The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl

Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grade 4n/a3.754622

A lightning strike gave her a super power...but even a super genius can't solve the problem of middle school. This smart and funny novel is perfect for fans of The Fourteenth Goldfish, Rain Reign, and Counting by Sevens.

Lucy Callahan was struck by lightning. She doesn't remember it, but it changed her life forever. The zap gave her genius-level math skills, and ever since, Lucy has been homeschooled. Now, at 12 years old, she's technically ready for college. She just has to pass 1 more test--middle school!

Lucy's grandma insists: Go to middle school for 1 year. Make 1 friend. Join 1 activity. And read 1 book (that's not a math textbook!). Lucy's not sure what a girl who does calculus homework for fun can possibly learn in 7th grade. She has everything she needs at home, where nobody can make fun of her rigid routines or her superpowered brain. The equation of Lucy's life has already been solved. Unless there's been a miscalculation?

A celebration of friendship, Stacy McAnulty's smart and thoughtful middle-grade debut reminds us all to get out of our comfort zones and embrace what makes us different.

"An engaging story, full of heart and hope. Readers of all ages will root for Lucy, aka Lightning Girl. No miscalculations here!" --Kate Beasley, author of Gertie's Leap to Greatness

Hardcover, 304 pages
Published on May 1, 2018 by Random House Books for Young Readers
ISBN-10: 1524767573
ISBN-13: 9781524767570
32 Book Reviews
  • crystalwind13
    crystalwind133 months55 stars
    Havent finished it but so far I LOVE IT! If you love math and middle school, read this book asap!
    • purplepearls
      purplepearls10 months
      Found out about this book on this site. It is great and is relatable. Lol. COVID and first period Math (my life in middle school)
      • coolish
        coolishabout 1 year55 stars
        Lucy Callahan lives with her nana and her uncle in North Carolina. But she got struck by lightning when she was just 8 years old and becomes a super genius. She can recite the digits of pi to very high numbers, do insanly hard math problems in 1 second, and has a deal with germs. Lucy and her nana move. From then on she is homeschooled. Lucy thinks she is too smart for middle school, and wants to go to high school. Soon after, she gets in a awful, germ-infested middle school. She wants to leave right away. Fourtunatly, she finds 2 friends. Unfournatly, Lucy has to go to a pet shelter for a school project. Lucy hates any kind of animal. Little does she know, that she is a dog lover. Her new best friend is a dog named Pi. Then Lucys nana gives her a choice: Should she leave her friends behind and go to the school of her dreams with smart kids just like Lucy, or stay with everyone at her current school, including all of the bullies? Find out what happens!
        • gold3nglare
          gold3nglareover 1 year55 starsFeatured
          Lucille "Lucy" Callahan is a 12-year-old wiz kid. She can recite many of the digits in pi, she can do hard math problems without even thinking about it, and she thinks about numbers all day. She's obsessed with math. This is because when she was 8, she was struck by lighting which rewired her brain. Now she is a genius. She loves to go online and tutor people for math, and she's been homeschooled since the lightning strike. One day, her Nana decided that Lucy should start going to real middle school. Lucy hates the idea. She wants to go to college, and she believes that middle school is too easy. Next thing Lucy knows, she's enrolled into a middle school filled with germs, and mean kids. Lucy doesn't want to look like the school's freaky genius girl so she keeps to herself. She wants to leave the school as soon as she can. But soon, Lucy finds some loyal friends, and some good teachers. Lucy doesn't even realize how much she is started to grow close to her new friends, new school, and the dogs at the dog shelter she visits for a project that she used to hate. Lucy finds out many things about herself. That she's more than a germophobic. More than a math wiz. More than a "freak". More than a lightning girl. She is a dog lover. She is a fun person to hang out with. She is the smartest girl in school. She is the best friend of a little dog named Pi. Lucy learns which friends are friendly and which are foes. Lucy has a choice to make. Should she listen to her heart and stay true to her new friends and come out of her shell, or should she revert back to her old shy self. The self that lets people bully her into silence. The self that avoids making friends. The self that avoids trying new things if it had nothing to do with math. When Lucy's Nana finds a school for smart kids that would be perfect for Lucy, Lucy has to make a choice. Should she go to the school of her almost-dreams with the education that matches her smarts, or should she listen to her heart and stay true to herself? Can she just leave her new behind? This book teaches readers to be true to themselves and not worry about what others think. Be yourself and embrace yourself. It also teaches people that friendship is a strong force that may be tested from here and there, but the right friendships can never be broken. 5 stars.
        • dancer831
          dancer831over 1 year55 stars
          This is a great book about Lucy (aka Lighting Girl). She gets struck by lighting and now she is like, the smartest person in the world. She’s so smart that she is can go to college, but she’s only 12! But before she goes to college, her grandmother makes some rules: go to middle school for 1 year, make 1 friend, join 1 activity, and read 1 book. Lucy thinks her life equation is complete- her computer + math + her grandmother + her uncle = love ❤️, but she realizes there is more to the equation. She meets a girl on the bus on her first day of school. When they get to school, the kids make fun of her for her different things she does (sitting down 3 times otherwise the digits of pi [3.14...] floods her head or sanitizing everything) She also meets a dog that she falls in love with, but it’s going to sentenced. The sad thing is, she can’t have a pet. Read this great book to find out what happens to the one and only Lighting Girl!
          • awesomekitten
            awesomekittenover 1 year55 stars
            I love this book it’s so amazing Lucy gets struck by lightning and can suddenly do all sorts of math she makes friends with windy and Levi they work on a project to get animals in the animal shelter homes!
            • minato_namikaze
              minato_namikazeover 1 year11 star
              this seems like a good book i will read it
              • horse123456
                horse123456over 1 year44 stars
                I'm pretty much finished with this book just a couple more pages and I think its super amazing that pi (3.1415926) is mentioned in this book 😃
                • kotlcfitzphie12
                  kotlcfitzphie12almost 2 years55 stars
                  This book is great! I love it. Also, I agree with @bsc.
                  • bsc
                    bscalmost 2 years55 stars
                    This book was really good! Lucy got struck by lighting when she was eight years old. After getting struck by the lighting she had become a math genius. She's been homeschool, but her grandmother makes her go to actual school. Her grandma orders her to make one friend and several other things. So she makes friend with Windy and Levi. Lots of things happen and I strongly recommend.