Category Archives: Book Reviews

Janette Oke/Book Reviews

Janette Oke is one of my favourite authors at the moment,  and is a “bestselling Christain author of over 70 books, 32 of which have been translated into fourteen languages. Her books have sold over 22 million copies.

The most recent book I  have read by her is:    It is part of a 3 book series, and am looking forward to reading the others.

    Janette Oke has dreamed for years of retelling a story in a biblical time frame from a female protagonist’s perspective, and Davis Bunn is elated to be working with her again on this sweeping saga of the dramatic events surrounding the birth of Christianity…- via 

Another one of her series I’ve read recently is the “Return to Canadian West.” The TV series “When Calls the Heart” had been based off them.


“Where Courage Calls” :Her courage and her heart will be tested in ways she never expected… Beth Thatcher has spent her entire life in the safe, comfortable world of her family, her friends, and the social outings her father’s wealth provides. But Beth is about to leave it all behind……  – via

I would definitely recommend them both, for around ages 13 up.

I have also enjoyed reading numerous other books by her. (the links as to where you can purchase the books are embedded in the pictures)

Mandie series

This was a really good series, which I would definitely recommend for girls around age 11 and up. You can sometimes find them at Christian book stores or here 

The Mandie Collection: Vol. 1

 “This five-in-one volume brings MANDIE fans–new and old alike–back to where it all began. Readers will discover anew the charms of the impulsive Mandie Shaw as she faces the ups and downs of first losing her father and then finding her long-lost family in “Mandie and the Secret Tunnel.” Many more mysteries follow for Mandie and her friends in “Mandie and the Cherokee Legend,” “Mandie and the Ghost Bandits,” “Mandie and the Forbidden Attic,” and “Mandie and the Trunk’s Secret.”                                              -via


And while not very close to the original stories, there are three Mandie movies, available here


which, I think are still enjoyable, though make sure you have read the books before watching.

Also if you have read the series, please feel free to leave a comment, I’d love to know what you thought of it .


Clare’s Costly Cookie

Grace to you, and peace in our Lord Jesus Christ! Welcome to the home of Nativity Press, a brand new Roman Catholic publisher of children’s literature that joyfully invites children and young people to place Jesus Christ at the centre of their lives and follow Him faithfully – with joy, courage, and love.

Nativity Press is delighted to announce the publication of its first book, Clare’s Costly Cookie: A Young Heart Discovers the Way of Love.

In Clare’s Costly Cookie, nine-year-old Clare, a thunderbolt in pigtails, joyfully invites children to experience her transformation from a strong-willed, self-absorbed child to a faithful follower of Jesus. With grace and courage she offers to Him the most meaningful gift she possibly can: her self-will.

Clare, in her inimitable way, models for children that following Jesus Christ and striving for true holiness are worth any cost. With spirit and spunk she demonstrates for young readers that living the holy Catholic faith is not only exciting, but better than gooey, warm chocolate chip cookies!

“What Julie is contributing with her book is the fostering of a personal and prayerful relationship between the child and God with the character of simplicity and spontaneity. This little book, manifesting a succession of childlike dialogues with God in total simplicity and trust, will help the children of our time to take the habit to pray throughout the day…”

Father Antoine Thomas, csj

Founder, Children of Hope

via Home | Nativity Press.

This newly published book by Julie Kelly (homeschooling mother of 6) would make great Lenten Reading! Go to to read a sample chapter or to order.

Clare’s Costly Cookie is also available through Seton Home Study School, Catholic Heritage Curricula, Holy Heroes and at Catholic Free shipping

Budding authors might like to read how Julie published her book Click here or right click and choose to “save as”.



The 16th of July is the Feast of Our Lady of Mt Carmel. The BROWN SCAPULAR OF MT. CARMEL AND BOOK Set includes a brown wool scapular with the images of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Our Lady of Mt. Carmel and the booklet “The Scapular of Mount Carmel,” written by a Monk of Saint Joseph Abbey in France. This little book explains what the Scapular of Mount Carmel is, where it came from, and why it is so important to wear this scapular faithfully. It also includes the prayers of “Blessing and Clothing with the Scapular of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel,” in both Latin and English. Paperback. 63 pages.


The Bush Boys Books

BushBoysABCofCampingCoverBush Boys is the camping adventure of the city Cumberlands, Peter and John, and their mountain cousins, Greg and Bernie.

Its setting is the Wild Bush Mountains, where Nature is still untamed in all its wild and lyric beauty – rocks and rapids and inviting pools, light on leaves, the sounds of bird calls, wind and water, with kangaroos and dingoes, goannas and snakes, kookaburras and cockatoos, and the creepy crawlies, bull ants, leeches, yabbies.

But the beauty of the bush is marred by three louts, the yahoos, who smash bottles, pollute the bush and turn out to be dangerous thieves and cheats. They are cunningly outwitted by the four bush boys who, when the bush strikes back, come to their rescue.

Bush Boys short chapters are ideal for reading in bed or curled up in a comfy chair, and also for reading aloud at home or at school. You’ll wish you were sitting at a campfire or in a tent, enjoying the real thing!

Bush Boys also offers vital know-how for readers who are planning a bush adventure: on survival in rough comfort, food lists and quantities, equipments lists, bush cooking, camp hygiene, safety first, first aid, etc

Father James Tierney and His Wonderful Bush Boys Books Fr Tierney


  • The ABC of Camping
  • Over 50 full page drawings
  • Nearly 80 smaller pictures and diagrams
  • An environmentally friendly book
  • For adventurous boys and girls.

via The Bush Boys Books: Synopses.

However, there were more urgent things Kev wanted to know. “What school do you go to? Why aren’t you at school today?” His own Mum and Dad were still undecided about his schooling, though they favoured the Wild Bush Mountains Grammar School at Galway Crags. Kev could be a day boy or even a boarder. However, he was not keen on either. Now, having met Pete and John, he knew their school must be best.

John told him chirpily, “We have school at home.” Kev looked puzzled.

Pete explained, “It happened like this. John an’ I spent the October holidays with our cousins” — he waved his hand to the south — “down there a bit. We managed to stay two extra weeks when our two oldest sisters at home got sick. Our aunt homeschools our cousins so she did us as well. Then just over a week ago our Mum moved up from the city to make this our new home. She took over our homeschooling — she calls it home-tutoring. She’s spent the whole of last week proving to herself that we can work on our own — after she’s got us started, of course.

Where can I buy these books?


Also available in the US from Catholic Heritage Curricula

The Hobbit: or There and Back Again

First published back in 1937. J.R.R. Tolkien’s own description for the original edition: If you care for journeys there and back, out of the comfortable Western world, over the edge of the Wild, and home again, and can take an interest in a humble hero (blessed with a little wisdom and a little courage and considerable good luck), here is a record of such a journey and such a traveler. The period is the ancient time between the age of Faerie and the dominion of men, when the famous forest of Mirkwood was still standing, and the mountains were full of danger. In following the path of this humble adventurer, you will learn by the way (as he did) — if you do not already know all about these things — much about trolls, goblins, dwarves, and elves, and get some glimpses into the history and politics of a neglected but important period.

Bag End, as used in the Lord of the Rings films.

For Mr. Bilbo Baggins visited various notable persons; conversed with the dragon , Smaug the Magnificent; and was present, rather unwillingly, at the Battle of the Five Armies. This is all the more remarkable, since he was a hobbit. Hobbits have hitherto been passed over in history and legend, perhaps because they as a rule preferred comfort to excitement. But this account, based on his personal memoirs, of the one exciting year in the otherwise quiet life of Mr. Baggins will give you a fair idea of the estimable people now (it is said) becoming rather rare. They do not like noise.

via The Hobbit: or There and Back Again (0807728454708): J.R.R. Tolkien: Books.

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