Saturday, November 24, 2018

Weekend Briefing

Welcome back, agents! Today is a special briefing; we have a new book that is recommended all agents read before their next mission by a very valued citizen consultant.

Name: Allyson Kennedy

A native of eastern North Carolina, Allyson Kennedy fell in love with writing at age seven while filling the pages of her Mary-Kate and Ashley notebook. Dozens of notebooks later, Allyson has penned short stories, poems, song lyrics, and two novels. After the second of her three writing contest wins at the University of Mount Olive, God planted a seed in her heart to pursue self-publishing her debut novel, Can't Beat the Heart of a Carolina Girl. When she's not writing, Allyson enjoys reading, blogging on her website, Authoring Arrowheads, reviewing books and movies for indie Christian authors and filmmakers, and following God's plan for her life. Speak Your Mind is her second novel.

And now, the very important novel that can double as a training supplement for agents still going through their junior high stage of the Academy:

No friends. No confidence. All mind.

Victoria Harding- the scared-silent girl of Grahamwood Junior High- survives the seventh grade from the confines of her mind. After her best friend moved away due to a secret Victoria can't reveal, she'd rather sit alone at lunch and live in her imagination than befriend the classmates that joke that she's plotting violence against the school. Between being called names and having a teacher who's out to get her, Victoria's confidence is at an all-time low, until she's volunteered to escort her new neighbor around school. With the new kid showing up everywhere, will she finally have the courage to be heard again through their forged friendship? Will she forever be locked within the restrictive cage her doubts have created, or will she realize that relying on God is the only way to defeat her anxiety once and for all?

And now, a recommendation from Mission Head: 
A Five Star Read!
Speak Your Mind by Allyson Kennedy was a charming middle grade novel that is a breath of fresh air compared to most depictions of kids going through public school in literature these days. I really related to 'Shrug' as she struggled with her shyness and lack of friends. But she also bears a great secret and is dealing with harassment from a teacher and bullying- and yet the story is never depressing. It was quite wonderful to see the ways so many characters grew through the course of the story, and the story was a comfort as I went through some difficult days at work.

I loved Aiden; he was just the kind of friend I wish I had had in junior high, with his steadfastness and loyalty. And Zeebot was just so original, I loved him too. Also, the romance was very well done for the age group (if I had had the privilege of reading it in middle school, I think I would've had a serious crush on the hero).

One of the best lines (besides all the other ones from Zeebot): "Excuse me, sir, Zeebot would like to inquire if you would be interested in completing the experiment for class on Area 51?"

This definitely makes it to my top five favorite contemporary middle grade novels.

I received a complimentary copy from the author, and the opinions are my own.

For curious agents who would like to know more, here are some places the civilian consultant has been know to visit according to our files:

Spotify Playlist for Speak Your Mind:
Authoring Arrowheads Blog:

And for those agents who would like to see what other sources besides the Agency thinks about this novel, visit the other blogs in this tour:

I'll leave you to do your homework, agents. But first, a quick announcement. #Giving Tuesday is coming up next week, which means, among other things, that every donation given to Human Coalition will be doubled, up to a 15,000 limit. I encourage all agents to look into Human Coalition- and other trusted charities that may be participating in a matching challenge this Giving Tuesday as a post-Thanksgiving celebration. Also, if anyone purchases any book in the Kristian Clark and the Agency Trap series between today and Tuesday, I will be sure to put all profit into Human Coalition in time for the Matching Challenge, that ends midnight! Until then, don't do anything that might get you brainwiped. Ciao!


  1. Thanks for participating in the blog tour and for the sweet review, Jes! :)

    1. Thanks for letting me participate and read your special work.