Book Review: Wheels of Change by Darlene Beck Jacobson

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Age Recommended: 12 and up

Wheels of Change was an extraordinary book about a family trying to cope with the changing world and the technology revolution of the time. The author developed the main character of the book really well. The book also does a really good job of introducing kids to issues of women’s suffrage and racial discrimination, both of which were prevalent in early 1900s. I did find some parts of the story a little repetitive, but otherwise the book is very well-written.

This book fit my 2015 Reading Challenge category of: “A book you can finish in a day.”

(This was another recommendation from #AMightyGirl reading list.)

 

Wheels Of Change

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Emily Soper is a unique girl who wants to live her dream. However, women in the early 1900s aren’t allowed to pursue their dreams- instead they are taught how to be “lady-like.” Emily loves spending time at her father’s barn which also serves as the workshop for her father’s carriage-making business and nothing can keep Emily away from the forge. There are two other people who work at her father’s business: Henry, an African-American blacksmith, and Sam, their Caucasian neighbor, both of whom are like brothers to Emily. She also has a younger brother, William, who is really very naughty but their mother never says anything to him.

The story is set in a time when automobiles are just starting to be produced, and Emily and her family fear that their business will be shut down due to the decrease in demand for carriages. However, President Roosevelt orders a carriage from Emily’s father which turns out to be one of their biggest projects. This boosts the family’s faith in their business and the Sopers’ start to believe that their luck could take a turn for the better.

However, Henry falls sick with pneumonia and is sent home to his family. The new hire at the forge strongly dislikes African-Americans and believes that African-Americans should not be able to work or mingle with Caucasians. To show his anger, the new hire burns the almost-completed carriage for the President. This puts Emily’s father behind schedule and he doesn’t have time to spare. Emily offers to help but her father declines, saying that it is not proper for young ladies to work in the forge. Now, it will take a miracle to help the Sopers- a miracle that they don’t possess…

Will Emily’s father let her help him? Will the President’s carriage be completed?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: Wheels of Change

Book Review: Girl On A Wire by Gwenda Bond

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Genre: Fiction

Age Recommended: 14 and up

In this book, the author weaves a tale of fantasy that seems so realistic that it makes one believe in magic. This book is truly well-written.

P.S. This was part of the recommended list of reads for ages 13 and over at http://www.aMightyGirl.com.

Girl On A Wire

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Jules Maroni is a sixteen-year-old wire walker whose dream is to follow in her father’s footsteps. When Jules’ family gets offered a spot at the world’s most famous circus, Jules can’t wait to join them. However, the Garcias, a decade old rival of the Maroni family, are also performing there.

Joining the circus may resurrect old superstitions about the Maroni family and the feud that they had with the Garcias. However, this circus is the opportunity of a lifetime for Jules and she can’t imagine anywhere else that she’d rather be.

Jules’ grandmother is also known world-wide for having magical powers. Jules doesn’t believe in the world of sorcerers and fortune-telling. However, Jules is threatened by unlucky magical objects that her grandmother believes are not of this world. The magical objects continues to haunt Jules and her family members and a death may occur- one that no one may be able to stop.

Will an age-old feud about magic ruin the lives of those who are innocent?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: Girl on a Wire

Book Review: North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Age Recommended: 14 and up

This book was exceptionally well-written and humorous. This book also fit my 2015 reading category of: A book written by a female author! Three down and many more to go!

North Of Beautiful

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Terra Cooper is perfect. Or so it seems with her flawless skin, petite body, and long blond hair. However, most people immediately notice the port wine stain on her cheek that can’t really be hidden by her hair. Terra is desperate to get the scar removed but her mom, and an encounter with a stranger, are about to change that.

Terra and her mom are driving when they get into a car crash with a boy names Jacob and his mother, Nora. Terra’s mother, Lois, and Nora immediately hit it off after apologizing to each other about the accident. Jacob and Terra are strangely formal to each other but soon grow to be friends. To Terra, Jacob is the only one who sees her and understands her actions and  her ways.

Soon, Terra’s brother who lives in Shanghai, invites Terra and her mother to visit. Jacob and Nora end up going with them as their unofficial tour guides, because Jacob was actually adopted from an orphanage in Shanghai and his mom still remembers the place. While in Shanghai, Terra and Jacob make some discoveries about who they really are. However, a problem arises that has the potential to tear these two apart…

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: North of Beautiful (A Justina Chen Novel)