The book is the first in a new series with Andrea Carter, who is a 14 year old girl growing up in California in the 1880s. Mahala just turned 15 and we live in California, so I thought this would be a fun read for her. Even though we don't live on a ranch like Andrea Carter does in the book, we have always loved Historical Fiction.
Whenever I do a Book Review I don't like to give away the whole story. So, I'm going to give you a small taste of the main Character and a brief synopsis of the book. I will say that Mahala was originally going to read the book with Kaden, but he kind of got lost in some of the words that he was unfamiliar with. Even though the amazing study guide went over many of the unfamiliar words. So, I decided to read it aloud with her and I thought it was a Great book. It reminded me of the books I used to read as a child. Kind of had a Little House on the Prairie feel to it.....I loved that show. It took all of 3 days to finish the whole book. It was filled with suspense and wholesome drama, nothing that you couldn't read beside Jesus. Love a good book like that! Honestly, it's hard to find decent books for a teenage girl these days. I felt like the plot was deep enough to hold our interests and filled with everyday life that Andrea struggles with. It was nice because all of us have struggled with some of her struggles at some point in our lives. Mahala could relate. You get to kind of see the life of a school girl that's new named Macy Walker. She's not the easiest person to welcome into the fold. :) She has a totally different life then Andrea. Andrea has to face tough decisions and she is able to show how her character was developed from having the Family she does and her Faith. This book is wonderfully written and any Pre-Teen or Teen would enjoy this series. I look forward to spending more afternoons with Mahala reading more in the future! Susan has another book in this series coming out in July 2015 called, Heartbreak Trail. Read an excerpt from Heartbreak Trail.
I wanted to mention a little more about the 40 page study guide. It was a very helpful resource and could be used for more then one kiddo independently or in a read aloud setting. The guide splits the book up into small bit-sized portions that consists of only a few chapters a piece. It's filled with Vocabulary work, extra reading ideas, Questions to get your noodle thinking a little deeper about each of the characters, life on a ranch with horses and the overall Plot of the book as a whole. Mahala super loved doing the crossword puzzles and I enjoyed learning so much more about horses with the vocabulary sections. Mahala gave me a test after we finished... I now know what foaling means. ;)
So, would I recommend this book? Well of course I would! I would say most kiddos in 4th grade and up, boy or girl would find this book interesting and could relate to it. The official age recommendation is 12 and up.
Thick as Thieves is $9.99 plus $2.50 shipping and handling and available here. The study guide is a free download available here.
Read an excerpt from Thick as Thieves HERE