To say my daughter Abbey is a reluctant reader would be a major understatement. She didn't start reading fluently until she was seven years old, and then it was only when I forced her to do so for school. But many years ago, we discovered Susan K. Marlow's Circle C Beginnings series, and the delightful Andi (short for "Andrea") Carter character, and Abbey fell in love with reading. It was so exciting for this mama to see! Abbey has now read every book in both the Circle C Beginnings and the subsequent Circle C Adventures series.
When we heard Kregel Publications was publishing a new series of Susan K. Marlow books about Andrea Carter and her new set of adventures called Circle C Milestones, we were seriously thrilled to be chosen to review the first offering of the new series, Thick as Thieves.
I am not exaggerating even one little bit when I say Abbey literally squealed with delight when the package arrived, and grabbed the book out of my hands and ran off to start reading it. We are homeschoolers, so once it arrived, I allowed this to count as her literature for the next few weeks.
Thick as Thieves by Susan K. Marlow takes place in 1880s California. Andrea Carter, her mother, and Andi's older siblings help run Circle C Ranch. In this new series, Andi is fourteen years old and is forced to meet a new schoolmate who is rough around the edges. When this new stranger Macy and her older brothers start causing trouble for the ranch, Andi reluctantly befriends Macy in order to get to the bottom of a series of thefts of cattle and horses from Circle C Ranch. What surprises both Macy and Andi, is how close they become as they learn to trust each other. When Andi takes it upon herself to go find the missing colts of her prized mare Taffy, she must rely upon God and her brothers for rescuing.
Susan K. Marlow weaves a ton of mystery, suspense, humor, and adventure into each chapter, holding the reader captive. Abbey and I still have read-aloud time together, and when I read selected chapters to her, they left even me wanting more. After she finished a chapter of reading on her own, I would ask her to tell me what happened, simply because I wanted to know where the story was going.
Best of all, the FREE study guide for Thick as Thieves, also written by Susan K. Marlow, has been an absolutely wonderful way to review the material, learn vocabulary, study history, learn more about horses, do math, engage in critical thinking, and more! We chose to do the study guide after Abbey completed reading the entire book, but it is set up in a way which will allow you to review every 3 -4 chapters if you prefer. I printed out the 42-pp PDF, used my 3-hole punch, and placed all the sheets in a binder. Here's a few excerpts to give you an idea:
Parents, I wholeheartedly recommend this and any of Mrs. Marlow's books for your child. BOTH boys and girls will enjoy it, because there is plenty of action for both. Thick as Thieves is recommended for ages 12 and up, but younger, advanced readers can enjoy this as well, or as I mentioned, it can work well as a read-aloud.
Thick as Thieves, in softcover format, retails for $9.99 + $2.50 s/h and can be autographed by Susan K. Marlow herself. We had the entire set of the Circle C Adventures (the previous series) autographed and personalized to Abbey, and she just treasures them, so this is a fun option for your young reader. Click HERE for that option! Or you can purchase from Kregel Publications, CBD, or Amazon.
Just go buy it, and do it NOW!!!
FCC Disclaimer: Kregel Publications provided me with a free copy of Thick as Thieves in exchange for my honest and thorough review. They did not tell me what to say or how to say it. No other compensation was given.
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