruth, a young girl growing up during the Great Depression, has trouble understanding to handle life in the face of job loss, food insecurity, hand-me-down shoes from the neighbor, and the closing of the local school. Only when Ruth takes the initiative to use her skills in addressing the needs of the youngsters around her does she begin to have a brighter outlook on life. This outstanding book will help children to gain a richer exposure to … lessons about unemployment, scarcity, and recession…Teachers and parents can use the book's poignant illustrations and clear text to help children come to terms with potentially difficult economic times they may be experiencing themselves."

Published by Sleeping Bear Press, 2008

Hard Cover, 40 pp. ISBN 978-1-58536-348-3
US $17.95
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Books will be autographed by the author. If you would like your books personalized, please indicate the name(s) in "Order Comments" section when ordering.

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Judy Young
5808 E. Bear Creek Road
Preston, ID 83263

Tel. 208-252-7197