A Love Like Lilly introduces two new, true-to-life stories woven together. The story begins in the summer of 1985 after Grandma Lilly’s funeral when Jamie (James to her friends) discovers her grandpa’s old photo album from the 1930s – his “wild” days serving as a teenager in the “CCC’s” in Utah during the Depression. Between the photo album and her grandpa’s stories, she discovers a little-known past about her grandparents, Harold and Lilly, and the unusual circumstances that brought and kept them together. In that sixteenth summer of her life, James discovers a lot of things about herself, too: her shock when Grandpa begins “dating” again, and her jealousy when her childhood best friend, Kyle, shows interest in other girls. Jamie learns that no one ever stops learning and that, although life is hard, there are second chances and new beginnings for everyone.

This book is based on actual events that happened to my grandparents during the 1930’s, taken straight from my grandfather’s journal cassette tapes, as well as events that happened to myself as a teenager when my grandmother died. Pictures are posted below from my grandpa’s scrapbook – pictures that I was hoping would’ve been included as an insert in A Love Like Lilly, but unfortunately that didn’t end up happening. I'll be posting pictures of my grandparents from the 1980's soon, as well as pictures of the CCC camps in Utah as they look now.

Click HERE to see the pictures from A Love Like Lilly



A Love Like Lily Reviews:


From LDSFiles.com:

Reviewed by Dayna Davis

This story is about 15 year old Jamie, who discovers her Grandfather's old 1930's photo album, while helping him clean out her Grandma Lilly's things after her funeral. She begins a summer of learning about her grandparents through her Grandfather's stories about the CCC or Conservation Civilian Corps. She also learns to deal with her shock when her Grandfather starts "dating" again, and how to cope with her emotions when her childhood friend Kyle, suddenly starts to change toward her.

This was a hard book for me to get into. I tried it a couple of times, but the first chapter just didn't grab my attention. However, when I got past the first chapter, I was truly hooked. And while I have never had any interest whatsoever in the CCC, I was amazed by what I learned from reading this novel. I now wish my own grandparents were around to answer some questions for me. This story was a fabulous way to make history come alive and I enjoyed it. I loved the ending and thought it was just perfect. I hope there will be another book about Jamie, not because this story wasn't complete but because her character came alive for me and I would like to hear the rest of her story.


From LDSReview.net:

15-year-old Jamie has just endured the loss of her beloved grandmother and has volunteered to spend the summer with her grandfather to help him cope. When she discovers a photo album full of pictures of her grandpa wearing a strange uniform, she just has to know what is was all about, and on the way she finds out how enduring love can be and how a summer will change her forever.

A Love Like Lilly , Kay Lynn Mangum’s sophomore novel, is a great read. It tells the story of 15-year-old Jamie Addison and her summer spend with her grandfather, who has just lost his wife of nearly 50 years. While cleaning out her grandmother’s possessions, Jamie discovers the photo album her grandpa kept of his years in the CCC (the Civilian Conservation Corps – a Depression-era work program dreamed up by Franklin D. Roosevelt). Wanting to know more, Jamie gets our her tape recorder and she and her grandpa record the stories of his life, especially focusing on his courtship to his beloved Lilly.

The time with her grandpa eases the pain of losing her grandmother, but the summer will bring on more heartache than Jamie thought possible. From Grandpa’s first love to Jamie’s first love, you won’t want to put this novel down.

As an avid LDS fiction reader, it takes a lot to get me impressed. More and more I’m less amused with the standard romanticized version of they-fell-in-love-and-got-married-in-the-temple. What makes A Love Like Lilly so great is that the stories Jamie’s grandpa shares are actual stories from Mangum’s own grandfather’s time in the CCC. They tell of lasting friends, hard work, and the love of sweet Mormon girls. What I especially like is how Mangum has interwoven the CCC stories with the real-time drama of 15-year-old Jamie’s life. You can feel her awkwardness as she struggles to understand true love, not only with her grandpa, but with her own budding relationship.

A Love Like Lilly is great for LDS fiction readers ages 12 and up.


Click here to read the first chapter of A Love Like Lilly.

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This book is available from the following bookstores. Click on the links to go to the respective bookstore:

Amazon, Deseret Book, Barnes & Noble.