The Lumpy Duckling by Kai Strand
Lumpy may be hefty with a misshapen mouth, but he’s funny and the most loyal friend Wheezy could ask for. When she meets Unwanted, she casts a wish for people to be able to see her best friend like she does. Her wish nearly kills him.
All the Weaver Tales are set in the same fictional village of The Tales. The villagers are called Word Weavers, because they speak in story. The same little gnome-elf, Unwanted, grants a wish in each book that makes the main character's problem worse. The books do not have to be read in any order.
Isn’t seventh grade too young to worry about boys? In that way at least. She always worried about her very closest friend, Lumpy. She and Lawrence Nightingale had been inseparable since she tripped over him in the sandbox almost nine years ago. Well, inseparable might be a bit strong, since they couldn’t even go to school together, Lumpy being a year older than
her and all.
Being picked on wasn’t the only thing they had in common. Wheezy smiled. They both liked…um…they preferred…um. Her smile fell away when she stared out the window picturing herself and Lumpy together.
They had nothing in common. He liked to watch sports and whittle wood; she liked to create sand art and find shapes in the clouds. He chowed down steak and pan fried potatoes, or liverwurst and ketchup sandwiches, while she nibbled pickled zucchini spears and rye crisps. He spit into a pennywhistle, calling it music, while she sang like a songbird.
Even their Word Weaving was different. She weaved reports and updates of current events while he …um…whatever his weavings were classified as, they made people laugh. Gnawing the inside of her cheek, she searched for a
commonality in their personalities, hobbies or interests. A reason they were friends.
An image of Lumpy, a dirt stained baseball cap slightly askew, round face, red from laughing, an ever present lumpy grin on his lips which sparked in his bright blue eyes, formed in her mind, and a smile brightened her face again. It didn’t matter that they had nothing in common. He was her best friend. That was enough for her.
Praise for The Lucky Duckling
Kai Strand explores friendship, perception, and the consequences of wishes in this fast-paced read. - Mary Waibel
This is a wonderful story of loyalty and friendship. It also shows how one’s fears and insecurities sometimes sabotage the good things we have in our lives. Like Wheezy, we have to learn to trust, to accept change, to be patient and understanding, and to try not to jump to conclusions. The end is most satisfying, but it’s an exciting, nerve-wracking ride getting there. The Lumpy Duckling is highly recommended for middle grade readers. - Penelope Anne Cole
Author Kai Strand
When her children were young and the electricity winked out, Kai Strand gathered her family around the fireplace and they told stories, one sentence at a time. Her boys were rather fond of the ending, “And then everybody died. The end.” Now an award winning children’s author, Kai crafts fiction for kids and teens to provide an escape hatch from their reality. With a selection of novels for young adult and middle grade readers and short stories for the younger ones, Kai entertains children of all ages, and their adults.
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