Channing O’Banning and the Rainforest Rescue by Angela Spady

Channing O’Banning and the Rainforest Rescue
Author:  Angela Spady
Illustrator:  Tammie Lyon
Category:  Christian Fiction, Children’s Fiction
Publisher:  Thomas Nelson
Release Date:  May 5, 2015
Recommended Age: 8 and up
My Rating:  4 stars

Accelerated Reader Interest Level:  LG (Grade K thru 3)
Accelerated Reader Points Awards:  2.00
Accelerated Reader Reading Level:  4.20

Book Description:

What Happens When Your Least Favorite Person Is Your Only Hope for Rescue?

When Channing O’Banning’s BFF goes gaga over new boy Marco, Channing wishes she could send him back to where he came from. Her wish turns into her worst nightmare when Marco tags along on her family’s dream trip to Marco’s home country of Costa Rica.

With her secret sketchbook in tow, a colored pencil stuck in her ponytail, and adorable pot-bellied pig, Teeny, by her side, Channing embarks on a high-flying adventure through the Costa Rican rainforest. But when the feisty fourth-grade artist makes a few wrong turns and gets lost in the jungle, she discovers that maybe Marco isn’t so bad after all.

Through her wild escapades, Channing learns just how important it is to keep the earth—and friendships—healthy.


Angela Spady has written a wonderful book for young readers. Channing O’Banning and the Rainforest Rescue is clean and has a positive moral. I know that my 9-year-old will enjoy reading it and I am happy for him to do so.

Fourth-grader Channing is one fast, run-on sentence. I love it. She is a little whirling dervish; quirky, zany, but a wee bit jealous and she has a bit of an issue with misplaced blame as most fourth graders tend to do. There are parts of this book that I found hilarious, such as connect the dots on your freckles and others endearing, such as Channing’s love of colored pencils and the fun names that she gives them. The story is filled with cute characters, my favorite of which is Teeny whom I believe i to be the best behaved pig on the planet.

Tammie Lyon is a talented illustrator. The drawings are funky and fun; the pages are brightly colored and engaging. I looked at her website and she is, in my opinion, gifted with an incredible talent for illustration geared towards children.

The moral of the story… Your child will learn that being a little know it all can often hurt you; you may miss out on the wonderful things that people who have different experiences and perspectives can show you. Channing also discovers that If you work together you might even be able to teach others something in return.

“I guess I needed to stop and really think before making judgments about people—especially when I didn’t know the whole story.”

As you can likely discern from the title of the story Spady also encourages a green lifestyle. She advocates being thoughtful of your environment and taking small steps towards caring for it. There is a section at the end of the book which gives kids, and their parents, some practical ways to save the Rainforests.

I have no reservations allowing my child to read and enjoy Channing O’Banning and the Rainforest Rescue.

About the Author:

angela spadyAuthor Angela Spady is an award-winning educator, curriculum author, and mother to two daughters in Kentucky and New Mexico. Her innovative teaching techniques have been featured on PBS, in KY Teacher Magazine, and in various print media around the country. She is a noted advocate for encouraging art and self-expression among children, and is often sought out by both parents and teachers on this critical topic. She lives in Taos, New Mexico with her husband Steve, and can often be seen writing, painting, or simply gazing upon the Sangre de Cristo mountains for a little inspiration. For more information, you may contact the author at


About the Illustrator:

tammie lyonTammie Lyon is the award-winning illustrator of numerous picture books for children. Let’s Hear It For Almigal was just awarded the Mom’s Choice Award Gold Medal Winner for 2012. Two of her most recent titles include, My Pup and Bugs In My Hair, both of which have been included on the list of the “Top 100 Best Children’s Books” by the Bank Street College of Education. She is known for her work on the Eloise series for Simon and Schuster as well as her new series, Katie Woo, published by Stonearch Books. Tammie’s first written and illustrated title, Olive and Snowflake, Marshall Cavendish Publishier, has just been released receiving a stared review from Kirkus and School Library Journal.

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