The Mystery of Broken Spur Ranch by Barbara Bockman

A long-standing family quarrel leads two cousins on a treasure hunting adventure in The Mystery of Broken Spur Ranch by Barbara Bockman.

After the death of his grandfather, James and his parents fly from India to the family ranch for the reading of his will. Fifteen years ago, differences between James’s father, Gerald, and his Uncle Lawrence over the running of the ranch divided the brothers, and Gerald left to create a new life outside of the States. The family’s return to Broken Spur Ranch shows the brothers’ stubbornness remains alive and well.

Before his death, Grandfather Hanover devised a plan to reunite his sons with the help of their children. James and his cousin, Thomas, must work together to solve grandfather’s riddle and save the ranch … and their families.

I loved everything about this story. It brings together two boys brought up in different parts of the world who must work together despite their cultural differences. The boys are tasked with a tall order considering James knows nothing about ranch life and doesn’t even ride. Thomas seems to have the advantage, but he still must learn to lean on James’s abilities if he wants to solve the riddle. The hardest part: can the two boys find a way to end the long-standing disagreement between their fathers and save the ranch? The stakes don’t get much higher than that.

The Mystery of Broken Spur Ranch has a fun cast of characters, an interesting plot, and a great ending. The story moves along at a good pace, and the mystery keeps the reader moving forward. This is not the first book I’ve read from Bockman. I certainly hope it won’t be my last. She knows how to tell a story that engages young readers.

Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Paperback: 114 pages
Publisher: Independently published (August 9, 2019)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1079783563
ISBN-13: 978-1079783568

I received a digital copy of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.

My TBR Pile

 

Two cousins embark on an exciting mystery to solve the riddle of their grandfather’s will. The boys from diverse backgrounds must work together to overcome natural and cultural obstacles. Can they save the ranch in time?

History, like magic, has a habit of repeating itself

It’s been six months since thirteen-year-old Alyssa McCarthy left magic behind for good. Or so she thought…

Then the enchanted objects that protected her disappear. Now a skeleton named Errol has cursed her with magical powers that keep getting her in trouble. Suddenly strange things are happening with disastrous effects, and if Alyssa can’t remove the magic, she will lose everything she holds dear.

In order to get rid of her unwanted wizardry, Alyssa will have to boost her bravery and confidence and determine who Errol really is. But every time Alyssa uses an enchantment, Errol is one step closer to getting his flesh back and becoming alive, and he will do anything to achieve his goals…even if it means destroying Alyssa’s happiness.

Originally published in 2016 as “Wizardry Goes Wild” and “The Unruly Curse” in 2019, “A Curse of Mayhem” is book two in the exciting and suspenseful “Magical Missions” series.

 

This exciting entry in Lee & Low’s “Story of” line of chapter-book biographies introduces readers to Robert Smalls, an enslaved steamboat wheelman who commandeered a Confederate boat during the Civil War and escaped with his family, crew, and their families to freedom.

Growing up enslaved in South Carolina, Robert Smalls always dreamed of the moment freedom would be within his grasp. Now that moment was here.

Robert stood proudly at the Planter’s wheel. Only seven miles of water lay between the ship and the chance of freedom in Union territory. With precision and amazing courage, he navigated past the Confederate forts in the harbor and steered the ship toward the safety of the Union fleet. Just one miscalculation would be deadly, but for Robert, his family, and his crewmates, the risk was worth taking.

The Story of Civil War Hero Robert Smalls is the compelling account of the daring escape of Robert Smalls, an enslaved steamboat wheelman who became one of the Civil War’s greatest heroes. His steadfast courage in the face of adversity is an inspiring model for all who attempt to overcome seemingly insurmountable challenges.

This Chapter Book edition includes black-and-white illustrations as well as sidebars on related subjects, a timeline, a glossary, and recommended reading.

What is in your TBR pile right now?

 

Colby Mouse’s Christmas Gift by Barbara Bockman

colby

Looking for a sweet Christmas story? You will find it in Colby Mouse’s Christmas Gift by Barbara Bockman.

Colby is a little mouse taking in all the sights, sounds, and scents of Christmas. He’s excited over the thought of giving gifts and wants to be part of all, but the danger of a trap might foil his plans.

Released last year, this is such a cute tale. So much of what Christmas is about is rolled into this fun story about a mouse wanting to give and receive gifts just like the people whose house he lives in.

K.C. Snider’s artwork is always superb, and when it comes to Christmas she outdoes herself every time. It’s worth buying the book just to flip through the illustrations. Once you open up Colby Mouse’s Christmas Gift, though, you’ll want to read it from beginning to end and then start all over. This is a perfect story of the season.

Rating: 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

Paperback: 16 pages
Publisher: Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc; Softcover ed. edition (October 10, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1616337079
ISBN-13: 978-1616337070

I received a digital copy of this book from the author. This review contains my honest opinions, which I have not been compensated for in any way.