Books For Mid-School Students
Is everybody tired of being at home? I take my hat off to parents who have school-aged children at home. Even though school systems are making huge efforts to accommodate remote education, I can imagine that teenagers are feeling confined both physically and intellectually, and have considerably more time on their hands that they didn’t normally have.
Fortunately, I’m hearing that reading books is making a comeback, and on-line sales of books are booming.
If you have mid-school kids (ages 10 to 14, plus some older ones) who need good books to either read on their own or to be read to, consider the Mogi Franklin Mystery Series. There are currently nine books featuring a fourteen-year-old boy and his seventeen-year-old sister, both of whom live with their parents in Bluff, Utah.
Each mystery book begins with the first chapter being set in the past. Something happens and the reader is left with a mystery. The subsequent chapters are in the present, where my two heroes find themselves in a separate mystery or social crisis that is somehow linked to the mystery in the past. Solving one requires solving the other.
Each mystery takes place in a real, find-it-on-the-map location, all (except one) within a day’s drive of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Each story is relatively true to the geography, the history, and the culture of the location. Each story is also independent; you can read the books in any order. They are all exciting books, and are family-oriented with family values.
The one book that isn’t local to the Santa Fe area is the result of a visit that I made to an elementary school in Houston. The class wanted nothing to do with me because I had no story that featured pirates. Well, New Mexico has a lot of interesting characters, but no pirates. So, to answer their needs, I wrote a story that occurs on the island of St. John in the Caribbean and features Blackbeard. It turned out to be one my more clever mysteries.
You can find descriptions of each book, book reviews, and photos of the locations on my website: DonaldWillerton.com. Each book is available from Amazon.com and can be ordered through my website.
The Ghosts of the San Juan (#1) won First Place in the Southwest Writers 2001 Contest, and a Finalist Award in the 2017 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards.
The Lost Children (#2) won the Juvenile Book category in the 2017 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards.
Outlaw (#6) and The Lady in White (#7) received Finalist Awards in the 2019 New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards.
The Lake of Fire (#5) won Honorable Mention in The 2019 Eric Hoffer Book Award contest.
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Don Willerton has been a reader all his life and yearns to write words like the authors he has read. He's working hard at it and invites others to share their experiences.