Oli's Uncommon Cents
Author: Deborah Allen
About the Book: Oli’s Uncommon Cents is about a young girl, Oli, who is 12 years old, and a die-hard-tom-boy. She is given a coin pouch and discovers there are five living coins inside. Together they explore much more than places, they explore life. Although this book is written as a fantasy novel, there is a lesson of self- worth and personal value that weaves its way throughout the story. Readers will follow Oli and her coins as they explore the world of money, and adventure, and learn the importance of worth, versus, value. They will discover that a person’s character is often directly related to the choices they make with their money. Throughout the book there are ethical issues for young readers to consider, and perhaps as they do, they will better understand how money can create tension, or hope, in a person’s life. Oli’s Uncommon Cents is written with a dramatic yet fanciful and humorous presentation, but seizes the opportunity to teach young people about the vices of greed and the wake of mistrust, fear and apprehension it leaves in its path. In contrast, young readers will be warmed with the valuable sense of self-worth, generosity, trust and confidence.
About the Author (in her own words): "My professional experience is actually in Landscape Architecture. I owned my own business for 25 years and then took a position in business at the University of Idaho. After retiring I pursued my interests in writing. I am an active children’s advocate. My sole purpose in writing is to incite hope in the lives of young people. I write Sunday school curriculum, and children’s devotions, although I don’t exclude myself from children’s secular writing. As an author for LAF Ministry, my experience ranges from writing, to design, to finance to children’s ministry, the latter being my passion. Working with children and their families, I have become concerned with the grave and desperate concerns young people have for their futures. In Oli’s Uncommon Cents, I combine my talents and interests and tackle the problem of greed, and its effects on families. Without abandoning my writing platform as a children’s advocate, I sneak a golden nugget into my creative fiction novel and teach children life lessons about the value of self-worth, generosity, and caring for others."
My thoughts: I truly enjoyed this book. It is written for middle grade readers with a simple writing style, and a great lesson to be learned. I love the thought provoking questions this book raised. Just what kind of value do we put on things. Although money all has a specific value what kind of worth should we place on money? Is it more important than our relationships? Do we give more worth and value to our money, and forget about those people in our lives who should be cared for and loved more than money? I think this book should be one to find it's way into every middle school!