Friday, May 6, 2011

Circle C Beginnings Books- Kregal Publications/ TOS Review

My family just read a book called Andi's Fair Surprise, from the Circle C Beginnings series.

Andi Carter is a six year old girl who lives on a cattle ranch.

This book is set in 1874, and the Carter family is going to the California state fair.

Everyone in the family is entering something in the fair, and Andi wants to enter something too.

She wants to enter her horse, Taffy, but everyone tells her she is too little. But Andi really wants to win a blue ribbon!

While at the fair, Andi wins a prize she can't keep, and learns a valuable lesson.

We really liked this book.  We read 2-3 chapters a day as a read aloud. It held my 6 year olds attention, which is remarkable without the book having a lot of pictures. It has a picture every few pages.

This chapter book has 74 pages, and is geared towards children ages 6-8, but even my 13 year old enjoyed listening to it. 

There were a few things that I didn't care for in this book. In a few instances Andi is not wanting to listen to her older siblings, and talks back, argues, and calls them names, such as mean and bossy.

I feel they could have kept the story line without the rebellion. 

That being said, it was not too bad, and mainly in the beginning, so we went ahead with the book, and we really enjoyed it.

I would consider reading the other books as well. If all of them have some of this same kind of attitude, I don't know that we would continue the series. But if it was just this one, we definitely would. 

Besides this one aspect, we really enjoyed this book.

I like the fact that there are several references to Jesus, and the Scripture. .

We thought maybe the family was homeschooled because there was no mention of school in this book, but one of the books in this series is called Andi's Scary School Days.

That was a bummer for me, because the author is actually a homeschool mom.

Now, I haven't read that particular book, so I have no idea if she stays in school, or is brought home, but I do not like my kids reading books where kids are going to school.

We feel that God has called parents to teach their children, and therefore I don't wanting them readng too many books where they are teaching that going to school is OK.

All in all, I would say that this was a good book, I really do wish the few rebellious parts were not there though.

If this kind of stuff doesn't bother you, then you will really enjoy this book. This was a wholesome book, and I didn't find anything inappropriate in it.

My 13 year old loved the fact that the book was set in the "olden days" and my 6 year old son really liked all the animals.

Something really cool that I wanted to share with you is the fact that there are free activity pages, and coloring pages, that you can download from their site, to go along with this book. 

There are also really cool online puzzles that your child can play with.

You can also purchase lapbooks that go along with the books.

You can find all of this and more on their website.

If you are interested in the Circle C Beginnings series, you can find them here.

They are very reasonably priced at $4.99 plus $2 S&H for one book, $9.98 plus $2 S&H for 2 books, or $15.96 plus $3 S&H for all four books!

You can read sample chapters on their website to see if you think your family would like these books.

I only reviewed one of the books from the series,  so be sure to read my fellow Crew Mate's reviews for their opinions on this book, and the rest of the series.

Have fun reading!


*I have received a copy of Andi's Fair Surprise, free, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Review Crew, in return for my honest opinion.
No other compensation has been given to me.*


Andi Carter said...

Hi VeryBlessedMama (love the names everybody comes up with on blogs):-)
Thanks for your lovely review of Fair Surprise and that your family enjoyed it. I liked the way you let your thoughts flow as they came and you wrote them all done . . . the good and the concerns as well.
(I review products for the Old Schoolhouse Magazine so I know all about this "reviewing" business. It's a lot of work!)
And you sure went above and beyond when you posted all of those sample pages. That was sure nice!)

And yep, I knew there might be issues with the Scary School Days book, but there was no way to get around it, as there was no such thing as homeschooling in 1874. To be historically accurate, the child has to end up in school, just like Laura and Mary in the Little House books. (Interestingly enough, in the older kids' series, when Andi is 12 and gets expelled from school, she BEGS to be taught at home instead of having to go back to school, so the attitude of homeschooling is there, if not able to be fulfilled).

I am especially enjoying seeing the different "takes" from different folks on the very same books. It just shows how diverse readers are. Fascinating! Other folks loved the fact that when Andi did smart off she didn't get away with it (unlike some chapter books I've read that will go unnamed here). And she always ends up having to ask forgiveness or say she's sorry for some things she gets herself into.

Hope that gives you an overall picture of what's going on in my head here. :-) Personally, I don't think that calling somebody "bossy" is actually being all that rebellious. Disrespectful, yes. And you will notice (if you read any of the 12 books--younger and older series--that she is never, EVER sassy or disrespectful to her mother.

Oops! Didn't intend to go on and on, but since you were kind of wondering about the other books, I hope this helped.

Blessings and thanks again!

Very Blessed Mamma said...

Thank you Susan. yes, your information does help a lot. I only have this one book to go off of, and I appreciate that you took your time to help me understand the full spectrum of the series.

I do feel better about some of the disrespect. I think I will read the rest of the series, and see how it goes.

I will post again after I read some of the others.

I didn't notice that she had apologized, nor asked forgiveness from her brothers or sisters. I will have to read it again, or perhaps it is in the other books more.

Perhaps, they can be a teaching series as well.

I will update my review after reading some more, and giving a little more thought to some of these issues that you have helped to clarify.

Thank you Susan.

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