Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Billy Cooper's Awesome Nightmare - Penny Estelle

Billy Cooper’s Awesome Nightmare is the first book in The Wickware Sagas. This 99-cent eBook can be bought on the following links:
* * * Here's Penny! * * *
Hi everybody! First, let me thank Marva for having me on her blog today. I’ve been lucky enough to visit with her before, and being able to make a return trip just puts a spring in my step and a smile on my face!

I wanted to tell everybody about what I overheard the other day at Langdon Middle School while chatting with one of the teachers. Some 7th graders were sitting in the quad area, talking to a student who had just moved into the area. This was apparently his first day.

He was a clean cut looking kid with dark hair, brown eyes, and expensive clothes, but his expression of complete boredom is what caught my eye. He grudgingly answered some of the questions that were asked by the other kids and, from my point of view, this kid wanted no part of this new school.

“Who did you get for English?”

“When do you have PE?”

“You better hope you didn’t get Smith for math.”

New Student took his schedule out of his pocket and tossed it on the table without a word. All the kids gathered around, talking at once about his assigned teachers.

“Uh oh,” said a redheaded boy, pointing to the bottom of the schedule. Everybody stopped talking and looked at New Student.

“What?” he asked.

“You have old lady Wickware for history,” Red replied.

“Aaaaaand…she’s strict? Mean? Oh, I’m so scared.”

“Oh no, she isn’t mean or strict. She’s okay. It’s just that…uhm…stuff happens in her class. Weird stuff! Kids are kind of afraid to talk about it out loud.”

New Student’s eyes quickly scanned the faces of the other kids. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

The morning bell rang and the students headed to their first hour class. Red yelled over his shoulder, “Oh you’ll see!”

“That was interesting,” the teacher said. “I need to get a move on.”

“Yes you do, old lady Wickware. Have a great day.” I’m certain I heard a hint of evil in her giggle as she walked away.


Billy jumped up, took two steps backward and fell hard on his back from about four feet up, knocking the wind out of him. He was seeing blue sky and rolling green hills. An old, two-wheeled wagon was what he had fallen out of.

The old man hurried over. “You alright, lad?”

Billy jumped to his feet before the old man could help him up. “Who…who….who are you? Where am I?” Billy stuttered, panic shooting through his body.

“Easy lad,” the old man said. “I was to bring you here.”

“Bring me where? Who said to bring me? Who? This is crazy! I’m not supposed to be here!” Billy’s voice got louder.

The man pulled out a satchel of coins, smiling. “Your mother paid me well to bring you to your aunt in Uri.”

“Uri?” Billy asked. “Dude, there’s no Uri in Arizona, I don’t think, and my aunt lives in Cottonwood.”

“Jonathan is my name, lad, not Dude.” The old man reached for Billy’s head. “Maybe when you fell you became…addled in your thinking.”

“I did not become…whatever. You’ve kidnapped me! I want to go home!”


Marva here: I already got my copy of Billy Cooper and read, so here's a mini-review to go along with this post.

Review - 4 Stars

Billy Cooper's homework assignment lands him in William Tell's front yard. While we have no idea how (but I kind of suspect that Mrs. Wickware has something to do with it), Penny Estelle gives the reader a fun mini-history lesson of the best kind: entertaining, not boring.

I'm happy to see that this will be a series of short stories continuing the time travel history lessons of Billy Cooper. This will be a wonderful set of books to use in grade school classes. Fun and fantastic make history easy to take and memorable. Well done.


  1. Wow! This sounds like a perfect read to keep my 12 year old enthralled and into it while learning about history. I will definitely be checking it out. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Great way to teach a history lesson! Sounds like a lot of fun.

  3. I appreciate Penny stopping by to tell us about Billy Cooper. Having read the first one about William Tell, I think the grade school kids would find stories like this to be "awesome" but not a "nightmare" at all.

  4. Thanks everybody for the really nice comments, especially Marva for letting me stop by!

  5. Rhonda - do you have an email address? Could you send it to me @ pennyestelle@yahoo.com