Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Book Blog Tour and Giveaway: The Encouragement Letters by Shanna Spence


  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

When I read the synopsis for The Encouragement Letters by Shanna Spence, I was intrigued. The cover also drew my attention. I lived in England for over 6 years which is another reason I wanted to read this book. I love all things England! When I got the opportunity to review it, I jumped at the chance!

I found the pacing to be perfect in The Encouragement Letters. This is a middle grade read, and Miss Spence sets the pacing perfectly for that age group. Never once did I feel like the book was too fast or too slow for young readers. I also feel the length of the book was perfect for the age group it targets.

I enjoyed the plot of The Encouragement Letters very much. It was interesting to read about Will's struggles and how he was overcoming them. I loved reading about how kind everyone was to each other. It was as if everyone was one big family. Everyone would help each other out, and that was very encouraging. It was interesting and uplifting to read about Will overcoming his challenges and not becoming a victim of circumstance even when that would have been the easiest thing to do. Reading about how Will was trying to lift everyone up in hard times with his encouragement letters truly was heartwarming. There are no plot twists in this book, but it doesn't need plot twists as it's not that kind of book. All of my questions were answered in the book. There are no cliff hangers whatsoever which was great.

The world building was done very well. Although written in third person, The Encouragement Letters is told through the eyes of 11 year old Will. I feel that Shanna Spence did a fantastic job making it seem as if a real 11 year old is telling the story. Miss Spence also does a great job making you feel as if you are involved with everything going on. Her use of language is profound. A few of the characters' accents were written exactly as they speak. I loved this! This made it that much more realistic. I also loved the Yorkshire dialect guide at the beginning of the book. Shanna Spence does a great job educating and making her readers feel like they are experiencing the Industrial Revolution in England first hand.

I loved every character in The Encouragement Letters. They all felt very real and fleshed out. Will was such a sweet boy as I mentioned earlier. I admired his work ethic and how empathetic he was even at such a young age. I loved all the shop workers and how caring they were towards Will always giving him extra food, scraps of leather, or whatever they had left over. Mary Beth was a character who also stood out to me. I enjoyed when she was mentioned. Maybe it's because I felt like I could relate to her. Like all of the characters in The Encouragement Letters, she had a strong work ethic and was so kind to Will. I thought it was cute how Will seemed to have a bit of a crush on her.

As this is a middle grade read, there aren't many trigger warnings. There is talk of death (Will's father had passed away a year prior when the novel starts) as well as sickness (Will's mother is sick throughout the book, and Will looks after her. There's one scene of violence (Will gets punched in the face), but it is not very graphic and is described in an age appropriate manner.

Overall, The Encouragement Letters is a very inspiring and uplifting novel. The characters are all so kind and have great work ethics, and the book is somewhat educational with describing how life was like during the Industrial Revolution in England. I would definitely recommend The Encouragement Letters by Shanna Spence to those 9+ who need some encouragement or who just love reading uplifting novels. Actually, I'd just recommend this to every and all people who are 9 years and older! This book gets a solid 5 out of 5 stars from me!
(Thank you to the author for providing me with a paperback of this title for a review on a blog tour I am doing in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.)
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
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Author Video
Character Interview
Author Interview

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  1. I thought there was a LITTLE twist with what Will found in the letter box... I enjoyed this story and your review of it!

    1. Oh yeah! I didn't even think of that! I loved this sweet book a lot <3

  2. Enjoyed your great review and even though I don't read this type of book often, it's reviews like your that cause me to branch out.
    sherry @ fundinmental

  3. I am enjoying these tours and finding all the terrific books my family is enjoying reading. Thanks for bringing them to us and keep up the good work.