Author Sharon Rene’s MG and YA recommendations: National Get Caught Reading a Book Month

Life has been strange around here lately; we have all been spending a lot of time inside. This is a great time to read! Reading is fun, informative, and good for everyone – young and old.

In this post, I’m going to give you some suggestions for great elementary and middle-grade books.

Of course, I have to mention my book – A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace published by TouchPoint Press. This is a book of short stories in three genres: Biblical, Historical, and Contemporary. It is the perfect book for a family with several children because of its diversity. Some kids will like historical stories, and others will like contemporary stories. Some of the stories will appeal to middle-grade readers (especially the contemporary section), and others are geared for the elementary group.

Children can read about biblical characters from other perspectives, such as Daniel in the lions’ den but from the lions’ viewpoint. What were those hungry lions thinking? In the historical section, they will learn about Queen Elizabeth I and a female pirate, and in the contemporary section, they will learn about sibling rivalry and other current issues.

A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace is available on Amazon and during May it is .99 cents on Kindle. Please check it out. ♥

I also recommend The Choir Girl series, also published by TouchPoint Press. This is a series of four books written by Victoria Kimble. Each book highlights the life of one of the choir girls. This is a funny and poignant series that is perfect for middle-grade girls. Also, Victoria Kimble will soon be releasing a young adult book, The Main Dish. I have read this, and it is great.

If you have middle-grade girls, please check out the Sour Lemon Series by Julane Fisher, published by TouchPoint Press. Rich in Southern humor, Sour Lemon and Sweet Tea is an irresistible journey of self-discovery, overcoming rejection, and the power of forgiveness. Book two is entitled Sour Lemon Strikes Out.

And now something for the boys. I highly recommend Burton Cole’s series – Bash and the Pirate Pig, Bash and the Chicken Coop Caper, and Bash and the Chocolate Milk Cows. Just from the titles, you know you are in for a rollicking, fun-filled ride. These books are very funny while helping children grow closer to God. Girls will like them too but they are especially geared to a male audience.

I read middle grade and young adult books all the time. They are my favorite. Here is a list of a few I’ve recently read and recommend:

A Night Divided by Jennifer A. Nielsen, Scholastic, 2018

Winterborne Home for Vengeance and Valor, Ally Carter, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2020

Meet the Misfits, Melody Carlson, White Spark Publishing, 2019

Porch Swing Girl, Taylor Bennet, Mountain Brook Ink, 2018

Tinsel in a Tangle, Laurie Germaine, Clean Reads, 2017

Sharon Rene is the author of A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace, published by TouchPoint Faith in 2018. She has also authored flash fiction stories and non-fiction pieces for Chicken Soup for the Soul and Life Changing Miracles as well as her own flash fiction collection, A Flash of Romance.

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Interview with the author of the Lincoln Square Series, Anna Huckabee


This gallery contains 2 photos.

  Anna Huckabee’s debut novel, Talents, hit the shelves earlier this year, and I know I’m not the only one excited to hear that she has more plans for her characters. The sequel to Talents will be released next year. In the … Continue reading

December BOTM: The Mind of Payne


Author Kent Breazeale will be hanging out at TouchPoint’s Book Club on Goodreads throughout December. Kent will share what prompted him to write his newest release, The Mind of Payne, and to answer reader questions. If it’s not enough to … Continue reading

New Release: The Mind of Payne, Kent Breazeale

eBook, available now at Amazon and Paperback, Spring 2014

eBook, available now at Amazon and
Paperback, Spring 2014

It seems like it’s been a long road from the day Kent first told me about his plans to finish THE MIND OF PAYNE. He’d been working on it for many years.

Kent verbally told me the story. I sat, mesmerized, like I did in middle school when my favorite teacher would read a chapter from Bre’r Rabbit. That is when I met Payne Isaac, and it was also the moment I knew I had have to work with this story.

But, I had to wait.

Some years passed and we revisited the idea of bringing young Payne Isaac to life. In the meantime, we focused on perfecting another novel Kent had completed (soon to be released), but we always returned to Payne.

In some ways I can relate to Savannah, Payne’s psychologist in the story. She had no idea how much Payne would touch her heart and or how deeply he would change her life. Neither did I.

I hope, like me, each reader finds themselves having changed a bit on the inside after meeting the unique and heart warming Payne Isaac.  -SW, Publisher

When psychologist Savannah James meets mentally ill five-year-old Payne Isaac she sees her role as simple: help Payne. Session after session she listens to Payne as he describes events that haven’t occurred and people she is certain do not exist. She desperately wants the therapy to have a positive affect in his life—a drive born from her need to cope with her own secret. When Payne discovers Savannah’s secret, he is convinced it is she who needs help—an obligation he believes belongs to him and one that forces him to choose between keeping his friends and helping Savannah.

EXCERPT from The Mind of Payne

…and Mister Lane gives you two half pints of chocolate milk each week?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“Are they both for you?”

“No, ma’am. One’s for me and one’s for Cheyenne.”

“So you drink one and Cheyenne drinks the other one?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“Have you ever seen Cheyenne drink his?”

“I don’t ‘zactly watch that close, but I know he drinks it.”

“How do you know for sure if you’re not watching? How do you know Cheyenne drinks the milk?”


“Because why?”

“’Cause the carton is empty.”

“Do you ever drink them both?”

“Yes, ma’am. Sometimes Cheyenne don’t want his an’ he lets me drink it an’ sometimes he wants me to give his to Robey.”

“I see. Have you ever seen Robey drink the milk?”

“I don’t zactly watch that close but I know he drinks it.”

“Because the carton is empty?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“Why does Mister Lane call you Hat?”

“’Cause I like to wear hats…mostly cowboy hats.”

“Mostly cowboy hats—so you sometimes wear other types of hats?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“What other hats do you wear?”

“Ice cream carton.”


“Sometimes I wear a’ ice cream carton. Momma warshes it out for me an’ I wear it. But mostly I jist wear my cowboy hat.”

“Why in the world would you…Never mind. Does Mister Lane talk to Cheyenne?”

“No, ma’am.”

“Does he talk to Robey?”

“No, ma’am.”

“Why do you think Mister Lane never talks to Cheyenne or Robey?”

“’Cause he’s in a hurry. He has a lots of people ta give milk to. He don’t have time ta waste for jawin’ like me an’ you.”

“Is that what you think we’re doing? Jawing. Wasting time.”

“I reckon, ‘cept I don’t mind if ya need ta borrow me now an’ then to have somebody ta talk to. ‘Cept I think if Daddy’s gonna do you a favor an’ let you borrow me then you oughta be payin’ him ‘steada him payin’ you.”

“Well sure, I understand your reasoning, but…what if it’s not me? What if it’s you who needs someone to talk to?”

“But it ain’t. I already have somebody.”

“Cheyenne and Robey?”

“Yes, ma’am.”

“Isn’t it nice though, to have someone other than Cheyenne and Robey with whom you can share your thoughts. Someone you can talk to about things. That’s why we’re here. For you to talk to me about whatever is on your mind.”

“I already talked to Cheyenne an’ Robey about somethin’ an’ Cheyenne said I oughta talk to you about it. He said I oughta jist bite the bullet an’ brang it out in the open. He said if I don’t, it ain’t likely ta ever git no better.”

“Yes. It’s good advice. Advice you should follow.”

“It’s about a wound and a scar. Cheyenne said a bad wound hurts right at first but sooner or later a scar takes its place. It’s there so that you can remember how bad the wound hurt and that it got better. Cheyenne said as bad as the scar is, it’s always better than the wound. He said some wounds are on the inside but they have scars jist the same. They jist take longer.”

“And Cheyenne told you this because you have a wound on the inside?”

“No, ma’am. You do.”

Amazon -Sept. 25, 2013
Barnes and Noble -Sept. 27, 2013
Paperback – January 2014