Showing posts with label Young Adult Christian. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Young Adult Christian. Show all posts

Monday, September 25, 2023

Easy Target by Tim Shoemaker

Genre: Young Adult, Christian, Realistic Fiction
Source: I own a copy

There is nothing better in my opinion than a book with a great story line that also promotes Christianity.

Tim Shoemaker is a master at crafting such books.  The characters are always relatable.  As a teacher I have seen many homeschooled kids begin regular middle school. For many it is not much of a social jump as they attend church or other activities that have them fitting in socially. Then we have those who have been out of the loop socially and struggle with going to a regular school.

Hudson Sutton is one of the first types of kids. He was homeschooled, raised as a Christian and adjusted fairly well in the school. That is until the bullying starts. He tries to protect his new friends from the bullying going on.  He comes up with a wonderful plan only to realize that he himself has become a bully. Since he is so open about his faith he is like many teens who think they are doing the right thing, only to discover that what they are actually doing is not what God would have us do.  One thing that kept going through my mind was the scripture, “Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord, I will repay.”  I guess a part of me remembers a time that I was so fed up with something that I thought I could help handle it. I then discovered that I had become a part of the same bad decisions. I justified my actions “because I prayed about it.”  There is a difference between praying and actually listening to what God is trying to tell us.  

All of the characters are well developed.  The setting was nicely done. The messages are clear. It is great that Hudson wanted to help his friends with the bullying issue. How far is too far? What happens when the bullied become the bullies?  A great question to end on and a recommendation to read this book. It is so worth is.


Saturday, July 29, 2023

Astray by J.F. Rogers


Genre:  Young Adult, Christian,  Fantasy

Source:  I received a copy from Bookfunnel to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

I love books for teens, especially if they have a message of faith to them.  Fallon is struggling since her mother disappeared and her father died. She is depressed and self-mutilates.  Her friend keeps trying to convince her that all she needs to do is have faith. When she goes through a portal into another world, Fallon finds what she has been missing. However, like so many teens, she is stubborn. Her journey in Ariboslia is one she must go through to learn who she is and grow her faith. This is a book about finding your faith among all the troubles you’ve had.  I really enjoyed the characters in this book. They reminded me of the type of characters Kandi Wyatt created in her “Myth Coast Adventure” series. Maybe that is why I liked this so much.  I also enjoyed the way the ending left room for a sequel. Must read book.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

To Save a Race by Kandi J. Wyatt

Genre:  Adult, Young Adult, Science Fiction, Christian
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

From Goodreads:
When Duke Callon divorces his wife and decides on an uncanny way of choosing his next duchess, Arianna's left with little choice. Faced with the intricacies of politics, Arianna struggles to find her place. Just as she thinks she has her footing, a decree, issued with the blessing of her husband, calls for the extermination of her entire race. 

A young innocent girl, a capricious duke, and a decree that will change everything. What will it take to save a race? 

My Thoughts:
I love everything Kandi has written so far.  However, out of all of her books her Bible based stories, set in an alternate time have become my favorite. In her newest book “To Save A Race” we have a steampunk version of the Biblical story of Esther. Arianna is a young girl who had lived with her uncle Marcos. Realizing she needed more ladylike training. For this reason she now lives with Lady Hemma and Lord Praus. Her uncle works for the Duke. She thinks it would be wonderful to be in the castle. The Duke divorces his wife and then eventually decides he wants to get married again.  He decides to screen the eligible women over a two month period. Each girl who passes the screening gets a night of dinner and sleeping with the Duke. This is of course appalling to Lord Praus and his son Kenden.  If a girl is engaged before the Duke makes this decree official then they are out of the running. Lord Praus wants to protect his daughter Pasha and his charge Arianna from such a fate. Kenden is willing to marry Arianna to protect her from this. Her uncle is content to let Arianna make the choice for herself.
If you know the story of Queen Esther from the Bible you will recognize it in this story. Kandi has once again taken a familiar story and put it in a different setting and been successful.  I loved the depth the story line takes. There was all the familiarity from the Bible with a fresh steampunk vibe. She creates characters that you love to hate. They were so realistic that at one point I wished I could grab the Duke by the collar and shake some sense into him. This is considered an adult novel. However, since it is such a clean read this is one I will place on my shelves at school. Young adults are looking for books with a touch of romance that is not so overpowering it makes them want to throw up. There are many themes, the biggest of which is love conquers all. These are themes that teens can and want to explore in a safe manner.  I can’t think of a better book to accomplish this.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Remembrance by Carolyn Twede Frank Review and Blog Tour

Remembrance Book Blog Tour
December 1 Carolyn Twede Frank -
December 2 Sheila Staley -
December 3 Susan Tietjen -
December 4 Sandra Stile -
December 5 Christy Frazier -
December 6 Christy Monson -
December 7 Kathryn Olsen -
December 8 Donna K. Weaver -

Genre:  Young Adult, Christian, Adventure
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

It seems that Josh Sawyer finds him even when he is trying to do the right thing. Josh loves his drama class but hates that they are singing in the Christmas Gala. Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus has been sung as part of the Gala for decades.  This year they have been told they can’t sing the “Hallelujah Chorus”.  They have been given permission to choose another song that doesn’t have a religious meaning.  While joking around with the new kid Zane, Josh sarcastically declares they should sing the song he hates the most, “Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer.”  To his horror, Mrs. Kowalski agrees that is the song they will sing.  Then she takes her frustration out on the class by assigning them reports on classical musicians.
Josh’s girlfriend Ester invites him to use her Uncle’s Literary Loom to research the musician. I loved the idea of the literary loom Ester’s uncle invented a way to live a book, to travel through it through the character. This trip to learn about Handel is just the inspiration Josh needs to spur him into action to try to save the traditions of the school’s Christmas Gala. There are so many story lines throughout this book. We see a young man who is searching for the meaning of God.  We learn the secret Zane had been keeping. As Josh travels through the Literary Loom several times, he learns more about the meaning of Christmas. He questions why more people don’t celebrate the real meaning of Christmas.

This is a fabulous book to read at any time of year. It was perfect for right before Christmas. This book really hit home with me. I see more commercialism each year. I had a student ask me a couple of weeks back if we could have a Christmas party. I teach in a public school. I told him we didn’t have parties in middle school. He said, but it’s a Christmas party we need to celebrate Christmas. I told him we weren’t allowed to celebrate religious holidays in the classroom. He still didn’t get it. I told him we were not allowed to celebrate Jesus’ birthday.  He said, “What does Jesus have to do with anything? I want to celebrate Santa.”  It is books like this that allow me to introduce kids to God’s messages.

I have not yet read the first two books in this series. I can assure you I will.  I will also be purchasing the series for my classroom library. It is difficult to find faith-based messages in books for classrooms.  I am looking forward to sharing this one with my students.  I just really wish the Literary Loom were real.  

Purchase on Amazon
Find out more about the author here

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Enslaved Series by Katie Clark

This review is for all three books in this series.  This is a must read.

Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Christian, Science Fiction
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Vanquished Book 1
Imagine a future where society is divided into three classes; Lessers, Middles, and the Greaters. Every dystopian society must have someone at the top who perverts life. In this case the Greaters have control of everything that affects the Middles and Lessers including medicine that could cure people. They have also outlawed religion. In this story we meet Hana who's mother has become deathly ill. She has cancer. Hana's society is so controlled she has a curfew, isn't allowed to date, and has grown to believe everything the Greaters have told her. But, when her mom gets sick and she is told there is no medicine for her mom she begins to open her eyes and look around at what is really happening. A medic named Fischer at the hospital tells her that there is a power higher than the Greaters who can help her mom. He shows her a forbidden Bible and encourages her to seek the truth. Her eyes are opened to so many things that are wrong in her world. She realizes that a lot of what is wrong has been created by the Greaters who supposedly have society's best interest in mind.
This is a great and unique dystopian because it isn't just about questioning the upper end of society, but their forced outlawing of religion.  Unfortunately, it is beginning to parallel our world way too much.  This is a book I would definitely recommend. 

Deliverance Book 2

This book picks up right where the first one ended. In this sequel we get more of a Hunger Games feel. Hana is in the Greater City where the president takes and interest in her, just as President Snow did in The Hunger Games. However, this is not as similar to the previous mentioned series from this point forward. Hana really wants to help. Unfortunately what she does is often inadvertently  at the cost of others. She is now a 'Greater'. This puts her in a position to learn what is truly happening with the government. It also puts her in the crosshairs of the president. He knows she has become a threat. She has found a pocket of Christians that have not let the government take away their belief system. Now she must find a way to let people know what is really happening, and at the same time protect those she loves. The suspense just keeps getting higher and higher.  One suggestion for the reader is make sure you own all three books because you are going to want to read them one after another.

Redeemer Book 3
In this book there are so many changes for Hana. She's been stripped of being a Greater. This in itself opens the door for her to truly find and do what she must for the greater good of society.  This book is so suspenseful and full of twists and turns you can't put it down.  The author has done an excellent job of tying everything up. It has a very satisfying ending. This is also a series I would definitely reread. I believe every time I read it I will see something a little bit different, something I missed the first time. Will I recommend it?  You'd better believe it. I will also be looking for other books by this author in the future. She is one awesome writer.

Author Bio

Katie Clark's published works include multiple children's books including A Tour of Your Muscular and Skeletal Systems, Animal Actors, Police Horses, and more. She is available for classroom visits and Skype chats to discuss her books. 

You can find her in the following places:


Book Trailers
Enslaved Series
Beguiled Series

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Overcome by Gabrielle Grace

Genre: Young Adult, Adult, Christian, Fantasy: 
Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.

I received a copy to facilitate my  review. The opinions expressed here are my own. This new author has a grasp on what it takes to be a great writer. Her characters are well drawn. Simon the main character is one you cheer on from the beginning. His best friend Derek is one I found myself going back and forth. between loving and hating. In my opinion, anytime a writer can make you love a character that you want to hate for their actions. they are successful.  The action scenes are just that, full of action. The reader goes from one conflict to the next. The tension is kept tight from beginning to end. I had to keep reading once I began it because I needed to know how Simon was going to handle situations. Would he be able to stay strong? Would he be able to keep friendships intact?  What happens when you have to make those tough life decisions?  I have to say I've known the author for several years. I knew this book was within her.  I knew she had talent.  I could never have imagined just how gifted a writer she is until I read this book.