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Grab a Free Puppet Play & Coloring Pages!

By Linda Wilson @LinWilsonauthor

Visit my website, , and download your free Thistletoe puppet play and Waddles' coloring pages.

The freebies are for my books A Packrat's Holiday: Thistletoe's Gift, and Waddles the Duck: Hey, Wait for Me!

Any purchase from my website includes signed copies of my books and fun surprises for your child, mailed to you in your child's name, postage free. Use the discount code ILOVEBOOKS when you check out and you can receive any three of my books from my website, postage-free, for only $20.

All of my books take place outdoors, and are not only family stories showing loving relationships in multi-generational families, but also include animals that children will come to love.

Secret in the Stars: An Abi Wunder Mystery

Eleven-year-old Abi becomes stranded at an old country inn that’s rumored to be haunted. Is it true? Did the innkeeper’s ghost really appear to her and ask for her help? With only hours left, Abi and her new friend, Jess, must search for answers. In the process, Abi discovers strengths she didn’t know she possessed, including the ability to see her first ghost! Abi never has to say good-bye to the ghost. At the end she tells him: “And bye to you, Herbert Rainey, but not for long. You are part of my world now—forever.”

Secret in the Stars was named a Kirkus Review recommended book.


A Packrat's Holiday: Thistletoe's Gift

On this cold winter’s holiday eve, Thistletoe Q. Packrat sat in the parlor, his chin in his paws. The cupboards were bare. Poor Mama. There would be no holiday feast this year. His only chance were the cowboys coming through on a cattle drive and staying the night. Finding scraps and bringing them home would be tricky. Thistletoe had no idea how he could do it. He would just have to try.

Perhaps it is the cowboys in the story or words to the beginning of the song "Home on the Range" that has inspired the New Mexico Press Women's Association and the National Press Women's Association to award Thistletoe's book first place in both the state and national awards. Whatever it was, children will love Thistletoe's story, and learn about cattle drives, cowboys, and the desert Southwest in the Glossary at the end.

Tall Boots

Ashley wants to win a blue ribbon at the 4-H Horse Show—but there’s one problem. She has to wear her old red rubber riding boots. Her mother is willing to invest in knee-high riding boots, but Ashley needs to prove to her that she’s committed to riding. When she walks her Welsh Mountain Pony, Lacy, into the ring, something is wrong. None of the riders look familiar. She shouts, “There’s been a mistake!” but her plea blows away in the wind. How can Ashley earn a pair of tall boots now?

Your child can learn how to join and get started in 4-H, with information provided at the end of the book.

Tall Boots is a Silver Award Recipient for the Mom's Choice Awards, Honoring Excellence, won a Story Monsters' approval award, and also won Honorable Mention in the Story Monsters' Purple Dragon Award for Fiction for 3-8-year-olds.

Waddles the Duck: Hey, Wait for Me!

Waddles the duck peeked out of his shell. His brothers and sisters were already following their mama across the grass to their neighbor’s pool. Last to reach the water, last to find food, last to find safety at the nearby pond, Waddles hurried to catch up. Hey, wait for me!

Waddles’ story is inspired by a duck family who came to live in our family pool in Centerville, Ohio. Readers are encouraged to learn about mallard ducks and to feed waterfowl—and all wild animals—a natural diet.

Waddles' story was recently published in May, 2022.

Coming Soon! The second book in the Abi Wunder Mystery series: Secret in the Mist: An Abi Wunder Mystery, and Cradle in the Wild, a picture book.

Next post: “Children’s Books that Celebrate our Differences,” Part Two, will introduce you to three more NM-SCBWI authors who write books that celebrateour diversity: Kit Rosewater, Laurie Goodluck, and author/artist Zahra Marwan. Find Part One here:

Find these fine books at and Or for signed copies and surprises,

purchase them here from my website.

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