Thursday, October 11, 2018

The Encouragement Letters ~ Lone Star Book Blog Tours Promo, Review, & Giveaway!


  Sub-genre: Middle Grade / Historical Fiction
Publisher: Book Liftoff
Date of Publication: November 22, 2017
Number of Pages: 180

Scroll down for the giveaway! 

WILLIAM CROMWELL, at age eleven, knew what it was like living with new changes. In 1865, Manchester, England a new textile factory moved into town and after a tragedy that befell him and his mum, they struggled to live. With so many things going on in his young life he wanted to be the encouragement that his father was to him.

As everything changes along with terrible hardships, just maybe the hope he gives to the growing town will find its way to Will…

This was such an uplifting wholesome book! It was so nice to read something positive about a time when people were so willing to step in and help someone in need without expecting anything in return! I couldn’t put it down!-- 5 Stars, Kindle verified purchase reviewer

Excellent read!! This story speaks to people in all walks of life. It is encouraging, sweet, and funny at the same time. I would recommend this book to anyone needing to see what it means to “treat others as you want to be treated." -- 5 Stars, Kindle verified purchase reviewer

A very inspiring book from a great new author! -- 5 Stars, Kindle verified purchase reviewer

A charming tale of a simpler time. Yet, the message is ageless. I congratulate Ms. Spence on this her first effort and look forward to more entertaining reads from her in the future.-- 5 Stars, Kindle reviewer

HALL WAYS REVIEW: The Encouragement Letters by Shanna Spence is a breath of fresh air with an eleven-year-old main character who I want to take home and keep for my very own.

“My, worry sure can make you tired.”

That eleven-year-old is one William Cromwell, and he’s a fabulous model of what any person, young or old, should be. Will’s energy and emotions really come through via author Shanna Spence’s descriptive word choices, which show him as thoughtful, caring, and compassionate. He is not only aware of what needs to be done for his and his mother’s very survival, but he does the tasks without guidance or complaint. He is wise beyond his young years as he synthesizes the changes that the new factory has forced upon his town and each of the merchants. Readers see these impacts through Will’s eyes and interactions with the various tradespeople, which makes the story very personal.

“I can’t believe that these new tools have taken
the place of me mum and others.”

Set in England during the Industrial Revolution, The Encouragement Letters gives realistic snapshots of life in the 1800s and the hardships that people had to endure in the name of progress. Author Shanna Spence is subtle in including historical facts and information so that the story is informative without feeling like a textbook lesson. Stepping back in time and following Will as he goes about his daily routine provides a different perspective for readers, who will feel like they are part of this community.

"Sometimes you have to make the wrongs righted again."

As Will recognizes the generosity and selflessness of his town’s people, he is inspired to give back in some measure. He takes it upon himself to write encouraging letters of appreciation to the people who show kindness to others. This really is only a minor story line in The Encouragement Letters, but it is a satisfying one -- and more so because Will remains anonymous, never taking credit for the joy he spreads. There are so many important messages conveyed to readers through Will’s thought processes and actions. The world needs more Wills!

The Encouragement Letters is written for a late elementary to middle grade audience, and it’s a quick and easy book to read. The short chapters and plenty of white space will make it appealing to reluctant readers. The dialogue includes terminology of the times, which adds a layer of interest, and the author provides a helpful list of definitions. The result is readers hear the British accents and the story feels authentic. Unfortunately, the book needs significant proofreading and editing to correct errors. The grammar policewoman in me always struggles with this, but with a kids’ book, the librarian in me struggles more. However, the story is too good to miss, and the messages are much needed, so I still strongly recommend it. It would make a fabulous read-aloud and complement to classroom – and life -- lessons.

I received my signed copy directly from the author when I attended the AME Book Fest this past summer. Thank you to her for sharing her wonderful story with me in exchange for my honest opinion – the only kind I give. 

Shanna Spence is a wife, mother, and registered nurse of over twenty years. She has written poetry since the age of thirteen and always dreamed of writing books. Raised in a small East Texas town, she pursued a career of nursing in Dallas, Texas but eventually went back to East Texas to settle down and raise a family.

Now she finally has found the time to fulfill her dream of writing stories that will hopefully bring out the imagination in others -- as well as inspiration. She is currently living in Longview, Texas. 


1st Prize:
Signed Copy + Bookmark + $10 Amazon Gift Card
2 Runners-Up: eBook Copy
October 10-19, 2018
Notable Quotable
Author Video
Character Interview
Author Interview

blog tour services provided by

No comments:

Post a Comment