Lilly's Special Gift


60 pages
ISBN 0-88780-664-3
DDC jC813'.54





Illustrations by Clarke MacDonald
Reviewed by Carol L. MacKay

Carol L. MacKay is a children’s librarian living in Bawlf, Alberta.


It’s Minna’s birthday and Lilly wants to give her best friend an
awesome gift. She and her other friend, Theresa, see the perfect
bracelet in a jewellery store, but the price tag is $1000 plus tax.
Lilly and her mom find a $15 bracelet at a farmer’s market and buy
that instead. But when Theresa sees the present, she mistakenly thinks
Lilly has stolen the expensive bracelet and tells Minna, who then
refuses to talk to Lilly for involving her in jewellery theft. The two
bracelets look a lot alike. Could they really be one and the same?

Brenda Bellingham, the Alberta-based author who has penned the other
stories in the Lilly series, has created an engrossing and suspenseful
read for children new to chapter books. Some readers will be able to
figure out why Theresa is acting strangely well before Lilly does, but
all will feel empathy for the girl who is wrongly accused. Clarke
MacDonald provides appealing images of the trio and nicely captures the
actions and emotions of the characters with his black-and-white

The novel concludes satisfactorily, with Lilly doing what is necessary
to find out the truth behind the origins of the bracelet she has given
Minna. The dialogue-driven story’s manageable text, along with
Bellingham’s likeable characters, will pull in reluctant readers.
Highly recommended.


Bellingham, Brenda., “Lilly's Special Gift,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 15, 2024,