Here are some of the amazing reviews I have received from parents and readers of the Sammi Jo books!
I can’t wait to add YOUR review!
Sammi Jo and the Best Day Ever!
DelAnne F, Educator
Title: Sammi Jo and the Best Day Ever – Sammi Jo Book 1 Author: DeDe Stockton Illustrator: Eric Gonzalez Published: 5-27-14 Publisher: Tate Publishing Pages: 104 Genre: Children’s Fiction Sub Genre: Fantasy, Social Issues, friendship ISBN: 9781630638306 ASIN: B00JWVEPEA Reviewer: DelAnne Reviewed For: NetGalley
The story opens near the end of term at Samantha Josephine Meriwether, called Sammi Jo’s by friends and family, boarding school. Sammi Jo’s family is heading to the shore for the summer as they usually do each year. This year though Sammi Jo’s best friend, Kara will not be going with her and Sammi Jo is afraid she is going to be miserable with no one to play with her own age. Kara tells her not worry, that she is bound to make a new friend.
Strange sounds and events begin to happen almost as soon as the Meriwethers arrive at their cottage. Over the next week Sammi Jo solves a mystery, makes a new friend and has a grand adventure. An adventure where everyday is better than the day before.
My nieces and nephews enjoyed Sammi Jo’s story almost as much as I enjoyed sharing it with them. The story was fun and humorous. I look forward to reading of Sammy Jo’s future adventures with them soon. Look for Sammi Jo’s next book, Sammi Jo and the Best Rodeo Ever.
Amazon link: http://www.amazon.com/Sammi-Jo-Best-Day-Ever/dp/1630638307/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1454488800&sr=8-1&keywords=sammi+jo+and+the+best+day+ever
Barnes and Noble link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/sammi-jo-and-the-best-day-ever-dede-stockton/1119268883?ean=9781630638306
Goodreads link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21998839-sammi-jo-and-the-best-day-ever
Reviewed by Hilary Hawkes for Readers’ Favorite
Sammi Jo and the Best Day Ever by Dede Stockton is a gentle and imaginative story about a little girl called Sammi Jo and her summer shore adventure. An only child, Sammi Jo goes to boarding school because her parents are both busy writers. Every summer the family takes a break together at their beach side cottage, and usually Sammi’s best friend from school goes for part of the holiday too. But one year Sammi must manage without Kara and she feels lonely without her friend to share in her adventures. Then some strange things begin happening on the shore line: a flying stick, some mysterious splashing sounds, something with big eyes peeping out from behind a rock, and some pretty, scale-like shells on the sand. Sammi investigates, puts the clues together, and discovers an unusual new friend. The two go on a magical underwater trip. No longer lonely, Sammi decides the holiday had plenty of best days ever after all.
Dede Stockton’s story will appeal to children around middle grade age who are confident readers. The chapters and overall book length of seventy pages make it a manageable length. The writing style is clear and succinct with a plot that moves along at a good pace, and, of course, a happy ending. I loved the sense of mystery concerning the puzzling items and noises that Sammi comes across on the beach, and the wonderful discovery of a magical sea creature – the perfect holiday friend for the lonely little girl. Sammi Jo herself is a believable and likable character and her desire for friendship and fun is something children will identify with. I did feel sorry for Sammi who is expected to entertain herself when her parents spend time working at the holiday cottage too. But having busy working parents is, of course, real life for many children, and an important ability – perhaps especially for children without siblings – is knowing how to safely occupy yourself at those times in fun and healthy ways. There is a good message here about using your imagination to overcome boredom and even loneliness, and not spending time feeling sorry for yourself. Sammi Jo just gets on with exploring the adventures and opportunities around her and has so much fun after all. An entertaining and imaginative story for younger readers.
E. T, Reviewer
Full review and links to come…
A fun little story about a girl who finds a new friend… and finds that even without her best friend by her side, she can still have fun!
This story has elements both believable, and unbelievable wrapped neatly into an exciting little story featuring problem-solving, friendship, and self-reliance skills in a spunky protagonist.
I wasn’t fond of the chapter in New York City. I found that one the hardest to believe, and might even skip it entirely on future readings. Am I to believe that people keep NY penthouses fully furnished to only spend a week a year at? And it mentioned some things to do in the city, but didn’t “show” Sammi Jo doing them.
Other than that, the story blended reality and fantasy nicely.
lisa F, Reviewer
This a cute little book I really enjoyed reading it, I read it to my children as there bedtime story and they both loved it. It was beautifully written and a magical read. We got lost in this book and my kids were sad when it ended.thank you for letting me read and review your book
Sammi Jo and the Best Rodeo Ever!
Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers’ Favorite
Sammi Jo and the Best Rodeo Ever is a children’s fantasy book by author Dede Stockton, and the second book to chronicle Sammi Jo’s magical adventures by the seaside. Along with her new friend Screech, the sea creature who has showed her a whole new underwater world, Sammi Jo and her cousin Jake are about to embark on a new adventure with the merpeople and their beautiful sea horses, including the mythical hippocampus Natacha. Sammi Jo learns much more about the society of the merpeople as she attends their very own rodeo, and the two cultures share in each other’s magical ways as they develop friendships that will last a lifetime.
Dede Stockton has created a superb balance of highs, lows, danger, and joy in Sammi Jo and the Best Rodeo Ever. Sammi Jo is a delightful protagonist with a thirst for adventure, whom both boys and girls will enjoy following as she embarks on her next adventure. The undersea world and its numerous locations are beautifully described and brought to life in fabulous illustrations, and Stockton’s inventions such as the shell phone, translators, and the underwater breathing stones are all well thought out and fun additions to the plot. There are a lot of new characters for readers to get their heads around, but fortunately the author provides a kind of glossary at the beginning to help you keep track. All in all, Sammi Jo and the Best Rodeo Ever is a promising continuation to a series which gets better and better.
DelAnne F, Educator
Title: Sammi Jo and the Best Rodeo Ever – Sammi Jo’s Adventures Book 2 Author: DeDe Stockton Illustrator: Eric Gonzalez Published: 1-26-16 Publisher: Tate Publishing Pages: 152 Genre: Children’s Fiction Sub Genre: Fantasy, Social Issues, friendship ISBN: 9781681873909 Reviewer: DelAnne Reviewed For: NetGalley
Eight year old Sammi Jo’s second week at her family’s cottage by the shore is even more full of fun than the week before. Screech has promised to show her something wonderous and Sammi Jo’s twelve year old cousin, Jake, comes for a visit. Sammi Jo’s parents take her to town to see a rodeo. Sammi Jo learns of local folklore and legends while she is there. Finally Sammi Jo has someone who will believe her about Screech and his family and not just write it all off as her imagination.
DeDe Stockton delivers a story that is both entertaining and educational. She teaches tolerance and acceptance of the difference of others. It is a story of wonders and adventures for young readers. I shared this story with my nieces and nephews varying in ages 6 to 10 and they all gave it two thumbs up. I give it a five out of five stars for the fun we had sharing it with the young readers in my family.
Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/review/create-review?ie=UTF8&asin=1681873907&channel=detail-glance&nodeID=283155&ref_=cm_cr_dp_no_rvw_e&store=books#
Barnes and Noble link: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/sammi-jo-and-the-best-rodeo-ever-book-2-dede-stockton/1123049787?ean=9781681873909
Goodreads link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/28329681-sammi-jo-and-the-best-rodeo-ever
The Reading Room link: https://www.facebook.com/The-Reading-Room-Cozy-Romance-Mysteries-And-More-With-Reviews-165170576957775/#
Claire S, Reviewer
This is a simple yet exciting story about a girl who sees a special kind of sea horse, befriends the merpeople, takes her cousin down to the underwater world and witnesses the best sea rodeo adventure ever!
Sammi Jo hears “the splash” and knows there’s something lurking behind the water but her parents disregard her thoughts. When she finally sees Screech, the one responsible for the splash, Sammi Jo’s life changes and becomes magical and fascinating!
This book is perfect for kids who love to read about mythical creatures and animals. Doubting parents aside, the story is centered on a bright young girl named Sammi Jo who never let negative vibes ruin her day. I read this to my youngest son and he had this grin reaching his ears because he wanted to meet mermaids and see seahorses. At least in this book, he was able to take a look at their beauty. The illustrations of the wonderful seafolks were a sight to behold. DeDe Stockton was able to tickle my child’s imagination so this is a going to be a good addition to my boys’ growing bookshelf!
Lisa B, Librarian
This book is adorable but the list of characters (and amount of them) is a little much for such a short book. My daughter (9 years old) thought it was really fun and she is reading it now, asking for the first book too.
lisa F, Reviewer
I read the first book in this series and loved it so couldn’t wait to start the second I also read this book to my children for there bedtime story they were hooked from the first page they didn’t want me to stop reading.I loved the imagination in this book it’s nice to drift off to an imaginary world it was beautifully written and another fantastic adventure thanks for letting me read and review your lovely book.
Adorable review by a 7 year old child who emailed me after reading “Sammi Jo and the Best Day Ever!” – November 9, 2014
I got your book yesterday at the smokey hill high school craft fair.I really liked the part in the book where Sammi Jo meets screech and where they go on an under water adventure together.
I can’t wait to read your next book.
love margo age 7.
Myself being an author and a parent of five great kids., September 29, 2014
Myself being an author and a parent of five great kids…..I am very protective of what they read. Additionally, I want great stories that are engaging and that can expand their minds. Dede has written just that. Amazing, clear, crisp, and engaging, I had three of my kids loving the book. It is warm, capturing and a book that gets your child to stretch their imagination in a way that every parent would want. There was one disappointing part though…..the kids were bummed that the couldn’t meet Sammi Jo in real life. If you figure out how to bring her to our hometown….you’ll have a fan club like no other!
[An aside to this note is that your children CAN meet Sammi Jo! If you schedule an author visit at your school, you MAY have the chance to meet a flesh and blood version of Sammi Jo! Contact me to find out how!]
June 12, 2014 – Just picked up this book by local author, Dede Stockton, for our grandaughters and nephew. GO to the Tattered Cover bookstore, or Tattered Cover online, get a copy of the book!
By buying through Tattered Cover you will help a local author make their preferred list. This is an awesome cute story aimed at early readers. CONGRATS to Dede for following her dream!
We’ve been reading about Sammi Jo’s adventure with our son at bedtime recently and he is totally captivated by this story! It’s great for early readers who are still fascinated by their own trips to the ocean or a lake nearby. At the beach last weekend, my son was peering out at the water to find a friendly sea creature like Sammi Jo did. We’re all looking forward to the next chapter in her journey!
I love all of the wonderful adventures this book offers. I wanted to read it before I gave it to my grandchildren Hannah, Hartlee, and Dylan. My oldest is 8 years old–perfect age for this book. I highly recommend this book–young readers will soak up all it teaches in a fun way!