Tuesday, January 12, 2010

TOS Review – Bertie’s War by Barbara Tift Blakey (Kregel Publications)

When I received Bertie’s War to review I was pretty excited. Finally, something that would be easy. Just read it and write the review, right? Well, it didn’t really turn out that way. I knew I was going to read this book myself because of it’s war related content. My kids are afraid to watch the news so I knew it wouldn’t be smart to read this one to them.

When I read a book that I like, I read it in one sitting. Usually in the bathtub after the kids have gone to bed and I read until the water gets cold. Then I like to finish in bed with the light in my husbands eyes while he is trying to sleep. I am so lucky that he can sleep through anything. Well, this book took me over 2 weeks to read. I just couldn’t get into it. The beginning was s.s.s.s.s.l.l.l.l.l.o.o.o.o.o.w.w.w.w. The ending did get a more interesting but for me this book was boring. Thankfully, working at a library has allowed me to begin to understand that everyone likes different books and writing styles. So, just because this wasn't my kind of book, don't let that stop you from reading it. Several of my fellow crew members who reviewed this enjoyed it and highly recommend it. It has 192 pages and can be bought for $7.99 in paperback.

Bertie is a young woman who lives during the Cuban Missile Crisis. It is 1962 and she is going into the 7th grade. She is terrified that there is going to be a nuclear disaster so she tries to find a safe place for herself and her family for when this happens. The story tells of her even trying to find the right coat to keep out the radiation. Bertie seems to be afraid of everything and her perception is that no one understands what she is going through as she enters into her teenage years. I like that the book is written with a Christian outlook but I don’t like the way the family members are portrayed. Her father seems too strict and her sister comes across as a know-it-all. Bertie seems to find her way into a lot of trouble, sometimes even dangerous trouble.

I remember when I was little being afraid that Russia was going to bomb the U.S. so I can relate to Bertie in that aspect. The only difference is that my mom and dad really never talked about things like this in our home. Bertie’s mom and dad discuss everything at the dinner table and this frightens Bertie. As I said before, the ending of the book was better that the beginning, but I still wouldn’t pick this to read again.

You can get this book from Kregel Publications where they have a large variety of books for you to purchase. I was impressed that they have a homeschooling section on their website which is very user friendly and easy to navigate.

Click here for their recently released books.

So, even though I didn’t really enjoy this book, I think Kregel Publications has many books that I would enjoy, including fictional Christian romance. Reading this has helped me remember that I have to watch what I say in front of my children because they are influenced by every little aspect of our lives. My children are very sensitive so I need to be even more careful about topics that will frighten them like war.

You can see what my fellow crew mates have to say about Bertie’s War by clicking here.

Please note that I received Bertie’s War at no charge from Kregel Publications in exchange for my honest opinion in this review. No other compensation was provided.

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