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Half a Chance by Cynthia Lord

It is summer and Lucy’s family has just moved...again. To make matters worse, her famous photographer father is already leaving on one of his long business trips. However, Lucy’s family is living on a New Hampshire lake, and there are potential new friends next door. Lucy and Nate become better friends as they help each other with summer projects. Nate helps Lucy find photo opportunities for a contest she wants to win. In return, Lucy helps Nate’s family protect the endangered loons living on the lake.

As these two friends get to know each other, they both learn that life is fragile and problems exists for everyone. Half a Chance is a familiar coming-of-age story, but the theme of photography and memory provides a unique feel. Tween readers especially will relate to Lucy and Nate with their varying family struggles, but their story is powerful for anyone dealing with loneliness, change, or an aging loved one.

Interest level--9-12 years old

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