One of the fun things of being a member of this year’s TOS Homeschool Crew is being introduced to new resources!
– Media Angels Science (Creation Science, Creation Geology, Creation Anatomy, Creation Astronomy)
– Creation LapBook
– Literature Study Guides
– An Insider’s Guide to Successful Science Fair Projects
– Teaching Science and Having Fun!
– Virtual Field Trips
– Writing and Publishing
– and more, including more in the Truth Seekers Mystery Series (see below)
When you have a voracious reader like I have, you’re always on the lookout for a decent book. We have a lot of classic literature under our collective belt, and still that child is thirsting for more. I’m sorry to say she developed a taste for Nancy Drew at friends’ houses (though I confess, I had about eighty Nancy Drew books when I was her age, too… that was before I learned about twaddle versus brain candy).
I was happy to discover Max Elliot Anderson’s books. His Mountain Cabin Mystery was among the first modern books we read, targeted at 8-12 year olds, that espoused similar values to ours. (No boyfriend-girlfriend stuff, for one thing, as is found in most of what’s out there. Including Nancy Drew.)
Middlest has gone through all of the Black Stallion books, the Warriors series, Encyclopedia Brown, all the Nancy Drew we’d allow, Boxcar Children, Bobbsey Twins (do you realize how many were published???), several books by Louisa May Alcott, most of Jane Austen, The Shining Sword, The Happy Hollisters, and more books than I can mention.
When The Missing Link: Found arrived, I was glad to hear the author’s intent to provide fun, clean, exciting reading for youth. By “clean” I mean that parents are respected, not the stupidest people in the book, that young teens aren’t subjected to boyfriend-girlfriend relationships (it’s my opinion that 12yo children don’t need to be dating), no occult themes and, while exciting, without graphic violence. Missing Link meets these standards.
What’s more, this is the first book in a series written by a homeschooling mother-daughter team! The first book in the series, Missing Link was begun when Christina Gerwitz was a young teen, and wanted to write a mystery novel of her own.
I can relate to this. My voracious reader is embarking on the writing journey herself. After reading so many books, she’s got stories in her head, ready to spill out onto paper! I’ve read the beginnings of her mystery-adventure novel, and it pulled me in! I’m looking forward to reading more…
Anyhow, the Gerwitz mother-and-daughter team didn’t know anything about writing novels, but they learned.
The Missing Link: Found is not bad for a first effort. It’s packed with action and adventure, and pressing mysteries to be solved by the young heroes, a brother, sister, and their cousin. Some of the author’s youth and energy shines through in the cinematic scenes (think helicopter chase, explosions, gun battles, and a close encounter with alligators, just for a few). The story starts out with a homeschooling family on vacation, but soon the action focuses on the heroes, and a good thing, too! With so much happening, it’s good to keep a tight focus and not get distracted.
Lots of facts are thrown into the story, with a view to the debate between Evolution and Creation Science. Most of these facts are drawn right from major Creation Science sources, trimmed a bit so as not to slow down the story line, but recognizable by anyone who’s been to a seminar put on by Institute for Creation Research or Answers in Genesis.
There was one fuzzy statistic, regarding the number of teeth a shark loses in a lifetime, not really related to the Evolution debate. When we researched the “shark’s teeth” issue, because the book spurred an interest in the topic of sharks, we found varying information. This issue will be addressed by the author on the Media Angels website. There’s a discussion of carbon dating in the book, as well, that might be oversimplified for the sake of the young reader. There are also some typos, but since you’ll find these even in big-name publisher books, I won’t put a lot of emphasis on this.
As a whole, Missing Link: Found is entertaining reading for your voracious pre-teen bookworm. Right now the publisher is running a special for the month of November, all three books in the Truth Seekers Mystery Series for $22, about a $5 savings from the price of buying all three individually. I haven’t read the other two books, but middlest, when asked if she’s interested in reading the rest, gives an emphatic, YES!