A Weird and Wild Beauty, book review, Carole Estby Dagg, Children's Writing, Erin Peabody, Sweet Home Alaska, Writing

Sweet Home Alaska — Review and Giveaway

Thought for the Day:
“Patience is also a form of action.” 
~ Auguste Rodin ~ 

Gifts for My Writer Friends:
Rejections got you down? Maybe you shouldn’t let it get to you so much. Find out HERE why. 

Keeping your characters in character is pretty darned important. HERE at Through the Tollbooth, Catherine Linka gives us some pretty darned good tips for doing that. 

Bonnie Randall wrote a good article at Fiction University HERE about using cliches in a whole new way. Check it out. 

Last week I promised an ARC of A Weird and Wild Beauty: The Story of Yellowstone, the World’s First National Park by Erin Peabody. This week’s winner is warrchick, AKA Suzanne Warr, a North Carolina writer who blogs at Tales from the Raven. Check out her blog HERE. She also participates in Marvelous Middle Grade Monday and has lots of good reviews and other stuff. Congratulations, Suzanne. I will get your book out to you soon.

I probably should have gotten around to reviewing Sweet Home Alaska by Carole Estby Dagg some time ago. After all, it came out in February, but life got in the way. But it’s never too late to share about a good book. It reminded me of some favorite books from my childhood — the Laura Ingalls Wilder books, Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink, and the Anne of Green Gables books. It is a real treat. Here is the review I wrote for the San Francisco Book Review.

Terpsichore’s family has been hit hard by the Depression. Pop’s job is gone and there are no others for him or others in their small Wisconsin town. When FDR offers lands and loans in Matanuska Valley, Alaska, to families like the Johnsons, Pop wants to go. They start this great adventure with the caveat that Mother can decide whether or not they will stay after their second harvest in Alaska. The young village grows in the valley with a lot of enthusiastic people and a few bumps along the way such as buildings taking long to be built and a doctor and hospital coming late. But Terpsichore makes friends and learns to love her new home, as do her sisters. But Mother misses her own mother and the piano they couldn’t bring. The fear is Mother will vote to leave, but Terpsichore has an idea to change Mother’s mind.

“Terpsichore looked at the faces of colonists around her.
People were beginning to hope again.”

Based on real happenings, this engaging novel is filled with charming characters and a very compelling story set in a time and place readers will find fascinating. Author Carole Estby Dagg’s excellent research shows as does her talent for

Carole Estby Dagg

creating believable scenarios and dialogue. This deserves wider readership than middle-graders.


I have a gently-read hardback copy for one of you. To win, all you need do is have a US address, be a subscriber or follower, and tell me that in a comment you leave on this post. If you are reading this in your email, click HERE to go to the blog so you can leave a comment. If you would like extra chances, please spread the word by posting the link on a Tweet, blog post, Facebook, or any other way you like. Let me know what you have done in your comment, and I will put in extra chances for you for each that you do.

Don’t forget to check out Shannon Messenger’s wonderful blog HERE for many more Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday reviews and giveaways.

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