Flamingnet Student Book Reviewer PS
Hallie Palmer, now a college student, has had
one crazy year. She has already begun to reform
her former gambler ways by concentrating on other
problems, as finding the tuition money she
desperately needs, dealing with her legal
guardian Bernard, and trying to figure out her
own relationships. As the 2nd oldest in a family
of 8 children, it's up to her to find the money
to go to college. Bernard employs her as the
gardener and doing yard work. Hallie also has to
come up with a plan to get Bernard reunited with
his ex-boyfriend, Gil. But Hallie has romantic
problems of her own and can't seem to keep any
guy interested. Hallie's freshman year is surely
full of surprises.
When I first started reading Heart's Desire, I
wasn't sure if I would like it or not. The crazy
characters, including a chimp named Rocky, were
entertaining and the dialogue was funny. The
story got better during the middle and once I got
to that point, I couldn't put the book down. As
the character is a college student, older readers
will relate to Hallie more. I didn't read the
prequel, Beginner's Luck, but I think it would be
more helpful in understanding the story and the
characters. I think that if you stick with the
book, you'll be glad to read it. I'm looking
forward to reading more about Hallie Palmer.
Rating (0 - 10 scale): 7
Reviewer Age: 19
Reviewer City, State and Country:
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA
About Laura Pedersen
Laura Pedersen was born in Buffalo, New York
(one of "God's frozen people") in 1965, at the height of
The Folk Music Scare. (For details of misspent youth see
essay at 'Is there a Nurse in the Church?'). After
finishing high school in 1983 she moved to Manhattan and
began working on The American Stock Exchange, a time when
showing up combined with basic computation skills could be
parlayed into a career. She chronicled these years in her
first book, Play Money.
Having vowed to become anything but a
journalist and with no conception of what a semicolon does,
Laura spent the better part of the 1990s writing for The
New York Times.
In 1994 President Clinton honored her as
one of Ten Outstanding Young Americans. She has appeared on
TV shows including Oprah, Good Morning America, Primetime
Live, and David Letterman.
In 2001, her first novel, Going Away
Party, won the Three Oaks Prize for Fiction and was
published by Storyline Press. Beginner's Luck was published
by Ballantine Books in 2003 and subsequently chosen for the
Barnes & Noble "Discover Great New Writers" program,
Borders "Original Voices," and as a featured alternate for
The Literary Guild.
Pedersen's other novels include Last
Call and Heart's Desire (the sequel to Beginner's Luck).
The third book in the Beginner's Luck/Hallie Palmer series
is The Big Shuffle.
Laura lives in New York City, teaches
reading and trades Yu-Gi-Oh! cards at the Booker T.
Washington Learning Center in East Harlem, and is a member
of the national literary association P.E.N. (poets,
essayists and novelists).
Interviews with Laura
Laura Pedersen's official