The Hostage Prince by Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple, a review

The Hostage Prince by Jane Yolen and Adam Stemple, Book 1 of The Seelie Wars, a review Published 2013 by Viking/Penguin Young Readers Group, 232 pages Genre: Middle grade fantasy, aimed at readers approx. 12 years old Snail is her name, and … [Continue reading]

Dear White Christian, a review

Dear White Christian by Aaron J. Layton Published 2017 by the Committee on Discipleship Ministries, Lawrenceville, GA Nonfiction, 120 pages I am a writer of fiction for twelve-year-olds. In my manuscripts, I have found myself returning again and … [Continue reading]

Prince Oleomargarine, Mark Twain’s new book for kids: a review

The Purloining of Prince Oleomargarine by Mark Twain and Philip Stead, illus. by Erin Stead Genre: Middle Grade read-aloud picture book, 8 1/2 x 11-inch format, 152 pages Published 2017 by Doubleday Books for Young Readers Great news for Mark … [Continue reading]

I am hopeful about my latest book!

As you know, my loyal fans, I've been working on learning the novel-writing craft for about twelve years. I've learned a lot along the way, and I've been able to bless others as an editor and publisher. But my own fiction work remains … [Continue reading]

Ella Hough, full of promise

My great-aunt, Ella Hough, was an amazing artist. I know because I have her sketchbook. She was born in 1868 to Thomas Hough and his wife Jane. Thomas was a successful entrepreneur who immigrated in his early twenties from Yorkshire, England, in … [Continue reading]

Update on editing and publishing

I notice I haven't posted in eleven months. I'm not very focused on promoting myself, I guess.  But I have been a busy bee! I have a manuscript that is ready for publication, in my professional opinion and that of other professionals, but it's not … [Continue reading]

Editing Jane Austen!?!

Jane Austen, review, Love and Friendship, film

A teen-aged Jane Austen wrote a novella that she never even titled, much less published herself. It's been called Lady Susan, and now it's been made into a movie, "Love and Friendship." Austen is known for originating the romance novel. She really … [Continue reading]

Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool, a review

Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool Published 2010 by Delacorte Press, 351 pages Genre: Historical middle grade/tween fiction, Newbery Medal winner Twelve-year-old Abilene Tucker arrives in the dusty, underpopulated town of Manifest, Kansas, … [Continue reading]

Book Review: Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi

Newbery Award winner historical fiction set in medieval England, for tweens

Crispin: The Cross of Lead, by Avi, Book 1 in the Crispin trilogy Published 2002 by Hyperion Books for Children, New York, 262 pages Genre: Historical drama for tweens This book won the Newbery Award when it was published, and more recently the … [Continue reading]

Why is this car grinning?

author Phyllis Wheeler discusses the family car, Monster

Monster the car is grinning. He thinks he won. I've been fighting with this car ever since we got him, nearly ten years ago. Took him home, and our mechanic discovered somebody had put antifreeze where the brake fluid ought to be. The car … [Continue reading]