This is my post during the blog tour for KidVenture: Twelve Weeks To Midnight Blue by Steve Searfoss. KidVenture: Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue is an interactive business adventure story for kids to learn about being an entrepreneur.
This blog tour is organized by Lola's Blog Tours and the tour runs from 3 till 23 December. You can see the tour schedule here.
By Steve Searfoss
Genre: Middle Grade Fiction
Age category: Middle Grade
Release Date: 26 January, 2020
Teach your kids about business and economics in a fun, meaningful way and inspire them to be entrepreneurs. Millions of Americans are small business owners or work at companies, yet there are not many books that explain to kids what business is about, the way there are books for kids about being a firefighter, farmer or astronaut. Beyond basic business concepts, KidVenture shows that character matters in business and the ability to persevere when there are setbacks and being someone who is trustworthy are key ingredients of success.
In Twelve Weeks To Midnight Blue, Chance Sterling launches a pool cleaning business over the summer. Join Chance as he looks for new customers, discovers how much to charge them, takes on a business partner, recruits an employee, deals with difficult clients, and figures out how to make a profit. He has twelve weeks to reach his goal. Will he make it? Only if he takes some chances.
KidVenture stories are business adventures where kids figure out how to market their company, understand risk, and negotiate. Each chapter ends with a challenge, including business decisions, ethical dilemmas and interpersonal conflict for young readers to wrestle with. As the story progresses, the characters track revenue, costs, profit margin, and other key metrics which are explained in simple, fun ways that tie into the story.
- Amazon paperback
I wrote my first KidVenture book after years of making up stories to teach my kids about business and economics. Whenever they'd ask how something works or why things were a certain way, I would say, "Let's pretend you have a business that sells..." and off we'd go. What would start as a simple hypothetical to explain a concept would become an adventure spanning several days as my kids would come back with new questions which would spawn more plot twists. Rather than give them quick answers, I tried to create cliffhangers to get them to really think through an idea and make the experience as interactive as possible.
I try to bring that same spirit of fun, curiosity and challenge to each KidVenture book. That’s why every chapter ends with a dilemma and a set of questions. KidVenture books are fun for kids to read alone, and even more fun to read together and discuss. There are plenty of books where kids learn about being doctors and astronauts and firefighters. There are hardly any where they learn what it’s like to run small business. KidVenture is different. The companies the kids start are modest and simple, but the themes are serious and important.
I’m an entrepreneur who has started a half dozen or so businesses and have had my share of failures. My dad was an entrepreneur and as a kid I used to love asking him about his business and learning the ins and outs of what to do and not do. Mistakes make the best stories — and the best lessons. I wanted to write a business book that was realistic, where you get to see the characters stumble and wander and reset, the way entrepreneurs do in real life. Unlike most books and movies where business is portrayed as easy, where all you need is one good idea and the desire to be successful, the characters in KidVenture find that every day brings new problems to solve.
There is a tour wide giveaway for the blog tour of KidVenture: Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue. These are the prizes you can win:
- 10 winners will each win a paperback copy of KidVenture: Twelve Weeks To Midnight Blue (US, Canada and UK only)
- one winner wins a $25 Amazon gift card
For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
One of the fun parts of book blogging is the opportunity to encounter and read a series I would not normally enjoy. My kids are all grown and my grandkids are too young for Steve Searfoss's target tween and middle grade group. However, I found I enjoyed the story myself. Steve truly has developed a book that teaches while entertaining. The real joy for me is that he not only teaches math, finance, and basic business principles, but he also models a healthy parenting model. In a world where so many of my students (I teach Middle School) come in each day from disrupted homes, I realize the books they read also project such homes. That is good in the sense of identifiable characters, but it means they are not learning what the other options are. I love the interchange between Searfoss's young boy Chance and his dad. I love his mom chiming in with her own guidance. I love his chatter with his sister. Overall, it is a delightful series and I truly hope this and forthcoming volumes are successful.
HERE IS MY REVIEW I POSTED ON AMAZON AND GOODREADS:
What boy doesn't have that new item they really want? And how often do they reach the age where instead of hearing, "Maybe at Christmas," they hear "Save your money." Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue is the adventure of Chance Sterling opening a business cleaning pools in order to raise enough money for a new bike.
The story itself is fun as he knocks on doors, makes flyers with his sisters, and hires a friend who may or may not be a top notch employee. My favorite parts were certainly the times he speaks with his dad, who offers him "banana consulting (pro bono). The book also introduces great concepts to kids like "vendors" and "marketing."
There is a flood of books on the market today where the protagonist has to have a blended or broken home, there must be some sort of world-ending stakes, or there must be trauma in the background. This book presents parents actively involved with their kids, teachable moments, silliness, and a good story. I also love the questions at the end of each chapter. As a teacher, I could see using this in a classroom. Overall, one of my favorite reads for 2021.
AND HERE IS STEVE'S BIO: (taken from Amazon)