book review, Children's Writing, Giveaway, Justin Weinberger, Reformed, San Francisco Book Review, Susan May Olson, Time Jump Coins, Writing

Reformed — Review and Giveaway

Thought for the Day:
“No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, 
no surprise in the reader.” 
~ Robert Frost ~

Gifts for My Writer Friends:
Randy Ingermanson can help you understand how to start and end a scene HERE
Donna Galanti wrote a gust post HERE on Writers in the Storm about how to find your childlike wonder and bring it into your writing for children. 
Having any trouble with writer’s block? Sue Heavenrich has a great post HERE to help you out. 

As summer begins in earnest, I should warn you I might disappear now and again from blogging, but I will be back whenever that happens. I have a couple of writer’s conferences I will attend, and I might take my grandchildren on a road trip to Colorado. 
Last week, I had the pleasure of reviewing Susan May Olson‘s new book, Time Jump Coins. The winner of the ARC is Danielle Hammelef, who always shares my link for extra chances. Thanks for doing that, Danielle. It works! Congratulations to you! I will get the book out to you this week. If you didn’t win, I do have another giveaway, so please keep reading. 
I am a sucker for books with bullies. It always makes for such interesting conflict. When I saw Reformed by Justin Weinberger on the list of books available for review from San Francisco Book Review, I snapped it up. I wanted to show you how cute the cover for this book is, but I was not able to get the image from anywhere. Not that it wasn’t where I could see it, but try as I might, I couldn’t get it to copy in a usable format. If you click on the title, you can see it at Barnes and Noble or if you click on the author’s name, you can see it at his site. Here is the review I wrote for SFBR. 

Ian Hart ends up in trouble the last day of middle school. The teacher had given a writing assignment, but Ian didn’t get it done. At lunch, one of his “friends,” Devon, plays a cruel trick on a boy named Max. Devon gets Ian to trade lunch with him. It’s not difficult since Ian’s mother packed him a peanut butter sandwich even after Ian begged her not to. Devon gives the sandwich to Max, who is highly allergic to peanuts and immediately goes into anaphylactic shock, nearly dying. The boys are found out, and, because it is so serious, Devon, Ian, and two other boys are sent to a reform summer camp. It is there Ian learns a lot about what true friendship is and how cruel bullies can be.

Justin Weinberger

Author Justin Weinberger seems to have some experience with middle-school bullies and how they work. This is an excellent portrait of bullies and their methods and meanness. It’s not a perfect book, as some of it stretches readers’ credulity, but it is pretty effective at getting its core messages across. The writing is good and the characters fully developed and believable. Middle-grade readers will like this.

I have a gently-read ARC of this book to share with 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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