Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Down Under Calling by Margot Finke

Looking for a mid-grade novel for a ‘tween-age boy who’s interested in all things Aussie?  Here’s the perfect book for you, Down Under Calling, by Margot Finke. Ms Finke is a transplanted Aussie with memories and stories to share about wild and wonderful Australia. I highly recommend this book to boys and girls who want to learn more about Australian animals. Parents and grandparents will enjoy the growing relationship between Andy and Grandma Rose.
In Down Under Calling, Andy’s mother wants him to do something productive over summer – not sit around playing video games. She suggests he write letters to his Grandma Rose in Australia. We applaud his mother’s pushing Andy knowing that he and his grandmother will get to know each other better through this correspondence. We’ll all learn more about Australia through Grandma Rose’s sharing her memories with us about growing up ‘down under.’

Andy, being a video game player, is not inclined to write letters – how “borrring,” he thinks, as he reluctantly complies with Mom’s urging. But once he receives Grandma Rose’s first letter, he changes his mind. Grandma Rose has a lot of interesting critter visitors to her garden, which backs to the Queensland Bush, plus entertaining personal stories from her girlhood. Andy is hooked and his friend, a girl named Kelly, is drawn in, too. The summer passes pleasurably on both continents as they eagerly await the next snail mail installment. Andy and Kelly’s friendship also grows as they share their personal stories.
Letter exchanges make for wonderful stories. We get to experience life in two worlds. In this case we also get Rose’s remembrances of her life as a girl in Australia in the 1940’s, contrasted with her life today. Andy’s perspective broadens and his understanding of his own life’s problems also deepens. He develops a warm relationship with his grandmother and gains a close friend in Kelly. They learn more about the creatures in Australia through Andy and Kelly’s ‘Google’ searches. Andy and Kelly find more to interest them outside in bike riding and bird watching.

If you’ve ever carried on a correspondence over a period of time you learn a lot about the other person as you share information – and you learn more about yourself as well. Andy learns his parents are having the same problems he’s had since his father was downsized, which changed their living situation. The whole family has had to adjust to their altered financial reality. In this day and age sacrifices seem harder to make when we see others are much better off. This story shows how families can stick together in hard times and that expensive, ‘store bought’ fun isn’t a true necessity. It’s our relationships that really matter.  

See Margot Finke's other books at:
Down Under Calling is available as an Amazon Kindle book:

Monday, October 28, 2013

October Releases by Guardian Angel Publishing

A Bad Mad Sad Day for Mama Bear  Animals & Pets 
by Mayra Calvani, artist KC Snider
On a very bad day, Little Bear offers Mama Bear various items to make her feel better, but she’s too busy to notice—until he gives her his super, so good, so very special dolly. Silly humor, alliteration, repetition, and onomatopoeia make this a fun read-aloud story. 
Bethlehem’s King Size Bed Musical Playbook  Angelic Harmony 
by Dixie Phillips, Sharon Phillips, Lucy Robbins, and Leslie Troyer 
A Christmas Musical for Children-Phineas of Capernaum orders a flock of sheep to find a king size bed for the newborn King about to be born in Bethlehem.
Captain Courage and the World’s Most Shocking Secret  Book 2  Littlest Angels
by Stacey A Marshall, artist Michelle Morse When beloved school principal and superhero, Captain Courage, reveals a shocking secret about himself, he shows everyone at school the true meaning of courage. 
Earthquake!   Academic Wings hardcover edition
by Susan Berger, artist Eugene Ruble
Ghost Story  Littlest Angels
 by Liam Maher, artist Gin May
One rainy day young John and cousin Harry play catch in the lovely lounge of a beach hotel. A gorgeous crystal chandelier gets shattered, but escaping from the damaged room, the duo causes the blame to fall on a ghost.
Hidden Treasure Littlest Angels 
by Judith J. Miller, artist Robert Beers
Instead of playing Matt must clean his room including the disaster under his bed. Besides scary, broken and stinky things he discovers a true treasure.
Mágico Mateo   Spanish Editions 
by Penelope Cole , artist Kevin Collier
Mateo tiene un secreto:  Él arregla las cosas por arte de magia.
The Ferry Boat  Littlest Angels 
by JennaKay Francis, artist Ed Woodward III
Riding the ferry to the island to visit friends is an adventure by itself. A rhyming story about a child’s adventures aboard a ferry.
Where will we fly?  Academic Wings 
by MarySue Seymour artist Cheryl Spadacinni.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Magical Matthew Translated into Spanish - Mágico Mateo!

Magical Matthew has been translated into Spanish and is up on the Guardian Angel Publishing website as Mágico Mateo! 

Here is the link to see the first two pages and to order from GAP:


It should soon be up on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other quality online book sellers.

If you can't wait for Amazon, you can buy softcover and ebook from GAP.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

GAP Authors Win Awards from Children's Literary Classics

Congratulations to three of our Guardian Angel Publishing (GAP) authors who have won awards from Children's Literary Classics. 

Margo L. Dill won the Eloquent Quill Award for Finding my Place: One Girl's Strength at Vicksburg. (Published by White Mane Kids).

Tracy Schuldt Helixon won a Silver Award for Little Isaac's Big Adventure, illustrated by Jack Foster.

Literary Classics Silver Award for One Pelican at a Time

 Nancy Stewart won a Silver Award for Katrina and Winter:  Partners in Courage.

 Literary Classics Silver Award for One Pelican at a Time

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Hockey Agony, by Donna McDine, artwork by Julie Hammond

Hockey Agony, by Donna McDine, and illustrated by Julie Hammond, is one of those short books that grabs your attention. Not because of the title -- though it does put you on notice something painful is coming -- but because of the subject matter. Here’s Larry, a teenager and excellent hockey player, who’s struggling. We see him in pain from a broken leg and in worse pain since he can’t play for his hockey team. Adding insult to injury, Peter, somewhat of a bully and “bad boy,” has taken Larry’s coveted spot on the team.

In addition to his humiliation and frustration, his Coach wants Larry to improve his attitude. Coach gives Larry the job of clock runner in the next game. This means Larry will have responsibility and monitor the game with a member of the other team. When Peter hears of Larry being the clock runner, he pushes temptation squarely in Larry’s face. And in his bully way, Peter leaves no doubt as to what he expects Larry to do, if the opportunity presents itself – cheat in favor of their team. Will Larry bow to this temptation and give an advantage to his team, or will he do the right thing?

Julie Hammond’s artwork is suggestive of Americana folk art – an enjoyable and picturesque style – that adds to the feeling of the story. She’s captured the characters; giving us “true life” facial expressions and body language. Her depiction of high school life is timeless and even other-worldly, as if we see the scenes through a special soft lens.
 hockey agony

As parents and teachers, we hope the lessons we present on honesty, integrity, giving your word, and doing your best will be absorbed and integrated into our students’ characters. The reality is that we seldom get to see whether these lessons bear fruit. Talk, as they say is cheap, and actions speak volumes. When presented with temptation, will our students find their moral and ethical center? Will they take the high road and do the right thing? We all are tested throughout our lives and have important choices and tough decisions to make. Read Hockey Agony and see how Larry handles his temptation.

This review is part of the World of Ink Virtual Book Tour

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

GAP Kids ezine October 2013

October 2013 Guardian Angel Kids ezine
 Down on the Farm

The Odd Chick
Life on the Farm by Jennifer Buchet
Tractor Tour by Tracy Helixon
Tractor goes to the City by Wendy Klein
Allie’s Farm by Felicity Nisbet
The Pig who did not want to be pink by Savannah Hendricks
Old MacDonald had an Alpaca by Shari L. Klase
So you want to be a Farmer? by Sharon Stanley
Down on the Farm Word Search Puzzle by Tanja Cilia


LYNDA S. BURCH. Publisher