The Golden Pathway

Children - Preteen
24 Pages
Reviewed on 09/10/2011
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Donna McDine is an award-winning children's author, Honorable Mention in the 77th and two Honorable Mentions in the 78th Annual Writer’s Digest Writing Competitions, Literary Classics Silver Award & Seal of Approval Recipient Picture Book Early Reader, Reader’s Favorite 2012 Honorable Mention, Global eBook Awards Finalist Children’s Picture Book Fiction, and Preditors & Editors Readers Poll 2010 Top Ten Children’s Books ~ The Golden Pathway.

Her stories, articles, and book reviews have been published in over 100 print and online publications. Her interest in American History resulted in writing and publishing The Golden Pathway. Donna has four more books under contract with Guardian Angel Publishing, Hockey Agony, Powder Monkey, A Sandy Grave, and Dee and Deb, Off They Go. She writes, moms and is the Editor-in-Chief for Guardian Angel Kids and owner of Author PR Services from her home in the historical hamlet Tappan, NY. McDine is a member of the Children’s Literature Network, Family Reading Partnership, and SCBWI. Visit

    Book Review

Reviewed by Rita Vetsch for Readers' Favorite

The Golden Pathway is a heart-gripping children’s story written by Donna M. McDine with illustrations by K.C. Snider. This story takes place during the dreadful days when people were allowed to own slaves and abuse them. A boy named David lives on a farm with his ma and pa. His pa is a mean soul and owns a slave named Jenkins who is just sixteen years old and works in the cotton fields for him. One night, David hears the terrible screams of agony coming from the barn where Jenkins is being whipped by Pa. David feels a great amount of compassion for Jenkins and knows that slavery is wrong. David is compelled to do everything in his power to help Jenkins because he knows he will soon die from the continual beatings. David will have to find incredible strength and courage to help Jenkins escape slavery and to stop the horrible beatings and torture inflicted upon him unjustly.

The Golden Pathway is written specifically for children 8-12 years old and is written perfectly to their level of understanding. It is easy to comprehend and the plot flows smoothly. The illustrations are beautifully depicted and complement the wording immensely. I found this story to be powerful, inspiring and something that will provide children with a valuable lesson about slavery and freedom as part of American History. I can see this book also providing a valuable tool for children to ask questions and bring about important conversation. I feel strongly that this book is a must read for all children ages 8 and up.

Penelope Anne Cole

The Golden Pathway, by Donna M. McDine, with artwork by K.C. Snider, is a captivating book about a sore subject in American history – the anguish of slavery. This moving story shows young readers the courage of one slave owner’s son, David, who rescues the slave Jenkins from a life of beatings.

David helps Jenkins after each beating, but knows he must do more than cleanse wounds. He has to help Jenkins escape or suffer a slow death at his father’s hands. The story grabs your heart. You hold your breath, hoping David won’t be caught by his mean Pa. You don’t breathe until the end, when Jenkins gains freedom through the underground railway. David’s compassion and bravery will inspire others to do the right thing in difficult situations.

K.C. Snider’s sensitive artwork is the perfect vehicle to convey Jenkins’ pain, David’s courage, and the threat they live under. K.C. Snider exposes the reader to the unvarnished truth, the reality of that horrid past in her artwork, but also shows us conviction and hope shining in David’s face.

Donna McDine has bared a shameful legacy for us to deal with. She’s done it with tenderness and care, brought us face to face with that ugliness and made it personal. Then she’s given us high purpose and bravery in David, the shopkeeper Mr. Stump, and his fellow Quakers. Their quiet determination to right this wrong, at great personal risk, inspires and uplifts us all. This award winning story is not to be missed.