books for young adults and beyond
Reach for the Clouds
by Barbara Shepherd and Shelley Anne Richter
John Smith is as average as his name. But he wants to excel at something, like his big brother, the “super achiever”. So, when John discovers he really wants to fly airplanes, he takes steps toward earning enough money to attend ground flight school.
Since his parents are unconvinced, and even unsupportive, John takes on two part-time jobs. He doesn’t know that he’ll soon have to struggle with friends who let him down, a physical injury, and two girls hinting at romance.
And one of those girls has a jealous boyfriend who is out to get him.
Will John give up his dream of flying an airplane?
REACH FOR THE CLOUDS is the story of one focused and committed teen who is determined to, literally, fly through the clouds.
The plot is easy to follow, while still having a reasonable number of twists and turns to keep the reader engaged. Even though John struggles to gain his parents’ approval to fly, his quirks and struggles are extraordinarily relatable. The authors force the reader to stare in the mirror, to see the fears and embarrassments that hold us back on a daily basis.
The suspense kept me hooked throughout. The characters had interesting flaws and contrasting personalities. Each felt like someone you could meet walking down the street.
The novel's themes of friendship, fear of failure, self-doubt, perseverance, and the importance of doing what is right will resonate with readers of all ages and make Reach for the Clouds a true gem of young adult literature. I'd recommend it to all!
Dr. Scout Cloud Lee, Author, Corporate Coach, and Finalist on Survivor Vanuatu
As all dreamers have experienced, dreams can quickly become nightmares. In Reach for the Clouds disappointment appears endlessly around every corner, as well as emotional entanglements. As John finally realizes his dream, you’ll find yourself engaged and asking for more.
Salome L. Vaughn, award winning poet
Reach for the Clouds is a classic study of a family where parents pick a golden child and another child becomes a scapegoat. The characters’ personalities are well-drawn. As John works hard to overcome all the obstacles in his pathway there are surprises around every corner. I rooted for him all the way. The bully Blake is a real jerk. A very satisfying read!
Mary Payne, advocate for adopted adults, and author of Adoption’s Hidden History and Lyncoya, Andrew Jackson’s Adopted Indian Son
Gardening with God:
Lessons from the Master Gardener
A Thirty-one Day Devotional Guide
As Anita Schlaht cleared the lot on which her new home was being built, God’s Word, as it relates to gardening and nature, came to life. Over and over, references to trees, vines, well-watered gardens, grass, flowers, and thorns, touched her heart, and emphasized how God is the Master Gardener.
Each daily reading includes scripture and an excerpt from Anita’s hands-on journal, in which she shares spiritual lessons God taught her as she worked in her garden. Each day also contains a suggested prayer and room for taking notes.
Reviews of Gardening with God:
“This uplifting book is a must-read for any gardener. Anita parallels her gardening experience with how God, the Master Gardener, nurtures your soul.”
Cynthia A. Moore, Logan County Master Gardener, Past-President Edmond Iris and Garden Society
Anita’s love of gardening is interwoven with the deep richness of God and His truths. This beautiful devotional is filled with tidbits of God, His Creation, and our desire to grow in Him. Everyone will benefit from this book.
Beth McClain, Caring Well Executive Director|Women’s Ministry Director
TWO LITTLE OLD LADIES
BY SUSAN YORK MEYERS
Whether trying to imagine heaven (“Wouldn’t a purple halo be nice?”), playing matchmaker for the youth minister, or helping a stressed-out young mother, this pair of seventy-something senior citizens tackle it with flair and humor. Because, for these two old ladies, it's all in the attitude!
$14.99 (hard cover)
$9.99 (soft cover)
I SPY SOMETHING WICKED
by Susan York Meyers
Tessa has always believed in Andre. So when she inherits her uncle’s house, she goes back to Ama, Oklahoma, determined to solve the mystery of the man her uncle told her didn’t exist.
But when she arrives, Tessa finds more than one mystery. How did her uncle really die? And what do you do when you find the tall, dark and handsome man of your dreams, who even cooks and cleans?
Too bad he’s dead.
$16.99 (hard cover)
$9.99 (soft cover)
by Susan York Meyers
At almost fourteen, Myra shops in the fat girl department. No one, least of all her mother, let’s her forget it. Except for Myra’s almost-imaginary friend, a statue of a girl out in the woods.
So when Myra finally finds a friend who wants to spend time with her, and doesn’t mind being seen with her, she wonders if it’s for real. Or will her new friend be like all the other kids, and make fun of her for being fat?
And who is answering the notes Myra leaves at the statue? Is the writer a friend or a foe?
She may have to choose between a longed-for friendship and doing the right thing.
$14.99, hard cover
$9.99, soft cover
Click on the video above to enjoy a poetry reading by Howard Stein.
LIGHT AND SHADOW
BY HOWARD F. STEIN
A collection of poems, “to be experienced, enjoyed, embraced, and perhaps, most of all, felt.” (from the book’s Foreword by Seth Allcorn)