(CBS Local)– Need a new book to read this summer?
Author Julie Pennell has you covered with her brand new book called “Louisiana Lucky: A Novel,” about the Breaux sisters who hit it big and win $204 million from the lottery. Pennell was born and raised in Louisiana and the book follows three sisters named Lexi, Callie and Hanna who live in small-town Louisiana. This is Pennell’s second book and she’s always been interested in exploring the dynamics that come with winning the lottery.
“Everyone has dreamed about winning an obscene amount of money,” said Pennell in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “I thought this was a fun way to bring it to life and make it a book. My first novel The Young Wives Club had a plotline of someone winning a small amount of money in a scratch-off and that’s kind of what inspired this. You hear so many horror stories about people winning a lot of money and how their lives kind of crumble and I didn’t want that depressing story to happen. I did want to touch on the reality of winning a lot of money. You have the fun parts of this book with your makeover scenes and shopping sprees, but you also have some reality of does money actually solve all the problems or does it create some problems of their own.”
Pennell describes the sisters in her novel as down on their luck and living pay check to pay check. In fact, one sister doesn’t have enough money to get gas. While some people think problems disappear once you come into a lot of money, the author wanted to emphasize the true reality of managing a large sum of money.
“When they win, they think everything is going to be different,” said Pennell. “Lexi is the youngest and she wants to have a big, Hollywood style wedding to kind of impress her in-laws and all of the people in the community. Callie is the middle sister and she works at a newspaper. She uses the money to after her career dreams and get the confidence to find love. Hanna is the oldest and she yearns to give her kids everything she didn’t have when she was growing up. They all think the material things they buy will change their lives, but in reality the question is what truly makes you rich.”
“Louisiana Lucky: A Novel” is available wherever books are sold and watch all of DJ Sixsmith’s interviews from “The Sit-Down” series here.