The Courtship of Sarah McLean

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    “Sarah McLean is a nineteen year-old girl who longs to become a wife and mother. The book chronicles a period of two years, in which she has to learn to trust her parents and God fully in their decisions for her future.”

 

Title: The Courtship of Sarah McLean

Author: Mr. and Mrs. Steven Castlebury

Genre(s): Christian Fiction

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: Nothing inappropriate; the main theme of the story is courtship and marriage, but it is portrayed in a Biblical and God-honoring way (no kissing, holding hands, hugging, etc between un-married couples).

Recommended age range: 10-100! 🙂

My Review:

Okay, can I just say that this is an AMAZING book? It was sooo good, and had an accurate portrayal of Biblical courtship.
My parents have decided that courtship is the best way of action for us (their children) and I was happily amazed to find a good, sound book that shows this. It showed Sarah’s struggles and triumphs, which I thought was a great thing. I would not say that it was un-realistic in any way at all; I know many people who have the same standards as Sarah and her family. It was a blessing to see how Sarah and her siblings helped out around the house with a good attitude.
I appreciate the good message that this book gives; I have to say that it is the first book I have found like it (which is pretty sad).

 

The Art Contest, by Perry Elisabeth Kirkpatrick

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Two days ago, the Nazis rolled into Marie’s hometown. With her mother trapped in the countryside and her father ordered to perform piano concerts for the invaders, the 12-year-old’s life is turned upside down.

“When she learns there is more to her pianist father than meets the eye, Marie must work with him to sneak important information past the watching Nazis.

“This is a short story (approx. 12 minutes average reading time). It contains themes of family, adventure, and trusting God in hard times.” ~from Goodreads

 

Title: The Art Contest

Author: Perry Elisabeth Kirkpatrick

Genre(s): Christian Historical Fiction

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: None whatsoever

 (My) Recommended Age Range: 8-15

My Review:

FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. I was not obligated to leave a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

This was a sweet short story about a young girl and how she helped free France from the Nazis. I like how Mrs. Kirkpatrick described things; I always knew what was going on. It was very short, and I would have liked it better if it was even a bit longer. However, if you are looking for a short story, I would recommend this.

 

 

Books I Got for My Birthday {2017}

Yes, you get a bonus post! I didn’t see any opportunities for posting this soon (on schedule), so I decided to do it today instead. 🙂

 

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SORRY! This graphic is supposed to say {2017}… but I made it in 2018 to replace a different graphic, so here we go! 😛

I had a birthday recently, and all of my wonderful friends and family who know me well also know that I love to read, so guess what they got for me? Books, of course! Some of these I had already read, and wanted to have, and others I hadn’t even heard of. I’m going to “introduce” you to these wonderful books.

((click on the links under the covers to go to the books’ Amazon pages))

I have been wanting this book for awhile, and a sweet lady in our church was so kind and bought it for me. However, I was a bit disappointed by it. The romance was more than I prefer.

 

((sorry for the very horrible picture))

To tell you the truth, I really wasn’t very interested in this book when I got it. I don’t know, but the cover didn’t look like something I would like (yes, I’m one of those people who judge a book by its cover but don’t we all really??). However, I really enjoyed it!

Yes, I finally have my very own paperback copy of London in the Dark!!! My kind little brothers, who knew I wanted it, pooled their resources and bought it for me. ❤ I have posted my original review on here (London in the Dark BLOG TOUR!!!), but my sentiments did change slightly after I read it for the second time. (Sorry, I don’t think I have updated my review though… :/ )  You can read my first review here.

I got this book from one of my brothers. I have started it, and it is much different from your usual ghost story; I might post my review on here when I have finished it. 😉

I greatly enjoyed this book! It was a romance, which I don’t usually read, but I loved it because it had a twist. 😉

With this book it was kind of like how I felt about Left to Die; I had high expectations and they weren’t completely met. I did enjoy it, but I got annoyed by the main character. 😛

One of my best friends gave me this wonderful book, and I highly recommend it. It was very good!

Okay, so I have saved my favorite new find for last. I had read the Great Illustrated Classics version of this book, and it was okay, but not my favorite. The unabridged version, though? ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!! ❤ It is so much better than the other!

Well, that turned into a mini-review-ish post. 🙂 My very first!

Well, I hope you all enjoyed this post!

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When is your birthday?

Have you read any of these books?

 

BLOG TOUR!!: Isolated, by Jordy Leigh

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   “Fourteen-year-old Louise Stella flees into the forest to escape an intruder who would take her hostage. But by the time she returns to her house, her country has broken out in war and her home island has become a military base. Sharing the land with enemy soldiers, Louise’s only goal is to stay alive one day at a time. Having no food or water, and little knowledge of how to survive in the forests of Quebec, her biggest adversary is “the Unknown”. Her pride crumbles and she realizes that she can’t sustain herself. She must depend on someone else… but Whom?
 
   “Isolated is a Young Adult suspense novella with uncertainty lurking at every turn. It will have you asking the big questions about life and death. Will you come to the same conclusion as Louise?”

 

Title: Isolated

Author: Jordy Leigh

Genre(s):  YA Suspense

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: absolutely none whatsoever!

My Review:

FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. I was not obligated to leave a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

I loved this book! From the first page, Jordy had me hooked. I liked the “survival” aspect of the story, and I also LOVED how Louise kept resisting God, but then SPOILER!! turned to Him SPOILER END!!.
There were great times of suspense, but I also liked how Louise had times of despair as well. It really shows how, without God, you cannot do anything.
Now I want to know what happens next! I can’t wait for the next book in this series to come out.

**I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review.**

The Author: Jordy Leigh

JordyLeigh(p)

“From as young as seven years old, Jordy Leigh filled exercise booklets with stories until her hand hurt. She loves a good book, but ultimately she hopes that hers will offer something of greater value than short-lived entertainment. In reading them, may you learn more about the God of the Bible.

Jordy Leigh hopes that Isolated will at once quench
your desire for compelling fiction and nourish your
soul with wholesome truth.”

Da Interview:

((my questions are in bold; Jordy’s answers are italics))

1) About how long did it take you to write Isolated?
 
If we’re talking first draft only, it must have taken me about a year to write Isolated – ‘about’ being the key word. That year was full of stops and starts; publishing this particular story was not on my mind from the beginning. But from first spark-of-an-idea to publication, it has taken me three and a half years, give or take.
2) Where did you get the idea for Isolated from?
The short version: a dream.
In 9th grade, I read the novel “The Giver”, by Louis Pasteur, which I was reading for school. I think it shaped a dream that I had one particular night. I don’t have a practice of telling my dreams to people, but I guess this one was memorable enough that I told a friend. She suggested I write a story based off it. I’ve since adapted the plot to the point where it doesn’t resemble the dream at all. But in doing so, I’ve (hopefully) made it more credible and interesting.
3) What is your best tip for wanna-be authors?
Writing a book requires hours upon hours of dedicated work. Make sure you know from the beginning that you’re devoting your time to something that is worth it. When I consider this from a Christian’s viewpoint, it means that for my writing to be worth the time, it has to be something God is pleased to use for the advancement of His Kingdom.
A good, suspenseful read isn’t bad. But the world and its desires are passing away. So keep what makes it good and suspenseful, but make sure it’s worth something in the light of eternity. Let’s not become weary in doing good, dear Christian writer, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up!
4) What is your favorite line/quote from Isolated?
Oh Leona! Do you know how hard a question that is to answer? I’ll call this a quote, since it’s more than a line:
“For a brief second, she thought she felt the familiar claws of fear sink into her heart. Once again, she stood face to face with the monster called ‘the Unknown’. Then she quieted her soul. Everything would be alright. She couldn’t understand God’s purposes so she would just have to trust Him.”
I’m not sure that it’s my absolute favorite, but it definitely ranks up there! It encompasses so completely the transformation that Louise undergoes throughout the course of the book.
5) Which character in Isolated is your favorite?
That would be Louise, the protagonist. I’ve ‘gotten to know her’ more than anyone else, and I can relate to her in a lot of her weaknesses. Besides that, in Isolated, she’s the main character by a long stretch. Some readers might be relieved to know that more characters become involved over the course of the three sequels.
Thank you so much for allowing me to participate in this blog tour, Jordy! I loved your book and hope that many will be able to read it. 🙂

The Scripture Sleuth 3, by Matthew Halverson

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  “Who stole the lumberjack statue? Is a peanut butter sandwich really powering the digital clock, or is it just a science fair scam? Why is there a mysterious skydiver in Pine Tops? Concord Cunningham can crack all the cases, but can you? In the third volume of unique Scripture Sleuth mysteries, Concord once again faces an exciting new case in each chapter. Though Concord always solves the mystery, he never gives away the solution. Instead, he reveals the location of a Bible verse which holds the mystery’s final clue. Then it’s up to you to look up the clue and crack the case! Not sure about your answer? No problem. The solutions are at the back of the book.

“Scripture Sleuth 3 also includes ” The Greatest Case,” which brings Concord face to face with another Scripture Sleuth. Together, they investigate the most important case ever. These timeless and lighthearted mysteries are certain to make you think, laugh and make looking up Bible verses is irresistibly fun.” ~from Goodreads

 

Title: The Scripture Sleuth 3

Author: Matthew Halverson

Genre(s): Christian Contemporary Fiction, Mystery

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: None

Recommended age range: 7-10

My Review:

I loved this book! I enjoy books where you have to solve the mystery, and having to look up Bible verses for it? That was a great idea! The mysteries were each unique, and I only figured out a couple without looking in the back.

I am not sure what Bible version is used in this book, but I don’t think that it was KJB. That is a slight downside to it, but I still enjoyed it very much. 🙂 I would recommend this book for ages 7-10.

 

 

The Secret Church, by Louise A. Vernon

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“The Anabaptists are a small group of Christians who believe that everyone is a priest and should be able to study the Bible. They refuse to baptize their babies, and instead baptize adults on a confession of faith in Christ. Because of these heretical acts they are persecuted and sometimes put in prison.

“Richard lives in Germany and is caught up with the Anabaptists when his cousin Otto shows up seeking refuge. Richard needs help to hide Otto, but can he trust his friend Trudi? Her father hates the Anabaptists and wants to get rid of the whole movement!

“Join Richard as he helps his family, runs from guards, meets the legendary Menno Simons, and decides for himself whether he too wants to join the secret church.”

Title: The Secret Church

Author: Louise A. Vernon

Genre(s): Christian Historical Fiction

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: None

Recommended age range: 9-15 (see note at end of review)

My Review:

     This book was great! I loved the whole plot-line. It was very interesting reading about how they got away from the Catholic church (but I’m not sure how they could have stayed, since all the Catholics in this book were basically evil lol). It was also interesting that they went to Menno Simons, the founder of the Mennonites, but everyone called them Anabaptists. From what I’ve gathered about history, the Mennonites and the Anabaptists/Baptists were very similar until the Mennonites went a little extreme (correct me if I’m wrong).
This story had a bit of a mystery feel to it, which I really enjoyed.
**Parents, read this book before your children do if they have bad dreams, etc. Two of the main characters SPOILER!! get caught in a burning house (they aren’t harmed) and the main characters are persecuted by the Catholic church for their beliefs on baptism. SPOILER END!!

Spring with the Moodys, by Sarah Maxwell

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Spring with the Moodys is the fourth book in the Moody Family Series. As the twins’ birth nears, the children want to bless Mom, and their surprising idea for how to do that is a huge success. In the midst of waiting for the twins, a pet-sitting job is unexpectedly given to them and brings its own excitement. There is incredible joy when the Moody twins arrive! Mr. Delome, the neighbor across the street, continues to be part of the Moodys’ lives along with other familiar characters from the first three books. Come join the Moody family for the spring.” ~from Goodreads

Buy on Amazon (my affiliate link)

Title: Spring with the Moodys

Author:  Sarah Maxwell

Genre(s): Christian Contemporary Fiction

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: absolutely none at all!!

Recommended age range: 3-10

My Review:

I loved this book! It is the 4th one I’ve read in this series, and I enjoyed it very much.
The twins were so cute, and I loved hearing how the Moody children were helpful to their mother after the birth. I also thought it was sweet how the children planned for birthdays and the baby shower by themselves. It gave me ideas for how I could bless my siblings, which I’ve been trying to do lately.
This book may be intended for a younger age group, but I still enjoyed it very much. It wasn’t a mystery, or anything like that, but I thought that it was a good break from the high-suspense books I’ve been reading lately. 😉

Violet’s Bold Mission

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“Vi Travilla is about to take on a challenge unlike anything she’s ever done before. Vi knows that her dream will not be easy to achieve, but she is little prepared for the complications that await her. Who will come to her aid as she confronts the unknown forces that are determined to end her mission? What must she do to win the hearts of the people she wants to serve? Will her faith sustain her as she faces distrust and danger? The fourth in the A Life of Faith: Violet Travilla series, Violet’s Bold Mission is based on characters created by Miss Martha Finley, a nineteenth-century novelist who penned a series of best-selling books about the Christian life. Her books inspired millions of readers in her own time. Mission City Press is pleased to continue Miss Finley’s tradition of Christian storytelling in these new adventures of Vi Travillaa young woman committed to live her faith every day through service to others.” ~from Goodreads

Buy on Amazon (affiliate link info)

Title: Violet’s Bold Mission

Author: Based on the Characters by Martha Finley (I’m not sure who the real author is)

Genre(s): Christian Historical Fiction

Rating: https://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.pnghttps://openclipart.org/image/2400px/svg_to_png/243661/1457652300.png

Romance Content: Hints of romance; not main part of story

My Review:

Continue reading

Beta-reading

Beta-reading

As you may have seen from my new page, I am now accepting books for beta-reading! Please go to this page for more info. Thanks! 🙂

(oh, and I’m sorry for sending two posts into your reader/email in one day. :D)

Tell me in the comments:

Are you a beta-reader?

Would you like me to beta-read your novel/novella/short story?

Do you know what beta-reading is (I didn’t until recently)?

NOTE: I AM NO LONGER ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS FOR BETA-READING.

Enjoy the Poodle Skirt, by Kate Willis

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“Rule one: Keep your hands clean.
Rule two: Careful with the food trays.
Rule three: Visit the soda fountain as often as you like, but don’t make yourself sick.
Rule four: Enjoy the poodle skirt.


“Canary is excited to spend a whole week helping her newlywed aunt and uncle run a 50’s diner along with her older siblings Rose and Michael. Even the rules for working there are fun!

“But when a routine cleanup presents a mysterious, hand-drawn map, her vacation gets even more exciting than a banana split with hot fudge sauce. And that’s saying a lot!

“A short story.” ~from Goodreads

Buy on Amazon (my Amazon affiliate link; see the Affiliate Links page for more info)

Title: Enjoy the Poodle Skirt

Author: Kate Willis

Genre(s): Short Stories, Christian Contemporary Fiction

Rating: five stars

Content: 5/5

My Review:

This was an adorable little short story about three siblings that work in their aunt and uncle’s diner for a week. The little mystery is interesting and adds to the story quite a bit- the book wouldn’t be the same without it. 🙂 I love Kate’s writing style and all of the little details that she adds!
The only thing that some people may have a problem with are the mentions of a jukebox and dance steps.

**I recieved a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.**

Touch the Sky, by Robert Elmer

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     “Barely escaping a plane crash, Peter discovers a concealed handgun in the plane’s cockpit. What is Matthias hiding? Who is involved in the nighttime rendezvous?” ~from Goodreads

Buy on Amazon (my affiliate link; see the Affiliate Links page for more info)

Title: Touch the Sky

Author: Robert Elmer

Genre(s): Christian Historical Fiction/Adventure

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

Another wonderful book in the Young Underground series. The action was wonderful- that’s one of the things that I love about this series- and it was so exciting (and HAPPY 😀 )when SPOILER ALERT!! Henrik finally asked Christ into his heart. I’m not sure why he didn’t do that earlier in the series, since (I think) that would have made the series better, but… that’s what the author did. 😉 SPOILER END!! I thought for sure that SPOILER ALERT!! Henrik was going to have to move to Palestine SPOILER END!!– SO glad that didn’t happen. Unfortunately, this is still the last book in the series… *cries* 😥 HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!! 🙂

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Before You Meet Prince Charming {Study Guide}

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       “A young lady who is pure will shine with a radiant brightness in this world of darkness. How can a young lady stay physically and emotionally pure as she waits for God’s best in marriage? What should be her primary focus? How can she build close relationships with her parents? How can she be growing daily in her walk with Christ? What are some practical ways she can deal with a crush? What principles should she remember in her friendships with young men? How can she be wise in her internet usage?

“Recommended for individual or small group use, this study guide is a helpful companion to the book Before You Meet Prince Charming. Including memory verses, personal reflection, discussion questions, and suggested activities, it challenges girls to dig into God’s Word for themselves, seek to know the Lord and learn His ways, and evaluate their own lives based upon His truth.”

Title: Before You Meet Prince Charming Study Guide

Author: Sarah Mally and Bekah May

Genre(s): Christian Non-Fiction, Study Guides

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

This was a challenging and encouraging study guide to Before You Meet Prince Charming. 

Each chapter has 10-13 questions, based on what the chapter was about. Most of the questions have Bible verses to go with them, and I found that this was very helpful.

This book was very helpful as I re-read Before You Meet Prince Charming, and I highly recommend it. I would suggest that, if you go through it as a group, you should do it with your mom or some other individual(s) who you are willing to share personal stuff with, because some of the questions get pretty personal and in depth (although nothing inappropriate, of course). 😉

 

 

 

 

The Twin Arrows, by Kate Willis

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      “Two children. Two journeys. Twin arrows.

“Ryla follows her father’s parting instructions as closely as she carries his gift. Her protectors are kind, and safety is certain inside the convent’s strong walls. But now she must leave and what lies ahead is uncertain…

“Her brother Drewin won’t wait any longer. The knight promised to escort him isn’t coming, and gossiping neighbors threaten to reveal his identity. He strikes out on his own, sure he can outrun the danger…” ~from Goodreads

Title: The Twin Arrows

Author: Kate Willis

Genre(s): Christian Dystopian/Fantasy (not sure which)

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. I was not obligated to leave a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

Things I did like:

I am starting to enjoy non-magical fantasy more, and this is a great example of that genre!

The emotions expressed…aahh!!! So well written! And not just the emotions, the whole thing was very well polished. 😉 Great details, etc.

I liked the parallel between our Heavenly Father and our earthly one (or did I just imagine that??).

I also loved how Kate showed God’s love and care for us when we turn to Him.

Things I didn’t like:

Something that I had a slight problem with was that one of the main characters lived in an abbey for part of the story… I didn’t feel comfortable with the Catholic reference. Of course, no Catholic doctrine/theology was mentioned, but still… I didn’t like that. :/ However, that hardly took away from the storyline/plot. 🙂 And, I could understand why she used that-I can’t think of a different place for Ryla SLIGHT SPOILER!! to be safe in… besides a friends house…:P SPOILER END!!

One thing that I think could have used some work was the background to the story… I didn’t understand really what was going on… SPOILER!! the revolution, why they had to hide… and I didn’t know about their mother being in a different country until the end…SPOILER END!! but that may hate just been the writing style; sharing the different parts of the story as the book  goes along.

 

I know it seems like there was a lot more that I didn’t like about this book than what I did, but really, I highly recommend it!! I just feel that sometimes it is good to let people know what might be questionable in books, and let them find all the good parts for themselves (…as I’ve said before 😛 ). 😉

 

Captive Treasure, by Milly Howard

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“The long days on the trail were filled with excitement for adventurous Carrie Talbot. And at the end of the trail waited more adventure–she was going to start a brand new life at the Indian mission established by her uncle.

     “Then a sudden encounter with an Indian raiding party left Carrie with more excitement than she wanted. As she rode off helplessly with her captors, frantic thoughts raced through Carrie’s mind.

     “Why was one of the Indians so interested in the family Bible she had managed to save? How could she escape? Even if she did, how could she ever find the wagon train again?

       “The raiding party took Carrie deep into the wilderness to a Cheyenne camp on the banks of a distant river. There Carrie met the Indian called the Keeper and began a life far different from any she had ever imagined.” ~from Goodreads

Title: Captive Treasure

Author: Milly Howard

Genre(s): Christian Historical Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

This book was excellent! The MC (main character), Carrie, is inspiring as she witnesses to the Cheyenne Indians who capture her. It was great how, even after she MINOR SPOILER!! lost her Bible SPOILER END!! she still was able to share with them through Bible verses she had memorized. It challenged me to memorize verses myself. I loved seeing the Indians grow to come to know Christ. This book was written for ages 7-9, but I, a 12-year-old, still enjoyed it very much. 😉

 

 

 

 

Ivy Introspective: BLOG TOUR!!

Yes, yes, I know that I have been doing a lot of blog tours recently, and I apologize for that, but… I love getting free books!! 😛 😉

blogtourgraphic

 (I am only doing the blog tour for Ivy Introspective today. 🙂 )

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I ❤ this cover!! 🙂

Trapped in a world where she doesn’t belong, twelve-year-old Ivy struggles to keep her head above water as her simplicity is brought to light by her new position as a young lady growing up at Pearlbelle Park.

“After much thought, Ivy’s parents decide to send her to McCale House, a boarding school in Scotland for girls and boys like her. However, scared and worried away from her beloved mother, sister, and nurse, Ivy can’t seem to focus.

“Will Ivy ever learn what Dr. McCale is trying to teach her? Or will she remained lost in her own mind forever?” ~from Goodreads

Title: Ivy Introspective

Author: Kellyn Roth

Genre(s): Historical Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. I was not obligated to leave a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

I’m not quite sure what to think of this book. However, I’ll try to gather my thoughts in this review.

Reading about Ivy was very interesting. I liked how she “found the song in her head”. I’ve read about special needs kids being very musically talented, and this seems to agree with that. Violet was a very interesting character… which brings me to another point:

The different places/circumstances where certain characters (SPOILER ALERT!! Mr. Parker and Violet SPOILER END!!) come to Christ are a bit vague. It is implied that they accept Christ as their Lord and Savior, but… it isn’t very clear. ??

I did like to see different characters “grow up”. 🙂 But… in my opinion, some of the adults in this story acted very immature. That seems to be Kellyn’s writing style, though, and I don’t think that it took away from the story. 🙂 Somehow, it fit with the characters’ personalities. 😉

 

Meet the Author: Kellyn Roth

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Kellyn Roth was born and raised in the country outside a small town in North-Eastern Oregon. Ever since she could talk, she’s had a fascination with words, always coming up with songs, poems, and stories. Now a homeschooled highschooler, she spends her spare time penning historical novels, several of which have been published.

 

Website · Blog · Newsletter · Facebook · Amazon · Goodreads

Interview with Kellyn:

Welcome to my blog, Kellyn! I have five questions to ask you today.

1) About how long did it take you to write Ivy Introspective?
Years and years and years …
Well, okay, from start to finish it wasn’t quite one year. I wrote the first draft in November 2016 (after much daydreaming, outlining, etc.). And then deleted it and started all over again. I wrote (or rewrote) Ivy Introspective over the spring and summer of 2017. I believe this new draft was finally completed in October 2017.
But it felt like longer. I really took too long to write this one. I even wrote a 15,000-word novella write in the middle of my writing – and published it! Procrastination at it highest, am I right?
 
2) Where did you get the idea for Ivy Introspective from?
 
I think the original idea came from wanting to somehow help Ivy (who first appeared in The Dressmaker’s Secret, The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, Book 1). She has a slight mental disability, and I couldn’t think of a way that she could receive the special training she would need.
In Ivy’s time, anyone who was different was ostracized or put in terrible places that were supposedly mental hospitals but were often more like third-world prisons. And, well, that wasn’t going to happen to my Ivy. Neither was she going to spend the rest of her life hidden. She probably could have learned to live with her disability (which is similar to some forms of autism), but I wanted to write about Ivy learning to be her amazing self in a way that wouldn’t take decades of gradual coping.
So … I decided to go off the rail a little and make up a place for Ivy to go to learn in a special way … a secluded school in Scotland. No, it’s not 100% historically accurate, but I hope it isn’t too unbelievable to have existed.
 3) What is your best tip for wanna-be authors?
Just keep writing is a little cliché, and read until you explode has been done too many times. Both of these are stellar pieces of advice, though, and in no way do I seek to discredit them.
I think my #1 piece of advice would be “write what you love.” Do you really love cats? Well, I don’t see why there can’t be cats in your stories. How about the ocean? You can write a story set by the sea, can’t you? Or perhaps you’re a lover of elves – all kinds of elves, from Santa’s Little to Tolkien’s. So put some elves in your story.
I myself really love the classic Grimm’s fairytales. I write historical fiction, but one of the themes in my series, The Chronicles of Alice and Ivy, is fairytale endings and how they play out in real life. There’s a chapter in Ivy Introspective that plays on this idea, and it’s one of my favorites. 🙂
 4) What is your favorite line/quote from Ivy Introspective?
Just one?! How could I choose? But I suppose I’d pick this one:
“I never know I can do anything until I do.”
~Ivy Knight, Ivy Introspective by Kellyn Roth
5) Which character in Ivy Introspective is your favorite?
Hmm … I guess Violet Angel. She’s a student at McCale House who “befriends” Ivy. (I put that in quotes because Violet is a sarcastic, unruly girl who doesn’t really “befriend” anyone so much as tolerate them. 😉 )
Thanks for interviewing me, Leona! ❤
You’re very welcome! I enjoyed it. 🙂

And, as usual, there is a giveaway with this blog tour:

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There is also an international giveaway for ebook copies of the books. To go to that one, click the arrow under the title of the giveaway (if that makes sense).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

The Animal Book Tag

Obviously, WordPress didn’t post this last week when I was on vacation. 😦 Oh, well! Now you get it this week! 😛

Hey, everyone! My cousin and I made a tag. It is called The Animal Book Tag!

Animal Book Tag

Da Rules:

1) Add the tag graphic to your post.

2) Thank the person who tagged you (unless you’re not thankful; please don’t lie! lol).

3) Answer the questions.

4) Tag five bloggers.

5) And you’re done!

 

Question #1: What is your favorite book with animals as the main characters?

Hmm… I’d have to say Malcolm At Midnight.

Q #2: Tell us about the book!

This book is about a rat named Malcolm. He is small for a rat, and thus, many people think he is a rat. He is taken from a pet store to live as a classroom pet. The teacher in this classroom is named Mr. Binney. Malcolm discovers that he can get out of his cage. on is first night out, he sees a meeting of classroom pets. They call themselves Midnight Academy. These extraordinary animals find Malcolm and he joins their group. Malcolm discovers several mysteries and, in the end, saves the day. (copied from my review of it)

Q #3: Which is your favorite animal in it?

Probably Malcolm, since he is the hero. 🙂

Q# 4: What is your favorite scene in it?

Well, it’s been a while since I read it, but I think it would probably be the one when Malcolm goes upstairs and the cat fights him (one of many reasons why I do not like cats 😛 ). I think that was in this book, but it could have been in Malcolm Under the Stars.

Q #5: What is your favorite quote from the book??

“A critter reveals his true self at midnight.”
W.H. Beck, Malcolm at Midnight

 

I tag:

Neria @ Writing for Fun

Elise @ A Lamp to Her Feet

Victoria @ Ruffles and Grace

Pip @ Pip and Lolly

Hosanna @ Having a Heart Like His

And… because this is the first time this tag has appeared on the Internet (wow, that sounds serious! lol)… I also tag YOU! Thanks for reading!

p.s.

I’m thinking about re-vamping this whole blog; colors, pics, everything (except the theme). What do you think?? Please let me know in the comments! 🙂

 

The Mystery of the Midnight Trespasser, by Hosanna Emily

the mystery of the midnight trespasser

   “‘Rosy growled, and I knew she was pacing the porch. I sensed her uneasiness. Something was wrong. Rosy never barked at cars; why would she choose this one?’

   “13 year-old Emily Kessler believes in God, but when she discovers someone trespassing in the middle of the night, can she learn to trust in Him completely? Will she have the courage to solve the mystery with her friends? And when everything falls apart, will Emily be able to keep those she loves safe?” ~from Goodreads

Title: The Mystery of the Midnight Trespasser

Author: Hosanna Emily

Genre(s): Christian, Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

I have been wanting to read this book for a while, and I finally got a chance to. I really enjoyed it! Hosanna Emily did a great job writing this book. I was reading an e-copy, so it could just be that, but I did notice a number of typos. I’m kind of persnickety about that. 😉
This book was well-rounded. I like how it was from a first-person POV (I think that’s what it’s called??). The Kessler kids & friends reminded me of my siblings and myself. 🙂 We enjoy playing in the woods by my grandparents’ house. Parts of the book were a bit confusing; at one point one or two of Emily’s siblings (I can’t remember how many) appear, when they weren’t mentioned earlier. I do like the mystery, however. It was very exciting. 😉
I read a negative review on Goodreads, in which the reader “complained” that the kids didn’t talk to their parents about the mystery. I would agree that that is misfortunate, but I have noticed that this is a common theme in mystery books (the Boxcar Children, Nancy Drew, etc.). I would say that the author could have done a better job showing parental involvement, etc, but I would also say that it did make the story more scary/interesting/etc. *shrugs*
All in all, this was a pretty good book, and I would definitely recommend it. It was clean, and Bible verses were used throughout (although I must say that I was disappointed that the American Standard Version was used {since I am a firm believer in the KJB}).

Have you read this book? Is it on your TBR? Please comment below with your opinions!

Aaannnddd… this has nothing to do with this book, but just to let ya’ll know, I am going on vacation next week, and will not be able to post. I will try to schedule a post, but WordPress doesn’t always co-operate when I try that, so… we’ll see! 🙂

The Secret Slipper~ BLOG TOUR!!!

Tour banner
You’ve got it: a blog tour! The Secret Slipper was a great book, and I’m excited to be able to review and promote it on here! 🙂 Included in this post is:
  • My review
  • Book sale
  • Author bio
  • Interview with author
  • Giveaway- US and International!
  • Blog tour schedule

Enjoy! 🙂


The Secret Slipper 02 small.jpg

Being a cripple is only the beginning of Lia’s troubles. It seems as if Bioti’s goal in life is to make Lia as miserable as possible. If Lia’s purpose was to be a slave, then why did God make her a cripple? How can He make something beautiful out of her deformity?

“Raoul never questioned the death of his daughter until someone reports her whereabouts. If Ellia is still alive, how has she survived these ten years with her deformity? When Raoul doesn’t know who to trust, can he trust God to keep Ellia safe when evidence reveals Bioti’s dangerous character?

“As time brings more hindrances, will Raoul find Ellia, or will she forever be lost to the father she doesn’t even know is searching for her?”

Title: The Secret Slipper

Author: Amanda Tero

Genre: Christian Fantasy

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

This was such a great book! It literally made me cry at the end! It is a fairly short read (I read it in one afternoon), but is definitely worth it. 😉 I can’t say that it really seems much like Cinderella (which I like; as you probably know, I’m not one for romance), but it is still a great book. 🙂 I’m also not one for fantasy, but this book fit to my tastes quite well. 😉 I might have to start trying more Christian fantasy, apparently! It did not have any magic or anything (another thing that I like 😛 ). I’m trying to decide if I should give more details… Okay, I will. 😉 (if you don’t like spoilers, you probably shouldn’t read this next section; I pointed out spoilers specifically, but still…)

There were a bunch of twists to the story (the one that caught me most off guard was SPOILER!! that Galien killed the informer {can’t remember his name right now- lol} SPOILER END!!). I did not expect SPOILER!! Lia to go to the dungeon; but that was a good thing, because then she asked the Lord into her heart SPOILER END!!. It had a great message of trusting the Lord throughout SPOILER!!, like when Raoul prays, etc. SPOILER END!!.

So, basically, YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK!!! I feel like I’m saying that a lot lately, but it’s really true!! 🙂 Thanks for letting me review it, Amanda!

*I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*

And… guess what?!?

Sale May 25

Order “The Secret Slipper” by May 26, 2017, to get it at the discounted price of $0.99!!

Also, if you would like to get a signed copy of either book (U.S. only, sorry!), click here!

About the Author

Amanda bio pic.jpg

Amanda Tero is a homeschool graduate who desires to provide God-honoring, family-friendly reading material. She has enjoyed writing since before ten years old, but it has only been since 2013 that she began seriously pursuing writing again – starting with some short stories that she wrote for her sisters as a gift. Her mom encouraged her to try selling the stories she published, and since then, she has begun actively writing short stories, novellas, and novels. If something she has written draws an individual into a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ, it is worth it!

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)

Connect with Amanda

Email: amandaterobooks@gmail.com

Website: http://amandatero.com/

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/amandaterobooks

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amandateroauthor/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/amandaruthtero/

Blog: http://www.withajoyfulnoise.blogspot.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/AmandaTero

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/amandatero

And… Da Interview!

1) About how long did it take you to write The Secret Slipper?

I started “The Secret Slipper” on November 22, 2016 and finished the final draft March 22, 2017 (cool; I didn’t realize it was exactly four months!).

2) Where did you get the idea for The Secret Slipper from?

I had finished “Befriending the Beast” (a spin-off of Beauty and the Beast) as a stand-alone when an author friend asked, “Hey, have you ever considered a father/daughter Cinderella story?” And that is exactly where the inspiration started. I prayed about it, and the Lord supplied the full story.

 3) What is your best tip for wanna-be authors?

Seek the Lord at every stage of writing. Writing is a tough thing, but if it’s what the Lord is leading you to do, He promises to give wisdom to everyone who asks.

Bonus tip: Never stop learning about the writing craft and be critical of your work. That is one of the best ways to get better.

 4) What is your favorite line/quote from The Secret Slipper?

Ooh…tough one…

Probably…“The question is not about the deformity of your body but about the deformity of your soul.”

5) Which character in The Secret Slipper is your favorite?

Jolin. Hands down. He’s the strong, steady, cautious guy, plus encourages Raoul in the Lord.

 

I know this is getting to be a very long post, but we have one more VERY important thing… A GIVEAWAY!!!

TSS Giveaway graphic

U.S. Giveaway: Enter to win the set of “Befriending the Beast” and “The Secret Slipper”

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/483ac2ab21/?

International Giveaway: Enter to win the eBook set of “Befriending the Beast” and “The Secret Slipper”

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/483ac2ab22/?

Also Touring With The Secret Slipper:

May 25, 2017

Amanda @ With a Joyful Noise | Release Day, Giveaway

Leila @ Leila Tualla’s Bookshelf | Spotlight

Faith @ Writings, Ramblings, and Reflections | Review, Giveaway

Leona @ Great Books for God’s Girls | Review, Interview

 

May 26

Emily @ Zerina Blossom’s Books | Interview

Kendra @ Knitted By God’s Plan (Spotlight) and O’Scarlett Reviews (Review) | Spotlight, Review

Alicia @ A Brighter Destiny | Review, Giveaway

 

May 27

Anika @ This Journey Called Life | Spotlight, Review, Giveaway

Katie @ His Princess Warrior | Review, Giveaway

Sarah @ The Destiny of One | Spotlight

Heather @ Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen | Spotlight, Interview, Giveaway

 

May 29

Kate @ Once Upon an Ordinary | Review, Interview

Sarah @ Penumbra Reviews | Review

Dary @ Peculiar Miss Darcy | Character Interview

Julia @ My Joyful Journey with Jesus | Interview

 

May 30

Kenzi @ Honey Rock Hills | Review, Giveaway

Anita @ Christian Author: A.M. Heath | Review

Judith @ JudithWNicholson | Interview

 

May 31

Jesseca @ Whimsical Writings for His glory | Spotlight, Review

Raechel @ God’s Peculiar Treasure Rae | Spotlight, Review

Esther @ Purposeful Learning | Review, Interview, Giveaway

 

June 1

Kellyn @ Reveries Reviews | Review

Victoria @ Victoria Minks Blog | Spotlight, Review

Kelsey @ Kelsey’s Notebook | Spotlight

 

June 2

Hanne @ RockandMinerals4Him | Spotlight, Review, Giveaway

Erica @ Roxbury Books Blog | Spotlight

Janell @ Views from the Window Friend | Review

Crystal @ Crystal’s Adventures for Christ | Spotlight, Review, Interview

 

June 3

Alexa @ Verbosity Reviews | Spotlight

Faith @ Chosen Vessels | Review

Melissa @ Clothed with Scarlet | Review, Interview, Giveaway

 

 

London in the Dark giveaways!

GUESS WHAT, EVERYONE?!? My current favorite author is giving away copies of her book!!! The Book: London in the Dark!!! Yes! Feel free to get a free e-copy of the book, but don’t enter the paper copy giveaway because I want to win jk!

DA POST:

Hello all! Today I have something special for you!

SO!!!! Whatcha think? Here are all the rules below! In exchange for the free copy of my book you receive, I would expect an honest review on amazon.com and if possible, goodreads.com

via Happy Victoria Day! // Free Book and Giveaway! — Ruffles and Grace

Yes,  I know that this isn’t my day to post, but I “had” to get this out. lol Expect a blog tour on Thursday! 🙂

Are you going to enter? (say no, please 😛 ) Did you hear about this anywhere besides here?? Let me know in the comments!

Peril on Providence Island, by C. R. Hedgcock

Peril on Providence Island (Baker Family Adventures #2)

“The Bakers are full of excitement as they head to the English countryside to celebrate Grandfather Wilson’s eightieth birthday. When an elderly neighbor with Alzheimer’s disease tells a tale of treasure lost on the high seas, the Bakers are sure she has confused reality with fiction. But as they find information that supports Old Marge’s story, they begin wondering whether there is truth in it after all.

“Can the discovery of an ancient treasure help Old Marge stay in her beloved cottage and out of a nursing home? This question sends the Bakers on a swashbuckling adventure of mystery and peril, following an old diary through mysterious caves and a maze of clues in search of the missing treasure. Along the way, their quest is marked by amazing providences that point to this key conclusion: God’s ways are always right and true.” ~from Goodreads

Title: Peril on Providence Island

Author: C.R. Hedgcock

Genre(s): Christian YA Fiction

Rating: ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ (four stars)

Recommended age range: 10+, because of some suspense

My Review:

AAAAHHH!!! This was so good! I mean, the action! the suspense! This was better than the first Baker Family Adventure, in my opinion. It was VERY good. Some more details:

SPOILER ALERT!! The Bakers go to England for Mr. Baker’s father’s 80th birthday. While there, they meet an elderly lady, who tells them a story of treasure, under the sea. Anyways, long story short, they end up going to this island, finding the chest of gold, and fighting off and catching bad guys. SPOILER END!! For those who skipped the spoiler, the Bakers have a rather exciting (and stressful at times) adventure. My kind of story, folks. 🙂 (My synopsis there sounds terribly cliche, but it wasn’t, really. 😉 ) Annnnddd… You really have to read this, folks. I’m serious. It is GOOD!! 🙂

The only reason why I don’t fully recommend this book (and the rest of the series) is because the King James Bible is not used (I think the NKJV is used, if I remember right). But other than that, I really liked it!

So, basically, this was a WONDERFUL, ACTION PACKED book. A must read. 🙂

Autumn with the Moodys, by Sarah Maxwell

https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1395215371l/2150948.jpg

from Goodreads.com

“Starting where Summer with the Moodys ended, the Moodys begin their new homeschool year. Not only is Mom experiencing morning sickness, but Maple, the eleven-week-old puppy, adds her twist of excitement. Packed into the book, you’ll find the Moodys helping their grandparents move nearby, an emergency trip to the doctor’s office, puppy training, birthday excitement, blessing neighbors, homeschooling–and to wrap the book up–a special Thanksgiving surprise!” ~from Goodreads.com

Title:  Autumn with the Moodys

Author: Sarah Maxwell

Genre: Christian Contemporary Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 6/5

My Review:

I don’t know, maybe I was in a better mood when I read this book, but I liked it better than the last one. It had more action (in the last one it didn’t seem like the Moodys DID much, if you know what I mean). And I’m starting to agree with the idea that books should have good examples in them (as opposed to people being bad, and getting punished for it). There might just be something to that! However, I think that there still should be some “conflict” in a story; otherwise, it just gets boring (kinda like the first book in the series). 😉
So, I guess that this “review” was more a stating of my opinions in general instead of a review of this book in specific, but I hope you don’t mind. I guess I’ll tell you some more about the book below (DO NOT READ IT IF YOU DON’T LIKE SPOILERS!!!):
SPOILER ALERT!! I LOVED Maple! My family is hoping to get a puppy, so that just made her more adorable. ❤ And the stuff with Mrs. Moody having morning sickness-very realistic, people! My mom hasn’t really had much with her pregnancies, but I know people who have. This just adds to the reality of the book, which I liked. And… Grandpa Moody getting saved at the end!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤ !!! I loved that Miss Maxwell gave the whole salvation plan, and what exactly happened (as opposed to just saying, “he accepted Christ”). So, yeah. There were a lot of things that I liked about this book. 😉 SPOILER END!!

How was that for a review (and some MAJOR spoilers)?!? I think I did pretty well giving away the main points of the book (in that last section). 😛

BYE!! ❤

Sunshine Country, by Kristina Roy

https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1461792159l/3036937.jpg

Cover courtesy of Goodreads.com

Palko is part of a mystery, several in fact, but he doesn’t know that. The only mystery he knows is the one that involves the hidden cave and the secret book that shows the way to the Sunshine Country – and Palko longs to go there. He has heard that in that land there is no darkness or fear, sickness or weeping. Soon he has his grandfather, Uncle Martin and the whole village wondering about the amazing little book that tells them such wonderful truths about the love of God and the forgiveness of sins. Even Father Malina starts to ask questions. But then there is the mystery about Palko’s past and another little boy who went missing – Uncle Martin is trying to find him and Palko promises to do the same. Will they find the little boy after such a long time? Are they in fact looking in the right place? Perhaps the mystery isn’t so mysterious after all.” ~from Goodreads.com

Title: Sunshine Country: A Story of Czechoslovakia

Author:  Kristina Roy

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction??

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 10/5

My Review:

I ❤ ❤ ❤ THIS BOOK!!! Just lovely! 🙂 I love how SPOILER!! so many people get saved as a result of one little boy. SPOILER END!! Just-the whole thing! It is so nice to see people searching for Christ, and finding Him. The only thing that I didn’t like was the part about the Catholic priest; he never rejected Catholicism after he got saved for real… of course, SPOILER!! he died very soon after SPOILER END!!, but still… Oh, well! This was still a WONDERFUL book! ❤ LOVE IT! Please, everyone! Put this on your to-read list or I will hunt you down until you do. Oh, and BTW, I love the description above, too. 😉 So mysterious, it is perfect for the book. 🙂

(And please excuse my ranting and raving; just YOU HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK!!! :P)

Just Thirteen, by Dorcas Mast

Just Thirteen by Dorcas R. Mast

Pansy took one last breath of the tangy fall air and shut the window with a bang. ‘Glorious fall!’ she exulted..’Autumn without a doubt, is the most wonderful time of the year. It makes me feel able to do anything.
A few minutes later down stairs in the kitchen, she announces exuberantly to the family, ‘I feel in my bones that today something great is going to happen.’
Something did happen. In fact, Pansy is the kind of girl who seems to make things happen, although this particular time, someone else brought the happening to pass. (…)
Pansy has just turned thirteen, and realizes that since she is now a teenager, she is on the way to growing up-and growing up means becoming a lady. But she is sure she is never going to be able to be the kind of lady she should be.
Her thirteenth year is an exciting and busy one with family fun and activities, school troubles and success, and Christian parents to guide and steer Pansy through all the happenings- and ideal situation for a lively girl who is Just Thirteen.’ ~from Goodreads

(I’m sorry that the description is so long; I couldn’t figure out what part(s) to remove. 🙂 )

Title: Just Thirteen

Author: Dorcas R. Mast

Genre: Mennonite Contemporary Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 4/5~ there wasn’t anything inappropriate, I just didn’t completely agree with the theology. 🙂

My Review:

This book was very relatable to me, a (almost) thirteen-year-old. Many of the things that Pansy went through apply to me, although she is was a Mennonite. Most of the things that happened in the book could have happened to me. 😛

I did not agree with all of the theological stuff (for example, when she got “baptized”, it sounded like they only sprinkled her?? {I believe in immersion}). Also, I’m not quite sure what they meant by saying “Christian”. (ex: they said that some of the teens/preteens were Christians, while others weren’t. In my (Baptist) circles I would take that to mean that some had not accepted Christ as their Savior, while others had. ??? I’m not familiar with Mennonite theology, so if anyone knows, let me know! 🙂 )That was not clear to me. But, all in, all, this was a great book. 🙂 And, I ❤ the cover. I NEED TO KNOW WHO DREW/PAINTED IT!!! 🙂

So, basically, (man, this is turning into a super long review!) I did enjoy this very much, just would not recommend it for younger readers, as it might cause them to question what their parents teach about baptism, etc. 🙂 But, for me, I loved it. ❤

 

Brave the Wild Trail, by Milly Howard

1927459

   “Florida after the Civil War was one long stretch of wilderness. Men had to struggle to feed and protect their families. Armed with the eighteen-foot bullwhips that earned them the name of “Crackers,” these men lived by hunting small game and by driving the wild yellowhammer cattle that haunted the scrub.

   “Eben Bramlett’s dream is to run a cattle drive down to Punta Rassa on the southern coast. His twelve-year-old son Josh, also expert with both horse and bullwhip, is his partner. Together they assemble a small company to begin the four-month trip to Punta Rassa. With rustlers, outlaws, and wolves ahead on the trail, they mount up and ride out.” (summary from Amazon.com)

Title: Brave the Wild Trail

Author: Milly Howard

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 10/5 😉

My Review:

I loved this book! It was a great read for a quiet afternoon. 🙂 Nothing bad about it; it was even from a Christian perspective! It is a fairly short book (121 pages), but jam-packed with adventure. 😉 It had small mysteries scattered without (like MINOR SPOILER!!! “who was the man watching the cattle?” SPOILER END!!!), but I don’t think it was a main part of the story. Some girls may not enjoy it as much as I did, as a boy is the main character, and his mom is the only woman/girl in the book (PLOT SPOILER!!! they are on a cattle drive for most of it, and the other helpers are men and boys SPOILER END!!!), but I thought it was okay. 🙂 All in all (I feel like I’m saying that a lot at the end of my reviews…), this was a WONDERFUL book. 😉

Summer with the Moodys, by Sarah Maxwell

3774078

From Goodreads

Come along with the Moodys as they help a widowed neighbor, start small businesses for the children, enjoy a family fun night, live normal life, and wrap up the book with two special surprises! Woven throughout the book is the Moodys’ love for the Lord and their enjoyment of time together. Children (parents too!) will love Mr. and Mrs. Moody, Max, Mollie, Mitch, and Maddie—they’ll come away challenged and encouraged.” -from Goodreads

Title: Summer with the Moodys

Author: Sarah Maxwell

Genre: Christian Contemporary Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

I LOVED this book! Someone in our church was having me pre-read it for her, before she bought the whole series (I’m becoming known as a fast reader). IT WAS REALLY GOOD! There were a ton of Bible verses scattered without, and I loved seeing the Moody’s grow in the Lord. And it would also be a great book about the power of prayer SPOILER!!! they pray for a dog and a baby, and in the end, they get both (well, the baby technically wasn’t born yet, but…) SPOILER END!!!. This book would be great for ages 6-12; actually some of the reviews on the book say that five-year-olds liked it! The only thing that I didn’t like was that… well… their lives seemed a little perfect… there was only one minor fight that the kids had, and that doesn’t seem very realistic. I mean, my brothers? I won’t get into that. 😛 I think Miss Maxwell could have shown a little more disobedience; but showed that there are consequences. Overall, though, this was a wonderful book and I highly recommend it. 🙂

London in the Dark BLOG TOUR!!!

 

london-in-the-darkblog-tour-2Announcing… London in the Dark, by Victoria Lynn!!!

 

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I love this cover!!!

London, 1910

Budding Private Detective Cyril Arlington Hartwell has a conundrum. London is being ravaged by the largest run of thefts in recent history. His hunch that it is all tied together may put him and those he loves in more danger than he could have reckoned.

Olivia Larken Hartwell is just home from boarding school for the summer anticipating time with her adoring parents. She misses her absent brother, Cyril, hoping for the day he will finally come home. But tragedy strikes, causing upheaval for all concerned and changes her life in a way she never could have imagined.

Olivia, Cyril, and their friends must bring the hidden to light, seek to execute justice, and dispel the darkness that hovers over London… and their hearts.

Title: London in the Dark

Author: Victoria Lynn

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction/Mystery

Rating: ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ (five stars)

Content: 5/5

My Review:

Aaaah!!! I loved this book! The storyline was well thought-out, and Victoria is very good at emotions. I was literally crying in spots (especially at the end)! The beginning was great, and the ending was OH SO GOOD!! The middle wasn’t quite so full of action, but it was still wonderful. I like how she put it all together into a marvelous book. 🙂 Now I need to rave a little:

The beginning:  I liked how the mystery started right away, SPOILER!! with the mysterious man at the dinner party. And the part with SPOILER!! the carriage accident, oh, that was so sad (and kind of a stunner-like, WHAT?!?!). *cries*

The middle: I liked how she peppered it with hints of what the ‘bad guys’ were doing, and showed Olivia’s emotions and how her brother treated her. 🙂

The end: This was my very favorite part of the book. The drama!!! WARNING: MAJOR SPOILERS IN NEXT SENTENCE!!! Bancroft’s salvation, the almost-drowning, the wedding…. ❤

All in all, I would give this 5 stars all the way through. 🙂 Thank you for letting me review it, Victoria!

*I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*

The Author:

Victoria Lynn

Victoria Lynn is in her 20s and if she’s not writing, she is probably sewing, singing, playing the piano, washing dishes, creating something with her hands, or learning something new. She has a passion for serving her Creator, encouraging others and being creative. She blogs at www.rufflesandgrace.com about writing, fashion, modesty, her walk with God and life. She lives in Michigan with her parents and 8 siblings.

 

 

Add on Goodreads ~ Buy on Amazon

 

And… Da Interview!

  • Which is your favorite character?

Oh my! That is such a hard question to answer! It is like trying to pick your favorite child! *wails* Hmmmm. . . All of the main characters are my favorite. I love them for different reasons. Can I pick 4? Olivia, Cyril, Dudley and Bancroft. 😀

Olivia was probably my favorite, but I like the other three as well. 🙂

  • How long did it take for you to write London in the Dark?

The rough draft from outline to writing “the end” was 7-8 months. I write long hand with a pen and notebooks, so it took me a while, but at the same time, I think it took me less time than if I had typed it because I wasn’t distracted, which is what tends to happen when I am on the computer.

Yes, that makes sense. 🙂

  • Is anything in London based on happenings from your life? 

That is a REALLY good question. I would have to say only a little bit. I didn’t realize it at the time, but some of the relationships were similar to ones that I had experienced. Especially Olivia and Cyril’s. Not the same obviously, but similar feelings and emotions.

*doesn’t know what to say to that answer* 😛

  • What was your favorite scene to write?

OH dear. I have two in particular that come to mind. I loved writing the scene towards the middle where Dudley and Cyril are bantering/arguing back and forth. *grins* I loved that! The other scene was one of the main lynch-pin chapters in the middle. I don’t want to give anything away, but I will say it is the chapter where something suspenseful happens to Olivia in Cyril’s office. 😀

Oh, yes, I remember that part. 🙂 I can imagine that that must have been fun to write, although I can’t imaging how you could stand it. 😛

  • Who is your favorite author?

Goodness! You are good at coming up with hard questions! LOL! I have quite a few who are my favorites and they are all older books. How about my top 3? Gene Stratton Porter, Lucy Maud Montgomery, and Grace Livingston Hill.

I’ve only read books by Lucy Maud Montgomery (in that list). I don’t think I’ve even heard of Gene Stratton Porter! I’ll have to check him out! 🙂

Thank you so much for having me Leona! It was such a delight to answer your questions!

You are very welcome! I’m glad you had fun! 🙂

 

And, what’s more, there are a couple of giveaways!!

Giveaway on the blog for:

London giveaway and:

London in the Dark giveaway 2

Goodreads giveaway

For signed copy of London.

Please enter the giveaways!

Thank you all so much for reading! Please check out all the other blogs that are participating in this tour! You can find the full list on Victoria’s blog. 

 

Have you read London? Would you like to? (clue: answer is YES YES YES!!!) Would you like it if I did shorter blog tours (I know I tend to not read longer posts)? Comment below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Escape on the Underground Railroad, by Nancy LeSourd

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“Hannah’s world is shaken when she discovers her family’s involvement with the Underground Railroad. When runaways find their way to her Virginia home, she must decide if she will play it safe or join her family to help the slaves escape. In Philadelphia, her friend Sarah is drawn into the life of a seven-year-old orphan whose world has been shattered by the evils of slavery. As the danger increases, the girls must find the courage they need to act before it is too late.” -from the back cover

Title: Escape on the Underground Railroad

Author: Nancy LeSourd

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

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Series: Liberty Letters, 1858

My Review:

I LOVED THIS BOOK!!! It wasn’t very exciting until the middle, but after that it was so good!! This book is composed of letters sent between two teen-aged girls. I like this style of writing so much that I have tried to write my own book in this style (needless to say, I haven’t gotten very far). There were a couple subtle hints of romance, but it wasn’t a main part of the story. I’m thinking that this is my favorite book in this series (that I’ve read), but I haven’t read the others in a while. 🙂

 

The Mystery of the Missing Map

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  “Kate, Anders, and Erik have traveled to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, where Kate’s Irish relatives live as caretakers of an enormous mansion. Kate is excited to meet her cousin Megan for the first time, and it turns out the two girls could be twins- except something about Megan is very different. Will it keep Kate and Megan from being best friends?

“Soon after their arrival, Kate, Anders, and Erik learn about a treasure map hidden somewhere on the grounds of the estate- but when two shady-looking men are seen lurking around the mansion, Kate is worried they will steal the missing treasure. Danger trails the foursome as they race to find the missing map and the treasure it promises- before the thieves catch up.” -from the back cover

Title: The Mystery of the Missing Map

Author: Lois Walfrid Johnson

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction

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Series: The Adventures of the Northwood #9

My Review:

This book was very entertaining, and had just enough ‘scary’ parts to keep me on the edge of my seat, so to speak. It did have a bit of romance, but nothing overly inappropriate (kissing, etc.); mainly just MINOR SPOILER! Kate and Erik SPOILER END!  making eyes at each other. The mystery part of it was very well developed (oh my, now I’m sounding like a professional critic!), was very exciting, and it was not easy to predict the outcome. I highly recommend this book!

The King’s Daughter and Other Stories

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“Due to the noble effort of the original California publisher, these stories were found in nearly every orphanage in our land during the late 1800’s. We bring to you an original reproduction of the 1910 edition with its 100 illustrations.” -excerpt from the back cover

 

Title: The King’s Daughter and Other Stories for Girls

Author: Various

Genre: Historical Fiction

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Series: Character Classics #1

My Review:

This little book is full of great short stories that will convict your heart. I would recommend it to younger girls. It is full of good character-building short stories.  The only thing that I did not like about is was that it was hard to read it in one sitting, because, after awhile, it got a little repetitive. This book has a great message to it, though. 🙂

****For those who were wondering, yes, I posted this a day early. I am going to be busy tomorrow; we are expecting some overnight guests on Friday. Thank you for understanding!

Beyond the River, by Robert Elmer

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  “Spending the summer at their uncle’s farm off the west coast of Denmark promises Peter and Elise Andersen freedom from the constant German patrols and bomb sirens that plague their home town. But on their first night at the sheep farm, a British bomber is seen lighting up the night sky- its engines in flames!

The plane crashes into the icy waters of the North Sea, but by the time they arrive, the pilot has struggled to shore and hidden himself in the thick woods. Knowing they must find him before the German soldiers do, Peter, Elise, and their cousins begin a feverish search for the endangered British pilot.

“The guard dogs are barking and the German trucks are rumbling in the distance- will Peter and Elise be able to rescue the pilot in time?” -from the back of the book

Title: Beyond the River

Author: Robert Elmer

Genre: Christian Fiction

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Content: 5/5

Series: The Young Underground, #2

My Review:

I love this series! My favorite part was when SPOILER!! Peter gets saved!!! SPOILER END!!  The only part that I didn’t like was that they mentioned “the bishop” and that the pastor was wearing a clerical collar. That almost makes it sound like they are Lutherans, but I’m not sure. I loved the story, though! I am starting to like “suspenseful” books more. 🙂

Florence Nightingale: God’s Servant at the Battlefield

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  “Florence went against the wishes of her wealthy parents and defied social custom when she took up a career that no respectable woman of that day would even consider. She became a nurse.

  History knows her now as “The Lady with the Lamp.” Night after night she walked among the cots of wounded soldiers, carrying her kerosene lamp to light the darkness and wearing her cape to keep out the cold. She was always ready to bandage the wounds of a bleeding soldier, give a drink of water to a thirsty patient, or write a letter home for a private on his deathbed.

  Up until Florence’s time, the hospitals in England were a disgrace. Could she better conditions? She would have to overcome the resistance of high officials, the apathy of the public, and even the ignorance of doctors.

  Throughout her life, Florence remembered the entry in her diary when she was still a girl: ‘God spoke to me and called me to His service.'” -from inside front cover

Title: Florence Nightingale: God’s Servant at the Battlefield 

Author: David R. Collins

Genre: Christian Non-Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

This was a great mix of non-fiction and fiction. It included a lot of accurate historical facts, but it wrote of Florence’s conversations and thoughts, most of which are probably not completely accurate.  I loved learning more about Florence and her family. I did not know that she was wealthy before I read this book. I hope to read more books in this series in the future.

Missionary Stories with the Millers, by Mildred A. Martin

Experience thrilling adventure as the Christian missionaries on these pages meet witch doctors, disease, drought, hate-filled guerillas, a Bible thief and killer cats!

Best of all, each one of these stories is based on an actual happening from the lives of real people.  Follow these missionaries as they respond to God’s call.   Some of them miraculously escape danger, while others face martyrdom for Christ- but the soldiers of the Cross always win in the end!

Title: Missionary Stories with the Millers

Author: Mildred A. Martin

Genre: Christian Non-Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review:

I absolutely loved this book!  I loved learning about how God protected different people who were serving Him.  Missionary Stories with the Millers also gave me a heart for missions.  I would recommend this book for children 8+.  It would also be good for kids younger than that, but there are some scary parts, so I recommend that parents read through it first to decide if it would be appropriate.

 

 

The Sound of Diamonds by Rachelle Rea Cobb

Reviewed by April Nelson

Rachelle Rea Cobb accurately combines history with romance in her novel, The Sound of Diamonds, in which she presents an exciting plot that shows the importance of truth and motive. This story takes place shortly after the Protestant Reformation and begins with Gwyneth, one of two main characters, being rescued from the hands of violent Protestant Dutchmen raiding the convent where she lives. Dirk, her rescuer, is the man who she thinks is her parents’ murderer. She hates him fiercely until she learns the truth. On their journey back to her original home, they encounter many perils and through it Gwyneth learns how to love again. Meanwhile, Dirk has his own story. He rescues Gwyneth only to clear his name, but through the journey discovers how motive determines character. This novel is a joy to read and captures the spirit of this time period, while illustrating the strength that truth and motive have in a person’s life. It is a Christian romance that gives a glimpse of history that will be an enthralling adventure for many future readers.
Recommended for ages 16 and up.

Indian Captive, by Lois Lenski

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“In this classic frontier adventure, Lois Lenski reconstructs the real life story of Mary Jemison, who was captured in a raid as young girl and raised amongst the Seneca Indians. Meticulously researched and illustrated with many detailed drawings, this novel offers an exceptionally vivid and personal portrait of Native American life and customs.”

Title: Indian Captive: The Story of Mary Jemison

Author: Lois Lenski (http://www.loislenskicovey.org/)

Best Suited For: Ages 12+

Genre: Historical Fiction

Rating: 4/5 stars

Content:  3/5 stars. This book was an accurate portrayal of the Seneca life.  On the downside, to maintain the accuracy, Indian Captive mentioned false gods frequently.  There were also women in the drawings who were not fully clothed.

My Review: This was a wonderful book.  The only things I did not like about it were the things I mentioned in the Content section.  I enjoyed how it explained, in detail, of how they made pottery, moccasins, and planted and cared for corn, beans, and squash.  Molly Jemison seemed to be a nice girl, although she shouldn’t have believed the Indians when they talked about their ‘gods’.  As I said above, I think this book would be best for ages 12+, and I would recommend that parents read it before younger children do.

 

 

 

Malcolm At Midnight, by W.H. Beck

Picture from Infosoup.com

Malcolm at Midnight was written by W. H. Beck and contains 265 pages. This fiction book takes place at McKenna Elementary School in Clearwater, WI.

This book is about a rat named Malcolm. He is small for a rat, and thus, many people think he is a rat. He is taken from a pet store to live as a classroom pet. The teacher in this classroom is named Mr. Binney. Malcolm discovers that he can get out of his cage. on is first night out, he sees a meeting of classroom pets. They call themselves Midnight Academy. These extraordinary animals find Malcolm and he joins their group. Malcolm discovers several mysteries and, in the end, saves the day.

There is one book after this, called Malcolm Under the Stars.  I reviewed it HERE.

This book is very good and  I highly recommend it.

 

Alone Yet Not Alone, by Tracy Leininger Craven

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Picture from GoodReads

A miraculous survival. An extraordinary faith.

Autumn 1755. Settled in the Blue Mountains of Pennsylvania, deep within America’s new frontier, the Leininger family celebrates the blessings of a beautiful homestead and bountiful harvest. Until tragedy strikes with the beginning of the French-Indian War, and the devastating raid known as the Penn’s Creek Massacre.

The lives of this simple, God-fearing family are forever altered when Barbara and Regina, two young sisters, are carried away by a band of Allegheny warriors. Driven by their faith in God and the powerful bonds of family, Barbara and Regina hold firmly to the belief that they are never alone, even in their darkest hour, and that they will be reunited again.

Title: Alone Yet Not Alone

Author: Tracy Leininger Craven

Genre: Historical Christian Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

My Review: Alone Yet Not Alone was a beautiful story of a young girl’s faith.  This book only contained 150 pages, but I loved every page of it.  I almost felt like crying during the climatic moments, and I guess that shows how much it impacted me. “Would I be as steadfast in the faith as Barbara was if I were in her position?,” I asked myself.  This is a very convicting book. 🙂 I especially enjoyed that this book is based on a true story.  I also really like the cover.  It really reflects Barbara and Regina’s fear (SPOILER ALERT!) as they get captured by the Indians.

I would recommend this book for ages 12+, only because it does have some romance in the last few chapters. (But nothing inappropriate; no kissing or anything.)

 

Written by Leona G., 11 yrs.

Lalibela’s Wise Man by Matshona Dhliwayo

FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. I was not obligated to leave a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

In his novella, Lalibela’s Wise Man, Matshona Dhliwayo, tells the story of Christian, a man whose father has just died and who has no family but two hateful brothers. Alone and depressed, Christian is soon sent on a mysterious trip to visit a wise monk in Ethiopia, from whom he learns the importance of several character traits. Mr. Dhliwayo gives insight in this book into various virtues that should be an essential part in each person’s life. Each day at the monastery, Christian is taught a lesson which ranges from catching his own food to giving up one his favorite possessions. At the end of the week, the old monk explains to him the meaning of each of the lessons, and on the last day, reveals a great secret that has plagued Christian for years. As Christian applies the wisdom of the monk, he learns the truly important things in life, and finally finds happiness. Like all books, this novella should be read with discernment, but it conveys great moral truths that are necessary in building one’s character. With an intriguing plot and a strong focus on morals, this book will encourage its reader to ponder his own character.

Recommended for ages 14 and up.

~Reviewed by April

The Apprentices, by Sarah Brazytis

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Picture from GoodReads

 

  “Old James is dead, and Lady Luckley has no recourse but to hire a new footman. She is elated to be given the priceless opportunity to get two perfectly matched footmen at the same time. George and Geoffrey are young, teachable, and eager for work.
But is Dunderlee House ready for identical twins?

Meticulously researched, The Apprentices will give you a glimpse into the servants’ quarters of an old house – and an idea of how two innocent boys can turn an elderly household upside down!”

 

Title: The Apprentices

Author: Sarah Brazytis (www.thehomegrownhistorian.yolasite.com)

Genre: Historical Fiction

Rating: 5/5 stars

Content: 5/5

My Review: 

FTC disclosure: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a honest review. I was not obligated to leave a positive review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.

I really enjoyed this short story.  It is only 90 pages long (paperback version), so it doesn’t take long to read.  I think the writing was good (though I’m no expert on it ;)), and it was easy to understand what was going on.  I liked how it showed that even twins have different personalities, because I haven’t read many books that are like that.  My favorite part was when (SPOILER ALERT!) Lady Luckley went to see George when he was sick.

All in all, this was a great book, and I would highly recommend it.

 

Written by Leona G., 11 yrs.

 

 

 

The Treasure Hunt, by Kate Willis

 

 

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Picture from Goodreads

The Treasure Hunt was written by Kate Willis.  This short story contains 52 pages.

The Treasure Hunt is about three children: Lily, David and Anna.  Their older sisters create a treasure hunt for them, to make summer not so boring.  They follow the “trail” everywhere; from the barn to the book shop.  The three siblings make sweet memories together in this charming little book.

My Review:

This book was a nice short read for the afternoon.  I liked how the siblings were always complimenting each other, and how the older sisters planned the treasure hunt for “the middles”.  The only thing that I did not like was how the details were a little blurred sometimes, like in the second scene, where they go to the sisters’ room. (I’m not even sure if it was their room; I’m just assuming that)  Other than that, this is a nice little read for a sunny day.

*I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for my honest review*

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Kate Willis has been homeschooled her whole life in a loving family where the Gospel of Jesus Christ, creativity, and good conversations are high priorities. She loves red shoes, a good story, little children, and chai tea. It is her desire to serve God in the home ultimately having a family of her own in the future. She is the author of The Treasure Hunt, numerous short stories, and many other works she hopes to share with you.

 

Author’s Blog

Jonas and Olivia, by Victoria Minks

 

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Picture from Goodreads

  Jonas and Olivia was written by Victoria Minks.  This book contains 226 pages and takes place during the beginning of the Revolutionary War.

Olivia Wilkerson is sent to live with Jonas Carmichael after her father, a renowned Baptist lawyer, passes away.  Jonas was her father’s best friend when they were both young.  Jonas didn’t know that Chauncey Wilkerson had died, and was also unaware that Olivia would be living with him.  He is an old, secluded man and does not want to have a young girl living with him.  He sends out letters, trying to find someone to take her.

Olivia is not happy when she arrives at Jonas’s mansion.  She is still mourning her father, and living with an old, grouchy man does not make her very happy.  Still, she finds comfort in trying to talk to Ishmael, the servant boy, and in making friends with Nabby Culpepper, a girl from the village.

As the book continues, we learn more about Jonas’s background, and why he is so hardened.  I won’t tell you much about it, except that he has had much sorrow in his life.

One day, Olivia spots a carriage coming down the road, and sees it stop if front of the gates.  She runs outside to tell them that Jonas does not welcome visitors, but they tell her that they are her aunt and uncle, come to take her away.  She packs her clothes, and leaves with them.

Jonas gets a letter from someone else who is willing to take her, and goes after them, to tell her.  He cannot find her, though, and goes back to his house with a heavy heart.

  Will Jonas and Olivia get re-united?  Will there be a happily-ever-after?  Read the book to find out!

 

My Review:

I really enjoyed reading this book.  It is the first book by Victoria Minks that I have read, and it certainly my expectations.  I especially liked how Olivia (spoiler alert!) taught Ishmael to read.  I also loved how Jonas ever… so… slowly… warmed up to Olivia.

The beginning of this book was a little slow, but for the last half of it, I was on the edge of my seat!  For this reason only, I would like to give it four stars (instead of five)!  Jonas and Olivia deserves a huge round of applause!

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 Interview with Victoria Minks!!!

Thanks for joining us today, Victoria!

1) What/who inspired you to write Jonas and Olivia
–It’s going to sound funny, but I sort of “met” one of the main characters, Jonas, in my head one day. I wasn’t brainstorming or anything… he just popped in my head and was like “Hey there! My name is Jonas!” From there on out I slowly learned more and more about who he was, his story, etc until it was finally pretty much a fully formed plot-line.
2) What was the hardest part of writing Jonas and Olivia?

–Figuring out Olivia’s character, probably. She took a bit more time to develop fully, and I spent a long time trying to understand her better and ‘dig deeper’.

3) What is the age range for this book?
–I think it’s the kind of book that most any age would enjoy. It’s family-friendly, but maybe the age range that would like it the best is 12-18.
4) What are your standards for books you read?
–My personal convictions lead me to ruling out books with sci-fi, fantasy genre, magic, over-the-top violence, glorification of sin, crude or bad language, or wrong relationships. I also prefer not to read most Christian romance. I’m not against romance, (It’s a natural, God-designed thing) but it just has to be done in the right way, and even in Christian books they tend to fall short of my preferences. 🙂
I do read books with flawed characters or characters who make mistakes. People in real life sin or make bad decisions, and seeing a character grow (or the results of them not repenting) I find valuable. As long as it’s presented in a clean way, of course! 🙂 I also read “non-Christian” books as long as is it is morally edifying and wholesome.
5) Are you planning on making this book into a series?
–Not really. In the back of the book you can find a link to three free short stories about the Culpepper family (who is featured in Jonas and Olivia a bit). I plan on writing more and eventually publishing a collection of Culpepper Tales, but that’s about it.
6) Where can we find your book?
–If you check out my link here, you can get to it easily: http://www.victoriaminks.com/jonas-and-olivia.html. Or you can search “Jonas and Olivia” on Amazon.com. 🙂
7) What are some tips you have for aspiring writers?
–Keep at it. The more you write the better you get. Don’t lose courage–if you’re writing for the Lord He will help you! 🙂
If you want extra tips/tricks, writing workbooks and more check out my blog at www.victoriaminks.com.

 

About the author:

   Victoria Minks was born in Oklahoma but moved to Japan as a missionary kid at age 3. Since then, she has enjoyed the life of a foreigner in four different locations in Japan.
An avid bookworm ever since she can remember, she has cultivated a desire for telling stories since a young age.
She has multiple favorites, but a few of them would be chocolate, music, historical fiction, horses, cowboy boots, old books, and rain. She believes life is a gift from God full of whimsical beauty and strives to honor God in it.

Link to Victoria’s blog HERE

Blog Tour: The Old River Road

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I’m so excited to be here for my first blog tour!  Ivy Rose is releasing her first book, and I am very happy to review it.

    Meet Ivy Rose and her debut novel, The Old River Road. This book is the first in a series of a yet-to-be-determined number of books based on the lives of the author’s ancestors. Written in a style similar to that of Janette Oke and Laura Ingalls Wilder, this is a story you won’t want to miss.

*This review contains spoilers*

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Isn’t this a lovely cover?? 🙂

The Old River Road was written by Ivy Rose.  This book contains 400 pages.

Clara Boutwell meets William McDonald when he accidentally knocks her into a mud puddle outside their work.  He apologizes, and walks her home.  Soon, William is invited over to her house for dinner, and begins walking her home from work every day.  Clara gets to know him well, and discovers that he is a strong Christian, as she is.  Eventually William asks her if she will enter a courtship with him.  She agrees, and they get married 7 weeks after he proposes, on Valentines’ Day.

A few months after their marriage, Clara wakes up to hear William coughing uncontrollably.  She does what she can to make it stop, but is dreadfully worried for him.  After the coughing stops, he tells her that he has asthma.  It isn’t very bad, and Clara soon learns how to help him when he has these fits of coughing.

Their first child is born soon after that, and little Archibald is welcomed warmly into the family.  The next child is born two years after Archie, and is named Newton.   All is well… or so they think.  William is getting weaker every day because of his asthma, and when he goes to a lung specialist, the man says that he will die in two months.  The doctor says that William’s only hope is to go out west, out of the big city of Chicago.   Clara’s sister, Katie, had recently moved to Washington with her family, so William decides to go there.  The only problem is:  Clara and the children cannot go with him!  They will have to follow later.

With great agony, Clara and her husband part.  After a few months, William wires for Clara and the children to come.  They have a wonderful reunion, and soon buy their own house.  There, Clara gives birth to another little boy, who passes away only a few hours after birth.  A few years after that, she has another child: a little girl!  Clara and William name the little darling Vera.

The family moves to the Spokane river eventually, because the soil where they were living before wasn’t very good.  The cabin that they move into is right on the river, and Clara is very happy with it.  They live happily ever after there, at least in this book!

This was a very entertaining read and I highly recommend it!  I would like to give it five stars!

**I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.**

Available now in paperback and e-book on Amazon

Add on Goodreads

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About the Author
Ivy Rose is an 18-year-old history lover and literary enthusiast. Aside from writing, she enjoys being outdoors, chocolate, traveling, reading, and ATVing (preferably if there is mud involved). She resides with her family of 9 on the banks of the Long Lake in eastern Washington.

And next up: the Interview!!

Thanks for joining us, Ivy Rose!

1) What/who inspired you to write The Old River Road?
     What first inspired me was stumbling across Clara’s memoirs at the age of ten. I remember thinking, “Wow, this would make a super cool book! Too bad someone doesn’t write one.” Talk about knock-on-wood. 🙂
2) What is the age range for this book?
    Very few of my books are for a specific age range, and, instead are family friendly. I think anyone 8 and up would enjoy this book.
3) Where can we find your book?
    It is for sale on Amazon, as a paperback and e-book.
4) What are your standards for books you read?
    Any book I read must, first of all, honor God. If He were reading over my shoulder, I wouldn’t feel guilty. I can go into more detail, but that pretty much covers everything. 🙂
5) Are you planning on writing another book in this series soon?
    There will be an announcement regarding that on my blog at the end of this blog tour. 😉 But in short, yes.
And finally, the moment we’ve all been waiting for: the giveaway!!
Ivy Rose is holding a giveaway in honor of her book release.  Please click one of the links below for a chance to enter!

The Old River Road Prize Pack (This is for people who live in the U.S. or Canada)

International Prize (If you live elsewhere, this one is for you!)

Here is the blog tour schedule:

Friday, July 8th (release day!)

Emily  — Review, Spotlight

Jesseca Wheaton — Review, Interview

Saturday, July 9th

Olivia K. Fisher  — Interview, Spotlight

Faith Blum  — Review, Interview, Spotlight

Hannah E.  — Review, Interview

Monday, July 11th

Faith Potts  – Review

Rebecca Morgan  — Review, Interview

Tuesday, July 12th

Abigayle Ellison  — Review, Spotlight

Kenzi Knapp  – Review, Interview

Hosanna Emily  — Review, Interview

Wednesday, July 13th

Blessing Counter  — Interview

Victoria Minks  — Review, Spotlight

Thursday, July 14th

Deborah C.  — Review, Spotlight

Anna S. Brie  — Review

Leona G. — Review, Interview

Friday, July 15th

Hope Ann — Review, Interview

Amanda Tero — Review, Interview

Anika Joy – Review, Interview

A Peep Behind the Scenes, by Mrs.O. F. Walton

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Picture from Goodreads.com.

A Peep Behind the Scenes was written by Mrs. O.F. Walton.  My copy contains 255 pages.  This book was published by Lamplighter Publishing.

A Peep Behind the Scenes is about a little girl named Rosalie.  Rosalie is the daughter of a traveling theater director.  Because of this, Rosalie, her mother, and her father live in a caravan.  They constantly travel to different fair-grounds to put on their show.  Mr. Joyce, Rosalie’s father, is cruel and does not care about Rosalie or her mother.  Mrs. Joyce is fatally ill, and worsens because of the constant moving.

At one town they pass, a elderly man gives Rosalie a card with a picture of a shepherd holding a lamb on it.  Underneath the picture it says “Rejoice with Me, for I have found My sheep which was lost.  There is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth.”   Rosalie and her mother get saved because of this card.

Throughout the story,  Rosalie learns more of her mother’s background.  As different events happen, Rosalie has to learn to trust in the Lord.  She eventually goes to live at her aunt’s house, and along the way leads a few people to Christ.  She lives happily at her aunt’s house until she grows up.

This was a wonderful book about a young girl as she grows up.  I liked how Rosalie always trusts in the Lord, even when things get tough.  I think that that is a good attitude to have.  I highly recommend this book to young ladies 8 and up.

 

Written by Leona G., 11 yrs.

 

Princess in Calico, by Unknown

Princess in Calico was written by, well, Unknown!  To help you find it, it was published by Rod and Staff.  This books contains 92 pages and is a wonderful book for girls of all ages.

Princess in Calico is about a girl named Katura.  She lives on a farm with her father, step-mother, and step-siblings.  It is a life of drudgery for Katura, who longs for beauty.  Then, one day, her father recieves a letter from her aunt and uncle, who want Katura to come and visit them.  Katura eagerly accepts, and is soon in Boston.  She is greeted warmly, and is taken on many excursions.  On one of these jaunts, Katura meets a woman named Tryphosa.  This lady leads the girl to the Lord!  Soon, though, Katura is called back to the farm.  There, she serves the Lord till her death.

This book is so compelling that it almost made me cry!  Katura had to go through many hardships, but she served God in it all.  I highly recommend it to all young ladies.

 

Written by Leona G, 11 yrs.

Fire by Night, by Loree Lough

 

 

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Picture from Goodreads.com

 

Fire by Night, by Loree Lough, is a Christian fiction book. It contains 137 pages and is the fourth book in “The American Adventure” series. This book takes place in Boston, MA during 1635.

Fire by Night is about Phillip Smythe. In this book, a cyclone sweeps through Boston, and Phillip’s father’s carpentry shop is flattened. To make money, Father goes to England to build furniture for the king. (He is a very good carpenter.) While Father is gone, a fire burns up their house. On top of all that, Phillip’s sister dies after giving birth to a baby daughter. Phillip blames God, but soon learns that it all happened for a reason. Soon, Phillip, with the help of his brother John, re-build Father’s shop. And, after twenty months, Father comes home! In the end, everything turns out all right.

One of the best things about this book is that Phillip learns to trust God in everything. That is a lesson that everyone needs to learn. God is always in control!

The rest of the books in this series are very good, as well. I highly recommend all of them.

 

Written by Leona G, 11 yrs.

Dash, by Kirby Lars

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Picture from Goodreads

Dash was written by Kirby Larson.  It contains 243 pages. This book is a fiction novel and begins in Seattle, Washington.

Mitsue “Mitsi” Kashino is living in Seattle, WA during World War II.  When she starts school, her friends from last year reject her because of her ethnicity.  Mitsi tries to be friendly to them, but another girl steps in to take her place as their best friend.  Eventually, news comes that all people of Japanese descent must go to camps to live.  And the worst news of all: Mitsi must leave her beloved dog, Dash, behind!  Mitsi and her family find a neighbor lady to take care of Dash until they come back.  And they are off to the camp!

The first camp they go to has only plywood houses.  Mitsi’s whole family – 5 people – must share a very small shack.  In a letter to her dog, Mitsi complains that she has to step over her brother’s cot to get to her own! Eventually they get moved to another camp.  This one isn’t much better though – the first was muddy, but the next was very dusty.  The only good thing about it (as Mitsi wrote) was that her best friend’s shack was next to Mitsi’s.

Eventually the good news comes – pets are now allowed in the camps!  Mrs. Bowker, the lady who had taken care of Dash, brought him to Mitsi.  Mitsi, overjoyed, hugs him as hard as she can.  All is well again!

This would be a good book to read if you are learning about WW II.  I enjoyed the parts about Dash. 🙂

 

Written by Leona G.

 

 

Millie’s Faithful Heart, based on the characters by Martha Finley

 

  Millie’s Faithful Heart was based on the characters by Martha Finley.  It contains 224 pages and is the fourth book in the “A Life of Faith: Millie Keith” series.  This book is a fiction novel that begins in in the south during 1838.

Millie’s Faithful Heart is about a girl named Millie who is sent south to her uncle’s plantation for her health.  The book before this one, Millie’s Remarkable Journey, describes her journey south.  One of my favorite things about this book is how she falls in love with a non-Christian.  Now, don’t stop reading here, please!  She declines his proposal because of her belief about being “un-equally yoked.”   I think that she had great faith, and knew that she had to do what was right.

In this book, Millie also helps a slave girl and her brother. Millie’s aunt Isabel said that if Millie attended all the parties, she would give the girl to Millie.  Millie doesn’t want to be a slave owner, but she decides that once she goes back to Indiana, she will set Laylie free.  That doesn’t happen, but Laylie and Luke do get to freedom!  I won’t tell you the ending, but it is really cool!

This is a good book about guarding your heart.

If you enjoyed this book, I also recommend the Elsie Dinsmore Series, by Martha Finley. I am anticipating reading the next books in this series, as well.

 

Violet’s Hidden Doubts, based on the characters by Martha Finley

 

  Violet’s Hidden Doubts was based on the characters by Martha Finley.  It contains 224 pages and is the first book in the “A Life of Faith: Violet Travilla” series.  This book is a fiction novel that begins at a Southern plantation in October of 1877.

Violet’s Hidden Doubts is about Violet (or Vi) Travilla. In this book, Vi’s beloved father dies.  She is devastated at this loss and draws back from the family. Later, Vi opens up to her mother and confesses that she believes that she caused her father’s death. Elsie convinces her that her feelings are not correct, and Vi is back to her usual self.

Later in the book, Vi and her family take a trip to Viamede, the plantation where Elsie was born.  Once there, Elsie’s cousin Molly gets married. Many other exciting things happen, also.

One of the best things about this book is the relationship that Vi and her family have with God.  Several people in this book learn important lessons that we can apply to our lives, too.

If you enjoyed this book, I also recommend the Elsie Dinsmore Series, by Martha Finley. I am anticipating reading the next books in this series, as well.

 

Malcolm Under the Stars, by W. H. Beck

 

 

Picture from amazon.com

Malcolm Under the Stars was written by W.H. Beck. It contains 258 pages and is the sequel to Malcolm at Midnight. This book is a fiction novel that takes place at McKenna Elementary School in Clearwater, WI.

Malcolm Under the Stars is about Malcolm, a rat who is a classroom pet. He belongs to a organization if classroom pets, called The Midnight Academy, who keep McKenna safe from danger. In this book, The Academy learns that the school board is talking about closing the historic school. The animals try to think of something to stop it. One of the animals remembers an old legend about someone hiding a “Loaded Stash” of money in the school. Malcolm ends up finding this hidden treasure, but it isn’t enough money. In the end, though, the board decides to keep the school open temporarily.

One of the good things about this book is that Malcolm makes up with one of his worst enemies, Snip the cat, and helps her find a home. I’m glad that Malcolm finally forgave her for all the bad things that she had done.   🙂

A memorable passage in the book is when Malcolm, with the help of his friend, Beert the owl, flies across the river behind the school to get help from an animal called the Striped Shadow.

They rocketed down until Malcolm was sure that every niblet he had eaten for dinner that night and  the night before was going to come back up again. He clung on to Beert, his face buried in his down. Eventually, though, Beert leveled off and the beating of his wings settled into a steady rhythm. Malcolm ventured a peek.

Crumblity crumb! The moon. It hung in the sky larger than the school’s clock face. And… “What are those lights in the sky?”

Beert ducked. “What? Where? Sometimes you have to watch out for fireworks. Or a lantern. Although not much in the winter.” “That sprinkle of lights.” Malcolm turned his head. “They’re everywhere!”

Beert looked again. “Stars above, Malcolm, you mean the stars above! You’ve heard of stars before, haven’t you?”

Malcolm had heard of stars, but nothing he had ever heard could have prepared him for this. They spread across the sky like jelly on a piece of bread. Malcolm felt he could look at them forever and never know them. Crumb, the Inside critters did have their pluses, but there were things out here that Malcolm couldn’t even imagine.

One of the things that I enjoyed about this book was that it was about animal. I really like animals. 🙂 I suggest that you read the book before this one, Malcolm at Midnight, before you read Malcolm Under the Stars.

This was a good book and I highly recommend it.

 

Written by Leona G., 11 yrs.

 

 

 

Sweet Home Alaska, by Carole Estby Dagg

 

 

Picture from Infosoup.org

 

Sweet Home Alaska was written by Carole Estby Dagg. It contains 298 pages and is classified on the publisher’s website for children 10 and up. I rank this book as ♥♥♥♥.

Sweet Home Alaska is a book about a girl named Terpsichore (pronounced Terp-SICK-oh-ree) Johnson. This book takes place during the Great Depression, so when Terpsichore’s family hears about President Roosevelt’s plan to send families to Alaska, they gladly go. After a long boat ride, the Johnson family is greeted by the news that they must stay in a tent with another family until their own tent is put up. When they get their own tent, Mrs. Johnson does not know how to use the small woodstove, and thus burns a cake. This draws a large crowd of people. Luckily, Terpsichore has made a new friend named Gloria who helps her figure out the stove.

One of the main parts of the book is that Terpsichore wants to have a library. She works hard to get it, with the help of of her friend Gloria and another boy named Mendel. The library is located in the camp’s pastor’s tent.

Soon, the first real harvest comes. Mr.Johnson had promised his wife that at that time, she could decide whether they would stay in Alaska or not. Terpsichore hatched a plan to persuade her mother to stay. She made enough money to buy a piano. Mrs. Johnson had taken piano in college and loved it. She ended up deciding to stay!

 

The only reason I gave this a 4 heart instead of a 5 is that a few bad words are mentioned. It only happens about 5 times, but it is still there. On a positive note, when a boy says something that sounds like a bad word, Terpsichore reprimands him.

 

Written by Leona G., 11 yrs.

 

The School Story, by Andrew Clements

The School Story

The School Story was written by Andrew Clements. This school story takes place in New York and contains 196 pages.

This book is about a girl named Natalie Nelson. Her mom works at Shipley Junior, a publishing company. One day, on the way home from work, Mrs. Nelson mentions that the company needs more school stories. Natalie thinks, “Who knows more about school than someone who’s right there, five days a week, nine months a year? I bet I could write a school story.” So she writes a book, called The Cheater.

Natalie shows her book to her friend, Zoe Reisman, who thinks of an idea. The girls could publish the book! With the help of an English teacher, Zoe’s dad, and Natalie’s uncle, they get it published.

The Cheater is edited by Natalie’s mom, so Natalie uses the pen name Cassandra Day. Zoe pretends to be a literary agent named Zee Zee Reisman. This is a cool book!

One thing I learned from this book is about the publishing world. I never really knew how it worked, and I learned a lot about it in this book, from literary agencies to editors. The School Story also inspired me to write a book of my own. It isn’t done yet, but I’m working on it!

The following passage is my favorite in the book. It is when Natalie comes to a publishing party in her honor, and when her mom learns who Cassandra Day really is.

        “Putting her arm around Natalie’s waist, Zoe said, ‘This is Cassandra Day. That’s her pen name. Cassandra Day is Natalie Nelson.’

The camera operator saw it all. As the tape rolled she thought, It doesn’t get better than this. And she was right.

        The camera saw everything so clearly. It saw the woman look at the girl, completely   baffled. It saw the mother’s eyes widen, her eyebrows furrow into a question mark and then smooth to under standing. It recorded the ballet of emotions that danced across both faces.

The microphone heard the woman’s sharp intake of breath, almost a gasp, and then the long breathing out, almost a sigh. And it heard the girl whisper,’It’s true, Mom.’

Mother and daughter looked at each other for a long moment, and when they hugged, the people and the room and the building and the city around them disappeared.”

  One of the best things about this book is Zoe, Natalie’s friend. Even when Natalie gets discouraged, Zoe is always there to encourage her. This is a highlight of the story.

This is a very good book. I highly recommend it.

This book is not in a series, but Andrew Clements, the author, has written many school stories. I wouldn’t recommend many of them, but some of them are good.

This book is published by Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers. It’s ISBN is: 0-689-82594-3

Written By Leona G., 11 yrs.

Before You Meet Prince Charming by Sarah Mally

 

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“This guide to radiant purity combines the thoughts and events in the life of a young princess with solid, clear teaching of Biblical convictions that young ladies today need to grasp. Through a captivating fairy tale, modern day examples, practical instruction and abundant humor, Sarah Mally challenges young ladies to turn to the Lord for fulfillment, to guard their hearts and minds, to identify and avoid the world’s thinking and to shine brightly in this generation.

This book offers biblical answers to everyday questions and deep life struggles. It includes many practical tips for girls such as how to guard your heart when you have a crush, being wise in Internet usage, how to strengthen relationships with parents, and how to use your single years wisely.”

Title: Before You Meet Prince Charming

Author: Sarah Mally

Genre(s): Christian Non-Fiction

Rating: PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Content: 5/5

Review:

I really liked this book. It was very convicting to me, and I think that every Christian girl should read it. In the first part of every chapter there is a continuing fairy tale of a princess and how she waits for her Prince Charming. The second part of each chapter teaches different aspects of courtship, purity, and the like.  As the website says, it would be good for ladies ages 8-100! There is nothing inappropriate for younger readers in it, as with some other Christian purity books, and I really appreciate that aspect of it. I highly recommend Before You Meet Prince Charming! 🙂

 

 

Mystery at Smokey Mountain by Dave Gustaveson

mystery at smokey mountainPicture from http://www.ywampublishing.com.

About This Book:

“Jeff Caldwell couldn’t believe how dangerous the overseas trip had suddenly become. Why did the mysterious envelope found on the Manila dump make them a target of such wicked men? Who could they turn to in this faraway nation? Could God help them across this frightening tightrope of adventure? With a passion to help the poor at Smokey Mountain, Jeff and the “Reel Kids” hit major roadblocks at every turn. Will they overcome the deadly obstacles of threats, bribes and severe weather? Can they escape the grasp of angry pursuers to fulfill their international mission?” Excerpt from the back of the book.   

Review:

I enjoyed this book very much. It was very suspenseful and kept me on the edge of my seat. It would be good for ages  9-14. It might be a little too exciting for younger girls. I have two or three other books in this series and I like them all. This adventure takes place in the Philippines.

Series: Reel Kids Adventures #2

Publisher: YWAM Publishing

ISBN: 0927545659

Written by: Leona G., 11 yrs.

The Mysterious Hideaway by Lois Walfrid Johnson

the mysterious hidaway                                                Picture from http://amazon.com

About This Book:

Spring term at the Spirit Lake School had begun, and the one-room building is filled with the excitement of friends who have finally gotten back together again. But from the very first day, this spring term promises to be different than any other in the school’s history. First, there’s Ben, the brother of Kate O’Connell’s mother. Although he’s older than the teacher, he needs to learn English and joins Kate and Anders as school begins. At six feet three inches tall, Ben causes a stir with the school children-and the teacher! Then there’s the strange sound that Kate hears above the noise of the first day’s hubbub. Where did it come from? The ceiling above her desk? Or from beneath the floor? Could she have imagined it? A series of baffling clues that seem to make no sense have Kate, Anders, and Erik searching for answers.”Exerpt from back of book.

Review:

I enjoyed this book very much. It was a very good book and I had no problems with it. I also like the rest of the books in this series. ♥♥♥♥♥

Series: Adventures of the Northwoods #6

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ISBN: 1556612389

Written by: Leona G., 11 yrs.

Listening for Lions by Gloria Whelan

blog+esther11sept2015 017About This Book:

“Thirteen-year-old Rachel Sheridan is left an orphan after influenza takes the lives of her missionary parents in British East Africa in 1919. When cruel neighbors take her in, Rachel suspects their intentions may not be honest. Soon, Rachel becomes entangled in a shocking and nefarious plot that takes her away from her beloved East Africa on a lonely and treacherous journey across the ocean. Surrounded by greed and lies, Rachel must rely on her irrepressible spirit and extraordinary wit to weather her incredible adventure. And somewhere along the way, between deception and hope, the truth sets Rachel free and Africa calls her home.” Exerpt from inside of front cover.

Review: I really enjoyed this book. It was exciting, and Rachel is an irrepressible character. I also like other books by this author. ♥♥♥♥

Series: None

Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers

ISBN-13: 9780060581749

ISBN-10: 0060581743

Written by: Leona G., 11!! yrs.

 

Play Dead by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines Stevens

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About This Book:

“Dodge, a retired police dog, and Cassie, his girl, are perfect partners. Quick on their (six) feet, driven to help, and willing to break a few rules, the two are always ready for a new mystery…       When Verdel Ward, the town’s richest man, disappears without leaving a will behind, everyone from the housekeeper to the mayor wants their hands on the fortune. But Dodge and Cassie smell a mystery – and they can’t help wondering about the suspicious fiancée and the twin brother nobody’s heard of. Who keeps tripping the alarm while sneaking around Ward’s mansion? And why is the new dog at the animal shelter so afraid of clues from Ward’s property? Together, Dodge and Cassie dig up clues and sniff out a trail that leads to a case much more sinister than a missing millionaire. Something’s not adding up, and the pair might be in over their heads. But this dog and his girl always collar their culprit!” Excerpt from the back of the book.

Title: Pay Dead

Author(s): Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines Stephens

Series: A Dog and His Girl Mysteries

Genre: Contemporary Middle Grade Fiction

Rating: ♥♥♥♥

Review:

I really liked this book. It would be good for girls ages 8-12. It is very suspenseful in some places. Every other chapter is told by the dog, and you can understand things from a dog’s point of view. The only thing I don’t like about it that it doesn’t talk about God (which, I don’t think the author is not a Christian, so it kinda makes sense… :P).

 

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs. old.

Hooked On Rubber Band Jewlery by Elizabeth M. Kollmar

Hooked_on_Rubber_Band_Jewelry_                                                 Picture from d-originals.com

About This Book:

“Go beyond the loom with Hooked on Rubber Band Jewelry! Young crafting prodigy Elizabeth M. Kollmar takes the rubber band jewelry craze to a whole new level, with innovative techniques and totally cool designs. This amazing book shows you how to create dazzling rubber band bracelets and necklaces-without ever using a loom! All you need is a double-ended crochet hook to get started making fabulous bling. Elizabeth takes you step-by-step through every stage of the process, with clear how-to photos and easy-to-follow diagrams. Her simple rochet hook method allows you to work your creations to any length. Learn to expand the possibilities of rubber band jewelry by adding attractive charms, beads, and buttons. Twelve awesome designs offer endless variations for hours of creative fun.” Exerpt from the back of the book.

  I enjoy making them and made one for each of the girls in our church. My favorite pattern was the strawberry one. It looks so realistic! The author’s website is at http://elizabethkollmar.com. She is eleven years old, just like some of you!

Series: None

Publisher: Design Originals

ISBN:9781574219159

Written By: Leona G.,10 yrs

 

 

Zipper by Ellen Miles

Zipper

Picture from http://www.scholastic.com

About This Book:

“Charles and Lizzie Peterson love puppies. Their family fosters these young dogs,giving them love and proper care, until they can find the perfect forever home. When Lizzie goes up to the mountains with her best friend, Maria, the girls think that they’re get a break from their dog-walking business. But then Zipper shows up and Lizzie can’t resist helping this adorable pup!” Exerpt from the back of the book.

Review: If you like dogs than this is the perfect series for you. I love dogs, and I also love this series. A great book! No bad words or anything, either. It would be great for ages 7-10. ♥♥♥♥♥

Series: The Puppy Place #34

Publisher: Scholastic Press

ISBN: 978054560381

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs.

Koda by Patricia Hermes

KodaAbout This Book:

“Koda is a bay quarter horse with a white blaze. He loves to explore the countryside and run free with his human friend Jasmine nearby. But after Koda sets out with Jasmine’s family on a long and dusty wagon train journey along the Oregon Trail, he finds out what is truly important to him. Here is Koda’s story…in his own words.” Exerpt from the back of the book.

Review: I really liked this book because of how it is from the horse’s point of view. I also like Historical Fiction. The only thing I do not like about it is that it does not mention God. ♥♥♥♥

Series: Horse Diaries, #3

Publisher: Random House Publishers

ISBN:9780375851995

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs.

 

Play Dead by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines Stevens

play dead

   picture from http://scholastic.com

About This Book:

“Dodge, a retired police dog, and Cassie, his girl, are perfect partners. Quick on their (six) feet, driven to help, and willing to break a few rules, the two are always ready for a new mystery…       When Verdel Ward, the town’s richest man, disappears without leaving a will behind, everyone from the housekeeper to the mayor wants their hands on the fortune. But Dodge and Cassie smell a mystery – and they can’t help wondering about the suspicious fiancée and the twin brother nobody’s heard of. Who keeps tripping the alarm while sneaking around Ward’s mansion? And why is the new dog at the animal shelter so afraid of clues from Ward’s property? Together, Dodge and Cassie dig up clues and sniff out a trail that leads to a case much more sinister than a missing millionaire. Something’s not adding up, and the pair might be in over their heads. But this dog and his girl always collar their culprit!” Excerpt from the back of the book.

Review: I really liked this book. It would be good for girls ages 8-12. It is very suspenseful in some places. Every other chapter is told by the dog, and you can understand things from a dog’s point of view. The only thing I don’t like about it that it doesn’t talk about God. ♥♥♥♥

Series: A Dog and His Girl Mysteries

Publishers: Scholastic Inc.

ISBN: 9780545436243

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs. old.

Secret Star by Terri Farley

phantomstallion#19 002About This Book:

“A movie star horse and his trainer are coming to River Bend Ranch, and Samantha can’t wait. But when Bayfire shows up, something is obviously wrong. The famous stallion has lost his sparkle. Bayfire has to get ready for his biggest, most dangerous scene of his new movie. If Sam can’t help bring back the stallion’s fiery spirit, his career could be over- and someone could get hurt.” Exerpt for the back of the book.

Review: I really like this series, and this book is one of the best. It would be good for ages 10 and up. I especially like the front covers. They always have pictures of beautiful horses. There is another branch of this series called Phantom Stallion: Wild Horse Island. Terri Farley’s website is at http://www.phantomstallion.com. ♥♥♥♥

Series: Phantom Stallion #19

Publisher: Harper Collins Publishers

ISBN-13:9780060758479

ISBN-10:0060758473

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs.

 

 

The Secret Soldier: The Story of Deborah Sampson by Ann McGovern

t.s.s.blogAbout This Book:

“In 1778, when Deborah Sampson was 18 years old, most girls her age were settling down and getting married. But Deborah had other ideas. She wanted to travel and have adventures-even if it meant dressing like a man!  In 1782, The Revolutionary War was still going on. And no one suspected that the man in the uniform was really a woman.” Exerpt from the back of the book. 

Review: I really liked this book. It is only 64 pages long, so it would be good for younger girls ages 7-9. It is a informing biography on women in the 16th century. ♥♥♥♥♥

Series: None

Publisher: Scholastic Inc.

ISBN: 9780590430524

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs.

Wild Thing by Dandi Daley Mackall

Wild Thing pic for blog

 

About This Book:

“Twelve-year-old Winnie Willis loves horses-just like her mother did. But since her mom died two years ago, Winnie, her sister, Lizzie, and her father have moved five times. Winnie never cared much-until now. She has a chance to buy the horse of her dreams at an up-coming auction, but how will she ever earn enough money? More importantly, how can she possibly convince her dad not to move them to another town . . . again?” Exerpt from the back of the book.

Review: This is a really good book except for two points, #1: where her sister says she can have this one boy for a boyfriend. She doesn’t like it, which is good, but it still comes up in the book. The second point is that is uses the New Living Translation of the Bible, instead of the King James Version. The author’s  website is at http://dandibooks.com/. ♥♥♥♥

Series: Winnie the Horse Gentler, bk.#1

Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.

ISBN: 978-0-8423-5542-1

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs.

 

Rebekah in Danger: Peril in Plymouth Colony by Colleen L. Reece

blogAug.11,2015Maryslessorplussistersintime 001

About This Book:

It’s no exaggeration to say that Rebekah and her family are in mortal danger. The first winter at Plymouth Colony is bitterly cold, many of the pilgrims are sick, and food is in short supply.  Ten-year-old Rebekah does her part to help, taking long hours of chores and tending to the weak. She’ll do all that she can to keep herself and her family strong-but what if she fails? She prays that God won’t allow her, or her parents, to fall sick and die as so many others have.” Exerpt from the back of the book.

Review:

In this book, Rebekah Cunningham and her family are very brave. It would be hard to leave all your friends and go to a place never explored before, but God was with them. A very good book. ♥♥♥♥♥

Series: Sisters in Time

Publisher: Barbour Publishing, Inc.

ISBN:1593103522

Written By: Leona G., 10 yrs.

 

A Family Apart by Joan Lowery Nixon

About This Book:

The Orphan Train Adventures begin in 1860 in New York City, where Mrs. Kelly, a young widow, realizes she cannot give her six children the life they deserve. Mrs. Kelly makes the ultimate sacrifice of love and sends them West on the orphan train to find better lives with new families. The children, especially thirteen-year-old Frances Mary, feel an overwhelming sense of betrayal and abandonment. Their arrival in St. Joseph, separates the children not only from heir mother, but also from each other as well. One by one they are adopted by western families – some looking for children to love, others only seeking cheap labor. Frances has promised Ma that she will look after Petey, her youngest brother, no matter what. Will honoring Ma’s request help Frances understand that splitting up the family was really her mother’s act of love?” Exerpt from the back of the book.

Review:

This book is very interesting. It would be good for girls ages 8-12. Some of it is also sad, like when the children are separated. I am hoping that all of the rest of the books in this series are as good as this one. Five stars!♥♥♥♥♥ (or hearts!)

Series: The Orphan Train Adventures

Publisher: Gareth Steven Publishing

ISBN:0836826388

Written By: Leona G.

 

 

Mary Slessor: Faith in West Africa by Rebecca Hammond

blogAug.11,2015Maryslessorplussistersintime 002About This Book:

“Perhaps the greatest thing that can be said about Mary Slessor is that she was born a missionary. From her earliest days, her dream was to be a missionary and Calabar (Nigeria) was her mission field. The death of David Livingstone was the catalyst for her missionary call, and in 1876, she went to the African mission field.Anywhere, provided it be forward,” was one of her most famous sayings and summed up her life. She toiled for forty years in the heart of Nigeria, constantly seeking new tribes and new people to reach with the gospel of Christ. She rescued hundreds of orphans  from certain death, prevented wars between tribes, helped to heal the sick, and spoke ceaselessly of the great love of God in sending Jesus Christ.” Exerpt from the back of the book.

Review: This is a great book for ages 10 and up. I like the author’s way of writing as if you could understand what she is thinking. Five stars!

 

Series: The Great “By Faith” Biography Series

Publisher: Ambassador Intel.

Written by Leona G., 10 yrs.

 

 

The Runaway Dolls by Ann M. Martin and Laura Godwin

About This Book:

“Best friends Annabelle Doll and Tiffany  Funcraft have stumbled upon an unexpected visitor , a new doll named Tilly May. She’s arrived in a mysterious package… but she looks so familiar. Could she be Annabelle’s long-lost baby sister? It’ll take a runaway adventure to find out for sure. Are the dolls ready for life on the road?” Exerpt from the inside of the front cover.

Series: The 3rd Doll People Story. This series is about dolls that can talk and walk, but they can’t let humans see them do so.

Review:

This book is very interesting, and you won’t be able to put it down once you start it. It is for girls ages 8-12.  There is no inappropriate language or content.

Publisher: Hyperion Books for Children

ISBN:9780786855841

Mandie and the Medicine Man by Lois Gladys Leppard

About this book:

“A Cherokee superstition seems to have come back to haunt Mandie and her friends – the gold they discovered has been donated to build a new hospital, but someone or something is tearing the walls down as fast as they can be built. The guard posted to watch the site is knocked out, tied up and blindfolded.”

Series: Book #6 in the Mandie series. This series is about an orphan girl living in 19th century North Carolina.

Review:

I would highly recommend this book for girls ages 9-12. There is no inappropriate language or content. In the series, she and a boy make a pledge to each other to marry when they reach adulthood, however there is no physical contact between them. You may find it difficult to understand this book if you have not read the previous books.

Publisher: Bethany House Publishers

ISBN: 0871238918

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Welcome to our blog! Our purpose is to encourage young ladies in their walk with Jesus Christ while developing excellent reading choices.  We are still forming this website, so we apologize for the lack of resources at this time.  Please check back again soon.