I just love the voice! AG is so spunky!
- CJ Loiacono
I did not get to read the first two books in this series, and you really do not have to, to get the drift of what is going on although I am going to order them because I really enjoyed this book, April Grace being my favorite character of course.
I love how she snoops around trying to be the little detective to find out everything that is going on in her household to no avail. April Grace is very blunt, with her witty and straightforward humorous perspective on life. This is set in the 70’s and April Grace goes through many changes and struggles that young girl’s today face, she reminded me so much of myself at that age. You will fall in love with April Grace, and many of all ages will find themselves relating to her I am sure.
April Grace Reilly is a sixth-grade girl who definitely knows her own mind. And in her topsy-turvy world, that’s a very good thing. She’s got a grandmother who’s dating a pastor from a neighboring church, an annoying sister who thinks she’s God’s gift to the soap opera world, and a Big Mystery on her hands. To top it all off, April Grace’s non-existent other grandmother drops in out of nowhere and becomes all too existent. How’s a girl supposed to stay on top of all of this?
This was a delightful book to read. April Grace has got the spunk and personality to match wits with Ramona Quimby any day of the week. The first person point of view is very effective in this book. We really get a great sense of April Grace’s wit and frustrations with the people in her world. She does read younger than sixth grade – but that’s a very good thing, in this reader’s mind. A book like this would appeal to readers in fourth grade and up. It’s a very good example of middle grades fiction – and probably the best middle grades fiction book I have read in the Christian genre.
The best part about this book was the writing. McCrite is a very talented writer. Chocolate-covered Baloney has such amazing voice, and such skillful show-not-tell writing. This is a book that any girl in the middle grades can enjoy reading. I highly recommend this book .
My daughter is what drew my interest to this series and it has been refreshing to see details from the first two books flowing smoothly throughout all three. I enjoy the emphasis the books give to family and keeping faith at the heart and center of it all. I would highly recommend this book to girls 4th-6th grade and anyone else that enjoys or happily remembers the 80’s.
Totally great series April Grace is sort of like me and the story is actually realistic. Everything always fits together
Purchased this whole series for Christmas break reading for my 11 year old daughter – she loved it. Read straight through. I could hear her chuckling at some of the characters and circumstances, so I knew it was a good find, even before she started staying up late to read “just one more chapter.”
I have read all 3 books in this series by KD McCrite and I would love for her to write more books with April Grace as the narrator and character of characters! These book are as enjoyable for adults as they would be for teens. Many times I busted out laughing even though I tried not to because my husband was asleep. Just couldn’t help it!!! Please publishers…..more April Grace. I am begging!
This book is great, I recommend for kids 9-13!
It was probably my favorite series to pure – teen girls!!!!
This was just an OK book for me. I have not read many books like this but wanted to give it a chance. I gave this book 4/5 stars. I liked the characters in the story. For having a young girl be the main focus of the story her personality really came through. The minor characters were also written well and you could feel their emotions with just the words on the pages. I did not enjoy the many arguments and what I felt like were disrespectful comments. You can write an argument or discussion without a lot of words and still get the idea of the fight across. I would recommend this book to the early high school age group.
I would like to thank the publisher for the copy of this book I enjoyed reading. I gave an honest review based on my opinion of what I read.
By Amber Walter
I can’t believe this is the last book of the series. It is just too good to end. I wish there were more to come on the Confessions Of April Grace!!!!
By Heidi Grange
April Grace has a big mouth. She isn’t afraid to say what she thinks, even if comes out rather rude. And she has definite opinions about things including her sister, Myra Sue’s strange behavior. Having gotten in trouble previously she decides that she won’t tell anyone about it until she has some concrete proof as to what her sister is doing. But the unexpected arrival of a relative throws all her plans into chaos, making her wonder what her life is coming to. Throw in a disagreement with her best friend, a surprise birthday party, and her neighbor as her new P.E. teacher and April Grace has a lot to sort through. Can she figure it out in time? Or will things just explode?
Strengths: April Grace is one of those characters that makes you sigh in exasperation yet laugh at her brashness. She has a strong voice and her ‘quaint’ expressions help create a believable setting. The other characters are also interesting each with his/her own problems and perspectives. The author does a nice job of showing how real relationships sometimes work and sometimes don’t work based on those perspectives which may or may not be accurate.
Weaknesses: Much of this book takes place at April Grace’s home, which is interesting, but some young readers might find a tad boring, but April Grace’s narration is anything but boring. The mystery with Myra Sue isn’t too hard to figure out.
This is a great book for a tween girl. April Grace is such an adorable character. I loved her to pieces. She was interesting, funny, and witty. The entire book is full of good, believable characters. The writing is clean and entertaining, while conveying the story and message clearly. Honestly, I just loved this book and would recommend it to any girl ages 8 and up.
While this is the third book in a series, it also can be read as a stand alone novel.
Great book! Love this series. I hope that it wins several awards across the country. More books/series need to be written like this one.
Set in a rural setting and uses Christian values Great book for young girls! Purchased as a gift and my daughter can really relate to the story line.
By Pen Name
Like the book I have red hair just like April kept we wondering what meta sues up too there family is so sweet and helpful for each other
I could really feel for April Grace, some sisters are so annoying. But when it came down to it, she really loved her sister and didn’t want anything to happen to her.
I highly recommend this book for the whole family. It’s fun to take a glimpse at the past where the clunky remote control was considered of high technology! But more important than the trip down memory lane, April Grace and her family drive home the importance of communicating with family members and being open-minded enough to listen to them, really listen to their side of the story, would save a lot of people from holding grudges and losing out on the precious moments life can bring. By the end of the book I was even ready to forgive Myra Sue for her absolute lack of common sense! And that’s saying a lot — read the book and you’ll want to shake her too!
By Elizabeth S.
I’m not a huge fan of change, and neither is April Grace Reilly, a sixth-grader from Cedar Ridge. April Grace’s life turned upside down in such a short time, and it all started with a simple warning in church. It was almost as if the sermon Pastor Ross gave that Sunday morning in 1987 was meant specifically for April Grace and her family. He simply said, “Things are gonna change.” (pg 1) And boy, oh boy, things surely did change!
Simple things occurred at first. Isabel, the Reilly’s uppity neighbor from California became April Grace’s gym teacher. Isabel wasn’t just any ole gym teacher; she was teaching them dance the Proper Way.
Then, April Grace’s sister, Myra Sue starts acting very sneaky. For a dumb fourteen year old, Myra Sue was acting more dumb than usual according to April Grace. She became suddenly interested in the mail and homework, which April Grace highly suspected was just a cover-up for something else. After all, Myra Sue never did her homework and was too accustomed to making Cs to start studying now. Even more peculiar, Myra Sue became overly fascinated in the phone–way more fascinated than her average teenage, soap opera-loving self.
Still trying to figure out what Myra Sue is hiding, another stick is thrown in the road when a long-lost relative suddenly appears. April Grace has reached her limit of change, but the boulder won’t stop. What was Myra Sue hiding? Who is this relative, and Why is this person in her home, her life, expecting to be part of the family when they haven’t been before?
Problems of change come in all sizes, but the biggest comes towards the end. I won’t spoil it for you (you have to read it for yourself), but the Reilly family as a whole learns to listen and forgive right smack in the middle of a crisis. Most of all, April Grace learns to treasure her sister, Myra Sue, and that sometimes, being a big-fat tattletale is the right thing to do.
I have to say, I really enjoyed this book. Katherine McCrite’s Chocolate-covered Baloney: Confessions of April Grace took me back to the time of phone cords being stretched as far as they’d reach for privacy, solving problems without the internet, and entertainment of days long ago. This book is perfect for a young girl of today who needs a different perspective (after all the 80s are back in style). It is also for us adults who as a child of the 80s can relive those moments all over again.
Change isn’t easy. I can say I wish some things were still the same as they were in the 80s…except BIG HAIR. That is one thing that definitely needed to change!
By TWJ Magazine
If you’re a fan of books for tweens and teens, then you’ll be a fan of K.D. McCrite and her lively young heroine, April Grace. This series takes place in the 1980’s, before the age of cell phones and social media…which proves that tweens are pretty much the same regardless of the decade, and deal with the same kinds of issues.
In Chocolate Covered Baloney, April Grace has a lot to deal with. A grandmother she’s never met before shows up on the family doorstep, acting like she’s family and ready to move right in. April’s older sister, Myra Sue, is keeping secrets and acting mysterious, and April Grace still isn’t quite sure how she feels about neighbors Isabel and Ian.
In the third novel of a series (Confessions of April Grace), the title character lives up to her name…her middle name, at least. She learns a lot about showing grace, forgiving in love…and finally gets to the bottom of Myra Sue’s secrecy…in the nick of time.
April Grace is spunky and confident, and speaks her mind. She reminds me a little of the 80’s sitcom character Punky Brewster…if Punky knew Jesus! Her family adventures are always fun and full of faith and love…with lots of humor thrown in for good measure. I’ve enjoyed the entire series, and Chocolate Covered Baloney lives up to its title.
I highly recommend the first two titles in this series as well.
Do you remember the days when cell phones and computers had no part in your day. If you want to talk to someone, you had to stand near the phone, hopefully not get too tangled in the cord, and call them. Sometimes, you would even get a busy signal. That sound is a sound of an era gone by. In some ways it was a simpler time. Google was not the answer to curious questions. However, even in those years, children had problems and concerns. Families had baggage. That is what Chocolate Covered Baloney: Confessions of April Grace is all about.
April Grace is a child of the late 80’s. She has an annoying sister who seems to be hiding things, a best friend with her own set of problems, and parents and grandparents that don’t always seem to understand. Yet, she learns that through all the difficulties she faces, she can depend on her family to be there for her. Even the members of her family that seem to be so annoying really care about her.
I found this book to be interesting. I was a child about the same time as this book is set. The book is full of sayings that I grew up hearing. However, it is relevant to today’s children as well because it deals with the issues that children deal with in any era.
You can find this book at Amazon, CBD, or wherever Christian books are sold.
“What I wanted to do was stay in our nice, warm house, crawl up on my bed, wrap myself in the raggedy old blanket I’d had since I was little, and read that book that was supposed to be over my head. That’s what I wanted to do, but something inside me said, “April Grace Reilly, something is Going On, and you need to find out what.”
April Grace Reilly knows that her sister’s up to no good what with her hanging around the mailbox all of a sudden and getting so defensive when she asks what she is doing. Her sister even threatens to tell their mama about some things April Grace doesn’t want her to know. She’s also been acting like she’s doing so much homework when she knows for a fact that she’s just reading her fashion magazines. April Grace knows she’s up to something but she’s going to have to get proof this time so someone will believe her before something terrible happens like it has happened in the past. But, then comes a surprise visitor that changes everything. Now April Grace is trying to be there for her mother and grandmother while seeing if there is some connection with her sister’s odd behavior and this horrid visitor coming into town.
I recently reviewed the first book in the Confession of April Grace series, In Front of God and Everybody. I haven’t read the second book yet but when I saw this on NetGalley I couldn’t resist! A review saying that you didn’t need to read the other books to follow along with this story also swayed my decision to request the third book with April Grace. There were two big shocks that came along with this story. The first one is because I didn’t read the second book and the second shock was purely based upon this book. There’s a new visitor that just takes control of everybody’s emotions in the family. They are unwanted but her mama can never turn anyone down because she’s just so good. I knew from the start the author was going to try to make me like this person but I was not going to like this person no matter what! She changed my mind anyways. With some tears in my eyes I admitted that I liked them now when there was a touching moment in the book. You’ll notice that I don’t tell you who it is because that would ruin everything! Just know when the name was revealed a audibly gasped. It couldn’t be true! It made for one great twist.
Most of the story is based around April Grace’s sister, Myra Sue, who April Grace can’t stand. Myra Sue thinks she’s so glamorous and strives to be that way. April Grace’s response is to call her a D.R.I.P. I think it was intentional that April Grace said more and more awful things about her sister that made me notice and feeling sorry for her sister. I really like April Grace and she has said some things out of sibling rivalry in the past but I think she went too far. You could tell that Myra Sue was feeling low and she didn’t need negativity. I foresaw what was going to happen and I can’t say I blame Myra Sue for it. The sense of family love came together when this story was through. It was like enough was enough this had to happen for the family to be more like a family. April Grace needed to notice that everyone has feelings. I enjoyed this togetherness coming from the sister’s relationship as well as from her mother. I’ve complained before that April Grace’s mother was just way too nice so much so that she caused heartache to her family. This time around I think I finally saw her and appreciated what she was all about. Isabel was also quite the loyal friend being there for April Grace’s mom and grandma when they needed some backup. She’s come along way.
This book was even better than the first. I am so happy how it all turned out and I so enjoy all of the characters this time around even more. April Grace was her always nosy self that got a few laughs and smiles out of me. Any way she acts she’s still her incredibly funny self who people should really start to pay attention to! She knows things and for fear that people would brush off her theories she tried to find proof that there is something going on with her sister. When everything hit the fan who was there to save the day? April Grace of course. I love that girl. This book was less christian fiction for me even if the first book wasn’t that much either. It was a nice amount and didn’t overwhelm me at all so I think most people will like her story. If you are looking for a good southern children’s book with a hilarious main character you should read about April Grace. April Grace truly captured my heart once again.
April Grace is back, and still dealing with the woes of a preteen girl. Her older sister is acting funny, her baby brother is the center of attention, and April has a sense that big changes are coming now that she is in junior high. And this biggest change of call comes calling in the form of a long lost family member!
This is the second book I have read in the April Grace series, and I find myself relating to April Grace so much. Because the books are set in the 80s, in a rural area, April Grace’s life shares similarities to my own life as a preteen, so I really find myself relating to her as a character. I think she continues to be richly developed, and it is nice to see her maturing a little. She is in that odd space between little girl and young lady, and I think so many tweens will relate to her.
I liked the story development as well. It involves a little bit of a mystery (what is her sister up to??) as well as a conflict in the form of the long lost family member. This means the story is engaging to the reader. Also even though this is a book from a series, it functions fine as a stand alone story, something I always appreciate.
I find these books to be great for middle grades readers, particularly young girls. While the books are marketed as Christian fiction, the Christian aspect is subtle, and mostly, it is just a nice, clean book for middle grades readers to which they will be able to relate.
I received a review copy courtesy of BookSneeze in exchange for my honest review.
This book was so good when I couldn’t read it it left me wanting more. I hope they can make another on!!!
By K. Wasiak
I was surprised how much I got into this book. The curious personality of April Grace really got me hooked into the plot wanting to know why her sister Myra Sue was up to. It was also interesting how it not only had April Grace as the narrator telling the story, but it also had her telling her thoughts. At times her thoughts are disrespectful and she does not always think before she blurts the things out, but this provides an authentic feel for her character while also usually showing how she did say what was appropriate or later realize she should not have said it in that way.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free through the BookSneeze book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
I bought this book so that I could give my granddaughter the complete April Grace set for Christmas.
She loves them, as do I. KD McCrite is a great writer, both for pre-teen, teen and adults.
KD, you have done it again! I love reading your confessions books!! I feel so many emotions while I am turning pages. The ending always leaves me with such warm feelings in my heart. Thank you so much for these journeys with APRIL GRACE.
April Grace’s family sticks together through thick and thin… for the most part. I love how everyone, including the neighbors that she didn’t “love” are always willing to help out as a family. There is so much love in that house. April Grace is such a wild girl at heart. She always speaks her mind but knows when to hold back.. for the most part. She is very inquisitive. But sometimes, you realize she is just a child. She gets in a fight with her best friend, she fights with her sister. But when the family needs help, she is there to hold them together and believes that God is there to help all of them. I believe that this is a must read for the young girls in your life, and I’m pretty sure I said this about the last book I read. It is meant to help them learn what is right and wrong.
I was given this book to review by Booksneeze… regardless, all opinions are my own.
I loved the book. It had a good storyline & it kept me interested. However I think the first two were a little better. It was still worth reading though.
This is the third book in the series about April Grace. I have not yet read the first two, but was able to follow the story easily without having read them.
This is what I call a VOICE book. You know those books where you feel like you can clearly hear the character’s voice in your head as you read. It’s more like sitting down and having a conversation with a person than it is like reading a book.
I love April Grace. She’s a strong, well developed character who grows throughout the story. She is confident but willing to admit when she’s wrong. I love her relationship with all the members of her family. Even though she has little or no patience with her snotty older sister, Myra Sue, you can tell that deep down she really cares for her. She’s even willing (after some struggling) to learn to love this new trouble causing long lost relative. All of her antics provide for an enjoyable read.
I especially liked that this story takes place during the late 80s when children were not so “plugged in.” It was refreshing to see young people interact without benefit of cell phones and social media.
Another positive is April Grace’s spiritual side. It’s not an overwhelming aspect of the book, but April Grace does frequently stop to consider her actions/thoughts and pray about them. April Grace is not perfect, but she does try to be good. This is a book I can add to my Young Christian Fiction reading list.
I enjoyed this book so much, I’ve already requested the first two books In Front of God and Everybody and Cliques, Hicks and Ugly Sticks. I also plan to order these books for the school library. Readers who enjoyed Heather Frederick’s The Mother Daughter Book Club series will certainly want to check out this series
By Shay Y. West
There aren’t enough words to describe how much I love the April Grace books. I grew up in the 80’s so reading these in such a nice trip back through memory lane. April Grace is faced with a mystery that she just HAS to solve. Her sister, Myra Sue, is acting all sneaky and just not at all like herself. To top it all off, a relative she didn’t even really know about shows up one day, throwing her world into a real tizzy.
The author manages to capture the duality that only siblings can possess: the rivalry and deep love. As I am the oldest of three girls, I am Myra Sue. And I can so relate to her. When it comes to privacy and my room, heaven help the sister who dares to breach either of these things. As I read the fights between Myra Sue and April Grace, I found myself laughing. My sisters and I sounded JUST like they did, from the name-calling to the “Oh HUH!” and “Nuh UH!” and the blackmail that if I told on them they would tell on me, etc. However, when it comes down to the nitty gritty, we love each other deeply as do Myra and April. It just may take awhile to figure that part out 😉
The book’s narrator, precocious April Grace Reilly, is one sharp cookie who recognizes baloney, even if it is coated with chocolate. In this third book of the series, she is experiencing the stresses of junior high school, a new baby in the family, and her beloved grandmother’s metamorphosis from granny into a senior citizen femme fatale. The shocking arrival of her mother’s ailing, long-lost, neglectful mother thrusts the family into total chaos and challenges their gentle Christian values. The peculiar behavior of her teenaged sister Myra Sue piques April’s concern and her snoopy detective tendencies and amps up their sibling rivalry to funny and sometimes outrageous levels, especially as told by the sweet, but quick-tongued and sharp-minded little sister.
Resolution comes through the fundamental goodness represented by the Ozark country family of the 1980s. Complex life situations, as seen through the eyes of a young girl, make for a readable story that draws the reader into the lives of the Reilly family. McCrite tells a tale that is sophistocated and entertaining enough for young adult reading, but she writes with measured sensibility for younger readers, too.
I thoroughly enjoyed the book and could easily see my young granddaughters identifying with April Grace and learning a lesson about love, acceptance and understanding.
I loved the author’s use of voice to write this book, I felt convinced I was actually reading the writing of a (very funny) tween.
For example, “Her hair was a color I have never seen on a real human person….And I believe if you are a million years old, you should not wear mini-skirts.”
Even the Chapter names are full of April Grace’s character “Myra Sue’s Room: The Pit of the World”, “Almost a Civil War in Our Very Own Kitchen”.
One thing some parents may not enjoy is the abundance of insults shared between April Grace and Myra Sue. I feel though that it was used to display typical sibling rivalry and I think it was true to life. The author also has a purpose for this, but you’ll just have to read it yourself as I wouldn’t want to spoil the story.
Another facet of this book I enjoyed was the use of multiple conflicts to teach the reader about forgiveness, the importance of family and friends, hospitality and of course to try and see other people in the way that Jesus would.
April Grace Reilly is a pre-adolescent girl in the sixth grade. Her sister, Myra Sue, is in the ninth grade and dreams of making it big as a movie star.
Chocolate Covered Baloney, written by K.D. McCrite in the voice of April Grace, is a story about sibling rivalry and learning what is really important.
The book starts off simply hilarious. April Grace is in church and the preacher says “Things are going to change!” He was right, but April Grace wasn’t altogether sure she liked the changes that came her way. She had already experienced some changes, Ian and Isabel St. James hadn’t been there a year ago, neither had her baby brother, Eli. Her Grandma was still a “normal” cooking and cookie baking Grandma who never went on dates.
You’ll have to read the book to see what kind of changes God has in store for April Grace because I’m not telling.
As I mentioned the book is hilarious, and I love nothing more than a funny book. The characters are well-developed, the plot great and moves along at a nice pace. The confliction/resolution is there but it could be a bit stronger…at least the resolution. I know this book will be a hit with the middle-school crowd.
There a few things I found troubling.
The sibling rivalry. I know, I know. It’s a right of passage, all children experience it. All children talk that way to their siblings. It might be normal but it doesn’t have to be! I do not care at all for the amount of times, and really even if it was just once it would be too many, April Grace referred to her sister as dumb. It was heavily implied she was stupid and lacked any brain cells for the “important” things in life. I am questioning letting my girls read it, because this type of talk/behavior is not allowed in my home and the last thing I want them to do is read it.
I wish there was a stronger God element in the story. The book starts out with April Grace and her family in church and that is about it for the spiritual element.
But you need to decide for yourself!
April Grace is a teenager with a mystery on her hands. Her sister, Myra Sue, has a secret and April is determined to figure it out. What is Myra Sue looking for in that silly mailbox? Chocolate Covered Boloney: The Confessions of April Grace is the kind of book I would have loved as a teenager. You can’t help but laugh at the way April Grace describes her life. With her grandmother starting to date, the tiny, proper Isabel teaching them `real dance – not the stuff they learn now days” and now the big surprise party, April Grace has some laughable situations occurring in life.
Chocolate-covered Baloney is the 3rd book in the Confessions of April Grace series. I’ve read the first too books and loved them, this new book did not disappoint. I love seeing April Grace grow up and even mature in her writings.
In this book April Grace to learning about change. Just when she is starting to get used to having a new baby in the house an unexpected guest arrives at their house. It’s her grandma on her mama’s side, one she thought was dead and one her mama hope was gone. Everyone in the family does not like her, but in true Reilly fashion they try their best to make her feel welcome. April Grace’s sister is also up to something that she shouldn’t but April Grace just can’t prove it and tries to find out what she’s hiding. But can she figure it out before it’s too late? In the end April Grace learns a lesson in forgiveness and love. She also learned to not judge a book by its cover.
This was another great read, one I would recommend to Christian families. Perfect for pre-teen and older. I look forward to when my daughters are older so I can share these books with them. This book series will become a great classic book for my family to read and enjoy for years.
By in wonder
There are 283 pages on this book. The main character is April Grace. She has no time to relax because of a strange intruder. When April Grace’s sister goes missing, things get crazy. She feels like it is her responsibility to track down all the clues. Finally when she finds her sister she can relax. I liked this book because of the way they described everything it made it seem real. I will remember this book because it was funny. I would recommend this book to a friend…it made me laugh out loud.
As a mom, I appreciate that this book is set in the 80’s ☺. It is refreshing to me that the characters in the book are not constantly on their cell phones, but they spend real time with family, friends and neighbors. They must also be resourceful beyond “google” in solving the “mystery”. smile. The author shows the reality that no matter what time you “grew up” in what you experience may be new to you, but in actuality “echoes and reflects the problems and issues of days gone by”.
By S. Steyling
If you were a child of the ’80s like me, I pretty much guarantee that you’ll be able to relate to “Chocolate Covered Baloney,” the latest book in the “Confessions of April Grace” series by K.D. McCrite.
Set in Arkansas during the mid-1980s, this story finds spunky 12-year-old April Grace Reilly wishing for nothing more than some peace and quiet so she can enjoy a good book and a chocolate bar. Unfortunately, her wish is shoved out the window when she finds herself dealing with more phoney baloney than she ever imagined!
As if it’s not difficult enough adjusting to life with a new baby brother and having your prissy neighbor become your gym teacher, April Grace’s life is once again thrown for a loop when a long-lost relative appears out of nowhere and begins wreaking havoc on the entire Reilly family. To make matters worse, her older sister Myra Sue – who manages to annoy April Grace nearly every waking minute of the day – has been acting sneaky and secretive. April Grace attempts to play detective to try and unravel these mysteries within her very own family – and when her sister ends up disappearing, it’s up to April Grace to piece together everything she knows so that she can help bring her sister home safely before it’s too late.
This third installment in the “Confessions of April Grace” series once again had me hooked from page one, bringing back all of the characters I’ve come to know and love, with a story that kept me hooked from page one. I also appreciate how K.D. McCrite once again achieves that perfect balance between narration and dialogue, fleshing out a story that both entertains and makes you think. The universal themes of the story – which include acceptance and tolerance – transcend generations, and April Grace’s spunky attitude and innocent curiosity will keep readers of any age engaged. It’s also nice that McCrite gives enough backstory in this book so that it’s not necessary to have read the previous two books to know what’s been going on. So whether you’re a teen/tween looking for a truly enjoyable read or you’re a grown-up in the market for something refreshing, I urge you to give “Chocolate Covered Baloney” by K.D. McCrite a chance! I have a strong feeling that you won’t be disappointed, and that by the time you’re not even halfway through the story you’ll have become a fan of one miss April Grace Reilly!
April Grace’s experiences in this book, as in the others are touching, with some humor and lots of tear-starting empathy.
Learning to tolerate and accept people. Learning how much family means. Learning how to love the unlovely and find them lovely in the process. April and her best friend have their eyes opened to being tolerant and accepting at a tender age; that lesson will serve them well.
April and Myra pass through another ‘sisters’ stage. The story is told from April’s point of view, but there are more characters who learn the life lessons along with her. And Myra learns a few life lessons of her own.
New baby brother, Eli, creates a sweet pivot point for the family and friends of Rough Creek Road to gather round. They all come together, do what needs to be done and help each other generously. Every one of them makes some quiet change that supports others and strengthens the bonds they are building.
If you have this series on your shelf, you will be offering a good read to all age groups. I highly recommend it.
The time frame is in the 1980s; as the author explains, she wanted to have the characters work out their lives without dependence upon technology. Plus we all know about ‘retro’; those and other good old days are intriguing to younger generations. The author has done her research and she doesn’t leave loose ends to distract you. The editors are good — if there were any typos, I missed them.
I read this book in the paperback format, ‘borrowing’ it before I tuck it into a Christmas package of the series. I am acquainted with the author, but purchased the copy. I am under no obligation to write a review, positive or negative. I will be reviewing it on Ozarks Mystique.
The book up for review is Chocolate-covered Baloney -The Confessions of April Grace by KD McCrite.
It revolves around the main character April Grace who lives with her youngest baby brother Eli, her oldest sister Myra and their parents. The setting is in the 80ties so there is a lot of reference to that time frame, a period I did enjoy thoroughly. She is a curious child with an active imagination. When she sees her older sister standing by the mailbox one evening and place something inside her brain takes off with the possibilities what Myra could possibly be doing. That gets put to the side when her mother’s mom appears out of nowhere having abandoned her daughter not once but twice many years ago. No one makes this woman feel quite at home as she tries to blend in with the household. If that was not enough her sister Myra is acting more secretive than usually staying in her room and keeping to herself. The plot thickens when April has to move into her sister’s room so the new grandmother can sleep in her own room. April starts to snoop even more so for the opportunity is right before her eyes.
This book was a bit lukewarm to me. I have not read the previous books to this series so am not sure if there is information in the others that I need to know prior to reading this one. I did not like the fact that April Grace addressed most of the adults in the book by their first name. That did turn me off a bit. The girl and her dialogue seemed a bit older than she actually was. Her personality was a little too much in some cases where she acted like an adult and got away with it in her speaking and actions. Again not having read the previous books this might have been already established.
The book was decent and a good read but I feel I missed out on not reading the previous ones in this series.
April Grace and her sister Myra Sue do not get along. Especially now that April knows that Myra has a secret. Myra has been sneaking out to the mailbox, writing mysterious letters in her room(pretending to be doing homework), and being cranky with everyone around her. Her family all chalks it up to “just a stage she’s going through,” but April thinks there is something more to it.
When a long-lost relative shows up unannounced things go from bad to worse. Now April and Myra have to share a room again. The girls are fighting more than ever and things in their home are topsy-turvy. And what about the mysterious hang-up phone calls?
April is as feisty and curious as ever which makes for some entertaining episodes in the story. Honest to a fault she does manage to bite her tongue to keep from saying even more than she already does. When the pastor of their church delivers a sermon on “change is coming” April tunes out. She feels that their family has had enough change to last her a lifetime.
Chocolate-covered Baloney was an entertaining read. Once again the antics of April Grace and the things that come out of her mouth crack me up. Even though she and her sister fight constantly you can tell that April still has a loyalty to family and love and concern for them. Returning characters included Isabel, Grandma (and her multiple boyfriends), April’s parents and the Freebirds. And introduced a new unexpected, and unwanted family member. April’s parents have never thrown anyone out of their house before, but this guest may exceed that generosity. A fun book and I look forward to the next installment of the April Grace confessions.
I love the April Grace series and can’t wait for the next one! These books are easy reading and once I pick it up, I hate to put it down. So funny…LOVE IT!!!
K.D. McCrite writes a wonderful story of a 12 year old girl from Arkansas and all of the experiences she has. April Grace (the twelve year old girl) is faced with many problems that youth face today, but the story is set in the 1980’s. April Grace’s biggest struggle is with change. Over the past few months her life has changed tremendously. In the opening chapter she lists off a few things that have changed including her grandmother, a new baby brother and her mother being sick. As the story continues we see how April Grace deals with the change that has already occured and how she is getting used to it, and we also see how she handles change that is continuing to occur. Throughout the story there is typical sibling interaction, family stress and struggle as well as the conveying of delightful family interactions.
This story rings true to my experience as a young girl and reminds me of stories I read when I was young, like Judy Bloome (one of my favorites). I enjoyed reading the story and remembering what my childhood was like, including the sibling rivalries. I felt like this book was an honest portrayl of many things that youth today face, and it was a very enjoyable read. I would rate this book 4 out of 5, remembering that the story is geared for youth and kids. 🙂
Confessions of April Grace: Chocolate Covered Baloney by KD McCrite is an adorable book, perfect for young girls. As I read it (you know, me, an ADULT) I was struck sometimes with the silliness of some of the situations, but every time I thought, “This is silly”, I also thought, “Munchkin would love it.”
The story is written from the point of view of a young girl, April Grace. Her take on the world and particularly on members of her family are exactly what you’d expect from a preteen! She’s not yet old enough to be too sassy, and yet very set in her opinions and eager to share. She tells of her struggles getting along with her overly dramatic sister, and of her difficulties in getting along with a new grandma. The ending is sweet, and gave me warm fuzzies. The book is entertaining enough to be enjoyed by my 10-year old daughter. It’s also completely appropriate, and I can feel good allowing my daughter to read it without worrying about her picking up any language or anything.
I’m giving this Confessions of April Grace: Chocolate Covered Baloney 4 stars. Young girls will really like it, I think!
*I received a free copy of the book from BookSneeze in exchange for an honest review. The opinions are mine alone.
By A. Lennon
Great Job KD, my daughter and I loved the book. April Grace is funnier than ever! April Grace is an 11 year old girl growing up in the country during the 80s. It is a good story with good morals and not too overly christian. If you read books to your children (around age 7 or older) or have kids who love to read get this book, get all 3 books. This story does lean more toward girls but if you read aloud I do believe boys would enjoy this story too since there is a lot of comedy.
I did not get a chance to read the previous offerings of April Grace but that really doesn’t matter. This is a book for tween girls that is engaging and fun. I wanted to review this book because I have a daughter who likes these types of stories.
April Grace is an amateur sleuth who does a wonderful job solving mysteries. Her latest mystery is one that involves her sister, Myra Sue. Myra Sue has been acting suspicious and, of course, April Grace can’t stand to just ignore the clues! She snoops around until she gets to the bottom of things. Along the way, however, she runs into bumps and snags that keep the reader entertained and turning the pages.
This book reminds me of my own growing up years, as I was about the age of April Grace in the 1970’s (the setting of the series). Don’t think it is outdated, however. The problems kids face today are not all that much different than those they faced 30, 40, or even 100 years ago. They just take different forms. For instance, if you are not an only child, you have had to deal with a troublesome sibling at one time or another. Read the Bible for more than a few minutes and you’ll see that people struggled with a sinful nature from the moment that Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit. Using a twist that hooks young readers in without letting them know that they might be learning something about themselves is a great writer’s tool.
I very much enjoyed reading Chocolate-covered Baloney and I think that my daughter will too.
I really like the book Chocolate Cover Baloney. It was really
funny and descriptive. First you don’t want to have anything to do with
“Mimi.” Then at the end you start to like her.
April Grace’s curiosity, her whole personality, is awesome. If April
Grace was real I would really like to know her.
This book has many good lessons such as forgiving others.
One good lesson is like the parable of The Lost Sheep. Myra Sue is
like the lost sheep that goes astray and her family that tries to find her
is like the shepherd, or Jesus. I think it is a really good book.
I think this book would be good for anybody who can understand
it. I would say the age group for this would be 10-and up. This age group would have more in common with the main character.
Expertly weaving polythematic elements, K.D. McCrite uses multiple conflicts happening in young April Grace’s life to teach the young reader about topics such as forgiveness, kindness, hospitality, friendship, and family, but especially what it means to see others the way Jesus sees them. Expect Chocolate-covered Baloney to challenge, and perhaps change, your young reader’s view of people and events in his/her young life.
From the viewpoint of middle-school aged April Grace, life has too many changes. The changes of a baby brother, a new family in the small rural town, and being in middle school, have turned April Grace’s life upside down. She doesn’t like it, not one little bit. In fact, she is so weary of change that she chooses to completely tune out her pastor when he preaches on the subject. Little does April Grace know or understand, life is full of changes; she is about to experience more change than she can imagine.
From meeting her maternal grandmother for the first time, an argument with her best friend, and her sister running away, April witnesses how others struggle with bitterness, anger, and finally forgiveness. Woven into these multiple conflicts is April’s curiosity and personal feelings of anger, guilt, and dislike for change. Without being “preachy” K.D. McCrite does an excellent job weaving these conflicts together to show that Christians have problems like everyone else, but have something that others do not….grace. The resolution of each problem yields heart changes for April Grace and for those around her. One of my favorite parts in this book is when April’s mother admits to April that she is having difficulty with her past and the mysterious appearance of her long-absent mother. This speaks volumes to me as a parent and reinforces that our children need to see our vulnerabilities to see us grow in our faith. We can disciple them by allowing them to see Jesus work in us.
My two girls, age 8 and 12 loved Cliques, Hicks and Ugly Sticks by K.D. McCrite, and I expect Chocolate-covered Baloney to be no different. I had to give up my Kindle for a few days while they were reading it and couldn’t pull them away. I absolutely recommend this book to anyone with children in 3rd grade and up. You will not get a more spiritually instructional, Christian fiction book for this age group that they will enjoy.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.
Confessions of April Grace: chocolate covered baloney by KD McCrite is a dizzying of a tale, but the good kind. I did not think this would be the kind of novel a-not-so-teenage reader can enjoy. Fortunately, I did enjoy this story and could not put this novel down. I had laughed so hard that I received some not so happy glances because I was to loud in an area where I should be quiet. I just could not help myself. This novel may be for young readers but I related to the situations that April was living through. This is the kind of book more young girls and there mothers should read in groups. It would be a great bonding experience, laughing and reading. What could be better?
One thing I know for sure about this book: its title/cover caught my eye! This is the third book in the “Confessions of April Grace” series by K.D. McCrite, and I must say that I’m a BIG fan. This series is published by Thomas Nelson publishers and is absolutely great for tween and teenage girls. It is a quirky, lively, yet kind of down-to-earth series told in first person by the main character, April Grace.
April Grace is a tweenage girl living in the countryside in the seventies. She has all sorts of interesting problems: her annoying older sister Myra Sue, her grandmother and her several different on-and-off boyfriends, her wacky neighbors, etc. April’s flat-out honestly blunt perspective is funny to read, and I certainly enjoy these books.
With April Grace’s snooty neighbor Isabel becoming April’s gym teacher, Myra Sure sneaking around, and April’s grandmother’s trouble with boyfriends, April has had enough change to last for a while. I enjoyed this book and this series because April goes through things that girls today go through and does so with a lighthearted yet outrageously funny attitude.
Thank you so much to Book Sneeze and Thomas Nelson publishers for letting me read and review this book.
A great read. Hope they keep coming!!
By Jennifer Bardsley on November 27, 2012
Chocolate-covered Baloney, Confessions of April Grace is a novel for middle grade audiences, that the author KD McCrite has chosen to set in the 1980s. It is one of the tamest MG books I have read in a long time. For example, April’s family receiving crank phone calls is considered a BIG DEAL.
One of the things I really enjoyed about this book was the author’s use of voice. Even the chapter titles were funny to read: “Myra Sue’s Room: The Pit of the World”, “Almost a Civil War in Our Very Own Kitchen”, etc. McCrite’s use of voice totally had me convinced that I was reading the inner musings of a tween growing up in Arkansas.
In addition to April Grace, the other characters in the book were equally well developed. Of course, as a member of the United Methodist Church, I’m a bit biased towards loving the scenes with Grandma’s gentlemen friend, a Methodist minister!
When it comes to plot, that’s where McCrite lost me. The most incendiary thing that happened within the first few chapters was that April Grace caught her sister Myra Sue at the mailbox removing a package she intended to mail. That really wasn’t enough to hook my interest. I kept reading because the characters were engaging, but the action didn’t really seem to get going until the final chapters.
I also question the whole construct of placing the novel in the 1980s. I’m not sure my nieces and nephews would know what “The Cosby Show” was, or care. The whole concept of soap operas too, might be over their heads.
It’s entirely possible though, that a large part of the April Grace audience is moms reading with their daughters (I don’t know.) As an adult reader, it was fun to read these pop culture references.