GENRE: Children’s Middle Grade
The book will be on sale for only 99¢ during the tour
About the Book
Christmas is three weeks away and a mysterious “Santa” has been mailing presents to sixth grader Sophie Washington.
Her friends guess that the secret Kris Kringle could be either Nathan Jones or Toby Johnson, two boys in Sophie’s class who have liked her in the past, but she’s not sure.
Sophie uncovers clues to find her secret Santa and the final reveal is bigger than any package she’s opened on Christmas morning.
It’s a holiday surprise she’ll never forget!
Read an Excerpt
Saturday morning, Chloe texts before I put my feet in my fuzzy, bunny slippers, inviting me to go ice skating at a rink near the mall.
[My mom can pick u up @2] says the message.
That sounds like fun, but I’m a little nervous. I’ve never been ice skating before, and the couple of times I’ve gone roller skating when I was smaller, I spent most of the afternoon holding my father’s hand.
After I ask Mom at breakfast she gives Chloe’s mother a call to make sure it’s okay.
“You kids act like you are old enough to make plans for yourselves,” she says shaking her head. Mom looks up the pricing for the skates on the rink’s website and gives me money for entry and to rent skates.
“Chloe’s mother says you will be skating for a couple hours. Here is some extra money for drinks and a snack,” Mom says, “and take these mittens with you.” She hands me a pair of purple hand coverings. “It might be cold in there.”
I slip the mittens on my fingers to admire them. It usually doesn’t get very cold here in Houston, so we don’t wear mittens or gloves much. I haven’t had to wear a coat all week, and it’s December.
“Sophie gets to have all the fun!” pouts Cole, as I wait by the window for my friend to pick me up.
“Don’t you worry about that, Cole,” Dad pats his shoulders. “I’m heading to the gym to shoot some hoops this morning with the fellas. A couple of them are bringing their sons, so you can join us.”
Cole perks up at that. “Yay! I can show my skills!”
My little brother loves basketball, and he’s pretty good at it. Every fall he plays on a junior basketball league. This season, his coach moved him up to the point guard position because his shooting has really improved. Cole now says he wants to be an NBA player when he grows up, and he’s been practicing his free throw shooting every afternoon. My father usually goes out to work with him when he gets home from his office, but Cole always likes to get extra playing time in with other kids.
This is my fifth Sophie Washington book review. And, like all the others, I was thoroughly enthralled with the concept of the book, the main and support characters, and the life lessons taught to Sophie and her friends.
In this newest release, author Tonya Duncan Ellis revisits the issue of school-age bullying, pre-teen crushes, and family traditions. Mix in a little holiday excitement and the possibility of a secret boyfriend and you’ve got a great story.
If you have a middle-grade student at home, this book (or any Sophie Washington book) would be a great stocking stuffer!
About the Author
Tonya Duncan Ellis is the author of the award winning, Readers’ Favorite “Five Star” rated, Sophie Washington children’s books series, geared toward readers ages 8 to 12, and is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). She has received awards for literary excellence, worked as a journalist and freelance magazine writer, and is a graduate of Centre College of Kentucky and Washington University in St. Louis.
The Sophie Washington book series recounts the adventures of a precocious African American preteen from Houston, TX and her diverse group of friends. Each funny and heartwarming story teaches lessons about friendship, responsibility, truthfulness and perseverance. Books in the series include Queen of the Bee, The Snitch, Things You Didn’t Know About Sophie, The Gamer, Hurricane, and Mission: Costa Rica.
Tonya loves to travel and has visited 49 American states and three continents, but some of her best journeys have been between the pages of a novel. As a girl she could always be found with a book in her hand, and reading is still one of her favorite hobbies. When she’s not reading or writing, the author likes to ride her bike, swim, and spend time with her husband and three children. She lives in Houston, TX.
Tonya Duncan Ellis will be awarding $20 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.
Follow the Tour
October 29: Locks, Hooks and Books
November 19: Andi’s Middle Grade and Chapter Books
November 19: Journey of a Bookseller
November 19: Hope. Dreams. Life.. Love
November 19: Notes From a Romantic’s Heart
November 19: The Children’s and Teens’ Book Connection
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It’s been my pleasure having Tonya (and Sophie) back for another visit.
Notes From a Romantic’s Heart is taking the rest of the week off for the holiday. Please come back next week for more authors, books, and giveaways.