Sticks N’ Stones and the Garden of Phea by Angela Burkhead – Book Blast!

Today I am taking part in a Book Blast hosted by Mother, Daughter, & Son Book Reviews.

About the Book:

Sticks n Stones and the Garden of Phea by Angela BurkheadTitle: Sticks n’ Stones and the Garden of Phea | Author: Angela Burkhead | Publication Date: February 6, 2014 | Publisher: Maple Hill Publishing | Pages: 152 | Recommended Ages: 9+

Summary: Rather than spending one more day amongst the humiliating remarks to the amusement of her fellow peers, Emily Fickeltin runs away. Or, rather, walks away. Emily is misunderstood and disliked but what seems to be every other child her age and on top of it all, she is overweight. Perfectly pleasantly plump, her mother calls her, but Emily feels far from perfect. Her attempt to escape her pain leads her to discover a hidden place with new hope for friends and acceptance. Stumbling into Phea’s garden, an eccentric woman skilled in the arts of gardening and imagination, Emily finds she is not alone in her troubles. Phea and her friend rabbit have a past of their own they wish to run from and together the three battle their innermost demons as their world crumbles around them. Will they ever discover peace and acceptance? These lost and disheartened souls must find who they are before they are all lost forever.

What I Thought:

Ms. Burkhead wrote a very imaginative story. Emily is an amazing character. She is bullied for being over-weight and her parents and teachers don’t realize or pretty much ignore how miserable she is. I like that Emily doesn’t try to become someone different – she really likes herself. Her character does make healthier eating choices and gets more exercise after meeting Phea and exploring her garden, but that is only a minor point to the whole story. Emily’s story is told in parallel with the story of another little girl who lived in the past and was bullied (Phyllda) and the two stories connect together in the book. One part of the story was a bit confusing for me – the origins of Phea – how she got to the garden and how Mr. Twinkletoes (her bunny) met her, but it wasn’t necessary for the story to be complete. I do wish it was explained more. The book was a quick read for me but it was a very enjoyable story.




About the Author: Angela Burkhead

Angela Burkhead

Angela Burkhead is a full time writer and a full time mom. Of the two jobs, she cannot decide which is more difficult and time consuming, but both bring the joys of fulfillment and accomplishment. She and her son currently reside in Richmond, Ky, just north of Kentucky’s arts and crafts capital, Berea, Ky, where she was born and raised. Her newest book, Sticks n’ Stones and the Garden of Phea, an upper middle grade/young adult fantasy novel, was published February of 2014.

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* $25 Book Blast Giveaway *


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Contest ends: May 13, 11:59 pm, 2014

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Categories: Age 6-9

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16 replies

  1. Oh, I love parallel stories. I’ll have to check this one out; it sounds intriguing.

  2. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Erik and I’m glad you enjoyed the book. I agree that Phea’s story was under-developed. I wanted to know more as well. Thanks for taking part in the blast! 🙂

  3. Bullies are naughty. If I ever met one, I would growl. ….and then probably hide. I like the sound of this book.

    Love and licks,

  4. Mr. Twinkletoes…ha! ha! ha!

  5. Love the bunny’s name. It sounds interesting.

  6. I love the premise and the sort of “time travel” sounds it has to it. I’m sorry to hear it was underdeveloped 🙁 But it sounds like a good read just the same 🙂 Nice review, Erik!

  7. Tough review. Interesting concept.

  8. Playing in gardens with rabbits sounds like a good thing!

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