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Penelope Anne Cole enjoys writing children’s stories to be read aloud. “Reading to children is the best way to help them love literature.” Ms. Cole has taught and tutored at every grade level, K to 12, and community college. She also reviews children's books. When not writing or reviewing children’s books, Ms. Cole enjoys dog walking, reading, gardening, church, and choir activities. She is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, a member of the California Writers Club:  Fremont Area Writers, SF Peninsula Writers, and South Bay Writers, and is a Reading Therapist with Read America. Ms. Cole reviews books at

http://pennyreviews-chat.blogspot.com/

See reviews of Ms. Cole's books at

http://reviewsforpenny.blogspot.com/

Her website is www.penelopeannecole.com

Contact Ms. Cole for School Author Visits, locally in-person, or by SKYPE.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

"A Sandy Grave" By Donna McDine Illustrated by Julie Hammond



A Sandy Grave, by Donna McDine, and illustrated by Julie Hammond, is a new Chapbook for ‘Tweens by the author of Hockey Agony, Powder Monkey, and The Golden Pathway. All of Ms. McDine’s books have the theme of doing the right thing at the right time for the right reasons. A Sandy Grave continues her themes of young people dealing with – and surviving – personal and societal injustice.



a sandy grave coverLeah joins two friends and their families for a beach vacation. On her first day there, the beach is filled with “looky-loos” staring at a beached dead whale. While walking down the beach to get a closer look, Leah sees two individuals representing the dregs of humanity, and I don’t say that lightly. In my book, poachers are in the same category as murderers. They kill wildlife for greed and diminish our natural world and our collective humanity. Leah feels a shudder that tells her these men are up to no good.

 “Leah tried to shake off the creepy feeling that was radiating down her back and arms. Grandma always said if something doesn’t seem right trust your instincts. Every inch of Leah screamed that she was right on the money.”


You’ll have to read the book to see how this story plays out, but I’ll tell you this much -- Leah does the right thing!


The artwork by Julie Hammond is light and frothy in contrast to the dark side of life that we glimpse. You see the ocean breeze in the girls’ hair and the sparkle in their eyes. Their stylish summer clothes help lighten the evil lurking in the background. They’re ready for a fun vacation and maybe even an adventure.



This story has bravery, confronting injustice, and, yes, ‘tweens doing the right thing for the right reasons at the right time. For teachers and parents, this book addresses themes of social injustice, right and wrong, protecting wildlife, living in harmony with nature, decision-making, meeting challenges, and supporting your friends in trying situations. I wholeheartedly recommend this and all of Ms. McDine’s books for Tweens.

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Donna McDine’s books are published by www.guardianangelpublishing.com and available from quality online booksellers such as www.amazon.com and www.barnesandnoble.com. More about Donna McDine at www.donnamcdine.com. And more about Julie Hammond at www.juliehammondart.com
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 Tags:  Chapbooks, Tweens, injustice, doing good, overcoming obstacles, doing the right thing at the right time, beached whale, beach, vacation, young people, helping friends


8 comments:

  1. A passionate review, Penelope. Sounds like the book struck all the right cords for you. Thanks for sharing with us.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks, Kai, I really appreciate these themes Donna writes about for our young people. They will be leading our country and we need to set their hearts and minds on the right path!

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    2. Kai,

      Thanks for dropping by and reading Penny's review of A Sandy Grave. I'm over the moon with her review!

      Best,
      Donna

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  2. Replies
    1. Hi Jan, thanks for your comment and support. I believe Donna's themes can help empower young people to see and do the right things and make our world a better place..

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    2. Janet,

      Thanks for your interest and never ending support.

      Best,
      Donna

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  3. Penny,

    Thank you for your heart warming review and profile of A Sandy Grave and of course the mention of my other books. Your support means the world to me.

    Best,
    Donna

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    Replies
    1. Hi Donna, I'm really glad you're writing books with these themes. It's so important that kids be exposed to this. I believe your books will empower and inspire many young people. Keep up the good work!

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