The Boy Who Fell From the Stars

Authors: Ted Dekker & Rachelle Dekker

Series: And They Found Dragons #1

Publisher: Scripturo

Release Date: November 9, 2021

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The start of the new Dekker series is full of mystery, drama and dragons! What more could readers ask for?

In the near, distant future most of humanity has nearly been wiped out by nuclear war and only a little over 100 souls are able to survive by escaping on a shuttle named Arc. While they have been away from Earth, the nuclear devastation brings forth more unexpected problems, Dragons. Any teams that have been sent aren’t able to live because of reactions to the dragons, until they find out kids are not as susceptible to the toxins from the dragons. One child, Jack, is immune to the toxins and he is not fit to go on the mission with the other kids chosen to travel to earth and slay the dragons. When one of the other kids falls ill, Jack is the only choice to help complete the mission to make it safe for all of humanity to return to Earth.

The first book in the new series by Ted Dekker and Rachelle Dekker will set readers off on an adventure that is out of this world. With characters that young readers will be able to relate to and a story that has adventure, fantasy and much more, readers young and old will enjoy. I have been a Dekker fan for a long time and bought this for my son for Christmas. I wanted to read them before him so we could discuss the stories afterwards and am glad I did, I enjoyed the story and can’t wait to see what happens next. Jack is a great lead character, but I have to say Sammy is my favorite so far. The first book ends with just enough of a tease to keep me aching to start the next immediately. This looks to be a great new series for young readers to enjoy.

Children’s Bible Stories for Bedtime

Author: Julie Lavender

Publisher: Z Kids

Release Date: January 11, 2022

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The perfect Bible story book for young kids that I love to see my young son reading on his own.

After a long day, kids need a way to wind down and a book with inspiring children’s Bible stories is just the right book to help with that. This is a wonderful collection of the first stories kids will learn about from the bible. Parents can sit down with their kids and pick a key biblical figure and go over their adventures together with illustrations that will capture kids’ attention and be a great conversation starter.

What I loved most about this was how easy it was to read with my son and know he was understanding and enjoying what we were talking about. It can be hard to get kids excited about reading the bible, but when they see the beautiful pictures and start reading the story that is written in a way they can understand it, this is a good way to get them engaged. Each story is broken down and short enough that the reader won’t lose interest. I love the end of each section that offers steps for settling down for the day, something that can be hard for kids and using these tips can really help. I recommend this book to everyone with small kids wanting a great addition to their nighttime routine that will not only help them settle for the day and feel good about the material their kids are seeing before closing their eyes for the night.

The Final Judgement

Authors: Ted Dekker & Kara Dekker

Series: Dream Traveler’s Quest #4

Release Date: January 1, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The final book in the series wraps things up nicely and gives readers a great finish to a fun series!

Theo and the gang must work harder than ever to defeat the evil around them in this world and “Other Earth,” before time run outs. All that they have worked for comes down to this and the lessons they learned about life, love and what it all means.

Fans of Ted Dekker will love this series and how it all concludes. Theo and his friends are great characters for young readers to follow and root for as they battle the forces of good and evil and learn about life and so many other great lessons. I gave this series to my son for Christmas a few years ago and just now got around to reading them all myself. I have been a Dekker fan for many years and love how things connect back to his other books. I can’t wait for my son to read the rest of his collection and tie it all together. I recommend this series for young readers that are looking for great books that will keep them excited about reading and learning.

The Garden and the Serpent

Authors: Ted Dekker & Kara Dekker

Series: Dream Traveler’s Quest #3

Release Date: January 1, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The third installment in The Dream Traveler’s Quest is a must read as the stakes are higher than ever and evil is determined to win!

Theo has achieved the first to Seals of Truth and now must figure out what his next quest will be and how he is going to accomplish it with the help of his school friend that is blind. Once they get to “Other Earth,” Denny has his eyesight restored and can use his other senses that are heightened from years of being blind and together they work to find the third Seal of Truth.

This third book got a little darker but not so much that it was inappropriate for younger readers. Theo is learning lots of valuable lessons about life but also about love and how much God loves us even when we can’t see it. The way Theo and Denny worked together was a great lesson for kids. These books are a great start to the Dekker universe as they get older and can read more advanced books. I recommend these to young readers looking for adventure and fun reads.

The Curse of the Shadowman

Authors: Ted Dekker & Kara Dekker

Series: Dream Traveler’s Quest #2

Release Date: January 1, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The second book in Dekker’s children’s book picks up right where the first one left off and is full of fun and adventure for all ages.

Theo Dunnery is back in his world after finding the first Seal of Truth. In order to return to “Other Earth,” as he calls it, he is going to have to bring someone with him to find the next Seal of Truth.

Full of the same adventure, action, and perfect storyline for young readers to grab their attention and help them fall in love with reading. I loved the progression of these books and how Theo had to rely on others to help him in both worlds showing him that no matter how alone he felt he was never truly alone. This will be a fun book for young readers to get started in the world of Ted Dekker’s writing, so many fun moments that kids and adults can enjoy.

Into the Book of Light

Authors: Ted Dekker & Kara Dekker

Series: Dream Traveler’s Quest #1

Release Date: January 1, 2018

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The first book in The Dream Traveler’s Quest sets up the world any fan of Dekker’s work will know and love. A great series for young readers.

Young Theo Dunnery tries to follow his dad’s advice about staying invisible to avoid the bullies as much as he can. As he is trying to avoid Asher, the one boy out to get him, he hides in the library and stumbles upon a book that takes him to another world. In this new world, he must complete a quest to find the Five Seals of Truth to conquer his fears. He is helped along the way to discover he is the true son of Elyon.

The first book in this new series for kids will be very familiar for anyone who has read The Circle Series by Ted Dekker. I have come to the conclusion that if there is a way for him to write a book and tie it back to the Circle Series in some form, he is going to do it. This was a fun story with lots of action and adventure to keep the attention of young readers. I liked the length of the books, just right for young readers to read and not be overwhelmed by a large book with a lot of content they aren’t ready for yet. Tackling the issues of bullying in school can be a difficult subject and using Theo’s bullying coupled with the other world he escapes into as a way to overcome the obstacles is a good story for kids but one to keep in mind that it is fiction. This isn’t going to work for dealing with bullies in real life. Some of the lessons in the book were not handled the way I, as a parent, would handle them but they did move well with the story and kids will enjoy the action and adventure. I recommend this to young readers that are starting out looking for some adventure but not a story that is too difficult for them.

The Happy Crab

Authors: Layla and Kevin Palmer

Illustrator: Guy Wolek

Publisher: Bethany House

Release Date: October 12, 2021

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Fun story for beginning readers!

Are crabs curious by nature?  At least one is and he is off bouncing around from adventure to adventure.  He’s been catching waves from Haiti to Pensacola Beach to the Santa Rosa Sound.  But one day the unexpected happens; while taking a nap from all his activity, he suddenly finds himself plucked out of the water by a human.  A little boy finds his perfect shell and decides that he wants to take it home and keep it.  Will this be the end of the crab’s adventures or is he about to have his biggest one yet?

This is such a fun, vibrant book that young readers will enjoy reading again and again.  The lettering is big and bold, making it easy for young readers to follow along or sound out along the way. The illustrations are top notch and will catch readers’ eyes and make them study them as they read along.  The story line is delightful and teaches children the importance of natural habitats and that even when they find something they want to keep, it might not be theirs to begin with. 

I received a complimentary copy of this title from the publisher.  The views and opinions expressed within are my own.

Slothy Claus

Author: Jodie Shepherd

Illustrator: MacKenzie Haley

Publisher: Tommy Nelson

Release Date: November 2, 2021

Rating: 5 out of 5.

A different, but fun take on discovering the true meaning of Christmas.

All the animals can’t wait for Old Slothy Claus to bring presents for Christmas this year, but sloths do need to move a little slower than expected and sleep a little more than other animals.  So, when Christmas day rolls round, there is a surprise for all when Slothy can’t get finished up to leave out.  When all the kids wake up without new toys or games, they are very sad, at first.  But then they begin to discover what the true meaning of Christmas is and how it’s not the material things that matter.

This was such a fun take on the Santa Claus story.  I love how at first everyone was sad like in the Grinch, but then they found out that all they need is each other with kindness, grace, hope, & love.  This is a great book to help kids understand that its not the new toys and presents they get, but the love from the person who gave it to them that matters.  The word font is large for new readers to read along with or try out on their own.  The pictures and illustrations are fantastic.  Great addition to a kid’s library!

I received a complimentary copy of this title from the publisher.  The views and opinions expressed within are my own.

Night Night, Angel

Author: Amy Parker

Illustrator: Virginia Allyn

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Release Date: September 28, 2021

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Great sleepy time story for kids celebrating the blessings of Christmas.

Read about your favorite Christmas traditions through the eyes of a young arctic fox.  From snowman building and lights to carols and gifts, the young fox and family visit many of our typical ideas for Christmas as well as the true Reason for the Season, Jesus.  With fun rhyming words and vibrant pictures, both children are parents are sure to enjoy this story.

It is very short and is a good book to read right before it’s time to turn out the lights.  The words are in a larger font so that new readers will be able to read along or on their own.  Both boys and girls are sure to love reading this during the Christmas season!

I received a complimentary copy of this title from the publisher.  The views and opinions expressed within are my own.

Lost Island

Author: MarcyKate Connolly

Series: Hollow Dolls #2

Publisher: Sourcebooks Young Readers

Release Date: October 5, 2021

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The follow up to Hollow Dolls picks up where the story left off and takes readers on a magical adventure full of surprises complete with all the magical adventures kids love in books.

After learning the truth about her mother, Simone is in a frenzy trying to keep her friends safe from Maeve and her powers. Now, Simone is in search for others with power to keep her Mother from taking their powers and using them for evil. An old legend leads her on a hunt for the Island she used to call home. Together with Sebastian and help from the librarians they set off to save others before it is too late. The closer they get to the island the more Simone sees that Maeve will stop at nothing to get what she wants.

MarcyKate Connolly has crafted a fun and magical adventure for young readers. With lots of suspense, action, drama, and adventure, readers will fly through the pages of this book. Most of the characters from the first book are back and we see a deeper depth with Simone and several of the characters. I really connected with Simone and the way she cares for her friends and wants to do all that she can to keep them safe. Her attitude and the way she was written really kept the story moving forward at a great pace for me. My only complaint would be the end and the last few chapters. Things were wrapped up a little too conveniently and felt rushed to me. I wish there would have been more development instead of it all ending so abruptly. Overall, it was still a good story that I enjoyed reading and would recommend to young readers that want a fantasy adventure.

I received a complimentary copy of this title from the author.  The views and opinions expressed within are my own.