Change is never easy, which is something that Jack knows all too well as his family has made the decision to move off the of the family farm an into town. Jack doesn't want to leave his grandparents, chicken Henrietta, and hayloft fort, though his new life offers new adventures Jack wants nothing more than to return to the farm. But God may have other plans...
The first in a brand new series for middle grade readers, The Tree Street Kids, harkens back to a not so far away simpler time. Set in the 1990's before kids faces were glued to screens and had to play outdoors, this book introduces Jack and his new friends as they work together to help others and develop new friendships. I loved Jack's little sister Midge who is an encyclopedia of animal knowledge, with an adorable sense of humor. Ellison is a bookworm, and loyal friend. And I'm excited to get to know the other kids better in future books.
This is a wholesome read, with characters that are well developed and grow over the course of the book. I was also very impressed with the strong faith themes throughout the story, as Jack learns to let go of his own plans, and help others unselfishly. I really enjoyed the character of Mr. Bruno who is a kind elderly man whom Jack befriends as they teach each other.
Overall, this is one of the best new books that I have read for children in a while. It has an engaging story, blended with humor, faith, and likable characters. The conflicts and faith themes flowed naturally within the story, never feeling forced or slapped on. A wonderful read for middle grader readers, as well as a read aloud for the whole family.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.