Monday, September 23, 2013

Double Book Review: My Own Mr. Darcy & Not Even Once Club

I apologize for the late post, but Blogger is having issues with me today! What a nightmare.  Ugh. 

I have two books I want to tell you about today.  The first one is a children's book Not Even Once written By Wendy Watson Nelson.  (Fun fact: She went to school with my mom in Canada!)

It's about a little boy who moves to a new town and is invited to a neighborhood treehouse.  He climbs up and the kids tell him about their club and, if he passes a test, they'll give him membership in the club.  The test is about the Word of Wisdom and making decisions about what you will or won't take into your body even if people are pressuring you.  Then he's given a scroll with other promises of things he won't do "Not even once."

I read this book with my five year old and she didn't really get it.  She liked the pictures a lot, though, and once I explained to her what some of the promises meant, she agreed with what they were saying.  My ten year old got more out of it, and the discussion questions in the back were helpful.  It's more like a story I'd use in Family Home Evening as a visual aid than a bedtime story I'd read over and over.  Great artwork and a good teaching concept for sure.

Here's the back copy:

The Not Even Once Club is an adorable and appealing way to engage children in a story that will help them choose for themselves to keep the commandments and to never break them. Not even once.

Children will meet Tyler, an energetic boy who is excited to make new friends in his Primary class. They have invited Tyler to join their special club, but first he has to pass the test and keep the club promise.

With illustrations from bestselling illustrator Brandon Dorman, The Not Even Once Club is a fun and engaging way for parents to help teach their children the importance of keeping the commandments. Included in the back of the book are additional teaching helps for parents and leaders.

About the Author

Wendy Watson Nelson holds a Ph.D. in family therapy and gerontology. Prior to her marriage to Elder Russell M. Nelson, she was a professor of marriage and family therapy for twenty-five years. Sister Nelson has served as a stake Relief Society president, stake Primary president, and chaired theBYU Women’s Conference. Currently, she is an institute instructor and visiting teacher. Sister Nelson was born in Raymond, Alberta, Canada, to Leonard David and Laura Byrde McLean Watson.


About the Illustrator

Brandon Dorman is the illustrator of the #1 New York Times bestsellerThe Wizard. He graduated from Brigham Young University-Idaho, where he studied fine art and illustration. He and his wife, Emily, have three children and live in Washington, where he enjoys working as a freelance illustrator. His work has appeared in children’s books and on numerous covers, including Pingo, The Candy Shop War, and the Fablehaven series. See more of Brandon Dorman’s artwork at

The other book I want to tell you about is My Own Mr. Darcy by Karey White.  When I first started reading it, I was immediately drawn to the main character Elizabeth.  She was funny and quirky, but knew what she wanted.  I also liked that she was "real" in the way that she was confident enough in herself to not be ashamed she worked at a bank and liked to wear her own "look" with colorful tights.

The best part of the book was the romance, though.  At first I was thinking, oh man, I hope this isn't going to be a lame triangle.  Love triangles only work if both men are viable options.  It didn't look that way at the beginning, just because of the heroine's obsession with Mr. Darcy, but it totally kept me turning pages to see how she got out of the mess she made for herself.  I loved the hero (I won't say who because it might give something away) and there were some really sigh-worthy, romantic moments.  A quick, satisfying read that made me say "awwww" at the end. (It's currently $3.99 on Kindle, just FYI).

Here's the back copy:

After being dragged to the 2005 movie Pride and Prejudice by her mother, sixteen-year-old Elizabeth’s life changes when Matthew Macfadyen’s Mr. Darcy appears on the screen. Lizzie falls hard and makes a promise to herself that she will settle for nothing less than her own Mr. Darcy. This ill-advised pledge threatens to ruin any chance of finding true love. During the six intervening years, she has refused to give any interested suitors a chance. They weren’t Mr. Darcy enough.

Coerced by her roommate, Elizabeth agrees to give the next interested guy ten dates before she dumps him. That guy is Chad, a kind and thoughtful science teacher and swim coach. While she’s dating Chad, her dream comes true in the form of a wealthy bookstore owner named Matt Dawson, who looks and acts like her Mr. Darcy. Of course she has to follow her dream. But as Elizabeth simultaneously dates a regular guy and the dazzling Mr. Dawson, she’s forced to re-evaluate what it was she loved about Mr. Darcy in the first place.

Author Karey White

Karey White grew up in Utah, Idaho, Oregon, and Missouri. She attended Ricks College and Brigham Young University. Her first novel, Gifted, was a Whitney Award Finalist.

She loves to travel, read, bake treats, and spend time with family and friends. She and her husband are the parents of four great children. She teaches summer creative writing courses to young people and is currently working on her next book.

1 comment:

Debra Erfert said...

I"m so amazed at how many books you read, Julie. These sound adorable.