Gabby is a girl with a vivid imagination. Her mother doesn't understand her 'wandering mind'. Classmates tease her and call her weird. Will Gabby aban...moreGabby is a girl with a vivid imagination. Her mother doesn't understand her 'wandering mind'. Classmates tease her and call her weird. Will Gabby abandon her creativity? Or will she continue to let her "Words with Wings" fly?
Nikki Grimes' verse novel is beautifully crafted. It will bring encouragement to creative children who are misunderstood and treated badly because they're seen as "different" and "weird". It validates their uniqueness. WORDS WITH WINGS is a MUST HAVE BOOK for elementary school classrooms and libraries, public libraries and bookstores. Highly Recommended!!(less)
Dr. Nadine Lavoie is a psychiatrist. Even though she's dealing with her own psychological issues, she has an office in a Mental Health building, doing...moreDr. Nadine Lavoie is a psychiatrist. Even though she's dealing with her own psychological issues, she has an office in a Mental Health building, doing what she can to help others. Heather is one of Nadine's patients. During sessions with this young married woman Nadine starts to remember bits and pieces of her past - time spent in a commune on Vancouver Island. Because of these disturbing memories, Nadine is in search for answers.
I like to be moved by fiction. This story did that at times, but not in a good way. There were parts that made me grimace. And the cult thing? "I was still surprised so many people went along with Aaron's crazy ideas" - these were Nadine's words and I agreed. People at the commune believing anything this man said, allowing themselves to be manipulated, it was all so bothersome to me.
Always Watching is an okay read. It was interesting for a while, but then it got to where I had to push through, and then it was interesting again. Although some parts were predictable, there were hidden truths that came to light and other things revealed that I never suspected.
This is the first time I've read this author's work. I purchased Chevy Stevens' Never Knowing (Hardcover for only $3.21) and I am looking forward to reading.
During the trial of eleven-year-old Sabastian, Daniel Hunter - defender of juveniles - remembers his time spent in the foster care system, the biologi...moreDuring the trial of eleven-year-old Sabastian, Daniel Hunter - defender of juveniles - remembers his time spent in the foster care system, the biological mother he longed to reunite with and the foster mother who committed an act of betrayal he could not forgive.
I can't say I know much about foster care, but this novel showed what I've mostly heard - some children are not treated well when they're placed in the homes of supposedly responsible, caring adults. However, it also showed that there are caring adults who will make sure a foster child receives the love and guidance needed to assure future happiness and success. And, unfortunately, it showed how domestic abuse affects children in the home.
I felt for a few characters: Mr. Rankin when he was on the witness stand. Daniel because of his childhood. Sabastian's mum because she seemed so lost. And, of course, it was upsetting to read the parts about the eight year old boy who was found dead.
Although there were times where I would have been moved more than I was if there had been more showing instead of telling, this was a good read. A child murdered and a child on trial, these are difficult things whether it's real life or fiction. The author did a good job with the interrogation and courtroom scenes. Also, past and present transition nicely. What kept me reading was needing to know the answers to these two questions: Did Sabastian do what he was accused of? What in the world did Minnie do that Daniel could not forgive?
“When Memories Fade” is Book Two in Moody’s Victory Gospel Series. I read the first book, When Rain Falls, and I found it intriguing. I thought this...more “When Memories Fade” is Book Two in Moody’s Victory Gospel Series. I read the first book, When Rain Falls, and I found it intriguing. I thought this book was going to continue Candace Johnson’s story, and I was a bit disappointed that it didn’t. Well, it did in a way - Candace is included, but the focus is mainly on Angel Roberts, who was introduced in the first book. She has accomplished a lot at her young age, but there’s one goal she has yet to reach – finding out what happened to her mother, Elisa, who has been missing for years.
What kept me turning the pages wasn’t what happened to Elisa, but the disappearance of Melanie Stowe. Who took her? Why? And would she ever be found? I tried to guess whodunit, but once again Moody’s mystery novel was not predictable. She also wrote about Stroke, Alzheimer’s, Depression and Bipolar Disorder in a way that helps the reader to understand the mental state of those suffering from these illnesses and what family members go through. These parts were informative.
Angel was a likeable character. I was okay with Wes Cade throughout most of the story. He was an intelligent man with a good career and he cared about pleasing the Lord. He irritated me at one point, though, because of a choice he made. He knew better. (less)
Dmitri (aka D) is intelligent, an overachiever, a math whiz. The only family he had was his mother, until he lost her to cancer. Now D is in foster ca...moreDmitri (aka D) is intelligent, an overachiever, a math whiz. The only family he had was his mother, until he lost her to cancer. Now D is in foster care. His foster mother, Mrs. Martin, is like a grandmother to him and it doesn’t bother him that she’s white. But then she gets another foster child and that does bother D; he’s left feeling like he matters to no one. Until a talking bird named Nuru comes into his life. Nuru is on a mission and she needs D’s help.
Zetta Elliott has a good imagination and she writes well. I had no problem visualizing everything that was going on once the fantasy part began, but I felt some scenes should have been more intense – what was going on with the stone beast, for instance – and the young people should have reacted differently at certain times. Even though this story is fantasy, it can still be realistic in its portrayal of characters.
I liked the words of wisdom D’s mom had shared with him. I wasn't clear on why he never had a relationship with his dad, but it would have been nice to know. I liked D and his friends, Keem and Nyla. I liked the bit of history. I didn’t like reading the racial slurs.
Ship of Souls wasn’t as adventurous as I expected it to be. It was an interesting read and I really felt for D in the end. (less)
Laurel Meisner lost her father, her mother and her brother to a tragic automobile accident. How will she be able to get through the rest of her life w...moreLaurel Meisner lost her father, her mother and her brother to a tragic automobile accident. How will she be able to get through the rest of her life without them?
I like emotional reads and since a girl lost her family I expected this story to be an emotional read, but it wasn’t. Yes, I felt for Laurel after a while, but it was difficult at first because of her response at the funeral. I thought, ‘This girl’s whole family is dead. Her dad, mom and brother are in caskets right there in front of her. Where’s the emotion?’ And it wasn’t shock, because if it was she wouldn’t have been thinking clearly enough to make the choice she made. It was a nice gesture, but it would have been more believable if it happened later on in the story. The grieving process was more realistic as I kept reading, though. Laurel and David Kaufman dealing with loss in their own ways, I felt for them both.
A big portion of this story is about the care of dogs and cats, and it seemed David’s dog, Masher, was a main character. I guess this would be interesting reading for anyone with a love for animals. What I really liked was that the author included college planning and Mr. Churchwell - every high school should have educators like him.
Although Laurel’s parents and brother were killed at the beginning of the story, I still got to know them, because Laurel thought about them often. Present moments triggered past memories - very well-written. The story is detailed and at times that was good because I was able to get a visual, but there were times when I thought there was too much information. Still, it was a good read. (less)
Candace Johnson was only twelve when she lost her mother. After seventeen years of marriage, she lost her husband. Now her best friend, Pamela Coleman...moreCandace Johnson was only twelve when she lost her mother. After seventeen years of marriage, she lost her husband. Now her best friend, Pamela Coleman, has been killed. Losing so many loved ones has caused Candace to put her faith in God on the back burner. Will she ever be able to connect with the heavenly Father again?
I liked Candace. She was a strong, independent woman and a good mother to two teens – Rachel (16) and Daniel (14). I also liked Beulah and Mrs. Roberts, and some of the conversations Candace had with them. Candace stopped attending church regularly after her husband’s death, but even though she was struggling with her faith, she did not forget where her help came from. Candace knew how to call on God in times of need.
I understood Candace's pain, but I did not agree with her thinking God took her loved ones. Her mother, her husband, her best friend, each of them died in a way that I don’t believe God would have anything to do with. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11) Reading this story, I was reminded of how sometimes Christians don’t take the time to thank God when good things happen, but they are quick to blame Him, or say He’s the One responsible, when something goes wrong. It’s as if they forget there’s also an Enemy. The thief (Satan) comes only to steal, and kill, and destroy (John 10:10).
This novel has sixty chapters, but most are not lengthy. The story grabbed me from the beginning. It was written in a way that kept me wondering and guessing who the killer was and, although there was a bit of repetitiveness, it was not predictable. While investigators looked into Pamela’s murder, Candace did some investigating of her own. She was a woman fighting for justice. She had questions and with every turn of the page I was anticipating the answers. I started reading in the evening hours. When I was ready to go to bed, I had to read one more chapter, and then one more…. It was difficult to put this book down.
Survivor’s guilt, legalism, adultery, flawed Christians, domestic violence, forgiveness - Tyora Moody deals with these issues and a bit more. She has penned an entertaining, suspenseful debut!! (less)