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"Hi, Mr. Whittaker," Patrick and Beth said at the same time. It was Friday after school. The cousins had come to Whit's End to visit their friend.
Mr. Whittaker shut a panel on the side of the Imagination Station.
He looked up at them and smiled.
"Good afternoon," Mr. Whittaker said.
Beth thought he looked tired. Did he work all night and day? she wondered.
"Is the machine fixed yet?" Patrick asked.
"Almost," Mr. Whittaker said.
"Have you found Hugh?" asked Beth.
"I've programmed the Imagination Station. It will now find the ring Hugh took," he said. "I'd like to send you after it. That is, if you're willing to go."
"We sure are!" said Patrick.
"Where are we going?" Beth asked.
"To the Holy Land when the kings of Israel ruled," Mr. Whittaker said. "I've put your costumes in the changing rooms."
The cousins changed clothes in separate rooms.
Beth came out first. She wore a plain wool tunic. It had a tan vest and belt. Patrick's tunic was like Beth's. But his didn't have a vest. Instead a tan sash wrapped around into a belt.
Mr. Whittaker then gave Beth a silver harmonica. He handed Patrick a rope woven with snake knots.
"Why does she get something fun?" Patrick asked. "All I got was this bracelet."
"You'll unravel that mystery when the time comes," Mr. Whittaker said. He gave Patrick a wink.
"Why do I have a harmonica?" Beth asked. "I know how to play a couple of songs."
"Which songs?" Mr. Whittaker asked.
"'The Alphabet Song' and 'Jesus Loves Me,'" Beth said.
"Those will do," Mr. Whittaker said. "Now go ahead and climb into the Imagination Station."
Patrick slipped the bracelet on his wrist. Beth tucked the harmonica inside a pocket. Then she and Patrick stepped into the machine.
"Remember," Mr. Whittaker said, "you need to find Hugh. Then get the ring from him. Once you put on the ring, the Imagination Station will appear. I programmed it to send you back to Hugh's time in England."
Patrick looked at Beth. He swallowed a lump in his throat. Hugh wasn't very nice.
"How will we get the ring from Hugh?" Patrick asked. "He's a lot bigger than we are."
"Let me tell you something," Mr. Whittaker said. "You two are small. But you're a lot smarter than Hugh. Just use your common sense. God will help you."
"Are you both ready?" Mr. Whittaker asked.
The cousins nodded. Patrick and Beth leaned back in their seats. The inside of the Imagination Station reminded Patrick of a helicopter cockpit.
Mr. Whittaker tapped the dashboard next to the red button. "The machine is programmed," he said. "Press the button when you're ready."
Mr. Whittaker stepped back. He walked over to a desk where a computer sat.
Beth pushed the red button.
The Imagination Station started to shake.
Beth knew what was about to happen. She waited for the rumbling. Patrick imagined a helicopter taking off. He pushed his body into the seat and waited.
The machine jerked forward. The rumble grew louder.
The machine whirled.
Suddenly, everything went black.
Excerpted from Showdown with the Shepherd by MARIANNE HERING BROCK EASTMAN Copyright © 2011 by Focus on the Family. Excerpted by permission of TYNDALE HOUSE PUBLISHERS, INC.. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Posted July 23, 2012
This 5th book in the Imagination Station series is a bit different as it's based on a bible story (the others, so far, weren't). It follows the adventure of Beth and Patrick as they continue to uncover the mystery of the Imagination Station, Albert, Hugh, Lord Darkthorn, and the stolen treasures. This book is written at a 2nd grade reading level, but even I was captured with the story! Definitely a page turner that keeps you hooked and makes you want to read more about the real historical figures between its pages.
My children and I have read all of the Imagination Station books in order up to this one. You could read them alone, but the story is a continuing one and I highly recommend starting with the 1st in the series, Voyage With the Vikings.
As a homeschooling mom, I use these as part of my history curriculum. Yes, historical fiction may be a bit unorthodox, but it grabs my children's interest, real-life characters are featured in these books, and the authors stick as close to possible to real life events as can be expected with 2nd graders historical fiction. It feeds my kids interest in going deeper with history, and gives them a love for it that most public school history classes don't. This is my favorite series for this age level and I couldn't recommend it more highly!
By the way, you can get Imagination Station books for free by participating in Tyndale's Summer Reading Program! Google it!
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Posted August 26, 2012
Cousins Beth & Patrick are again, off on a great adventure, traveling to the Holy Land, 1000 BC. They are still in pursuit of Hugh to get Mr. Whittaker's ring. They don their costumes, get into the Imagination Station and off they go! They find Hugh shortly thereafter, and surprise, he is hanging out with the Philistines and using his knowledge of 1450's England to attempt to change history. Beth & Patrick get to spend time with David the shepherd as he confronts the giant Goliath. As always, there seems to be a bit of a cliffhanger at the end, too....
I think these are wonderful books for an earlier reader. The combination of history and fantasy (in this case Beth & Patrick are entering a real-life Bible story), adds a layer of concern - they wonder if the timeline could change if Hugh is successful. They are brave and learn a lot. Your early reader will, too!
Posted August 25, 2012
Showdown with the Shepherd, book five in the Imagination Station series
By Marianne Hering and Brock Eastman was a great book! The series
follows cousins Patrick and Beth in their various adventures in the
imagination station. Adventures in Odyssey lover will fall in love with
these books. The series is written for younger readers but people of all
ages will love the christian values it teaches and enjoy the story.
Posted July 28, 2012
Patrick and Beth visited Whit's End and traveled in the imagination station to David the shepherd's time. They were trying to find the ring that Hugh took and give it to Mr. Whitaker so that he could travel in the imagination station. David the shepherd saved them from a bear. They watched David fight Goliath and win. Hugh was hiding out in the Philistine army. The cousins found Hugh hiding in a bush. They all jumped into the imagination station, barely missing a bear chasing them. When they got in the imagination station, Hugh disappeared and the ring was left. The story continues with the next book.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 10, 2012
I really like Adventures in Odyssey, and this new series for intermediate readers doesn't change my opinion.
This book tells (re-tells) the story of David and Goliath. Since I am already completely familiar with biblical account, the plot was less entertaining than some of the other books in the series. Nonetheless, I highly recommend the series to elementary aged readers. It also makes a great read aloud to younger kids.
Posted November 6, 2011
No text was provided for this review.
Posted November 8, 2011
No text was provided for this review.