The Meeting Place (Song of Acadia #1)

by Janette Oke & T. Davis Bunn

Unconditional Recommendation: In Acadia, a chance meeting creates a strong bond of friendship and faith between an Englishwoman and a Frenchwoman during a time of hostilities and impending war between their homelands.

Age: Young Adult
Series: Song of Acadia, Book 1
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (1999)
Genre: Historical Christian Fiction

Awards: Christy Award for North American Historical (2000) Continue reading

The Dragonet Prophecy (Wings of Fire #1)

by Tui T. Sutherland

Conditional Recommendation: Told from the perspective of Clay the MudWing, the dragonets of destiny come out of hiding and enter the world only to discover it more dangerous and violent than they were expecting.

Age: Middle Grade
Series: Wings of Fire, Book 1
Hardcover: 336 pages  
Publisher: Scholastic Press (2012)

Genre: Fantasy Continue reading

Mattie’s Unspoken Vow (A Newly Weds #5)

by Margo Hansen

Unconditional Recommendation: A shotgun wedding to a stranger, a tangle of relationships, and strange circumstances happening all over Sand Creek make for an engaging and sentimental finale to the series.

Age: Young Adult
Series: A Newly Weds series, Book 5
Paperback: 322 pages
Publisher: Tate Publishing & Enterprises LLC (2013)

Genre: Historical Christian Romance Continue reading

Where the Red Fern Grows

by Wilson Rawls

Conditional Recommendation: An engaging tale of friendship and adventure shared by a boy and his two hound dogs.

Age: Middle Grade
Series: Stand Alone
Paperback: 249 pages
Publisher: Doubleday (1961)
Genre: Adventure, Animal

Awards: Massachusetts Children’s Book Award (1987), North Dakota Children’s Choice Award (1981). Continue reading

The Witch of Blackbird Pond

by Elizabeth George Speare

Unconditional Recommendation: Katherine “Kit” Tyler must learn to live in a Puritan community with her relatives but befriends the Witch of Blackbird Pond and risks being persecuted as a witch herself.

Age: Young Adult
Series: Stand Alone
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin (1958)
Genre: Historical

Awards: Newbery Medal (1959), Dorothy Canfeld Fisher Children’s Book Award (1960) Continue reading

Tuesdays at the Castle (Castle Glower #1)

by Jessica Day George

Conditional Recommendation: 11-year-old Princess Celie and her siblings strive together within their magical castle to protect themselves and their kingdom.

Age: Middle Grade
Series: Castle Glower, Book 1
Hardcover: 225 pages
Publisher: Bloomsbury (2011)
Genre: Fantasy

Awards: Utah Book Award for Children’s (2011), Pennsylvania Young Readers’ Choice Award for Grades 3-6 (2013), California Young Readers Medal for Intermediate (2015), Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award (2015) Continue reading

Skybreaker (Matt Cruse #2)

by Kenneth Oppel

Conditional Recommendation: Matt Cruse’s adventures continue as he, Kate and a gypsy race to recover the ghost ship Hyperion and its treasures before falling prey to deadly high-altitude life forms and other sailors who seek its riches.

Age: Young Adult
Series: Matt Cruse, Book 2
Paperback: 464 pages
Publisher: HarperCollins (2005)
Genre: Adventure

Awards: Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children’s Book Award for Adult Middle Reader (2006), OLA Forest of Reading Red Maple Award for Fiction (2006) Continue reading

I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives

by Caitlin Alifirenka, Martin Ganda, with Liz Welch

Conditional Recommendation: A young American girl and a young Zimbabwean boy become pen pals and build a friendship through letters that changes both of their lives for the better.

Age: Young Adult
Series: Stand Alone
Hardcover: 392 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (2015)
Genre: Memoir

Awards: The Magnolia Award for 9-12 (2017), Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award (2018) Continue reading