Tag Archives: Book Review

Report Writing: A Survival Guide

Report Writing: A Survival GuideTitle: Report Writing: A Survival Guide
Authors: Joyce Kupsh and Rhonda Rhodes
Publisher: Xlibris
ISBN: 978-1-4500-6892-5

“Anyone can write a report. The key is to write a report that people want to read. Developing an effective writing style requires knowledge and practice,” Joyce Kupsh and Rhonda Rhodes write in their book, Report Writing: A Survival Guide.

This one hundred and thirty-four page paperback targets those interested in writing reports, proposals, documents, and other written works more professionally. After acknowledgments and an introduction, the book is divided into seven chapters, ending with checklists and an index.

This thin compilation gleans a plethora of information to make it easier when writing. Starting the first chapter on the purpose of the writing, over thirteen types of reports are briefly explained. The different format styles are offered as well as the parts of a standard report.

The second chapter contains six pages, explaining how to start the writing process through planning, researching, and outlining. The following section discusses referencing and citing sources while the fourth chapter includes writing with objectivity, conciseness, coherence, and tone.

The next two chapters are more detailed, offering tips on polishing and producing the report. Some topics include rules on abbreviations, capitalization, and punctuation along with traditional fonts and layouts to use. Although the examples are simple and to the point, the rules and nuances are generalizations compared to popular in-depth manuals on proper writing applications.

An important facet of the book that many writers ignore is the final chapter on finishing the written project by editing substance, style, and consistency. Some proofreading tips include reading out loud or reading each line backward to find errors.

The checklists at the back of the book may be helpful for novice writers as they offer chapter-by-chapter charts to consider when writing a report. Although some may find them tedious, they are good reminders to recheck, rewrite, or rethink when writing.

This guide is beneficial mostly to the beginner writer who needs a quick resource guide. Some experienced writers may collect ideas from its contents, but they may already be relying on other more comprehensive reference manuals.

This reviewer hopes she has written an adequate report according to the writers’ guidelines.

Professor Emerita Kupsh has published books and articles while also conducting workshops and seminars in several countries. Rhodes, a Professor of Technology, researches, publishes, and presents worldwide also.

Thanks to Bookpleasures for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinions.

This review will be posted on Bookpleasures and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Business / Money / Education

Twenty Dinners

Twenty DinnersTitle: Twenty Dinners
Authors: Ithai Schori and Chris Taylor with Rachel Holtzman
Photographer: Nicole Franzen
Publisher: Clarkson Potter
ISBN: 978-0-385-34528-6

“Cooking isn’t about following directions to the letter; it’s about building a foundation of basics and trusting yourself to use them,” Ithai Schori and Chris Taylor with Rachel Holtsman write in the introduction to their cookbook, Twenty Dinners.

At two hundred pages and seventy-two pages, this hardbound targets those interested food recipes comprised of full dinner menus. With a fifth to full-page, full-color photographs that cover most of the completed dishes, there are over seventy-five recipes.

After an introduction that includes the authors’ stories, the book is divided into four sections based on the seasons, each containing five dinner meals with listings of corresponding recipes. The ending has techniques, terms, handy advice, tools, pantry tips, shopping for ingredients, acknowledgments, and an alphabetical index by topic, not the name of the dish.

Beginning the first chapter on Fall, five complete meals are introduced, often including a complimentary drink and dessert. Each dinner has a starter page of the menu and suggested alcoholic beverages. Some of the chapters include additional inserts on wine, a home bar, coffee, pickling, ramps, tomatoes, and pate.

Each dinner menu states the concoction selections. Recipes usually start with the drink first, followed by an appetizer, main meal, side dish, and dessert. Serving size is under the title with a paragraph about the dish. Ingredients are in used order with instructions in paragraph format. No preparation time and caloric content are given.

One mouth-watering meal might be Summer’s Dinner #18 comprised of lavender-goat cheese crostini with peaches and mint as the appetizer. Fire-roasted trout with grilled figs and quinoa salad with grapes and hazelnuts are the main dishes. The dessert choice is berry-blood orange trifles with sunset spot to drink.

With twenty different combinations already organized, the book takes away the angst of what unique meal choices to pair together when having company for dinner. These longtime friends focus on being laid back as they entertain their guests with tasty meals, offering the reader seasonal options of complete dinner menus.

Former restaurant cook, author Schori is also a photographer and videographer. Author Taylor not only has been cooking since he was nine years old, but he also is a musician, producer, songwriter, and a member of an indie rock band.

Thanks to Blogging for Books for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review of the reader’s honest opinion.

This review will be posted on Blogging for Books, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links of Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Home / Garden / Food

If You Were Me and Lived in … China

If You Were Me and Lived in...China: A Child's Introduction to Culture Around the WorldTitle: If You Were Me and Lived In … China
Author: Carole P. Roman
Illustrator: Kelsea Wierenga
Publisher: Red Feather Publishing
ISBN: 978-1511440844

“If you were me and lived in China (Chai-na), your home would be in East Asia (Ay-sha). China is officially known as the People’s Republic of China and has 1.35 billion people living there,” Carole P. Roman writes in her children’s book, If You Were Me and Lived In … China – A Child’s Introduction to Culture Around the World.

Part of the worldwide series, this thirty-page paperback targets preschool to early elementary school-aged children and readers who like learning about other countries. With no profanity, scary scenes, or violence, it would best be read to beginner readers based on some complicated words that usually include pronunciation. Colorful illustrations cover one side of the page with a nicely sized font wording on the opposite side and one double-paged photograph. Three pages at the end of the book reiterate how to pronounce certain words and their meanings.

China is an interesting place because it has so many people and a variety of climates along with two famous rivers. Its name comes from the Qin dynasty that many mispronounced in the past.

A unique place to visit is Beijing, its capital, along with the Forbidden City and the Great Wall of China. Many like to see the giant terracotta clay army that was buried approximately two thousand years ago.

There are many activities in the country such as going to the New Year or Spring Festival. The celebration of the new year lasts fifteen days, and it is a day to honor grandparents and promote good luck.

With so many citizens in the country, there are many different types of foods. A favorite Mandarin dish from Beijing is Peking Duck; Cantonese dinners include stir fried rice with sweet and sour pork. Many people like the spicy chili peppers in Szechuan meals while Shanghai food often involves seafood. Most everyone loves fried ice cream for dessert.

The reader learns names for father and mother. Also taught are common names for boys and girls, as well as words for doll, money, and school.

Not written as a fictional story, this educational book is a simple way for a young child to learn about a foreign land, especially if he or she knows someone living there or is planning a trip to visit.

With so many countries around the world, one looks forward to future books in the series to learn more about a particular location.

An award-winning author, Roman has written complete series for children of books based on counties and pirate genre. She lives in New York with her husband and close to her children and grandchildren.

Thanks to Red Feather Publishing for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinion.

This review will be posted on Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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The Friends of Jesus

Title: The Friends of Jesus
Author: Karen Kingsbury
Publisher: Howard Books
ISBN: 978-1-5011-2127-2

“These Bible stories will give you a deeper understanding of the friends of Jesus, and along the way, beautiful truths about your own friendships,” the back jacket states on Karen Kingsbury’s book, The Friends of Jesus.

Second of four in the “Life Changing Bible Study Series,” this two hundred and forty page hardback targets those who enjoy fictionally enhanced stories of the Bible, along with devotional studies for personal or group application. The New International Version of the Holy Bible is used.

Different from most of the author’s storytelling works, this one has six novellas of friends close to Jesus: Simon, Martha, Jarius, Mary, Peter, and John. At the conclusion of the short stories and acknowledgments, there are three to four numbered questions by chapter for individual reflection or group discussion of how the stories can be applied to friendships today.

While the stories are not totally based on Biblical facts, Kingsbury takes ample liberty establishing the emotional and personal connection the friends have with Jesus. Each blends different perspectives of Christ’s time on earth from a human viewpoint.

Here is a synopsis of the selected friends of Jesus:

Simon the Leper begins with the Pharisee contracting leprosy and how his family and friends shunned him up to a year later, yet Jesus felt compassion and completely healed him.

Broken-hearted Martha’s story starts when her brother, Lazarus, is ill. While she learns of Jesus’s consistent comfort, she anoints her Savior an alabaster jar of expensive perfume.

Jarius, the synagogue leader, seeks out Christ when his twelve-year-old daughter becomes ill; loyal Jesus takes the time to heal the women with the issue of blood first.

Mary Magdalene remembers her past when she was possessed by demons at age twenty-one as she watches Jesus, her Restorer, headed toward his crucifixion.

Peter recalls becoming Jesus’s disciple and walking on the water to Him, only to betray his Lord three times and be forgiven.

An arrogant John walks to Samaria while discussing Christ’s resurrection, transformation, and miracles that shows God’s love.

Not similar to the first book in the series that focuses more on studying the Bible, this one does not contain Bible verses to look up or references.

If readers know the Biblical differences between fact and fiction in the stories, they will recall the angst, frustration, and love these people had being friends of Jesus. With engaging stories and studies in the Word, Kingsbury offers a tender reminder God became a man to save us from our sins.

A bestselling novelist with over twenty-five million books sold, Kingsbury is a visiting professor of storytelling and host of her radio show as well as soon to have theatrical and cinematic movies made based on her stories. Living in Tennessee with her husband, they have six grown children.

Thanks to Howard Books for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s opinions.

This review will be posted on Amazon and DeeperShopping with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Jesus Shows God’s Love

Jesus Shows God's Love (The Beginner's Bible)Title: Jesus Shows God’s Love
Publisher: Zonderkidz
ISBN: 978-0-310-74148-0

“And everyone, the young and the old that heard Jesus and the disciples speak, knew that God loved them very much,” the story of Jesus’s ministry concludes in Zonderkidz’s children’s book, Jesus Shows God’s Love.

Part of The Beginner’s Bible series, this twenty-four page paperback targets children four to eight years old interested in knowing more about a portion of Jesus’s life on earth. Using the New International Reader’s Version of the Bible, the story is taken from the Gospels in the New Testament. Due to the amount of wording, it would best be read out loud to non-readers or beginner readers who like to look at pictures due to their limited reading comprehension level. This reviewer wished all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

With a Bible verse from Matthew 3:17 written out under the book’s title, the story begins on the special day that Jesus was born and ends abruptly with Jesus talking to others about God’s love for them. Focusing mainly on His ministry, there is no suggestion of Jesus dying on the cross for our sins or the eternal plan of salvation.

Stating Jesus grew up like everyone else, the story progresses that He became a good and kind man. The explanation of John the Baptist baptizing Jesus is given. Also added is Jesus finding His twelve disciples with two pictures of them that include their individual names. The remainder of the book is Jesus telling His disciples about the love of God, and they, including Christ, explaining the same message of love to many others.

All artwork by an unmentioned illustrator is in ovals on almost every page. The designs are in full color with expressive characters mostly smiling. There are no scary scenes; only Judas Iscariot has a shifty eyes.

With mostly simplistic wording that a beginner reader can comprehend, the book offers a glimpse at what Jesus did when He was on earth before He was crucified and resurrected. Reminding children that Jesus always promoted God’s love, children may enjoy this innocuous read that only focuses on the beginning of His ministry with no mention of His many miracles.

Thanks to Zonderkidz for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinions.

This review will be posted on DeeperShopping and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under *** OK - Don't Love It, Don't Hate It, Childrens, Christian

Laugh Out Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls

Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for GirlsTitle: Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls
Author: Rob Elliot
Illustrator: Jonny Hawkins
Publisher: Revell
ISBN: 978-0-8007-2237-1

“Why wouldn’t the lions play games with the zebras? There were too many cheetahs. Where are those cheetahs?” Rob Elliot writes in his children’s book, Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls.

This unnumbered two hundred and forty page paperback targets nine to twelve-year-old girls who enjoy jokes and doodling. With no profanity, the book has no table of contents or index to look up themes of jokes. The author and illustrator biographies along with advertisements end the book.

The next time your daughter, granddaughter, or young girl claims she is bored with nothing to do, hand her this four-by-six inch compact book of jokes that has illustrations to draw, complete, fill in, or design.

Including clean-cut jokes that can be corny, funny, silly, and innocuous, the idea of the book is to not make fun of people while finding something to laugh at daily and cheering others up. Although focusing on young girls, some involve body noises and fluids that the writer considers the best.

With a usual one-liner joke at the top of the page, there is ample space to doodle or complete the exercise while the joke’s answer is near the bottom of the page. A gray section under the answer is instruction on how to complete the illustration.

Here are a couple of examples, complete with the drawing exercise:

Why did the boy stop using his pencil?
It was pointless.
Get the lead out and finish the pencil. What was it drawing? What broke it?

What is the richest bird in the world?
The golden eagle.
Be regal and finish the wealthy eagle.

What do trees eat for breakfast?
Oakmeal.
Doodle the top of the tree and what it’s eating.

As one can tell, the humor is simplistic yet silly enough for young girls as well as adults to get the joke, either laughing or smirking to themselves, “Why didn’t I get that one?”

This would make a fun addition to a grab or gift bag or for a road trip to lighten the tedious mood. Allowing a child to use her creativity in drawing will also promote imagination.

Elliot is an author of eight joke books for kids. Living in Michigan, he and his wife have five children. Illustrator Hawkins has had his cartoons published in over six hundred publications. He and his family along with numerous pets also live in Michigan.

Thanks to Revell for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s opinion.

This review will be posted on the Baker Publishing, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Arts & Crafts, Childrens

Laugh Out Loud Pocket Doodles for Boys

Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for BoysTitle: Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Boys
Author: Rob Elliot
Illustrator: Jonny Hawkins
Publisher: Revell
ISBN: 978-0-8007-2236-4

“What do you call a pig that’s no fun to be around? A boar. Finish this dull and angry pig,” Rob Elliot writes in his children’s book, Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Boys.

This unnumbered two hundred and forty page paperback targets nine to twelve-year-old boys who enjoy jokes and doodling. With no profanity, the book has no table of contents or index to look up themes of jokes. The author and illustrator biographies along with advertisements end the book.

The next time your son, grandson, or young boy claims he is bored with nothing to do, toss him this four-by-six inch compact book of jokes that has illustrations to draw, complete, fill in, or design.

Including clean-cut jokes that can be corny, funny, silly, and innocuous, the idea of the book is to not make fun of people while finding something to laugh at daily and cheering others up. Focusing on young males, some involve body noises and fluids that the writer considers the best.

With a usual one-liner joke at the top of the page, there is ample space to doodle or complete the exercise while the joke’s answer is near the bottom of the page. A gray section under the answer is instruction on how to complete the illustration.

Here are a couple of examples, complete with the drawing exercise:

What kind of bird do you have with every meal?
A swallow.
Where is the birdie? What is on the plate? On the fork?

How can you learn more about spiders?
Check out their web-site.
Doodle his website. What does it spell or catch?

How do skunks get in touch with each other?
They use their smell phones.
To whom is skunk sending this smellfie?

As one can tell, the humor is simplistic yet silly enough for young boys as well as adults to get the joke, either laughing or smirking to themselves, “Why didn’t I get that one?”

This would make a fun addition to a grab or gift bag or for a road trip to lighten the tedious mood. Allowing a child to use his creativity in drawing will also promote imagination.

Elliot is an author of eight joke books for kids. Living in Michigan, he and his wife have five children. Illustrator Hawkins has had his cartoons published in over six hundred publications. He and his family along with numerous pets also live in Michigan.

Thanks to Revell for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s opinion.

This review will be posted on the Baker Publishing, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Arts & Crafts, Childrens

London Tides

Title: London Tides
Author: Carla Laureano
Publisher: David C. Cook
ISBN: 978-1-4347-0822-9

“After all these years, he deserved to know why she had run away. Deserved to know it hadn’t been because she stopped loving him. And maybe he deserved to know that leaving him had been the biggest mistake of her life,” Carla Laureano writes about Grace in her novel, London Tides.

Second of the MacDonald Family Trilogy series, this three hundred and forty page paperback targets those who enjoy contemporary romance. With some slang and the word hell used, discussions of death may not be appropriate for immature readers. This reader wishes all pronouns of God were capitalized for reverence.

In this continuing saga of the MacDonald family, older brother Ian has always done what others wanted and expected of him. Giving up his desires working for his brother’s business, the precise perfectionist is jilted when thirty-four-year-old Grace returns to London ten years after abruptly walking out of his life and breaking off their wedding engagement.

Grace, an Irish photojournalist, chose her career dealing with war zones over her love for Ian. A decade later she seeks a sense of purpose as she debates getting out of the business and settling down. Wondering if Ian will forgive and forget her for the past, she feels like a failure if she quits the war cause to prove her self-worth.

As the confused woman deals with post-traumatic stress disorder and panic attacks trying to erase the guilt over a co-worker’s death, Ian struggles with playing it safe without taking risks or telling Grace his feelings.

While the photographer fluctuates on wanting to reconcile her romantic relationship with Ian, she wonders if God is giving the two of them a second chance. Although the bond of love still is strong after ten years being apart, both have matured and changed, trying to understand what they want next.

Having romantic options unanswered for other members of the MacDonald family, this read that covers the streets of London to revisiting Skye leaves room for another book in the series that promotes moving on from the past, trusting God, and finding happiness.

RITA award winner, author Laureano enjoys writing romance and Celtic fantasy series. Having ten years’ experience in marketing, she is a full-time writer who lives in Colorado with her husband and children.

Thanks to the RadiantLit and the author for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinions.

This review will be posted on RadiantLit, DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Facebook, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Christian, Fiction

Princess Joy Sticker & Activity Book

Princess Joy Sticker and Activity Book (The Princess Parables)Title: Princess Joy Sticker & Activity Book
Authors: Jeanna Young & Jacqueline Johnson
Illustrator: Omar Aranda
Publisher: Zondervan
ISBN: 978-0-310-74618-8

“Instead of getting gifts for her birthday, Princess Joy decides to give gifts. She gives a present to every child at her party. Can you find the following hidden items?” Jeanna Young and Jaqueline Johnson write in their children’s book, Princess Joy Sticker & Activity Book.

Part of the Princess Parables series, this sixteen-page oversized paperback targets young girls ages four to eight years old. With no scary or awkward scenes, the book is about Princess Joy and her birthday party as well as many pages of activities.

With brightly colored drawings that are easy to understand, the loosely written story is about a girl named Joy and her four sisters. In this story, Joy loves her puppy, Rosebud, and she is excited her birthday is coming because there will be a party for her. Party invitations are designed, and cupcakes are decorated. Come party time, Joy gives gifts to the children who attended instead of receiving them. A page that seems out of reading order is when Rosebud wanders off but returns to the party as it is inserted before the party has been planned.

In addition to the fifty colorful and reusable stickers on two pages in the middle of the book that divides a two-page picture, the activities include games involving matching the stickers to a picture, finding-the-words, completing a drawing, traveling a maze, spotting the differences, solving a secret code, counting items, and locating specific items along with several pictures to color. The small stickers have depictions of princesses, children, butterflies, animals, and tiaras to name a few.

With four other books in the series, this is a fun sticker book to engage little girls with creative hands-on activities. Although there are no written Bible verses, there is the undertone reiterating the princess loves God. Making a nice gift for the artist, be sure to include color pencils or crayons.

Author Young is a cancer survivor who has written eleven children’s books. She lives in California with her husband and four children. Also living in the sunshine state, author Johnson and her husband have seven grandchildren, and she is devoted to teaching young ones about God. Illustrator Aranda was born in Argentina and has produced artworks worldwide, focusing mainly on children’s products.

Thanks to Book Look Bloggers for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reviewer’s honest opinion.

This review will be posted on Book Look Bloggers, Deeper Shopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under **** Good - Will Be Glad to Pass On to Others, Arts & Crafts, Childrens, Christian

The Beginner’s Bible Holy Bible

NIrV Beginner's Bible, Holy Bible (The Beginner's Bible)Title: The Beginner’s Bible: Holy Bible
Publisher: ZonderKidz
ISBN: 978-0-310-74356-9

“Great! You’ll love how you can read this Bible all by yourself. The print is easy to read and The Beginner’s Bible art is fun and will help you better understand the stories in the Bible,” the back jacket states of this New International Reader’s Version of the Holy Bible.

Targeted toward children six to ten years old who want a Bible to call their own, this one has a sturdy hardbound cover. Containing violence and adult situations, some of the iconic contents may not be appropriate for immature readers. At 2,048 pages in length, the New International Readers Version is geared for more simplistic viewing. Although the print is in a decent-sized font, the paper is thin, so words bleed through the pages.

Typical of the NIvR, this contains several pages about the particular version, both the Old and New Testaments, a dictionary, and a list of one hundred and fifty famous Bible stories by title and book location. In the verses, numbers are numerical, not written out, some key language is omitted, and antiquated pronouns such as thee and thou are changed.

Since it is part of The Beginner’s Bible series, the book has twenty full-color, full page illustrations of stories in the Bible. The first two drawings are at the beginning on two presentation pages, with a place to write in the recipient’s name, giver, date given, age of the recipient, and reason given.  Placed routinely throughout the pages and not near the stories’ locations, the artworks cover characters such as Noah, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Samuel, Elijah, David, and Jonah from the Old Testament. The New Testament pictures are mostly about Jesus and His miracles, death on the cross, and resurrection.

This book would be a nice first Bible for a young child who is beginning to read and understand its well-known stories, as he or she searches for more information. It is a reasonable progression for those who enjoy The Beginner’s Bible series products and are ready to read directly from the Word of God.

Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars.

Thanks to Zonderkidz for furnishing this complimentary book in exchange for a review based on the reader’s honest opinion.

This review will be posted on DeeperShopping, and Amazon with links on Bookfun.org, Godinterest, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

GRAMMARLY was used to check for errors in this review.

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Filed under *** OK - Don't Love It, Don't Hate It, Childrens, Christian