The Penderwicks in Spring

Note: I wrote this review in 2015, but am just now publishing it. Excitement reigned at my house last month. My youngest daughter realized that the library finally had processed the newest book about one of our favorite literary families, the Penderwicks. The day we got the email that her hold was ready, I made... Continue Reading →

Moon Over Manifest

Abilene Tucker has only known life on the road. She and her daddy followed the railways, living in camps while her daddy worked odd jobs to keep them fed. Then one day, her daddy sent her away to live in Manifest, Kansas. Manifest, Kansas. Why there? Why now? Abilene feels abandoned. She knows how to... Continue Reading →

Brother’s Keeper

Sora Pak and her family live by a very strict set of rules. The family Bible is hidden under the floor. They must attend the local communist meetings. Their friends and neighbors keep disappearing. But they are afraid to leave their North Korean village. Until the war comes so close, they decide this is their... Continue Reading →

Bronze and Sunflower

Bronze and Sunflower are the names of two children in China who become inseparable friends - and eventually family. This sweet story by Cao Wenxuan was translated from Chinese by Helen Wang. Set during the Cultural Revolution, Bronze and Sunflower is a story of love, hardships and family life in the Chinese countryside (and not... Continue Reading →

Around the World in Eighty Days

Here’s a classic I have never read - until this weekend. I found it in the homeschool box, realized the kids all had to read it and thought I’d better read it, too. Who knew Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne would be so captivating? Maybe you did, but I didn’t! This... Continue Reading →

Ali and the Golden Eagle

Wayne Grover met the real-life Ali in the mid-1970’s when he was in Saudi Arabia for his job. A lifelong mountain climber, he wanted to explore the deep rifts he’d heard about along the western edge of the Arabian desert. As he explored, he came upon a remote village deep in a rift larger than... Continue Reading →

Stone Fox

This short book by John Reynolds Gardiner must have been a reader for my children when we were homeschooling, because I don’t ever remember reading it before this morning. Little Willy is concerned for his grandfather, who suddenly took to his bed and quit talking and laughing with Willy. Doc Smith says nothing is wrong... Continue Reading →

Detectives in Togas

Coronavirus quarantine has me revisiting old friends. I pulled a box of books from the storage unit and my daughter went through it, looking for familiar faces she wanted to re-read. She can’t read them all at once, so I grabbed a few I wanted to read again from her stack. Detectives in Togas by... Continue Reading →

The Thing About Jellyfish

Do you need a good sobfest? Read The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin. Suzy has decided to stop talking. Something really bad happened the last time she talked to her good friend, so she’s not saying anything. Not to her mom. Not to her dad. Not to her brother. Not at school. Then her... Continue Reading →

The Lost Kingdom

Matthew J. Kirby is back! I was so very happy when I found The Lost Kingdom, his latest book, at the library. I actually grabbed the audio book, which is excellently read by Charlie McWade. The Lost Kingdom is another entry into Kirby’s unique genre, which I call historical fantasy. It’s historical - set right... Continue Reading →

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