Friday, July 19, 2013

Thars Gold in Them Thar Hills! Or is there? - A Susan Marlow, Goldtown Adventures Book Review

 photo New_Banner_FENCE_GOLDTOWN_3_zps5a900665.jpg

Ever since I can remember Susan K Marlow has been talked about by TOS Review Crew members. The Crew has reviewed her books many, many times and we have had the great privilege of reviewing her books before as well. The only problem was that her books always seemed to be geared more toward girls or at least had girls as their main characters. When we reviewed another series written for younger readers it wasn't so bad. Although the main character was a girl, there were a lot of male characters in the series and Joshua loved it. However, Joshua is older now and her older series with a girl main character just wouldn't work anymore. Then, I found out that there was a new Susan K. Marlow series with a boy main character and was thrilled that we were going to review Tunnel of Gold - book 2 of her new Goldtown Adventures series published by Kregel Publications!

I love Susan K. Marlow's books because they are rock solid Christian children's literature. Don't get me wrong, though. This isn't one of those sticky-sweet-never-gets-into-trouble-always-does-the-right-thing type books. Her characters are always realistic and get into a lot of trouble that kids growing up out west in the late 1800's would get into. In Tunnel of Gold, geared toward readers aged 9-13, Jem Coulter, his sister Ellie, his cousin Nathan and the rest of the characters in the book are so realistic that by the end of chapter two you feel like they are your friends. They're definitely kids that I would want my boys to be friends with. Only I would keep an eye out to see if I could minimize the mischief that they were sure to get into! 

 photo Tunnel_cover_125_zpse0323f20.jpg

Jem, his sister Ellie, and his cousin Nathan (who is a city slicker that just moved in with Jem's family a couple of months before) are out delivering firewood when the whole town grows quiet. It is so eerie that they go to investigate what happened. So, what caused this silence in Goldtown, the town where Jem lives and where Jem's "Pa" is the new Sheriff? I mean, this is dead silence! The stamp mill, which is so loud that it shakes the town day and night stops working and there is no sound from the mine itself. What happens when Jem finds himself in the middle of a riot of mine and mill workers? What happens when Jem has to choose between right and wrong even when wrong could save the town? What happens when Jem's father is ordered to choose wrong so that the town will be saved? You'll have to read the book to find out! Trust me, you won't be disappointed. There is adventure on every page mixed in with a little fun, mischief and a lot of learning about what God wants us to do in tough situations.

We read Tunnel of Gold while driving home from taking my oldest to work at a camp in upstate New York. The ride was long but this great book helped the hours to go by swiftly. Now, let me tell you, that is a real accomplishment since the two boys that I was reading it to (while Sarah drove of course!) are both on the autism spectrum. They soaked it up and when I asked what they thought of it some of the comments were:

"Grrrreaaat!" - Jacob (said along with the happy dance that is his newest thing).

"I love it!" - Joshua (along with two thumbs up which means he really, really, likes it).

 "The characters are so funny and the plot keeps you on your toes!" - Sarah even chimed in with a comment.

So, there you have it! The Tinkel family really loves Susan K. Marlow's new Goldtown Adventures Series. We are going to be traveling a lot during the rest of the summer, and I have a feeling that this book will be read again more than once. After all, like any great book, you always find out you missed something when you read it again!

In fact, I'm thinking about buying the first book in the series - Badge of Honor - as well to read along the way. After all at a price of $7.99 each plus $2.50 shipping and handling or both for $13.95 plus $3.00 shipping and handling can't be beat. You can even get the books personalized and there are free Enrichment Study Guides that you can download. Just click here or on any one of the hi-lighted links above. Happy reading!

Many other members of the TOS Review Crew reviewed Tunnel of Gold and Badge of Honor and you can find what they had to say by clicking on the banner below.


 photo DisclaimerGraphic1_zpsf612f371.gif

No comments:

Post a Comment