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Book Review

Publisher's Note:

Henry has always been fascinated by rocks. As a homeschooler, he pours through the R volume of the encyclopedia (to help him identify the rocks he finds). So, when a meteorite falls in his family's field, who better to investigate than this rock enthusiast--with his best friend, James, and his little sister, Birdie, in tow, of course. But soon after the meteorite's arrival, the water in Henry's small Maine town starts drying up. It's not long before news spreads that the space rock and Henry's family might be to blame. Henry is determined to defend his newest discovery, but his knowledge of geology could not have prepared him for how much this stone from the sky would change his community, his family, and even himself. Science and wonder abound in this middle-grade debut about an inquisitive boy and the massive rock that came down to Earth to reshape his life.…

Down to Earth

by Betty Culley

Overall Book Review:

Seasoned YA author, Betty Culley brings us her first middle-grade novel in Down to Earth. It’s such a fun book that had a similar feel to Robin Yardi’s Owl’s Outstanding Donuts. Several elements of the story, mainly the simplistic life of the main character and his family, made it feel as if it was a story from many years ago but you later find out it is a modern-day story. Due to the fact that a major part of the plot was about finding where one can drill for a (water) well, we get the bonus of learning about dowsing. Several chapters begin with a quote from a book about this unusual skill that adds interest to the story. In addition to the story having educational value, the relationship between the main character and those close to him are beautiful. It’s also great to read about a child who loves to learn. Down to Earth is a feel-good story that will be engaging for anyone who enjoys an every-day story with a side of extraordinary.

Review of a Digital Advance Reading Copy

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Random House Children’s Books

Content Analysis:

Profanity/Language:  1 mild obscenity.

Violence/Gore:  Few (5) brief incidents including reference to a mother dying and her children nearly drowning; second-hand report of adult dying; reference to house getting hit by lightning; child hit in head, becoming unconscious; house destroyed in flood.

 Sex/Nudity:  None

Mature Subject Matter:

Poverty; family losing their house.

Alcohol / Drug Use:


Overall Book Rating

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About the Reviewer

I love being able to help busy parents who just don’t have the time to pre-screen all their children’s books and know how much I appreciate it as my sons have gotten older. I feel very blessed that my amazing husband makes it possible for me to be a stay-at-home mother to four amazing boys. When not reading or enjoying time with my family, I like baking, especially trying new recipes, and the occasional sewing project.