All of the members of the Prairie Family have been big fans of Jenny Cote’s books about Max and Liz. I have written about these wonderful stories several times on this blog. This series of books is about a dog named Max, a cat named Liz, and several of their animal friends who are immortal and travel throughout history as they serve the Maker. The first book, The Ark, the Reed, and the Fire Cloud, introduce the characters of the series as they accompany Noah on the Ark. The second book, The Dreamer, the Schemer, and the Robe, is set in Egypt during the time of Joseph. The third book is entitled The Prophet, the Shepherd, and the Star and traces the prophecies foretelling the birth of Jesus Christ and how they were fulfilled. Each of these books has been just wonderful and has brought new appreciation and insights into the various biblical events that they portray.
Jenny Cote has been working on the latest book in the series that is entitled The Roman, the Twelve, and the King. She just finished writing the manuscript that tells the story of Jesus’ ministry. She considers this particular book to have been her most “difficult and intense” story to write yet because she really sought to portray her Savior and His Mission accurately, clearly, and personally. My kids have been praying for her as she wrote this book, so we were very delighted to be chosen to be advance readers for this newest Epic Order of the Seven book!
So, what are advanced readers? Well, in the next few weeks, we should be receiving a pre-publication copy of the manuscript for this book. It is not completely edited and won’t have the fancy graphics that the final copy will have. Advanced copies are given to readers to receive feedback and comments that will be printed in the final publication. So, we are very honored and excited to be part of this process! We will need to finish reading the book by June 1, and because the book has 781 pages, we will be very busy reading once we receive the copy.
These books make great family read-alouds, and that is how we have enjoyed them. Jenny writes in such a way as to really bring the animals to life. The animals are from a variety of countries and have unique accents written into the text–that makes it so much fun to read to the kids! I really encourage families to have read-aloud time, even for their bigger kids. We started reading with the kids when they were really little and have just continued through the years. By the time we adopted Kara at the age of three, we were already reading “big kid” chapter books as a family, but she just stepped right in there and has never turned back! 🙂 Each night we read a chapter or two before bed (but it will need to be more than that for this new book!), and it gives us a chance to be together, relax, and enjoy each other without all of the electronic noise that we usually have. We have read a variety of things from classics, to biographies, to great fiction–Christian and secular. We have read all of the Max and Liz books several times and see new things to enjoy each time we read them. Our family reading time is truly one of our favorite times of day, and I suppose that even after the kids are gone, Dan and I will still be reading out loud to each other! 🙂
The final book of The Roman, the Twelve, and the King is scheduled to be released in September 2012. I am sure that we will be placing a preorder for it even though we will have read the advanced reader version because it will join our collection of loved read-alouds. When we have finished reading it, I will post a full review on this blog.
We can’t wait to start the latest journey with Max, Liz, Kate, Al, Nigel, Gillamon, and the new mystery friend, otherwise known as the Epic Order of the Seven!