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)

Saturday, November 28, 2020

2020 Favorite Amish Reads


 Kelly Irvin ISBN: 9780310356691 Amish Romance
When a wildfire creeps closer to Montana's northern mountain area of West Kootenai, Mercy and her students are evacuated down the mountain to the town of Eureka. Even with a faith in God, when your family and community is evacuated there is such a strong desire to stay and fight for your land. How do you really just leave... and head to safety?

Spencer McDonald is a smoke jumper who knew that there were "too many" variables, nothing could be taken for granted and in every moment "nothing" would be in his control. It is in one of those moments that a "sickening thud" will alter how he would be fighting this fire jump.

There are so many interesting characters with a variety of personalities and faithfulness: Deputy Tim and Juliette; Caleb and his focus on Mercy; Marnie and Angie as they try to mend their family's past mistakes; and of course many relatives and the wisest of parents. The fire, the evacuation, the reality of  restarts all lead to an inspirational journey. There is a high standard for the written word whenever Kelly Irvin begins a heart-filled journey!

 Kathleen Fuller ISBN: 9780310355120 Amish Romance
Sometimes, being an Amish female who is at eligible age for marrying creates much unwanted stress when social gatherings have become a point of hide-and-seek from all of the eligible men. Martha receives some "sage" advise about how to by-pass all of the unwanted attention. Could Cevilla's solution actually work? Is there a possibility that Seth might consider helping her evade the marriage proposals?

Seth Yoder has no interest in Martha and her "oddities." His only passion is in trying to keep his family's farm in Birch Creek. His only challenge is he has no desire to farm or take care of animals. Yet, it is his father's request and anticipation that leads him into decisions that would distract him form his calling. If there was anyway for him to dis-engage from Mrs. Stoll's un-relenting manipulation's he might not have considered a profound commitment that is appears to be a simpler solution. Is there ever peace at the end of a rushed agreement?

If someone you barely know offers you a solution... check to see if it is an opportunity that leads beyond a quick decision into a teetering form of blackmail? Can you overcome the decision or could you become ensnared in the weave of deception?

Every series that Kathleen Fuller pens is delightfully filled with "quick" conversations, strong-willed personalities, as well as a perfected weaving of faithful inspiration.

 Kelly Irvin ISBN: 9780310348177 Amish Romance
Laura Kauffman has always enjoyed the "togetherness" of quilting, yet her arthritis is getting in the way of quilting... so for now she will enjoy the gathering by making cards instead of crafting quilts. During this season in life, it has become a beautiful and peaceful togetherness that entices her to gather as much as possible. There has been so many changes that Laura has endured, the hardest change came when she could no longer be a midwife. Could she still find a way to be useful instead of giving into seclusion and old age?

Zechariah is facing his own season of aging, unfortunately moving in with his grandson's family reminds him that he isn't ready to be taken care of. Anyone who has experienced the change into a "seasoned" period of life knows that there is only one way to move forward. That first step out of feeling "useless" is one of the longest journeys of a lifetime.

Given an emergency, Laura has offered to stay and help look after Zechariah's grand children for a few days. The very last thing Zechariah needs is Laura fussing after him. Even though they have known each other as littles, how do you accept so many changes with grace? Could they begin by accepting a gentler tone while bickering? Life moves forward... can these two find God's answers in the midst of their "seasonal" changes?

If you believe that "friends warm a room better than any fireplace," then this is one of the warmest and inspiring novels for a winter escape. Kelly Irvin creates endearing characters, vibrant conversations, and settings within a community that knows the value of each other.

Perfect arm-chair moments of peace, strength, and endurance!
"I received these books from the Fiction Guild for this review."

Monday, November 23, 2020

2020 Favorite Reads

Perfect reads for giving...

 Terri Blackstock ISBN: 9780310332596  Mystery/Suspense
As if things couldn't get any worse for Brenna, now the man convicted of murdering her father is released. Coping with all things changing is not one of her strengths. Back in the day, she had hope. Now, well what would you do when the man you once loved moves in across the street? 

Nothing seems real for Brenna, her ex-husband is remarried and using his money to gain custody of her children, the pardon of her father's murderer means he is returning to their town, plus his son has just moved in across the street... what would any sane person do? Trust! But who? Could Nate be the one that will keep her sane while she uncovers the truths from fourteen years ago?

This was definitely a well crafted page turner. As you are turning the pages (often late into the night), you realize that "rooting" for Brenna is like trying to hold onto a snowflake.

 Abigail Wilson ISBN: 9780785223665 Suspense/Romance
Sybil arrives at Croft Towers, an English Countryside, after a highwayman endeavors to waylay her journey to her new post. Upon arrival, Sybil not only encounters the strangest acting members of Mrs. Chalcroft's family... including the man that she recognizes as "he" who held her at gunpoint!

A most endearing storyline begins to "stitch" together mysterious messages, unnerving behaviors, misleading assumptions, and of course a unwanted romance. Dialogue will entice you to speak to the characters while the plot unfolds with smugglers, murderers, and spies. Who will Sybil trust at Croft Towers? Why did Mrs. Chalcroft request her for this post? Is Mr. Sinclair's double life trustworthy?

 Rachel McMillan ISBN: 9780785216964 Historical Fiction/Mystery
This is the second of the Van Buren and DeLuca mysteries set in the 1940's. What an interesting and very "lively" time in our history.

Having left her "elite" upbringing behind, Reggie has landed in Boston and has begun working for Hamish DeLuca. With one investigation closed, Reggie finds herself using her newly found "sleuthing" talents to keep DeLuca from death. Is she ready to take on their current investigation with her own wit and semi-strength? Especially when "there is never a good time to drown."

Hamish is still processing many of the unanswered questions that his cousin left behind from the previous nightclub murder. Now that there is a developer seeking to purchase some land, Hamish isn't necessarily on "alert" when Reggie leaves to investigate the Fiske Wharf site with their newest client. Yet, something isn't right about this new case. Will Hamish "refocus" his nerves in time to unravel what is really taking place or will he endanger Reggie and face death?

The delight with this novel is found in the historical settings, fashions, sounds, and "mob-ish" quality of the 40's. For those moments when a reader needs a break into a lively "entertaining" read... this is a great choice!

 Siri Mitchell ISBN: 9780785228615 Mystery/Political Thriller/Espionage
Georgie Brennan will be stretched even beyond her grief. Just who was her husband, Sean? There is no way she can remain focused at her position as a physicist. Sam, her son, is desperately trying to be strong now that her husband has been killed by a "hit-and-run" driver. Georgie knows that Sean was on a run to get something for the plumbing, or was he?

The "get-down-and-get dirty" steps forward in grief becomes a distraction for Georgie. When certain elements of her "new" daily life intensifies, Georgie becomes suspicious about the claims as to Sean's fatal accident. Was there something that Sean had been dishonest about even from the beginning? What do you do if those you trust have the most "dangerous" secrets? Why did Sean play a "hide-and-seek" game with Sam? What is causing their dog to behave so strangely around their house? What is Sean's journal saying? 

This late night, page-turner, will "kick-start" your heart. There are plenty of deceiving characters, a distrusting mind game, and more than enough loose ends to satisfy any book-chair detective!

  Colleen Coble ISBN: 9780718085889 Mystery/Romance (Stand Alone Novel)
Harper Taylor might have had an unhappy childhood, but once Oliver Jackson mentors her and gets her career as a marine biologist started she finds a daily life that feels safe and secure. Until that day when on a dive...

Ridge Jackson has never cared about knowing who Harper Taylor is. His distrust of her relationship with his father has left only doubts, distrust, and distance between him and his father. Animosity, was the only thing he felt for his father and Harper, until...

Annabelle Rice had no idea why Harper wanted to meet with her, what was this all about? Why, after all of these years, would someone be interested in her mother and her mysterious death?

This novel is crafted as two different time sequences. The plot is interwoven with the birth of one child, mysterious deaths, DNA investigations, Weeki Wachee mermaids, drug smuggling, and relationships that build into a cherished beginning.

Perfect for Holiday gifts... And Winter nights!
"I received these books from the Fiction Guild for this review."

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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