Middle Grade Books

The Gadgets And Gears series


What to you get when you mix mad science, real history, a boy genius and a daring dachshund? Gadgets and Gears, that’s what! Published by Clarion.

Welcome to the Amazing Automated Inn, home of twelve-year-old inventor Wally Kennewickett, his genius scientist parents, and his dashing dog, Noodles. From the lightning harvester on the roof to the labs full of experiments in the dungeon, the inn is a wonderful place for a curious boy and his loyal dog to live.

“Fast paced and funny, with plenty of alliteration and word definitions provided by Noodles, it carries hints of both Lemony Snicket’s wordplay and the absurdity of M. T. Anderson’s Pals in Peril series. . . . Young, precocious readers and older readers looking for a shorter read will enjoy this first title in the Gadgets and Gears series.” —Booklist

“Hamilton makes the comedic most of her premise. . . . Noodles’s antics and droll, mannered narration make him the indisputable star of this show.” —Publishers Weekly

“Steampunk with training wheels for the chapter book set. . . . Sly humor . . . nifty, gear-laden illustrations . . . [an] imaginative, engaging premise.” —Kirkus Reviews

Mesmer Menace Teacher’s Guide

Ire of Iron Claw Teacher’s Guide

The Millie Keith Series

In 1999 Mission City Press gave me a marvelous opportunity — they asked me to write a series of novels based on characters created by Martha Finley, a Christian writer of the late 1800’s.

I was delighted by the challenge, but I had some research to do before I started writing. What were Christian women like in the mid 1800’s?

I turned to diaries and historical documents to find out. I was happy to find that they were not all prim and proper Victorian Ladies who sat in parlors sipping tea. Some wrote books and challenged injustice. Some went alone to secret, solitary places to talk to God. And some lived lives of world travel and high adventure!

Three of the women I learned about became the real–life models for the new adventures of Millie Keith.

In the 1830’s Sarah and Angelina Grimke, daughters of a Southern judge and plantation owner, laid down their wealthy lifestyle, their social standing and the respect of ‘proper’ society to fight a terrible evil — slavery.

Victorian ladies were not supposed to notice ‘indelicate’ things, such as the way slaves were treated. They were certainly not supposed to speak about them in public! When Sarah and Angelina not only noticed but stood up and spoke against slavery, their lives were threatened.

They were warned not return to the South. They were even thrown out of two Christian denominations for being so bold! Society dictated that ladies should not behave in such a way.

The Grimke sisters disagreed. They disagreed so strongly, in fact, that they became suffragettes as well as abolitionists, fighting for the rights of women to have an education, to speak about social injustice, and to vote.

They were not alone. Thousands of women attended their lectures; tens of thousands read their pamphlets and articles.

Isabella Bird’s travels began in the 1840’s, when she was hardly more than a teenager. Her father, an English pastor, sent his brilliant daughter to the Americas to report on the state of Christianity there. Isabella, a young lady of culture and refinement, traveled alone and loved it. She eventually became a world traveler, who wrote wonderful books.

Books in the Millie Series:

Millie’s Unsettled Season
Millie’s Courageous Days
Millie’s Remarkable Journey
Millie’s Faithful Heart
Millie’s Steadfast Love
Millie’s Grand Adventure
Millie’s Reluctant Sacrifice
Millie’s Fiery Trial

Laylie’s Daring Quest
Mission City Press
“I loved this book. It is fresh, original, by turns heartbreaking, and then funny…..These charactors are tangible. I feel as though I have, in actuality, met them. What I expected when I purchased this book was a run of the mill run away slave book. What I discovered was a story that gripped my heart, and would not let it go.”