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Lia's Guide to Winning the Lottery Paperback – 4 Aug 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children's Books; Reprint edition (4 Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847801919
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847801913
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.7 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 183,359 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Growing up in a small town in Hertfordshire, Keren David had two ambitions: to write a book and to live in London. Several decades on, she has finally achieved both. She was distracted by journalism, starting out at 18 as a messenger girl, then working as a reporter, news editor, features editor and feature writer for national newspapers and magazines. She has lived in Glasgow and Amsterdam, where in eight years she learned enough Dutch to order coffee and buy fruit and vegetables. She is now back in London and lives with her husband, two children and their insatiably hungry guinea pigs.
Keren wrote her first novel When I Was Joe as a project for a course in writing for Children at City University. Starting the course to publishing the novel took exactly two years.
Keren blogs at

Product Description


A really funny and thought-provoking tale of a teenage Lottery winner - and the inevitable chaos that follows.


A laugh-out-loud story of family life turned upside down by Lia's winning lottery ticket. Masquerading as a light-hearted read, this delightful book introduces a larger-than-life family struggling to stay calm with two teenage girls in their midst!


A good example of sharp, sassy fiction about urban girls who have made an art form of shopping and self-absorption, but are proved not to be completely shallow… The message fo the story (that an £8m lottery win can only solve some of Lia's problems) contains few surprises but is told with excellent comic timing. The details of how she obtained the winning ticket make a killer punchline.


A thoughtful, salutary, well-researched tale.

(Independent on Sunday)

A modern 16-year-old girl and the issues and problems she contends with when she wins the lottery - including friendship, bullying, sex, family, guilt, suicide, binge drinking and jealousy. That makes it sound very heavy but the delight of this is the light touch and the page turning ease of reading this thought-provoking book.

(Tricia Adams, Chair of the SLA)

A great new read from a fantastic UK YA novelist, Keren David... will make a perfect Summer read.

(Nicole Burstein, Waterstone's Picadilly)

Told with humour and a light touch, there are some mysteries to explore and hints of danger, but essentially, this is a coming-of-age story.

(Tall Tales and Short Stories)

Wise, funny, ingeniously plotted and deeper by far than its chick-lit type exterior suggests.

(Jewish Chronicle)

Surely you can buy a perfect life with £8 mill? Lia knows differently. Sweet, sad and very,very funny.


Having 8 million pounds in the bank plays havoc with sixteen-year-old Lia's relationships with her family, friends, neighbours and schoolmates in this believable and rather funny account of the aftermath of a huge lottery win. The tone of the book is light, but it provokes big questions about how we ascribe value to people and things, whether righes are corrosive and if having our fantasies come true is necessarily a good thing.

(Ibby Link)

A convincing portrayal of a 21st-century teenager who finds her windfall could create more problems than it solves.

(Daily Express)

 'humorous and thought-provoking … it's a ten out of ten.'

(Ink Pellet)

'This astringent, insightful satire is a major treat.'  'Tart, funny and fast-moving, with a touch of rueful realism and a lot of heart.'

(Kirkus Reviews, Best Teen Books of 2012)

About the Author

Keren David was brought up in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire and went to school in Hatfield. She left school at 18 and got a job as a messenger girl on a newspaper, then turned down a place to read English at university to take an apprenticeship as a junior reporter. She was freelancing as a reporter on the old Fleet Street by her mid-twenties and, after living and working in Scotland for two years, was appointed as a news editor on The Independent at the age of 27. She worked at The Independent for six years, moving from news to become a commissioning editor on the Comment pages. She and her family then went to live in Amsterdam for eight years where she was editor in chief of a photo-journalism agency. On returning to the UK in 2007 she decided to attend a course on writing for children at the City University. When I Was Joe started out as a project for that course. She lives in London with her husband and two children and studying for an Open University degree in Humanities with Art History. To read a Q&A with Keren David, click here

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mrs. Gail Brewster VINE VOICE on 22 July 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The author has really done an amazing amount of research into what happens when you win the lottery; the book is full of sage advice about investing and not overspending.

Lia is only 16 years old and wins £8 million, when she starts getting into bother and overspending, the author adds a debate as to whether or not the UK should change the lottery to the American version, where money is only paid out periodically and not all at once and whether the age should be raised to 18 or 21. (It would appear from the author's information that winning the lottery might not be all it's cracked up to be).

Lia finds out the hard way just who her true friends are as she faces a barrage of abuse from face book, jealousy from school mates and abuse from her friend Jack's mum who insists that Jack is due to half the winnings because he bought her the lottery ticket as a birthday gift.

The book is very funny in places and really captures the imagination; you can picture Lia going from a broke adolescent accustomed to comparing the price of everything between the market and charity shops to one who gasps and still checks the price tags in the designer shops she now uses.

The story covers a lot of ground; the family squabbles and interaction between Lia and her friends provides an insight into the minds of teenagers as well as the exploration of new found feelings of love and lust that she finds with an enigmatic boy named Raf. All of which are quite believable and engrossing.

I think this is a book for any teenager (boy or girl), it is a pleasant, sometimes thought provoking read and I found it highly enjoyable.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Book Angel Emma VINE VOICE on 30 Aug 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have to admit I really thought I was going to hate this book after reading the first few chapters. I can hear you all screaming WHY? Well it is because Lia is just so gosh darn awful. She spews acid from her mouth instead of words, she is toxic and toally selfish and self-absorbed. I even had to ask Keren if she did improve or I was going to stamp on the book. She told me to stick with her, and yes she had intentionally made her like this. I am so glad she convinced me to stick with it.

Lia's Guide to Winning the Lottery provides great insight into what it would be like to suddenly come into a LOT of money. I am sure we all imagine what we would do with a large lottery win, the houses we would buy, the holidays we would take but have you ever really thought about what you would do to ensure that your financial future was secure. This point was brilliantly crafted into the storyline.

Unfortunately, I hate to say it but Lia is very realistic portrayed, I have been noticing a lot more the type of things girls her age say and OMG they are like that, it must be the hormonal imbalance that makes them evil, lol. It was nice to see Lia's character developemnt through the story via numerous incidents not least the pie throwing. The way in which the media scrutiny was partrayed was quite scary, although I did think that Lia's mother was a bit shallow I liked the way she used her PR training to manipulate the situation to her advantage.I really liked how Lia was quick to crave normalicy after the worldwind of activity.

The peripheral characters really added balance to the story and WOW was Lia lucky to have friends like that.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By S. M. Wilkinson on 30 July 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Lia's Guide to Winning the Lottery looked and felt, initially, very different from David's staggeringly successful thrillers, When I Was Joe and Almost True. On the surface, one seems to be reading something slighter, with Lia's voice and situation dramatically lighter than Ty's. One of David's many strengths, however, is to deal with very meaty, up-to-moment concerns without ever seeming to flag up 'issues'. It wasn't long until I realised that this sassy, bouncy novel was once again highlighting some serious issues -- celebrity culture, cyber-bullying, fundamentalism, sex, alcohol, to name just a few -- without ever suggesting easy answers. My very favourite aspect of the novel was the way the character of Raf is presented, the mysterious, possibly even paranormal, love interest -- David has great fun playing with the tropes of urban fantasy within a very contemporary, very realistic novel. I've loved all David's novels and this one certainly shows off her versatility. What it shares with the Ty books, apart from its unerring grasp of the contemporary scene, is its addictive quality. I loved it and can't wait to see what this exciting writer does next.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By V. K. Evans on 19 July 2011
Format: Paperback
Completely different subject matter to When I was Joe and Almost True but just as compelling. Keren David writes teenage characters with thorough honesty; she doesn't shirk away from difficult subjects such as teenage sex and difficult family relationships but these are treated as part of a story, part of life - she's never preachy, patronising or judgemental.

There's a freshness and humour to David's writing that, combined with a page turning story, makes an unbeatable combination. I love the journey she takes us on. Though boys shouldn't be put off by the cover, both the subject matter and the characters have universal appeal, I would thoroughly recommend Lia's Guide for teenage girls and their mothers.

If Lia's mum doesn't make you growl or cringe I'd be amazed....
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