Excerpt from Lucky by Rachel Vail, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio


by Rachel Vail

  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Apr 2008, 240 pages
    Apr 2009, 256 pages

  • Rate this book

Book Reviewed by:
Jo Perry

Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt

They smiled then, too, at the memory of our mother's epic battle against our old electric tea kettle the last time she was on one of her occasional quitting-coffee kicks.

"Want to see a failure, girls?" Mom had asked that morning last fall, spinning around to face us.

All three of us nodded. Sure. We wanted to see anything she wanted to show us. When my mother is in the room it's almost impossible to look away from her.

She grabbed the electric tea kettle and thrust it out like a weapon, as water dripped guiltily from the spout. "A tea kettle's spout should stick out," she explained, her quiet voice controlled, intense. "But this one is snub-nosed. It's indented. You know why?"

We all asked why, trying not to smile too much as our cereal, forgotten, soggified in front of us.

"Why?" she repeated. "So that boiling water will spill all over the masochist who is making tea instead of going to Starbucks like a normal person!"

My father laughed.

"It's a design failure, Jed. Admit it—it drools!" She spun around toward him. "Look, it left a spot on my new silk shirt."

The spot was microscopic, if it existed at all. In her sapphire-blue silk shirt under her black Armani suit, my mother looked, as always, flawless.

"You just have to pour it slowly, Claire," Daddy told her in his kindergarten-teacher voice. "Easy does it."

"That's so . . . tea-drinker," Mom answered, a small smile tipping up the corners of her mouth. "I'm not Zen enough for this malformed tea kettle? Fine, then, I'm not. Out it goes!" Mom slammed the full glass tea kettle into the garbage can. "That's it," she said, and turned to yank the plug out of the wall outlet so she could dump the base into the trash after the kettle. "Garbage."

Daddy smiled his crooked smile and murmured, "Oh, Claire."

"Let this be a lesson, girls," Mom told us, her chameleon eyes flashing deep sapphire. "We are the Avery women. Nobody—nothing—can intimidate us. We will never back down; we will never surrender. Especially not to moody inanimate objects!"

Daddy laughed again.

She pretended not to smile and continued. "We are warrior women! We are Valkyries! We will not—ever—allow ourselves to be bullied or mistreated! Right?"

  • 1
  • 2

The foregoing is excerpted from Lucky by Rachel Vail. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced without written permission from HarperCollins Publishers, 10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member
and discover your next great read!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Crossing the Horizon
    Crossing the Horizon
    by Laurie Notaro
    In Crossing the Horizon, Laurie Notaro takes us back to a time when flying was a rare and risky ...
  • Book Jacket
    Auntie Poldi and the Sicilian Lions
    by Mario Giordano
    Munich matron and self-described worldly sophisticate, Isolde Oberreiter, has decided to retire to a...
  • Book Jacket: Of Arms and Artists
    Of Arms and Artists
    by Paul Staiti
    In the late eighteenth-century, the United States of America was still an emerging country, ...
Book Discussions
Book Jacket
The Bone Tree
by Greg Iles

An epic trilogy of blood and race, family and justice.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Comet Seekers
    by Helen Sedgwick

    A magical, intoxicating debut novel, both intimate and epic.

    Read Member Reviews

Win this book!
Win The World of Poldark

Win the book & DVD

Enter to win The World of Poldark and the full first series on DVD.


Word Play

Solve this clue:

One S D N M A S

and be entered to win..

Books that     

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.


Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!

Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.