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The House That Lou Built

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4.16  ·  Rating details ·  111 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews
Lou Bulosan-Nelson is going to build her dream. She shares a room with her mom in her grandmother's house in San Francisco, and longs for a place of her own where she can escape her lovable but large extended Filipino family. Lou has a talent for woodshop class and creating projects, and plans to build a tiny house, 100 square feet, all her own, on land that she inherited ...more
Published June 12th 2018 by Random House Kids/Wendy Lamb Books
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Ms. Yingling
Apr 26, 2018 rated it liked it
E ARC from Netgalley.com

Lou lives with her mother and grandmother in San Francisco. Her father died before she was born, and her grandfather passed away a few years ago, but she has a large, supportive extended family and many friends. Her mother is training to be a registered nurse and is struggling financially. She's looking for jobs, and favoring one she is offered in Washington state, because the cost of living is much cheaper. Lou does not want to leave the area, especially since her father
...more
Lorie Barber
Jun 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I received an advanced copy of The House That Lou built, thanks to Random House Kids books. I read it in a day and I absolutely loved it.

Lou’s story is strikingly original, as is she. She is resilient, persistent, and real, making mistakes and learning from them. I couldn’t think of a better role model for my students. Lou and her family are beautifully developed, and her creativity and optimism when presented with problems are both traits of like to see developing in my students.

But what stru
...more
Barbara
It is wonderful to find middle grade novels in which female protagonists aren't boy crazy or preoccupied with their appearance. While a case could be made that these concerns are part of coming of age and being in the middle grades, a steady diet of books that tackle those issues can get old after awhile. Thus, it is refreshing to meet Lou Bulosan-Nelson, a 12-year-old who is determined to build her own tiny house on property she inherited from her father. Lou is more interested in learning how ...more
Laurie
May 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interest Level: 3-6

@kidlitexchange #partner Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of this book - all opinions are my own.


What would you do if you found out your mother wanted to move you away from your family and friends? What would you do if you found out that the land your dad gave you is about to be taken away because your mom can't afford the taxes on it? Would you think to build a tiny house on it? I wouldn't, but Lou was determined to do just that. Lou is the top of her
...more
Afoma Umesi
May 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thanks to the publisher for a free review copy of this book!

Lou is a middle grader with a knack for building. She excels at her woodwork classes and has dreams of building her own tiny house. Especially because she currently lives with her mother in her grandmother’s house and barely has any privacy. She becomes even more desperate to build when her mother decides to move Lou away from her friends and large Filipino family for a new job offer.

I enjoyed reading LOU and definitely thought her to
...more
Shaye Miller
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
I was thrilled to get my hands on this darling book the day it was released. Lou is a 7th grader who is half-Filipino and half-Caucasian. She lost her father when she was just a baby, but she has an extremely supportive family living in close proximity. Because her mother is struggling financially, she is considering accepting a job in Washington state that would pay for Lou’s future college costs. However, this would take them far from their family and friends. So Lou concocts a plan to keep he ...more
Cat
Jun 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
The excerpt I read sounds intriguing. Then I read some reviews of the book on various sites. Still sounds like a good read. I would think 5th to 8th grader might enjoy this story. Some may well be puzzled as so many schools have discontinued shop classes. Liability must be pretty high and do they really have a use anyway. Much like home ec. At least skills in home ec are useful. Not sure about shop classes.... They seem to have been more useful back in the 60s and 70s. By the 80's and 90s not mu ...more
Vernon Area Public Library KIDS
Jun 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Ages 8-12, 660 L
Lou Bulosan-Nelson is not your typical 12-year old. This Filipina- American girl has spirit, intelligence and perseverance. Equipped with power tools, goggles and her blueprints, Lou is determined to build her very own tiny house on the land that her dad left for her. She shares a room with her mom in her grandmother’s house and longs for a place to call her own.

With the help of her friends and her teacher, Lou seeks to accomplish her dream. But, one day her mother receives a certified letter a
...more
Katie Fitzgerald
Jun 24, 2018 marked it as did-not-finish
Though I was interested in the subject matter of this book, the writing style fell flat for me almost immediately. The text is easy to read, but it's almost too straightforward, without the warmth and humor that work best for middle grade protagonists. I stuck with it for about 25 pages, but when the main character and her best friend started lecturing the boys in their class about women who have made a difference in history they stopped sounding like believable kids and began to sound like talk ...more
Melissa Sarno
May 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved Lou and her tiny house dreams. The friends and family in her life made me so happy. What a lovely, heartwarming book.
Melissa Jung
Jul 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
So sweet, so wholesome, and I think the first book I've read with a Filipino-American family. A read that will make your heart happy. Middle school teachers, add this to your library!
Tracy
Jan 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.

There is so much to celebrate in THE HOUSE THAT LOU BUILT. I know that my girl-power-loving second grader will love reading a book about a strong, smart, independent young girl who can bridge between goofing off with friends and managing a complex construction site. I'll also recommend this book to my half-Filipina nieces, who I’m sure will appreciate reading about Lou, her Filipino culture, and her lo
...more
Jessica Bayliss
May 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Such a fun MG with a spirited protagonist. Lou wants nothing more than to build a tiny house on land left to her by the father who died before she was born, but when she learns that she and her mom may need to move out of state, she faces the reality that she might have to leave that dream behind--along with her loving extended family. I loved watching Lou fight for what she wanted. A fun read that also made me very hungry!
Laurie
Feb 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Interest Level: 3-6

@kidlitexchange #partner Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the review copy of this book - all opinions are my own.

What would you do if you found out your mother wanted to move you away from your family and friends? What would you do if you found out that the land your dad gave you is about to be taken away because your mom can't afford the taxes on it? Would you think to build a tiny house on it? I wouldn't, but Lou was determined to do just that. Lou is the top of her
...more
Marie Cruz
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read the arc and absolutely loved it. It’s a book every Filipino American kid can relate to and a story every American will enjoy. :)
Kristin Crouch
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Mae Respicio for sharing an ARC of The House That Lou Built with #collabookation.
There's a saying, ‘There are only two lasting things we can hope to give our children: one is roots, the other is wings.’ Well, Mae Respicio has given her main character, Lucinda (Lou) both, and it is a pleasure to watch her utilize them!
Lou’s roots spread from the California forests into San Francisco where her large, close-knit family lives. Before she was born, Lou’s father died, leaving her a plot
...more
Laura Mossa
A very special thanks to author Mae Respicio for sending an ARC of The House That Lou Built to my #bookexcursion group. All opinions are my own.

Having her own room would be awesome-sauce. Living in San Francisco, Lou shares a bedroom with her mother and lives in her grandmother Lola’s house. Lou’s father died before she was born and he left her a plot of land. On that land, Lou dreams of building a tiny house. Her timeline for building has to be accelerated because her mom was offered and accep
...more
Michelle Kidwell
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing


The House That Lou Built
by Mae Respicio
Random House Children's

Wendy Lamb Books
Children's Fiction
Pub Date 12 Jun 2018


I am reviewing a copy of The House that Lou Built through Random House Children's/Wendy Lamb Books and Netgalley:


Lou Boulsan-Nelson has plans for an ultimate summer project she wants to build herself her own 100 foot tiny home. She shares a room with her Mother in her Grandmothers house, and she wants a place to escape her lovable and crazy extended Filipino family. Lou loves her w
...more
Melissa
Feb 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc, jf, read-2018
Thank you to the publisher for this ARC.

The House That Lou Built was a sweet story about a 7th grade girl named Lou who dreams of building a tiny house on land her father left her. Lou is Filipina, and the author did a great job incorporating the culture into the story. Reading about different food and festivals was a highlight of this book. I also loved the relationships between Lou and her friends. They supported her in her dreams but still kept Lou grounded when she let her dream change the
...more
Alyssa
Apr 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
As soon as I saw the charming cover, I was hooked. The story is quick and sweet. We follow Lou as she tries to figure out what home and family mean, while also fighting for the last link she has to her dad--a little plot of land.

Lou's voice is charming and adorable throughout the book. She's so genuine, you can't help but love her. I really enjoyed getting a glimpse into her community--a culture we don't have many MG books about--and I want her lola and my grandma to get together. The world may
...more
Angel
This book made me cry before I'd even finished the first chapter.

Lou exists in a very different context than I did as a young girl, but so many of the little touchstones in her life--Filipino food, family friends, working out her identity as a biracial Filipina-American girl--are familiar to me. Her stubbornness and spirit made me wonder if I was ever that strong as a kid, and her struggle with the idea of moving is a struggle my heart knows all too well. Mae Respicio writes Lou with a voice th
...more
Tyler Ward
Apr 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was deeply moved by this book and especially enjoyed the focus on creativity! I think that students/readers will be inspired by a strong female main character, one who is original, artistic, and full of ideas. (And, quite refreshingly, when her ideas did not pan out she found her own solutions.) The book shared interesting details around architecture that I haven't come across in other kids' novels, which made it feel fresh and non "cookie cutter" (as other middle grade fiction I've read latel ...more
Katherine
Apr 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
The House that Lou Built is about a spirited young girl determined to build her own tiny house. Lou is half-Filipina, living in a wonderful community that embraces their culture to the fullest. She is pretty happy young girl, until her mother is offered a job in another state. Lou doesn't want to be separated from her friends, family, and her land, her only connection to her father. Deciding that the house can't wait any longer, Lou sets out with the help of some friends to get building.

This wa
...more
Sara Daugherty
Jun 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a wonderful story about persistence and family. Lou is a Filipino/American girl within a tight family unit facing the possibility of a move that would create geographical distance from her family. She struggles with not only the separation of family and friends, but from the land that her father left to her. Books portraying cultures are becoming more and more popular in youth fiction. I loved that this one shows the Filipino culture. My sister-in-law if Filipino and in sharing with her ...more
SundayAtDusk
Apr 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a unique story because Lou, the 12-year-old protagonist, wants to build a tiny house on the land her late father left her. Her favorite class is woodworking; and she believes building the house will keep her mother from moving them to Washington state; away from her friends and extended Filipino family in San Francisco. Things don't go according to plans, though, and Lou has to face the fact that she not only may be moving, but also may never have the opportunity to live on her inherited ...more
Laura Gardner
Dec 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
⭐⭐⭐⭐💫/5 for THE HOUSE THAT LOU BUILT by Mae Respicio. Out June 12, 2018. Thanks to @kidlitexchange for this review copy; all opinions are my own.
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Swipe for a summary!
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Lou is spunky, smart, resourceful and determined. Her family is colorful and dynamic. There’s lots of diversity in this book and the characters are realistic and complex. I love this story and I love this book. I sped through this book; I can’t wait to see what Respicio writes next!
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#bookstagram #book #re
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A.M. Morgen
Feb 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If this book were a house it would be a gingerbread house because it's so sweet! I loved the handy heroine, Lou, and her quest to build a tiny house. With the ubiquity of HGTV and DIY blogs, Lou's goal felt totally achievable and I was rooting for her to succeed. I also appreciated the author's deft hand in addressing gender stereotypes, cultural differences, and immigrant experiences, among other topics. There are so many important themes folded into the book, but they never felt forced or over ...more
Katie Reilley
Jun 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read an ARC of this book that was sent by Random House Kids via my #bookexpedition group.

It’s a wonderful middle grade story about family, friendships, and what home really means. Lou is everything I hope to see in a middle grade character: motivated and determined, yet also flawed. Sometimes she makes decisions that aren’t always best, but she learns from them by opening up and asking for help from her friends and family.

This was a window book for me; I enjoyed learning about Filipino cultu
...more
Joyce
I wish this book existed while I was growing up. But I’m glad The House That Lou Built exists for Filipino-American kids today. Respicio created wonderful characters and a heartfelt story about a girl with a dream to build her very own house. Filipino kids can relate to the cultural descriptions and Tagalog expressions (though Lou’s family uses Ilokano “manang” and “manong” instead of ate and kuya). The author also explains the meanings for non-Filipino readers as well. This was a quick read wit ...more
michelle
* Thank you for NetGalley for providing me with a review copy. All opinions are my own.

The House that Lou Built feels different from other books out there. It is refreshing to have a Filipino main character and allow her to stay very true to her culture without pounding it in to you. Lou was incredibly determined and full of passion. As with MG books, she had to learn a few lessons, but it worked. At times I felt the story was a little slow, but I also think there is an audience out there wantin
...more
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Mae Respicio grew up in Northern California and like the main character in her debut middle grade novel, spent many childhood summers dancing in a Filipino folk dance troupe. Mae is a past recipient of a PEN Center USA Emerging Voices Fellowship. She's been a writer-in-residence at Hedgebrook and Atlantic Center for the Arts and has published a variety of musings on parenthood. She lives with her ...more
More about Mae Respicio