FYI: This is a Young Adult book, intended for tween and teen aged girls.
Best-selling author Sandra Byrd has published nearly three dozen books in the Christian market, including her latest series, French Twist, which includes the Christy finalist Let Them Eat Cake (2007) and its sequel, Bon Appétit (2008). Many of her acclaimed fiction and nonfiction books target the tween and young adult market. She has also published a book for new moms entitled Heartbeats. Several of Sandra's shorter works appear in periodical markets such as Relevant, Clubhouse, Pockets, Decision, and Guideposts. For the past seven years, she has shared her secrets with the many students she mentors through the Christian Writers Guild. Before turning to full-time writing, Sandra was an acquisitions editor in the ABA market. She lives in the Seattle, Washington, area with her husband and two children.
Here's a little Q & A with Sandra:
Why did you write the London Confidential series?
Each of us, as women, remember what it's like to be a young woman, struggling to find our place in the world. Some girls have family issues, some have friendship issues, some have school issues, most of us have more than one concern. Whenever I write for young women I hope to provide them with an enjoyable read that validates their concerns, shows them that they are not alone, and provides encouragement to stay the course and see what wonderful things the Lord has just around the next corner.
The world feels a little depressed right now, too. I wanted to provide a happy, hopeful read and not a heavily issues-driven series. The London Confidential books are, I hope, fun to read.
What are some of the biggest struggles for teen girls today? What do you hope teen girls will take away from the series?
Truly, as Eccelsiastes says, there is nothing new under the sun. The issues that young women had when I was growing up are the same ones that my daughter has. Who am I? How can I make a difference? Where do I fit in? Am I loved? Why are people hurtful? While they may have different formats, for example, the internet, texting, or movies, the issues remain essentially the same.
But that's good news! That means that we women have walked these paths and have hopefully found our way. It enables us to be Girl Guides, the British world for Girl Scouts, in a physical, emotional, and spiritual sense. Just as we're instructed to do in Titus 2. We can do this in person, or we can do it by buying a good book to pass along to our daughters, granddaughters, nieces, and friends.
You say books can bring mothers and daughters together. How?
Books provide a non-threatening, impersonal forum for mothers and daughters to discuss issues. A mother can ask questions like, "What do you think of her choices? Is that a temptation kids at your school face? Do kids act that way in your school? Is the way these girls acting normal? Do you think those girls should be allowed to date?" That way you're not pointing to or calling our your daughter's behavior, specifically, but you're allowing her to express what her world is like. Just be sure not to offer a correction or comment to her every response!
Tyndale hasjust posted the link to the book trailer for the London Confidential series by Sandra Byrd. You can view it on YouTube.
Here's what I say:
I was a bit unsure about reading a YA book, I had a fear of boredom, or that I would have to force myself to read it. I was pleasantly surprised at the easy writing style of Sandra Byrd. As an adult I could easily tell that the book was a little simple, but not to the point of being condescending to a tween or teen. I quite enjoyed the realistic path of the story. And the Christian overtone was in no way over powering. Christianity is just a large part of Savvy's life. Several very important lessons about growing up and dealing with the trials of teenagehood are addresses and impressively discussed. At no point was the book preachy, which was another reservation I had. I can honestly say that if I had a daughter I would give her this series to read. As it is I am already planning to get it for my niece this Christmas. If you are a reader (duh, you are on my blog lol) I think this would be a fun book to read with your tween or teen daughter. All in all a great book, that was easy to read and left me with a warm feeling that all is still good in the world.
Disclaimer: Although I did receive a copy of this book for review (From Tyndale Media), I was in no other way compensated to post this review. These opinions are 100% mine.