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Critical Praise

“Fear not: This novel about a mildly retarded man who wins the Washington State Lottery is no Forrest Gump retread --- we much prefer this (admittedly folksy) narrator to Tom Hanks as a mentally challenged Zelig. Patricia Wood’s mentor, Paul Theroux, lent his literary wisdom to a book that manages to be heartfelt and totally not corny.”

——New York magazine

“In Lottery, Patricia Wood has created an altogether endearing character swept up in the most extreme of situations. A testament to the transcendence of friendship and the redemptive power of love, this startling novel is at once funny and poignant. Fans of Mark Haddon’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Daniel Keyes’ Flowers for Algernon would do well to pick up this captivating debut. I loved it!”

Martha O’Connor

“Patricia Wood’s debut novel tickles your funny bone, tugs your heartstrings, and redefines the word ‘fortunate’ all at once.”


“[An] irresistible debut novel about what makes people good or bad, smart or stupid.”

——Good Housekeeping

Lottery is a compelling and beautifully written story that will show you how it's possible to have a low score on an intelligence test and still be a genius at understanding other people's feelings and motivations.  And you'll learn that having above-average intelligence may mean less than finding happiness with yourself, and the people around you.  Lottery is a novel, but it reads like it really happened, right next door to you.”

——John Elder Robison, author of Look Me in the Eye: A memoir of my life withAsperger’s

“Wood’s debut is a poignant page-turner…a sweet read about money, relationships, and life.”


“A wonderful first novel…vivid and funny and poignant and joyful. Perry L. Crandall is the thinking man’s guide to a happy life.”

——The Washington Post