It's 1885, and New York City is alive with excitement: the Statue of Liberty is arriving from France! Eight-year-old Lily agrees with her father that the statue is important as well as beautiful; it will send a wonderful message of welcome to the many immigrant families who come to the United States.
In anticipation of the statue's arrival, the city is trying to raise money to build a pedestal, and Lily is proud that her class will be contributing. But she needs to find her own way to help. Finally she comes up with an idea: she makes Liberty-like crowns and sells them outside her apartment.
Set against a vibrant historical backdrop, this simple chapter book is an engaging story. Lily's creativity and resourcefulness make her a likable character, and her thoughtfulness adds credible depth: When she realizes that some people oppose the fund-raising effort because they believe the money could be better used to feed the poor, Lily understands that freedom of speech is one of the many liberties the statue will represent.
Deborah Kogan Ray's warm black-and-white drawings capture the spirit of Carla Stevens' narrative, making Lily and Miss Liberty both inviting to open and satisfying to read.