MrsK's K-8 Books Worth Reading

my best-reads-for-k-8 shelf:
MrsK Books's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (best-reads-for-k-8 shelf)

Monday, December 31, 2018

The Man He Never Was by James L. Rubart

The Man He Never Was: A Modern Reimagining of Jekyll and Hyde
ISBN: 9780718099398
Publisher's Synopsis:

Toren Daniels vanished eight months back, and his wife and kids have moved on--with more than a little relief. Toren was a good man but carried a raging temper that often exploded without warning. So when he shows up on their doorstep out of the blue, they're shocked to see him alive. But more shocked to see he's changed. Radically.

His anger is gone. He's oddly patient. Kind. Fun. The man he always wanted to be. Toren has no clue where he's been but knows he's been utterly transformed. He focuses on three things: Finding out where he's been. Finding out how it happened. And winning back his family.

But then shards of his old self start to rise from deep inside--like the man kicked out of the NFL for his fury--and Toren must face the supreme battle of his life.

In this fresh take on the classic Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, James L. Rubart explores the war between the good and evil within each of us--and one man's only chance to overcome the greatest divide of the soul.
What if You Woke up One Morning and the Darkest Parts of Yourself Were Gone?
MrsK's Review:
Toren Daniels was in the process of re-conditioning. He was experiencing peace again, which wasn't what others had been seeing before he left playing in the Pros with the Seahawks. It had been eight months since he had gone missing, eight months! Where had he been? What was the letter referring to? The way to freedom, who sent the package? In his search for answers, Toren goes home to his wife, Sloane. What must she be thinking? What note did he write? How could she start a new life? How can he regain everyone's trust? Before getting together with Quinn, Toren would spend the hours in silence, prayer, and pondering the way his soul had been transformed.

Once Sloane gets through the shock of Toren's sudden appearance, she knows to stay in the moment. A moment in which the children and her will need to trust in God's promises. After all of these months, she would have to deal with Toren's efforts to regain his way back into her life and the truth that her children deserved him in their lives. 

Quinn was his workout partner, his best friend since sixth grade.  "To find true freedom, you must find true forgiveness." Seeing is believing. For now, Toren appears to have lost all of the rage that began eating up his self-control. It was great on the field, but eventually it cost his friend his career and family. All of the signs of Toren's Hulk/Frankenstein alter ego had not yet resurfaced. Maybe Toren has changed. Where has he been all of these months?

Coach had always been a rock for Toren. Would he still be the one to help him regain his career? To help him navigate back to what was his best life on and off the field?

Eden is the private eye that Sloane had used to track down where Toren had gone. Now that he has reappeared, Eden will be the one helping him navigate the leads of where he had been. Could Toren had been one those clients who had decided to try re-consolidation? A process in which certain brain receptors are neutralized.

Dr. Ilsa Weber is the counselor who had helped Toren locate the center. Reconnecting with her should bring answers depending on how badly he will want to change. Yet, Toren must find his truth in order to defeat his deceivers. Could the truth be found on Friday Harbor?

When Toren enters the hallway...
Sorry, you must take the rest of this journey on your own...
 A novel in which your soul sees a reflection...
A novel in which your spirit quakes...
A novel in which your mind cries out to the Lord...
A novel in which you will ponder the moments spent within these pages.
Truth... a promise of freedom!
Meet the Author:
James L. Rubart  James L. Rubart is a 28 year old trapped in an older man's body, who loves to water ski and dirt bike with his two grown sons. He's the bestselling, Christy Books of the Year, Carol, INSPY, and RT Book Reviews award winning author of nine novels, including his latest, The Man He Never Was. He lives with his amazing wife on a small lake in eastern Washington.

"I received this book from the Fiction Guild for this review."
Thomas Nelson

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Ringing in the New Year: Enticing Options

White as Silence, Red as Song
Alessandro d'Avenia
ISBN: 9780785217060
Publisher's Synopsis:
Leo is an ordinary sixteen-year-old: he loves hanging out with his friends, playing soccer, and zipping around on his motorbike. The time he has to spend at school is a drag, and his teachers are “a protected species that you hope will become extinct,” so when a new history and philosophy teacher arrives, Leo greets him with his usual antipathy. But this young man turns out to be different. His eyes sparkle when he talks, and he encourages his students to live passionately, and follow their dreams.

Leo now feels like a lion, as his name suggests, but there is still one thing that terrifies him: the color white. White is absence; everything related to deprivation and loss in his life is white. Red, on the other hand, is the color of love, passion and blood; red is the color of Beatrice’s hair. Leo's dream is a girl named Beatrice, the prettiest in school. Beatrice is irresistible - one look from her is enough to make Leo forget about everything else.

There is, however, a female presence much closer to Leo, which he finds harder to see because she’s right under his nose: the ever-dependable and serene Silvia. When he discovers that Beatrice has leukemia and that her disease is related to the white that scares him so much, Leo is forced to search within himself, to bleed and to be reborn. In the process, he comes to understand that dreams must never die, and he finds the strength to believe in something bigger than himself.

White as Milk, Red as Blood is not only a coming-of-age story and the narrative of a school year, but it is also a bold novel that, through Leo's monologue - at times easy-going and full of verve, at times more intimate and anguished - depicts what happens when suffering and shock burst into the world of a teenager, and the world of adults is rendered speechless.

"Everything is a color,
Every emotion is a color."
MrsK's Review:
(YA: Reality Fiction)
Leo doesn't like white. Life isn't white! Listening to others is a good way to avoid the white. Leo has friends, he even has a girl he likes, her name is Beatrice. Yet, his life is different from kids at school. His difference comes from his unique perspective about people and life. Being 16 isn't a smooth transitional period of life. Hating the Dreamer will turn Leo's outlook upside-down because ignorance can't remain comfortable.

The Dreamer entered Leo's life as a substitute teacher. "To grasp beauty from anywhere and share it..." According to Leo, the Dreamer writes well on his blog. The Dreamer inspires curious minds in the classroom. Can he bring history alive to these students? Will his guidance help his students prepare for adult-hood? Change is in the air at this high school.

Silvia is insightful, loyal, and always goes the extra mile for Leo. Her dream is to become an artist. Silvia always "forces" Leo to go deeper in his thoughts, actions, and beliefs. Will she help him make sense about Beatrice's future? What will be the cost to their friendship?

Beatrice is one of Leo's dreams. She appears perfect in every way. That is until Leo discovers that her blood cells are in a war for her life. Leo is determined to help Beatrice live, even if it means giving her his blood, his free-time, his heart, and even his future. 

It is a rare find when a book engages you to the point of pondering wisdom and life. Crafted with depth, these characters will remain witnesses throughout your life...
"Freedom allows us to dream,
and dreams are the blood of life,
even if that occasionally means taking a long journey
and getting a bit beaten up along the way."
Meet the Author:
 Alessandro D'Avenia Alessandro D’Avenia, born in 1977 in Palermo, holds a PhD in classics and is a high school literature teacher and screenwriter.
Alessandro D’Avenia holds a PhD in Classical Literature, and teaches Ancient Greek, Latin and Literature at a high school in Milan. White as Silence, Red as Song was his first novel,published in Italy in 2010. It sold a million copies in Italy, has been translated into over twenty languages and was released as a film in 2012. Alessandro has since published four more books, the latest of which, Every Story is a Love Story, was published in October 2017.

The House at Saltwater Point (Lavender Tides #2)
ISBN: 9780718085803
Publisher's Synopsis:
Ellie Blackmore is making a name for herself as a house flipper. But when her sister Mackenzie disappears, Ellie can’t focus on anything but uncovering what happened. Her only clue is the bloodstain on the deck of Mackenzie’s boat. Ellie knows her sister isn’t on the best of terms with her ex-husband, Jason, but he wouldn’t kill her—would he?

Coast Guard intelligence officer Grayson Bradshaw believes Mackenzie faked her own death after stealing a seized cocaine shipment. The problem is convincing Ellie, who seems to view him as the true enemy.

Both Ellie and Grayson want truth, but truth—and family—is often more complex than it first appears. From international terrorism to the peaceful lavender fields of Puget Sound, The House at Saltwater Point is a thrilling race to uncover the truth before it’s too late.

"You've heard to trust your instincts..."
MrsK's Review:
(Legal Thriller)
Ellie is a interior designer, a contractor, strong and witty. Her blog, Hammer Girl, keeps her in business and she is rather "set" in her ways. After all, flipping homes isn't for anyone weak by nature or without grit. That is until, her sister, Mac, goes missing. Now everything in her every day life becomes out of focus. What begins as slashed tires quickly escalates into murder and a race for life.

Grayson is an intelligence officer, yet he has just arrived in Lavendar Tides, Washington. His vacation was called short once the two tons of cocaine ended up missing, how could officials lose an entire seized shipment? If that wasn't enough stress, now his parents have acknowledged that a strangers request might just be the truth. His hunches about Mackenzie Blackmore's connection in the heist were strong, and for the most part, his hunches were rarely wrong.

Who was leading whom astray? Grayson will stay close to Ellie, for now. That is until his hunches provides his next lead. Ellie is getting more and more frustrated with Grayson's attitude of her sister, maybe she should investigate on her own.

Neither one is completely truthful, neither one is trusting, yet both will need to rely on each other! Death is just a few steps behind them,
"Hammer Girl... a reminder that she is
strong and resilient."
Twists and turns...Who can you trust?
Meet the Author:
 Colleen Coble USAToday bestselling author Colleen Coble lives with her husband, Dave, in Indiana. She is the author of dozens of novels including the Rock Harbor Series, the Aloha Reef Series, the Mercy Falls Series, the Hope Beach Series, the Lonestar Series and two Women of Faith fiction selections, Alaska Twilight and Midnight Sea. She has more than 2 million books in print.
The Solace of Water
ISBN: 9780718075668
Publisher's Synopsis:
After the loss of her young son, Carver, an African-American preacher’s wife named Delilah Evans moves with her family from Montgomery, Alabama, to Sinking Creek, Pennsylvania, for a fresh start. The last thing she could have imagined was becoming friends with Emma Mullet, a reclusive Amish woman.

Emma is fighting personal battles of her own and feels estranged from her small Amish community. The secrets that have kept her isolated from her own community serve to unite her in an unlikely friendship with Delilah.

Sparrow, Delilah’s eldest daughter, knows she is responsible for the death of her little brother. When tensions at home become unbearable, she seeks solace at Emma’s house, becoming the surrogate daughter Emma has always wanted. Sparrow, however, is hiding secrets of her own, secrets that could sever all ties to her safe refuge.

Life for these three gets harder when church and social issues confront them, causing rifts within Sinking Creek’s three distinct communities: whites, blacks, and Amish. When their carefully protected secrets come to light, there seems to be little hope for friendship, restoration, or even forgiveness. But when the unthinkable happens, Delilah and Emma find themselves looking into the mirror of their own self-deceptions and are forced to make a choice that will set the way of their future.
"God was painting His love across the sky,
but I didn't deserve to see it."
MrsK's Review:
(Historical Fiction)
Delilah has just buried her son, Carver. A month has gone by, yet her heart still feels broken. Leaving Alabama for Pennsylvania could be a fresh start, at least that's what she has been told. Yet, she just didn't trust that life would be different up north even though it was the 50's. Upon arrival, Delilah's heart was pounding in fear as Carver's twin, George, ended up missing. It was in the woods that she found him, safe in the arms of Emma.

Emma lives in Sinking Creek, PA. With burdens so secret, Emma's day dreaming brings a solace to her days. "The blades of grass twist and turn...," Emma knew she had to be quick about writing her words down, quick before they "flew away." She had found her love for words in the eighth grade and even though she never returned to school, she couldn't stop from writing the lines that bubbled forth. Something new was unfolding that day she had found the little boy, something spoke deep with in when that child's mother found them. 

Sparrow is Delilah's daughter, she has been gifted with a wisdom beyond her years. As soon as George goes missing, Emma follows her mama into the woods of Sinking Creek. That's when she first sees Emma. After her mama takes George home, she notices the basket that the was forgotten. Hurrying, she follows the path that leads to Emma's property. As the days follow, Sparrow finds peace within those woods. A peace that eludes her when she is at home. Her guilt about Carver is a burden that has no healing. Yet, when she is befriended by Emma's son, she slowly begins to recognize the stirring within... hope was being rekindled

Deeply moving story about grief, dysfunction, and fanning the flame of hope. Friendship has many facets, sometimes it can be a silence that recognizes the sorrow,
Deeply moving!
Meet the Author:
Elizabeth Byler Younts Elizabeth Byler Younts is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers. She gained a worldwide audience through her first book Seasons: A Real Story of an Amish Girl and is a RITA nominated writer. She is also the author of The Promise of Sunrise series. She has consulted on Amish lifestyle and the Pennsylvania Dutch dialect two award-winning television shows. Elizabeth lives in Central Pennsylvania with her husband, two daughters, and a cockapoo named Fable.
Formula of Deception
ISBN: 9780718083854
Publisher's Synopsis:

When her twin sister was murdered, Murphy Anderson changed her name and appearance and moved to Kodiak to avoid the press and publicity. But when local authorities discover she’s an artist and request her help in drawing a dying man’s memories, she unintentionally ends up in the limelight again—and may be back in the killer’s cross-hairs.

The memory that Murphy was asked to draw was from an Alaskan hunter who discovered five bodies on remote Ruuwaq Island ten years ago, but has only shared the information with the police now that he’s dying of cancer. When they go to the island to investigate, no skeletons remain but there is evidence that the bodies may have been deliberately destroyed. But the big discovery is of a World War II Quonset hut.

As one by one the people who were at the hut die, Murphy knows there is something much deeper at stake. What happened there during WWII? And who is willing to kill to keep those secrets buried?

"You know, messy crime scenes, dead bodies, stuff like that..."
MrsK's Review:
(Mystery, Legal Thriller)
Murphy's lies were getting her in deep, ever since she came to Kodiak Island she just couldn't keep out of these situations. What began as a half truth has quickly ensnared her in an investigation as a forensic artist. After a year on Kodiak, Murphy found that the rain provided a perfect atmosphere. Hiding from the past was becoming comfortable. Painting a few pictures, crafting sea glass jewelry helped her get by. Mr. Brinkley had claimed her small accommodations as his home, once in he became her sounding board and confidant. He wasn't just a stray, he was all she had that kept her past and present somewhat balanced. Why had her sister come to Kodiak? Why is the serial killer on the loose, could he be the reason so many are dying? How could he have followed her? 

Detective Elin Olsson has strong instincts. She knows that Murphy has what it takes to help document the newest crime scenes. She knows she can trust Murphy to get the evidence that will lead to a conviction. What began as a deathbed confession, has now become a double homicide. What did that old hunter discover on the Ruuwaq Island ten years ago?

Bertie Fischer is from the state's crime lab. On Ruuwaq Island, Bertie takes a death-defying fall that sends her to the Anchorage hospital. But, before she goes, she enlists Murphy's help against Zinkerton. Bertie knows who Murphy is and why she has arrived on Kodiak. 

Joshua Ward is a patrol officer, who takes over helping Murphy gather evidence while Bertie is hospitalized. For Joshua, Murphy seems like a real life Jessica Fletcher. Everyone around her is dying.

Ryan Wallace is a journalist writing a history piece about the Salmon Run Lodge. That is until he has to rescue Murphy from the owner.

Are you ready for one wild and crazy ride of deception?
"He says it looked like they killed each other with
their bare hands."
A thriller that entices page-turners to read
long into the night!
Meet the Author:
Carrie Stuart Parks  Carrie Stuart Parks is Christy, Carol, and Inspy award-winning author, an award-winning fine artist, and internationally known forensic artist. Along with her husband, Rick, she travels across the US and Canada teaching courses in forensic art to law enforcement as well as civilian participants. She has won numerous awards for career excellence. Carrie is a popular platform speaker, presenting a variety of topics from crime to creativity.

"I received these books from the Fiction Guild for these reviews."
Thomas Nelson

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Poppy the Pony by Lily Small

Poppy the Pony
ISBN: 9781627797344
Publisher's Synopsis:
Enter an enchanted world of animal friends! Perfect for fans of Holly Webb, Rainbow Magic, Secret Kingdom and Magic Kitten. Each cute animal has its own pair of pretty fairy wings, and a special job to do in Misty Wood to make it a wonderful place to live. Poppy the Pony is very shy. She loves soaring through Misty Wood, but she is too scared to talk to any of the other fairy animals. Then, one day, a thunderstorm comes, and Poppy discovers she is braver than she ever knew...The Fairy Animals of Misty Wood are perfect books for girls aged 5-7. They will fall in love with these gorgeous, magical kittens, puppies, bunnies and more. Have you collected all of the Fairy Animals? Bella the Bunny; Betsy the Bunny; Chloe the Kitten; Daisy the Deer; Hailey the Hedgehog; Katie the Kitten; Mia the Mouse; Paddy the Puppy; Paige the Pony; Polly the Puppy; Poppy the Pony; and, Sophie the Squirrel. Lily Small grew up on the outskirts of a wood in Southern England. The eldest of four children, she would often keep her younger brother and sisters entertained with imaginary tales of the creatures that lived in the woods and the adventures they would get up to when humans weren't around.

MrsK's Review:
The series, Fairy Animals of Misty Wood, is a huge success with readers in the 2nd-3rd grade classroom! These animals are caring, friendly, and set on overcoming their fears.

Poppy the Pony might be shy, but she is braver than she knows. When a thunderstorm brings fear to her friends on a picnic, Poppy comes up with an idea. Being brave in the midst of danger means you rely on a talent from within!

There are so many delightful bonuses within this series: adorable and entertaining illustrations, the Misty Wood map to help readers know where the animals are, as well as a few interactive writing/drawing prompts.

Perfect for classrooms, excellent for parents and gift giving, and wonderful for grandparent story time!

Snuggle up and enjoy a wonderfully, fanciful moment or two,
An adventurous fantasy... Delightful!

Thursday, December 27, 2018

A Christmas collection for break-away moments...

As this year begins a season of celebration... a gathering of friends and loved ones... baking, crafting, shopping, planning, and so little time... Break-away moments can provide a sweet retreat... Try a cup of tea and one of these reads:
Christmas at Carnton (Carnton, #0.5)
ISBN: 9780310293248
Publisher's Synopsis:
Amid war and the fading dream of the Confederacy, a wounded soldier and a destitute widow discover the true meaning of Christmas - and of sacrificial love.

Recently widowed, Aletta Prescott struggles to hold life together for herself and her six-year old son.With the bank threatening to evict, she discovers an advertisement for the Women's Relief Society auction and applies for a position - only to discover it's been filled. Then a chance meeting with a wounded soldier offers another opportunity - and friendship. But can Aletta trust this man?
Captain Jake Winston, a revered Confederate sharpshooter, suffered a head wound at the Battle of Chickamauga. When doctors deliver their diagnosis, Jake fears losing not only his greatest skill but his very identity. As he heals, Jake is ordered to assist with a local Women's Relief Society auction. He respectfully objects.Kowtowing to a bunch of "crinolines" isn't his idea of soldiering. But orders are orders, and he soon discovers this group of ladies - one, in particular - is far more than he bargained for.
"The Lord'll give you what you need when you need it...
You just need to keep watchin' for it so's you don't miss it."
MrsK's Review:
Mrs. Aletta Prescott lives in Franklin, Tennessee in 1863. It has only been a month since she received the letter from the War Department about her husbands death. Now that she has lost her job with the textile mill, she is determined not to give into the smothering dark places that her mind called her to. Although her son needed her, the baby within her needed her to stay strong in the face of life's burdens. With God's help, maybe she could apply for the cooking position at the Christmas Auction. Beginning a new season in life, a change in location, the hope of using her skills to make life better for others brings Aletta hope. Yet, is she willing to trust in the hope springing up in her heart?

Captain Jake Winston was one of the best sharpshooters for the Confederacy, until the day the Union's sharpshooter took him down. With his shoulder healing, Jake discovers that it will take awhile before he would regain his long-range sight. Now the Colonel is asking him to be his representative at the Women's Relief Society Christmas Auction. Not the best assignment in Jake's opinion. For Jake, a hope of the heart is dangerous.

"When you hear a red bird sing in winter... your sadness will soon be lifted...,"
Take your alone time and renew your strength with characters that know how to choose hope,
"He'd fought on countless battlefields...
He'd seen boys who would never reach manhood...
He'd walked among corpses after battle...
But these women were fighting...
On a battlefield of their own."
A historical weaving of a tale filled with
sorrow, change, and the crossroad
of choosing to open ones heart to hope.
Meet the Author:
Tamera Alexander
Tamera Alexander is a USA Today bestselling author and one of today's most popular writers in the inspirational historical fiction genre. She and her husband live in Nashville, Tennessee, not far from the Southern mansions that serve as the backdrop for six of her award-winning novels.

Words from the Heart (Amish Letters #3)
ISBN: 9780718082567
Publisher's Synopsis:
Ivy Yoder hasn’t heard from John King in over a year. She knows it’s time to let go of the idea that they will one day marry, but she’s humiliated to be one of the oldest single women in her Amish community of Birch Creek. When quirky Cevilla Schlabach asks her to help clean out an attic, Ivy is grateful for the distraction.

Noah Schlabach isn’t from Birch Creek, or even Ohio. His job as an auctioneer takes him around the country and away from a typical Amish life, but he still remains devoted to his family. So when his aging aunt asks him to help clean out her attic, he agrees. Plus, who knows what curious items he might find up there?

As Noah and Ivy work side by side, they come across a different kind of treasure: a packet of letters written during the Korean War. Soon they are swept up in the story of two young people falling in love—even as they remain determined not to fall in love themselves.

"You both have an appreciation for things other people
tend to discard."
MrsK's Review:
Ivy Yoder is only four feet eleven, yet she has plenty of spunk and has reached the realization that her hope for marriage is not related to the one man she has been waiting on. With one job ending and the prospects for a part-time job on the horizon, Ivy is willing to help her friend Cevilla clean out her attic, especially since Cevilla's nephew has finally found time in his busy schedule to come home to Birch Creek.  Little did she know, that the attic had its own secrets and once discovered Ivy might need to rethink the path she thought God had been leading her towards.

Noah Schlabach is an auctioneer who has mastered his cadence, is well liked, is an honest appraiser, and has no intention of following his Aunts lead. Coming back to Birch Creek is only for a short time, his schedule is already set for the new year and it shouldn't take any time to get the attic de-cluttered and "make good on his promise" to his Aunt. His only challenge is the ringing in his ears, the extreme pain that the ringing causes, and his dizziness that comes with out any warning. For now he knows he can get the attic cleaned out, then he will check out what is causing his symptoms.

Cevilla knew that God was directing her decision to have Noah and Ivy be the ones to clear out all of the boxes in the attic. Yet, when her nephew begins shutting out her directives and Ivy accepts a new part-time job, she must seek God's guidance. Could she have misunderstood God's answer?

If it wasn't for the discovery of those letters, Ivy nor Noah would have remained connected. When Noah is asked to be the auctioneer for Birch Creek's first auction and Ivy is asked to help as a teacher, there just doesn't seem to be any hint that friendship could turn into a crossroads dilemma.

Take this seasonal moment of reading as a journey beyond what we "think" God is calling us to do,
"Pray about it. Pray hard... 
Don't make a rash decision."
Life... sometimes where you are going leads you
on a new path!
Meet the Author:
Kathleen Fuller  Best-selling author of Amish fiction. Also a wife, mother, crafter, coffee addict, football fan, and chocolate aficionado.

The Weaver's Daughter 
ISBN: 9780718011888
Publisher's Synopsis:
Kate's loyalties bind her to the past. Henry's loyalties compel him to strive for a better future. In a landscape torn between tradition and vision, can two souls find the strength to overcome their preconceptions?

Loyalty has been at the heart of the Dearborne family for as long as Kate can remember, but a war is brewing in their small village, one that has the power to rip families asunder --including her own. As misguided actions are brought to light, she learns how deep her father's pride and bitterness run, and she begins to wonder if her loyalty is well-placed.

Henry Stockton, heir to the Stockton fortune, returns home from three years at war seeking refuge from his haunting memories. Determined to bury the past, he embraces his grandfather's goals to modernize his family's wool mill, regardless of the grumblings from the local weavers. When tragedy strikes shortly after his arrival, Henry must sort truth from suspicion if he is to protect his family's livelihood and legacy.

Henry has been warned about the Dearborne family. Kate, too, has been advised to stay far away from the Stocktons, but chance meetings continue to bring her to Henry's side, blurring the jagged lines between loyalty, justice, and truth. Kate ultimately finds herself with the powerful decision that will forever affect her village's future. As unlikely adversaries, Henry and Kate must come together to find a way to create peace for their families, and their village, and their souls - even if it means risking their hearts in the process.
"This was the start of something.
Of what, she did not know..."
MrsK's Review:
Kate has a boldness, a conviction that runs deep. Her family's beliefs have been a powerful compass for her loyalty and commitment to those she loves... those she strives to serve... and those whose future is being threatened. When Henry Stockton returns from the grave, she discovers that "past" assumptions causes actions that leads to a starvation of the soul.

"If war had taught him one thing,
it was that the things he thought mattered no longer did so."
Henry has just returned from the war. He was prepared for the initial shock that his living might cause his family, what will create havoc will be the truth behind his family's business. Henry has much to do if he is going to bridge generational choices with new perspectives. With Kate's help... maybe his desire for change might become a path for everyone in the village.

What can hope, grit, and faith produce in the midst of falsehoods, deceit, and assumptions? Is it possible to lead others into an "united" perspective of success? Is life, family, and future worth the changes within your heart? Is it really possible to "see" someone beyond what has always been assumed?

Hope, trust, and faith can lead to a change for tomorrow,
When generational assumptions become unraveled...
Can honesty usher in life-changing progress?
Meet the Author:
Sarah E. Ladd
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"I received these books from the Fiction Guild for these reviews."

Monday, December 17, 2018

God Bless You and Good Night by Hannah C Hall

God Bless You and Good Night
ISBN: 9781400209231
Publisher's Synopsis:
Bedtime Bibles and storybooks are evergreen classics that sell through year after year. Seasoned brands and new names alike are seeing surging sales in this felt-need genre as parents are looking for comforting books with Bible stories, verses, and prayers to settle kids down to sleep.

In "God Bless You and Good Night," sleepy little ones are reminded of God's blessings and how much they are loved. The delightful rhyming story takes readers through several scenes of snuggly animals who are getting ready for bed. These sweet, sometimes silly rhymes and adorable art are sure to make "God Bless You and Good Night" a favorite part of the bedtime ritual for parents and children.

MrsK's Review:
Every parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle knows that bedtime for little ones can take on a life of its own. Those little ones yawn and fight to stay awake and not miss one single moment. Getting them tucked in can be a joy. Lights out can be a struggle. This sweet story offers the promise for sweet moments to snuggle, to "lull" a cadence of comfortable security, and gifts of tenderness.
"It's time to stretch from small to tall
To see the moon so bright.
It lights our way and seems to say,
"God bless you and good night."
This copy is the touch and feel version of the story. Each small animal has a parent helping them in the process of getting ready for bed. What is so endearing, is how little fingers just have to "feel" each page even as they are drifting off to sleep.

Such a sweet invitation... take the precious moments to snuggle up with this book!
A sweet story...
Promised memories...
Moments to be tucked away within your heart!
Meet the Author:
  Hannah Hall’s future truly began to take shape on her first day of Kindergarten. Paired up to be in a reading group with a mischievous little redheaded boy, Hannah both realized her love of well-written story and met her future husband.

Just a couple years down the road, on her seventh birthday, Hannah’s mother dressed up like a gypsy, gazed into her crystal ball (aka snow globe) and predicted that Hannah was going to grow up to be an author. Her powers were astonishing.

Sadly, time passed and Hannah became too “cool” to read and write stories. She immersed herself in trying to be popular, struggled with who she was and who God wanted her to be, and forgot that He had made her to write.

But God was faithful.

After she graduated from college with a degree in Broadcasting, Hannah realized that the life of a news anchor was not for her. She floated from job to job, wrote for teeny tiny magazines, learned to be a wife, settled in small-town Arkansas, and fell deeply in love with God before taking on the both the greatest and hardest job she’s ever had: being a mom.

Now as a wife to a red-bearded worship pastor and a homemaker with a growing family, Hannah is passionate about bringing God glory wherever she is and in whatever she’s doing, whether it be in the midst of “training” one of her five kiddos, through discipleship with younger women, or through writing little books for little readers.

Hannah has published thirteen books, including bestsellers God Bless You and Good Night, God Bless our Fall, God Bless our Christmas, God Bless our Easter, Sunrise, Easter Surprise, and Star Bright, Christmas Night. Hannah’s first picture book Would a Worm Go on a Walk? was a finalist for the ECPA Christian Book Award and was included on Focus on the Family’s list of Top Ten Picture Books.

Her life mission is to please God, however that may look. And though she fails (often and badly) her life verse reminds her that God is good and He is faithful:

“Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has done for her will be accomplished!”
 Luke 1:45
To God be the glory.

MrsK's Reading Bio

Reading is important! No questions asked, not even a blink of the eye from any student I grew up with. On the first day of the First grade, we were given our first books. Day two we all read aloud, round robin of course. Day three we were place in our first basal, now known as a lit circle group. Books were so important, publishers designed new curriculum so that every student was reading by the end of the first week. These early readers had images that looked like what we could see in the classroom, beyond the classroom, even on the big screen. Reading is important, throughout history every generation has believed that “Reading” opens up the world for endless possibilities.

I adore the 1950’s Dick and Jane books. Actually, most reading specialists and experienced (45+) educators believe that every student learned to read with Dick and Jane. Since these books are being re-issued, I have heard many parents, grandparents, and students claim that Dick and Jane stories of repetition does teach students to read.

Early influences from my mother influenced my desire to read. I would watch her read and we would go on “secret” excursions to the library. The library became my playground. I owned every book I could carry home, of course they needed to be taken back to their home after visiting with me for a week or two. My first book that I could pull off of the library shelf and read was, Father Bear Comes Home. I only saw my dad on Sundays for a few hours. I would pull this beginning reader off of the library shelf every week. Every week I would try to read the first chapter. Every week I got further in the story. My mom would let me check it out, only if I could read it myself (She didn’t like the illustrations therefore she didn’t want to take time to read it to me). One day, I pulled the book from the shelf and when mom came to get me from the children’s corner, I realized that I had read the whole story. I ran to the check out desk and the Librarian KERCHUNKED the checkout card. My mother, brother and neighbors read. My teachers read. We all read aloud all day long in school. The Priest read aloud every day at mass, even in Latin. Everybody in the Doctor’s office read. People on the bus read. Dad’s waiting in their cars as the Mom’s and children grocery shopped, read. In fact, once you could read and write, Sunset Magazine considered you a reader and sent you mail every day.

Reading is important; I’ve spent my life reading. I’ve traveled around the world and into space through books. My favorite genre is whichever book I have open at the time. Children’s Literature is my passion. Book clubbing is one of the best past times, especially if food is involved. In fact my friends of old are in a book club and we are about to embark on a beach trip to “read” and discuss our newest selection.

My “home-run” book story has helped every student find his or her own “home-run” reads. Every year, I have shared my, Father Bear Comes Home, and every year my students have brought in their “home-run” books. That’s the “diving board” into our Lit. Studies.

In “Growing Up Digital,” Tapscott’s insights into the new generations enthusiasm for the Net reminded me of my generation’s enthusiasm for reading, movies, TV, parties and our driving permits. The Net-Generation, as Tapscott describes, “are learning, playing, communicating, working, creating communities, and enforcing a social transformation.”
N-Geners are interactive “techies” who are always looking for a way to “work it” verses the TV Generation of “Baby Boomers” who started out looking for “how it works.” Reading development is tougher today, society moves too fast to invest their “non-working” free time into a book or even “home work.” Since I stepped into my own classroom, I have seen students being told to read, being forced to read, and threatened into reading. Homework is not any longer the vehicle for students to gain their future lifestyles or careers with. Yet, the Internet does create an enthusiasm for learning. Since I have been enrolled in these courses, I have used the computers in every subject. My students are using the newest technology in the classroom because I am giving them investigative sites to use as they learn from each other and books. I agree with Tapscott, in order to bridge the gap with this up and coming generation we must “live and learn with them.”

FTC Required Disclaimer: I receive these books from the publishers. I did not receive monetary compensation for these reviews. These reviews have been posted in compliance with the FTC requirements set forth in the Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising (available at


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