Author: Colleen Coble and Robin Caroll
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
ISBN: 978-1-4003-2106-3

Why, God? Why is this happening to me? You know I didn’t take the necklace. Why can’t you show Dad and the rest of them that I had nothing to do with it?” Emily prays in Colleen Coble and Robin Caroll’s novel, Rock Harbor Search & Rescue.

This two hundred and forty-four page paperback book has a photograph of a young girl running along the shoreline with a large dog during a storm on the front cover. Targeted toward middle school aged children, this Christian juvenile fiction is geared to those who enjoy mysteries, detective series and search and rescue themes. With no profanity but discussions about beliefs in American tribal lore and cult icons, some caution should be given toward immature readers. This reviewer wishes all pronouns in regard to Deity would be capitalized for reverence.

Emily O’Reilly is almost fourteen years old and, with her father and step-mother’s permission, will be able to help buy a puppy that she wants to raise for search and rescue like their other dog, Charlie. To raise the needed one hundred and fifty dollars, she makes jewelry to sell at the upcoming Fall Festival in Rock Harbor, located on Lake Superior.

With her best friend, Olivia, living several weeks at her house since the girl’s parents are on a cruise, the two eighth graders man the festival booth together to sell her wares. When the well-known  Ojibwa Native American jeweler, Mary Dancer, who is located at the booth next to them, asks the girls to watch her booth for a few minutes, the girls feel honored.

After Mary comes back to the booth, she immediately notices her famed “Sapphire Beauty” handmade necklace is missing and Emily’s knock-off replica is in its place. Everyone including the town’s sheriff tends to believe Emily is the culprit.

With the help of her younger brother and Olivia, Emily goes on an ardent quest to uncover the thief to clear her reputation even though she feels her own father and step-mother do not believe her. Going on tips and trails that lead to dead ends, Emily continues to help the Search-and-Rescue team locate lost individuals with their trained dogs.

In addition to teaching that God is in control and will protect us, this book readily teaches young adults about forgiving others, overcoming hated, gossip and grudges and how eavesdropping can lead to making assumptions or wrong conclusions. As the first in the Rock Harbor series, this tome has plenty of action, suspense and relationship issues that will indeed create future engaging adventures.

This book was furnished by Booksneeze for review purposes.

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