Title: The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns
Author: Elizabeth Leiknes
No. of Pages: 167
First Released: 2009
Synopsis (Courtesy of B&N): “Lucy Burns wants a normal life: friends, love, and a family of her own. And she could have it all if only she could break free from the job she hates.
That job? Facilitator to hell.
And her boss is a real devil.
At the age of eleven, to save her sister’s life, Lucy writes a desperate letter to “To Whom It May Concern,” but when He writes back, Lucy is bound for life. There are perks, sure-she’s ageless, she’s beautiful, and she can eat as much chocolate as she wants and never get fat-but there are also consequences.
She can never see her family again.
She can never have a boyfriend.
She must spend her life leading sinners to their demise.
After nineteen years of doing the Devil’s dirty work, Lucy wants out, but it all seems hopeless until Teddy Nightingale, her easy listening music idol, gives her the answer: a little-known loophole.
If she succeeds, Lucy gets love, happiness, and everything she ever really wanted. But the consequences? They’re considerably worse than death. To make it through, Lucy must decide what is evil and what is good, what is right and what is wrong, and if, in the end, there’s ever any way to truly know.”
Comments and Critique: This was the first book I read for the April 2010 24-Hour Read-a-Thon. I picked it up at 8 AM on Saturday morning and finished it roughly ninety minutes later. I might not have been fully awake when I first started reading it, but there is something about Lucy and her plight that makes one forget about needing coffee and completely absorbs your thoughts.
Ms. Leiknes did a fantastic job of presenting a classic good versus evil morality tale, with her own added twist. Lucy is funny, likeable, and snarky. The snark definitely lightens the message but allows the reader to relate to Lucy, even if she can eat all the chocolate she wants without gaining weight.
At 167 pages, there does not appear to be much there, but Ms. Leiknes does a tremendous job of raising questions – what makes people good versus evil? Is it one’s job, one’s thoughts, one’s actions, one’s intentions, or a combination thereof? In addition, she demonstrates very clearly that one should also be careful of what one wishes – in a very literal sense. More importantly, she presents a great lesson on empathy and the need to always get to know the full story before making assumptions.
The Sinful Life of Lucy Burns is deliciously fun in its snarkiness, but it does have a very serious message about having it all and being careful for what you wish. This is no fairy tale in the Disney sense but rather a tale for today’s age – one where the bad and the good guys are difficult to discern. A quick read, I definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a lighthearted good versus evil story. Lucy Burns will charm her way into any reader’s heart!
This book counts towards my 100+ Reading Challenge, my Read ‘n Review Challenge, and the Thriller and Suspense Reading Challenge. I used my own money to get this little gem into my library.