Debbie received a journal for her 9th birthday, and like her Mom does in hers, she addresses the journals to God. At points, it was a very touching novel, as she struggles with the issues in her life, friends, secrets, and growing up. The time frame crosses the death of President Kennedy, so as an adult, I connected with this part. Kids who feel excluded (which is pretty much everyone at this age) will relate to Debbie's struggles with fitting in, finding friends, and trying to figure out who she is. As you read through the journal, you receive vignettes into her life and perceptions, including the monster hiding in her closet. For me, it wasn't monsters at this age, but I was always scared to get up in the morning because of the snakes hiding under my bed. :-/ Since the journal includes a story of the death of a main character, I strongly recommend that parents read this book before turning their own 9-year-old loose on the book. You will want to determine if it adequately handles the issue, or if you will need to have additional discussions with your child concerning the meaning of death. The same goes for some other stories in the journal, including one on visualization and magic. So, while I enjoyed the novel, I give it only a "qualified" approval - depending upon the child and the novels which you want them to read. --Amazon
IN JOURNALS OF THE BIG MOUTH BASS Debbie Sue Bass Williamson has come upon a refreshing way to allow adults to re-visit the developing mind of a 9 year old child while at the same time offering children of around that age to find a reliable friend or role model. After reading the first few pages of this well written book the reader is catapulted into the private world of Debbie, a freckle faced little dynamo who has a tendency to verbally jump before she should and whose frustrations concern the art of maturing form a little girl into a female person. What makes this book a pleasant diversion for adults is the candid way in which Debbie uses her new gift of a journal to communicate with God - likely the only one who can keep secrets: there is no mimicking of children's language that can quickly become tiresome but at the same time the verbiage is solidly that of a child's way with expressions - and thoughts - and fears - and frustrations - and desires! For the children who read this book (and it is undoubtedly going to become a popular book among readers in the third to sixth grade level) there are happily lessons to learn from Debbie's journal entries, but they are so natural that they in no way resemble 'sermons': these are insights and stories that become easy to understand , and more important, easy to remember because of the manner in which Williamson writes. The cover and interior design by Anne LoCasio and the illustrations by Tom Rybarczyk fit the flavor of the book, underlining the fact that it is indeed a children's book but not attempting to make it simple a picture book. This is a well conceived and well produced little book that should enjoy a long shelf life. --Amazon
Debbie does not appear to be your typical nine year old. She just had a birthday and was so not impressed with her gifts except for the one from her mom, a journal. You see, Debbie has trouble keeping secrets, so she decides to write them in her journal to God. After all, God won't tell her secrets to anyone. Debbie tells of her adventures growing up as a girl with an older brother(who incidentally gave her the nickname of Big Mouth Bass), trying to be more girly instead of such a tomboy, her first crush, and the mischief her and the gang got into. The entire book is written from the aspect of a journal. Debbie loves to tell God how ugly she is with her freckles and red hair, she has no girlfriends, is always picked last for games of dodge ball, and most of all her inability to keep a secret, which by the way gets, her in trouble on more then one occasion. This is such an enjoyable read and is most definitely written from a nine year olds perspective. It includes short, choppy sentences to flight of ideas. Even so, there is no trouble following the storyline. I think any school aged child would thoroughly enjoy this book. I am not a school aged child and I thoroughly enjoyed the story. I personally will be waiting for the next book to come out to see what mischief Debbie gets into next. The book cover is absolutely perfect and most definitely shows Debbie. The beginning of each chapter also has a picture which is completely appropriate for each chapter. --Amazon
About the Author
Debbie Williamson was born in SLC and raised in Southern California. She has four children and eleven grandchildren. She married her best friend, love of her life in October of 2000. She lost him to cancer in 2010. She loves the ocean, reading, gardening and nature. She sucks at golf but keeps at it. One of her quotes, " Love is the only thing we leave here with, the only thing that matters and the one thing that lasts forever."