Monday, October 3, 2011

Book Review: Lucky for Good by Susan Patron (2011)

Lucky for Good is the third and final book in Susan Patron's Hard Pan series. As the book begins, Lucky and her adoptive mom, Brigitte, learn that the cafe Brigitte runs is illegal because it's inside their residence. The people of Hard Pan come together, therefore, to find Brigitte a new location and to settle her into her new building. In the meantime, Miles's mother returns from prison with a new religious outlook that she tries to force upon her son, Lucky fights with the nephew of the health inspector who oversees the move of Brigitte's Cafe, and Lincoln prepares to say goodbye before his big trip to England.

I'm sad to see this wonderful trilogy come to an end, but for the most part, I think it's been given a nice send-off. At times, I felt like it tried to wrap up too much in too small a space, particularly regarding Lucky's father and his relatives, and I was somewhat put off by the romantic overtones starting to appear in Lucky and Lincoln's friendship. That said, though, the exploration of the relationship between religion and science was an interesting one, which made references back to Lucky's scientific interests in the first two books. I also liked seeing Lucky's journey come full circle, with her knowledge of twelve-step programs and higher powers coming back into the story at its conclusion.

My one disappointment was that Matt Phelan did not illustrate this volume. While Erin Mcguire's illustrations are lovely - especially the one of Miles and his mother hugging during their reunion - I got used to Matt Phelan's style, and it was quite jarring to see another illustrator's interpretations of  these characters I feel like I know so well. This is a small quibble, however, and shouldn't detract from the overall success of the novel. This third book is not my favorite of the series, or the best one, but it made a satisfying and fitting ending to Lucky's story, and left me feeling optimistic about Lucky's future success.

1 comment:

  1. Allison - I wonder why, too. I enjoy Erin McGuire's work, especially in Breadcrumbs, but it just wasn't the same without Matt Phelan. But the story was still enjoyable. I liked the second one as well.