Customer Reviews: The Tanglewoods' Secret (Patricia St John Series)
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on August 24, 2000
I was given a copy of The Tanglewoods' Secret when I was probably 10 or 12. I read it and loved it then. I'm now nearly 29. I just picked it up again tonight, and read it cover to cover. The struggles of the main character, a nine-year-old girl, to learn to overcome her fiery temper and selfish spirit, and her discovery of the Shepherd who can and does teach her (and others) how to be good, can speak to anyone who ever wanted their own way over another's. If you are looking for a good, pastoral story with a truly uplifting message (so hard to find today!), then order this book.
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on October 19, 1999
I have never read a more meaningful and thought provoking allegory of the Saviors parable of the lost sheep. In addition the story contains very beautiful and uplifing examples of what can happen when we let ourselves be found by Him. I am very grateful that I found this book.
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on January 4, 2009
This is our first year of homeschooling our two youngest children, ages 10 (boy) &8 ( girl). Both children loved the book and did not want me to quit reading until it was finished. We laughed and cried and fell in love with the characters. It is very hard to find books that both children enjoy listening to me reading. The characters are believable, the story heartfelt. We have since read several other of St James books and enjoyed them as well.
I highly recommend this author for wholesome, enjoyable stories.
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on January 14, 2014
I should have been more aware that this is a revised version "for modern readers". What, are we dumber or something that we can't comprehend Patricia St. John's original text?????? I have LOVED the story from childhood, but the charm is lost in this revision. Same for the other revised versions of her stories.
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on May 5, 2016
This is not the version I thought it was. This is an abridged, youth version. I am still looking for the original. As for this one itself, it is okay. The story is the same, I think, but the wording and phrasing used feels off somehow. Not smooth.
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on May 18, 2008
This charming story lets you walk alongside young Ruth and her brother Philip, as the Good Shepherd is discovered in their hearts. Through the help of some dear friends & unexpected events, the pair learns about God, the One who takes care of His little lambs in the pasture.

Ruth & Philip are good siblings and companions for each other, especially when they share their treasured romps in the woods. Together, they are intrigued & fascinated by every little creature, whether it's in the grass, the trees, or hiding someplace else.

It seems to me, as if these children have two main goals. One goal is to attempt to always evade Aunt Margaret's never-ending slew of chores. The other goal is to earn money... so that they can buy their dream camera, and finish their prized, homemade bird book.

The most important thing in this story though, is that the best secret of all is found out--and that's the Tanglewoods' Secret.

This book had very good morals for children of any age to learn. Older readers might decide to read this book aloud, so that even the young ones can enjoy it too. I loved this story very much. There's plenty of amusement to keep you entertained by all the colorful characters.
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on June 3, 2016
We read Treasures of the Snow first, and that was a great book with a clear plot and interesting characters that were tempted in the ways that many kids are. After that book, this book was a huge disappointment. We homeschool, and we typically discuss plot and things as we're going through the book, but this book really has very little plot to it (which was tough for my learning son). If you had to pick one thread, it would be that the girl wants to be good, but can't make herself be good. And eventually she understands that God can help her do the right thing. While I agree totally with that theology, the book did a terrible job at making that point really clear and meaningful. The characters just kind of wander through situations, and are very thin. And be aware - at the end of the book, the friend dies, although it is presented as an answer to her prayer that God would bring an end to his pain. I wish we hadn't bothered with this one.
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on March 22, 2013
Siblings Philip and Ruth live with their somewhat particular Aunt Margaret while their parents are in India.The brother and sister are avid bird watchers; make a wigwam of branches, honeysuckle and bracken; and laugh over the antics of a wayward, orphaned lamb whom a kind old shepherd cares for. Ruth's temper causes her many sorrows until she meets the Good Shepherd--who cares for her like the shepherd did the orphan lamb--and shows her the way to joy. This book is not jam-packed with violence, aliens and "cool" talk. It is timeless; a homey, inviting story which reminds children and adults alike that life's joys are not found in a continual persuit of media entertainment, amusement parks and quest for excitement. Rather, true joy is found following Christ, the Great Shepherd of the sheep; and learning the lessons found in His Word and the beauties of His creation. Read aloud to children 6 years and up, or read along by 8 year olds and up--it is necessary and thoughtful reading for young and old alike.
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on July 27, 2005
This book shows how when we are bad then come to him He will forgive us for He is merciful
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on April 30, 2016
These children's books by Patricia St. John are absolutely wonderful. These books are character building and filled with both the joyful wonder and difficult challenges of real life from the perspective of children, some from different countries. They are filled with positive values and opportunities to think about choices, consequences, and what kind of person will you become. I highly recommend them. The children in her stories are usually ages 8-12. Have fun reading them together.
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