Meet author Floyd Hughes, and learn about his new book, Hi My Name is Jonah, in his new author biography just posted to Feathered Quill Book Reviews at:
Thursday, April 29, 2021
Headstrong Hallie!: The story of Hallie Morse Daggett, the First Female Fire Guard
By: Aimee Bissonette
Illustrated by: David Hohn
Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
Publication Date: February 2021
Reviewed by: Holly Connors
Review Date: April 27, 2021
Get ready to meet one amazing, headstrong young woman who doesn't let the word "no" stop her from reaching for her dreams.
Meet Hallie Morse Daggett, a young girl who lived with her family among the trees and forest animals of California's Siskiyou Mountains. Born in 1878, Hallie's favorite thing to do was to hike through the woods, go hunting, fish along the shores of the Salmon River, and explore the various trails near her home. Nothing scared Hallie except...forest fires.
As a child, Hallie and her sister Leslie would help the fire crews by stamping out forest fires as well as bringing food and supplies to the men who fought the fires. Hallie decided that she wanted to join the US Forest Service when she grew up. There was only one problem - in the early 1900's when Hallie was ready to apply for a job, the US Forest Service wouldn't even consider hiring a woman.
In 1910, Hallie wrote a letter to apply to the US Forest Service. She was not hired. But she didn't stop. She wrote more letters and never gave up. Finally, in 1913, the ranger who was in charge of hiring decided to take a chance on Hallie - he knew that there was no one more familiar with the mountains and no one more determined to protect the land.
Headstrong Hallie is a great look at an amazing, and very determined, young woman. In a time when woman were expected to stay home and learn how to be a housewife and mother, Hallie had other ideas. Her story is an inspiration to all young girls. The book covers both Hallie's early life and what led to her determination to become the first "fire guard," as well as her life working at the remote Eddy Gulch station where she could see both Mount Shasta to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. At the back is a two-page Author's Note with a more detailed look at Hallie's life.
Quill says: A fantastic picture book biography of one amazing young woman.
Monday, April 26, 2021
Molly: A Love Story
By: Dana Brackob
Illustrated by: Evgeniya Kozhevnikova
Publisher: Histria Books
Publication Date: April 6, 2021
Reviewed by: Katie Specht
Review Date: April 22, 2021
In the first few pages of Molly: A Love Story, we are introduced to Molly, a friendly and loving pit bull without a home. She has been living dangerously on the streets, but she soon finds herself rescued from this life and taken to a shelter. Once there, she begins a new phase of her life: waiting and hoping to be chosen by a family.
A family visits the shelter in search of a dog to fill their empty home, and instantly falls in love with Molly. Molly is welcomed into her new home with open arms and she brings abundant joy to her family’s lives. One day, Molly meets Logan, a Siberian Husky. They become the best of friends and Molly’s family adopts him as well. Molly and Logan spend their days snuggling in their favorite chair and chasing golf carts at the dog park.
Molly’s life drastically changes when she is diagnosed with cancer. With her family and Logan by her side, she undergoes surgery and chemotherapy treatments, ultimately beating the cancer. Sadly, shortly after the cancer treatments, Molly passes away quietly in her sleep. Her family and Logan miss her dearly but will forever cherish fond memories of Molly.
Molly: A Love Story is a touching narrative of a real-life family and their beloved dog. Author and Molly’s owner Dana Brackob shares her poignant story with children to help raise awareness for Molly’s breed, the pit bull, which is often erroneously regarded as vicious. Many young readers will be able to relate to their dog, regardless of the breed, being one of their best friends. Just like in the story, children will be able to remember the exciting adventures they experienced with their dog as their favorite companion.
In addition to eradicating public misconceptions about the pit bull breed, Molly: A Love Story also highlights an important topic for children: losing a pet. Many children will experience the loss of a pet in their childhood. Having access to healthy examples of how to cope with this loss is crucial for these children. While the child’s parents modeling these examples is ideal, books can also provide great demonstrations of this behavior for kids to see.
It is also worthy to note that the author shows her love of rescue pets by donating a portion of the sale of each copy of Molly: A Love Story to her local animal shelters. By supporting this book, the reader is also giving back to a rewarding cause.
Quill says: Molly: A Love Story is a heartwarming story of an abandoned dog finding love with her forever home and the joy that they bring to each other’s lives. This book also teaches young readers that the love of a lost pet will forever live on in their hearts through all their shared memories, while simultaneously supporting the worthy charity of animal shelters.
Thursday, April 22, 2021
Hey authors (or anyone with online presence) - have website problems? Or need a website? Check out Unglitch! They built our beautiful Feathered Quill website when we made the difficult decision to totally update our old website. A huge undertaking that they handled beautifully.
Wednesday, April 14, 2021
Today, Feathered Quill reviewer Ellen Feld is talking with Steve Skurka, author of Pharo and the Clever Assassin.
Today, Feathered Quill reviewer Barbara Bamberger Scott is talking with Eddie Brophy, author of Nothing to Get Nostalgic About.
Presence, The Play
By: William E. Jefferson
Published by: Storybook Barn
Publication Date: May 2021
ISBN: 978-1-7364- 9670-1
Reviewed By: Amy Lignor
Review Date: April 13, 2021
There are those books out there that make you think. Not only are you entertained by the story and intrigued by the characters, but the author does an intriguing job of offering up both darkness and light throughout. This is one that does just that, taking the reader on a full-scale ride that feels more like a fantastically acted film than words on a page.
Upon opening William Jefferson’s book, you find yourself at the Theatre Portesque. This amazing locale with the old, red velvet seats that reminds you of a different age, is absolutely packed; it is opening night, and they have come to see Presence play out before them.
We first meet Brother Plot. He has helped Brother Script put together this play and he’s excited to see it on the grand stage. He saves a seat so that Script, the playwright, can sit beside him when he arrives. Upon speaking with another thrilled visitor in the theatre, whose boyfriend will be the first member of the cast the audience will see, Plot learns that Script is beloved by many and that one and all are excited about the night.
The reader will find him beloved, as well. Script is a playwright but also a monk who lives on the Isle of Estillyen. He lives in a world that Tolkien would have absolutely loved. This is one of the most picturesque villages ever, and the land has a unique connection to all the main characters. An order of monks live on the island, men who belong to Estillyen’s Order of Message Makers (AKA: Storytellers) that dates back to the 17th century. All have chosen names to go by, such as, Chronicle, Saga, Script, Epic, Plot, Narrative, and Writer.
Instead of a lovely opening night, however, tragedy occurs when Script has an accident—he takes a vicious tumble in the balcony and is rushed to the Good Shepherd Infirmary in an ambulance. Plot, who has stood by Script’s side for as long as he can remember, comes with him on this journey, as well, and is heartbroken when he and Brother Writer reach the ICU and find out their friend, who was so full of life just a short time ago, has now fallen into a prolonged coma.
Upon speaking to the doctors, their diagnosis is revealed: Script is in this state but, thankfully, his vital signs are doing well. In fact, the brain scans done show Script to be alive and well, but stuck inside his own mind. He is in that inner consciousness – that network where doctors do not quite understand what is happening. At this point, all they know is that Script’s brain is experiencing a high level of activity, such as one would see in a chess player. Everyone knows there is something going on in their brother’s head, but all they can do is wait and pray for him to open his eyes and come back to them.
As Plot and the others leave the infirmary, praying with everything they have, readers stare at Script as he stands on a path that will lead him through the emotional, entertaining, dramatic and imaginative journey he’s about to dive into.
Told from Script’s comatose state until the end, the story that is woven by author William Jefferson is a grand one. At times, it feels almost like C.S. Lewis has joined forces with him, taking us into a new Narnia and opening up some of the most amazing and memorable scenes you’ve read in a long time.
Quill says: Presence, The Play offers a cast of characters in a fantastical realm that takes readers’ imaginations on a thrilling adventure!
For more information on Presence, The Play, please visit the website: www.estillyen.com
Monday, April 12, 2021
Little Sock Makes A Friend
By: Kia Heise and Christopher D. Park
Illustrated by: Christopher D. Park
Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press
Publication Date: March 2021
Reviewed by: Ellen Feld
Review Date: April 11, 2021
Welcome to the world of Little Sock! Little Sock is an adorable sock who lives in the drawer with all the other socks. Today, however, he's about to go on a fun adventure.
Little Sock Makes A Friend, is a follow-up to the 2019 book Little Sock, that introduced the unique protagonist to readers. In this sequel, we learn that Little Sock lives in the sock drawer with all the other socks...but he has a secret. At night, when the other socks have gone to sleep, Little Sock sometimes sneaks out of the drawer and heads to the dryer. Behind the dryer is a tunnel that goes to Sock City! (And now the adults reading know where all those missing socks go!)
Little Sock loves going to Sock City because there is so much to do. He can play with a hula hoop, ride the Merry-Go-Round and check out the fine dining. Unfortunately, there are also lots of things that require a friend - volleyball, anyone? When Little Sock spots another sock who is by herself, he thinks that she could possibly be his friend. But how do you ask someone, or some sock, to be your friend?
Little Sock Makes A Friend is a creative story to help youngsters get over the fear of making friends. It's not every day a reader gets to follow a sock down a dark tunnel behind the family's dryer to a magical land full of happy socks. The text is very simple and is accompanied by lighthearted illustrations of Little Sock and all the other socks who live in Sock City. This would be the perfect book for a shy child or one who is going off to daycare, or preschool for the first time.
Quill says: Little Sock Makes A Friend is a super-cute story that shows little ones that making friends isn't a scary process, and that the fun you can have with a new friend is awesome.
Wednesday, April 7, 2021
Test of Time
By: Jacqueline T. Johnson
Publication Date: April 2013
Reviewed by: Lynette Latzko
Review Date: April 5, 2021
Author Jacqueline T. Johnson presents readers with the first book in the Sons of Meir series, Test of Time, a strong start to her fantasy series.
This engaging fantasy story is set in the majestic, but brutal times when kings ruled nations and regularly battled for control of not only their own lands, but the takeover of other kingdoms as well. Our story begins with Erich, who, through a few strategic moves, has managed to develop a trusted relationship with King Onio that quickly transformed his lowly status in life into not only becoming an imperial soldier in the kingdom of Meir, but a husband to princess Kalya, the future queen. Together with his longtime comrade, Nash, from the kingdom of Noyi, they both come to a mutual decision to forget about, and move on from their roguish former lives, and work toward protecting and strengthening the kingdom of Meir.
Time progresses and as Meir’s army becomes more formidable, it further solidifies Erich’s position as a great leader. But like many nations during this time, peace and power comes at the price of attracting the attention of other nations, ones with their own relentless thirst for absolute power. You see, the King of Noyi, Lugar, has been plotting and building his army to overthrow King Onio and his land. This all appears to be a simple age old premise, kingdoms fighting for power with each other, right? Yes, except for the fact that one of the men is suddenly thrust into a new reality where he comes to realize he was a pawn in a larger, much more sinister conspiracy to not only overthrow kingdoms, but a plot that will ultimately challenge friendships and even blood relationships. But will the men overcome the challenge thrown at them and do what is right, or will they succumb to powers greater than themselves?
Test of Time is an intriguing story filled with adventurous suspense that will undoubtedly keep your attention until the cliffhanger ending. It should be briefly noted however, that some readers may find a few abrupt scene changes while reading that may disrupt the natural flow of the story, so it is advised to read carefully in order to fully enjoy the story as it unfolds. However, the author has developed solid, realistic and likable characters that easily allows readers to become fully engrossed in the storyline, and look forward to what happens next in the sequel.
Quill says: Author Jacqueline T. Johnson pens a good fantasy read that keeps the pages turning.
To learn more about Test of Time, please visit the author's website at: jt-johnson.com
Monday, April 5, 2021
Today, Feathered Quill reviewer Diane Lunsford is talking with Daniela Amato, author of Finding Joy: A Dog's Tale.