Make Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolfe

LaVaughn is an urban 14 year old and she has dreams for college.  “College,” as described by LaVaughn is a big word for her home where she lives with her mother, “and you have to walk around the word like it is furniture.”

To make her dreams of college come true, LaVaughn takes an after school baby sitting job for two small children.  Their mother Jolly, is an abused seventeen year old who is trying to hold a job with little skills and manage a home and two children with little success and a perpetual feeling of overwhelm.

Although LaVaughn’s mom tells her daughter to proceed with caution and not get too involved, LaVaughn’s support of Jolly has potential to lead to greater things for all involved.

The 2nd book in the trilogy....
The 2nd book in the trilogy....
The 3rd book in the trilogy....


I really enjoyed my time in LaVaughn’s world.  Lavaughn at 14, is more mature than the mother of two Jolly at 17.  What author Virginia Wolfe writes here is a story of circumstances.  LaVaughn’s home life is centered around a single mom who works hard, shows value to what she owns and teaches her daughter these same skills.  One works hard to have what they have.

Jolly on the other hand was never given the opportunity to learn these skills.  She never had loving parents around her having grown up in foster care with a lady names Gram who passed away.  She did not finish high school, and her housekeeping and parenting skills are…. ummmm…. lacking.

At times the book was emotional, when  Jolly experiences sexual harassment at work she does not know that she has rights, after all hasn’t she been used one way or another all her life?  Yet that is the beauty of the story as these two people under different circumstances come together and learn from each other.

LaVaughn’s story continues in the second book called True Believer, and finishes in This Full House.


I listened to this book on audio from my local library

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