McKenna Writes Books and Linda Blair and Rick Springfield Big Fans!
The bases are loaded, and the home-runs will, once again, belong to Marla McKenna.
Her first book was the 2011 winner Mom’s Big Catch (Tate Publishing, $9.99).
Now, just in time for Spring Training, comes the highly-anticipated follow, Sadie’s Big Steal (Tate Publishing, $10.99). The new tome is a new picture book inspired by McKenna’s Mom’s Big Catch, which has become a fan favorite with baseball lovers of all ages, and can be customized to fit any team (six team versions in print and more in production). Both books offer positive messages for kids about never giving up and the importance of friendship.
This time the family dog, Sadie, takes center stage . . .
Our lips are sealed, but we’ll toss out a bit more about the plot: Sadie’s plan was to steal Mom’s Big Catch, but when faced with choosing between right and wrong, Sadie’s adventure takes her on a heartfelt journey where she ends up stealing something much more important.
Both books continue to support causes that Marla wholeheartedly believes in: Finding forever homes for those animals in need; and promoting literacy to children through the game of baseball. Sadie’s Big Steal hits another home run with her positive message throughout this book while also promoting anti-bullying and anti-dog breed discrimination.
And two of her VIP fans agree. Says Rick Springfield: “Another great story from Marla. It has a personal touch for me with the addition of my sweet lost pal Gomer immortalized in ink. A great story and a great cause. XOXO”
Adds Linda Blair, founder of the Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation: “Moms Big Catch came to my attention purely from Marla’s love for animals and she approached my charity with an open heart and a need to help. I can’t tell you how refreshing it was that a book with such a positive message is in turn helping animals in need. I hope there are more stories to come from Marla, and thank you for creating another positive in your already beautiful message. Many thanks!”
Wait, there’s more. Marla and Mom’s Big Catch have been invited by the Milwaukee Brewers to Brewers on Deck Fan Fest 2015 to host a community book drive to benefit Milwaukee area children; and the Chicago Cubs Spring Training to work with Fergie Jenkins Foundation–Baseball Hall of Fame Pitcher.
Sounds like The Write Stuff to us.
Learn more by clicking marlamckenna.com
Feathered Quill says: Wonderful books for parents to share with their kids. Hopefully, this author will continue to gift readers with more adventures in the future.
Reviewed by: Amy Lignor
Review Date: January 26, 2015
What began with Mom’s Big Catch continues in this sweetheart of a book that is both all about a dog, and a source to help dogs in a very positive way.
For those who missed the first tale, kids were introduced to a loving family that includes Mom, Dad, Ashley, Julia, and their dog, Sadie. This was a family all excited about heading to the ballpark one day. Dad had never caught one of those home run balls in the stands, and Ashley wanted to catch one, too – way before she had to reach her father’s “old” age to do it. Readers could almost smell that popcorn, hear that national anthem sung, and listen to the cheers, as the fans made sure to shout-out for their team.
Well, in this new tale, the family is back, yet Sadie is the one who has her heart set on the baseball that sits on top of the mantle. Sadie loves baseball as much as the rest of the family, and she has told her dog friends in the neighborhood that she is devising a plan to steal the ball when the family is asleep so she and the rest of her canine friends can play with it. She also wants to include a new dog in their group, Rosie, that has been seen wandering in the area. Unfortunately, other dogs think Rosie is ‘different,’ and she has no family or friends who care about her. So they think if Sadie were to get caught stealing the baseball, she could blame it on Rosie.
When Sadie overhears a story told by her beloved Julia that night, about a new girl in school who everyone is teasing, yet she really likes her, Sadie begins to change her mind about a great many things.
A lovely story with a sweet message, this second book gives everything there is to give to kids: a wonderful family that supports each other, the always awesome sport of baseball, and a really cool dog that proves things like prejudice, bullying and lying are really bad choices for anyone to make.
It is important to note that partial proceeds from these books go to the Linda Blair WorldHeart Foundation that is on a mission to rescue the canines of the world and give them a second chance at finding a happy, loving home.
Mom’s Big Catch, Sadie’s Big Steal a Winning Double-Play
Critical BLAST – Submitted by Chris Delloiacono on Fri, 02/06/2015
Whenever I’m offered an opportunity to review children’s material, I jump. To be honest, I’m basically a little kid at heart, but that’s not the real reason. My 22-month old son, Nate, is the driving force behind reviews like this. I’m so excited to share with him all the things I grew up loving.
Baseball has been one of those passions my entire life, so I’m thrilled to review Marla McKenna’s nifty double play of titles. Let me start with Mom’s Big Catch from Tate Publishing. It’s obvious McKenna understands the game of baseball and the passion we fans feel for our team. Even more, she has chosen to enter the story on an ambition of many denizens of the ballpark–catching a ball!
The story follows Ashley as her family spends the day at the game. There’s a really nice family dynamic, and McKenna establishes a lovely voice for the little girl. She also builds a lot of suspense, but I’d imagine the title gives a hint where the story ends up. I must tell you, in 2009 I caught a Johnny Damon foul pop at Citi Field during a Yankees/Mets game. I always bring my glove to the park, and this was the one and only time I needed it. I can still remember the ball coming my way, and then reaching up in the crowd of hands. When I pulled my glove back and checked the pocket…oh the elation! Amazingly, a little over twenty years before, my dad caught a Bobby Thompson home run ball during batting practice at the 1985 Old Timers’ Day at Yankee Stadium. Here’s hoping my little Nate keeps the tradition alive of bringing a piece of the game home.
Enough about me. Let’s get onto McKenna’s recently released follow up, Sadie’s Big Steal. This one is a direct sequel, except this time we are treated to the story of Ashley’s dog, Sadie. It’s told in the first person, as Sadie plots to steal, and play with, the ball caught in the previous story. There is also a subplot about a new dog in town who isn’t treated right. This story also has some nice themes and should give children something to think about and learn from.
Not only are the stories entertaining, but they both feature vibrant artwork. The art is simple but it enhances the story, and sets the perfect tone for youngsters. What more can you look for in a children’s book then a wonderful message, great writing, and cute artwork? I mean, really!
Finally, I want to mention the WorldHeart Foundation. McKenna donates a portion of each book sale to this group that helps rescue dogs find new homes.
These are nifty books that have a strong message. Baseball fan or not, they’re perfect for children 4 and up. I know I’ll be reading them to Nate soon enough.
A monthly report on the best in new fiction and non-fiction books. Alan Caruba is a charter member of the National Book Critics Circle and has been reviewing for more than five decades.
For the younger crowd, age 4 and up, there’s an inspiring story, Sadie’s Big Steal by Marla McKenna, ($10.99, Tate Publishing, softcover) a sequel to “Mom’s Big Catch” as told by Sadie, the family dog who loves to catch balls and tells of her plan to steal a major league baseball that Mom had caught at a game. She wants to share playing with it with her other dog friends. Along the way, though, she realizes that it would be wrong to do that and she realizes, too, that she wants to help a new dog in the neighborhood find a home with the help of the local shelter. It’s the kind of story that teaches some valuable lessons about respecting and helping others. I would recommend it to any parent that wants to share those lessons.