Thursday, May 27, 2010

Book Review: Andrea Carter and the Trouble with Treasure

“Here in the heart of the Sierras, the word lost took on new meaning. Steep, rock-encrusted gullies, ridges that went on for miles, and dark pine and sequoia forests marked this place as dangerous to the inexperienced traveler. Andi, for one, did not want to be left on her own in these mountains.” p. 35 
Oh, if eleven year old Andrea Carter (aka Andi) only knew the trouble awaiting her in those mountains, she may have dwelled on that thought long enough to return to the safety of her ranch...
Of course, headstrong and independent Andi would have scoffed at the idea of falling into jeopardy; not with her big brother Mitch and two of her closest friends trekking the mountains with her. After all, two weeks in the Sierras, fishing and panning for gold while sleeping under the stars, was to be the highlight of her life! On the back of her trusted horse Taffy, Andi always felt confident and ready to meet uncertainty head on.
What starts out as a promising adventure for everyone, quickly goes from bad to downright awful. Pulling the reader along the mountain paths of post Gold Rush California, the latest Circle C Adventure book from author Susan K. Marlow is sure to enthrall your tween readers with its rough-and-tumble tale set in the late 1800’s. From snakes to bank robbers--and even a stint in jail-- the young cowgirl and her posse seem to find themselves in a heap of trouble.
Andrea Carter and the Trouble with Treasure  is a terrific and face-paced read that will prove to be hard to put down! Packed with good old-fashioned pioneer peril and a natural (yet not preachy) undercurrent of trusting in God and His care, this story delivers good, clean entertainment.
Although The Trouble with Treasure is part of the Circle C Adventure series, it is a stand alone saga that the reader can jump right into. But why limit the fun to just one book? Check out all of the Circle C Adventure books from Kregel publishing (available for $7.99) by clicking here. This series is also available in bookstores. As an added bonus, there is a free study guide with activities to go along with your purchase when you go to this website. 
**As part of the TOS Crew, I was provided with a copy of Trouble With Treasure in exchange for my unbiased review.

1 comment:

Susan Marlow said...

Hi Heather!
Your review of TWT was so FUN to read. He-he.
Do you write anything yourself (as in stories)? Your style is light and a joy to read. It did not only cover a "review" but made the review and experience in itself.

thanks so much for the great review and how you presented it!


At the Intersection of Creation and Evolution: A Dream

The alliterating story below is based on a dream I had several years ago. Please contact me for permission to reproduce.

Darkness devours me.

I am enveloped in emptiness.

Are my eyes open or are they closed? I strain against this shroud of night and still see nothing.

What is this place?

An image illuminates in front of me. A large, leafy tree streaks past and vanishes.

It deserts me to the darkness again.

In a moment, more images appear. A rapid succession of snapshots and thoughts clamor before my eyes and mingle in my mind.

I see seedlings. Several supple shoots have emerged before me and then swiftly stream away.

“The first trees on earth were not seedlings”, my mind observes. “They were not created as small insignificant saplings.”

That thought is rapidly replaced with a vision of a man.

He’s maybe 30; he is muscular and needs to shave.

He fades away.

In his place I see an infant.

A tiny bundle of pink skin upon a soft blanket flickers briefly in my brain.

“Man was created with age,” is the next statement I hear. “Adam did not begin his life as a baby, he began as a grown man.”

The voice seems like my own.

The thoughts do not.

Reeling before me now is a blur of rivers, forests, mountains and even layers of the earth. It is like a movie rushing rapidly before my retina.

The soundtrack of this epic is proclaiming a peculiarly plain concept:

“The earth was created with age. Creation and evolution are not in total opposition. There is a reason that science finds the earth to be quite old: it was made that way.”

Thoughts continue to tumble through my mind; pictures parade before me. I listen in amazement to what seems to be puzzlingly profound and yet rather apparent all at once.

“Adam was created as an adult. Trees and plants were made fully grown.”

I suddenly feel quite certain that, if I were to chop down some of the trees that had been spoken into existence, I would find a range of rings running through their trunks.

“The earth was brought to life with age built into it… just like Adam. He did not begin life as an infant. The earth came into being with what it would need to sustain the life that was created. It was old when it was young. The world was
made with maturity; it was also produced with purpose.”

These thoughts are thrilling. Why had I not seen this before? It seems so simple. Obtusely obvious. Had others not observed this correlation? If they had, why wasn’t it being candidly conveyed?

In the span of thirty seconds I have been ravaged by a radical revelation. I feel the weight of its worth resting on me; it is tantamount to tangible.

I am neither a theologian nor am I a scientist. I don’t claim that the ethics of evolution are completely compatible with the Bible’s account of creation. But certainly Science can come concurrent to creation and affirm our faith with facts.

Of course, the Omnipotent Originator of the Universe is exceedingly elusive to what our mind could ever envision. Above what science could ever extensively elucidate.

Accordingly, creation is confounding too. Each diverse discovery deems it more marvelous to grasp. Many scientists have reluctantly relented to the theory of Intelligent Design.

That’s why, alongside those facts, we also need faith.

Lying inexplicably at the intersection of those two essential elements is an exceptional endowment: the intermittent insight of our dreams.