[Review] Meet the Malones (Beany Malone Series, Book 1) by Lenora Mattingly Weber

Publisher and Publication Date: Cascade Publishing. 1999. First published in 1943 by the Thomas Y. Crowell Company. Reprinted by arrangement by HarperCollins.
Genre: Young adult fiction written for girls.
Pages: 282.
Format: eBook.
Source: Self-purchase.
Audience: Young adult to adult.
Rating: Excellent.

The illustrations are by Gertrude Howe.

Beany Malone series-Book One. There are 14 books plus a cookbook in this series.
Weber also wrote other series of books. For example, Katie Rose and Stacy Belford.

Link for the Kindle @ Amazon.

For a bio of the author including other books, she wrote: Cascade Publishing.

Goodreads author page.

Fellow blogger and children’s book reviewer loves this book: Ms. Yingling.

I came across Lenora Mattingly Weber and her books by chance. One of those things when someone mentions a book or author on social media. I am intrigued. Then I do a little research and find out the books are inexpensive. Unfortunately, the public library does not have them. I plan to read as many as I can.


In the first book, Meet the Malones, Beany is not the main character. Beany is the youngest of the Malone siblings. It is the second eldest who is the main character, Mary Fred.

The eldest is Elizabeth who is a young married woman with a baby on the way. Her husband is in the Army and will be sent overseas soon. When he leaves, Elizabeth and her new baby will move back home with her siblings.

Mary Fred is 16. She is a student in high school. When the story begins, she has just purchased a horse. Her world is school, friends, dances; and a certain popular high school boy who wants to date her.

Johnny is the lone boy of the siblings. He is 15. When the story begins, he hopes to buy a typewriter. But there is an accident, and he must pay the consequences.

Beany or Catherine Cecilia. is 13. She is the cook of the family. She has good organizational skills. She is practical. Steady.

Their dad is a journalist for the newspaper. And he will go to Hawaii soon to cover the war news.

Their mother died three years ago.

Meet the Malones is the story of a close family living in Denver during the early part of World War II. The story shows how the war impacts the family. The story shows everyday life in the Malone family. It shows the four young people who (most of them) are in school yet take on jobs to help with the family finances.

My Thoughts:

Sometimes a book catches me at just the right time to enjoy and even cherish the story. Meet the Malones is easy to read and understand. The overall story is uncomplicated. It is not a story heavy with plot and themes. It is an endearing family drama.

One of the things I love best about the Malones is they work together to solve a problem. They are a family and a team. There is a point in the story when a family member comes to stay with them to help. However, this person is more trouble than help and the family is tested in their own characters and with each other.

Mary Fred has the same kind of predicament other young people have in high school. She wants to be liked and be liked by the “it” crowd. She doesn’t want to spend her days with chores and family responsibilities. She wants to have fun. She loves the attention from a certain popular boy. She changes to suit him. She finds out this is the wrong choice. A person should not change who they intrinsically are to make another person like them or like them more.

I love reading the catchy phrases and words of this generation. This includes what the call certain clothing. For example, saddle shoes or pompadour curl.

I love the intimate conversation about love, relationships, and marriage between Elizabeth and Mary Fred.

I’m anxious to start reading book 2 in this series!


Quote of the Week

“Those that much covet are with gain so fond,
For what they have not, that which they possess
They scatter and unloose it from their bond,
And so, by hoping more, they have but less.”

William Shakespeare [1564-1616]

Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations by John Bartlett.
Published by Little, Brown and Company in 1955. Page 131.

[Book Blast] We Shall Not Shatter by Elaine Stock

Publisher and Publication Date: Amsterdam Publishers. May 15, 2022.
Genre: Jewish Historical Fiction.
Pages: 398.
Format: Available in Kindle, paperback, and hardcover.
Audience: Historical fiction readers.

Goodreads link.

Link @ Amazon. Available for preorder.

Link @ Barnes and Noble.

About the Author:

Elaine Stock writes Historical Fiction, exploring home, family and friendships throughout time. She enjoys creating stories showing how all faiths, races, and belief systems are interconnected and need each other.

Elaine’s grandparents, on both sides of her family, narrowly escaped World War II by immigrating from Poland and Austria to the US. Fascinated by the strong will of people to overcome the horrors from this era, she wrote We Shall Not Shatter, Book 1 of the Resilient Women of WWII Trilogy inspired by her deaf great aunt who was left behind as a teenager in Poland and perished in the Holocaust, while her other deaf siblings were permitted to enter the US when their young ages helped them to circumvent medically-revealing exams. Other extended family members also remained in Poland to lose their lives in the Holocaust.

Although multi-published in award-winning Inspirational Fiction, and a past blogger and online magazine contributor, Elaine now pens novels for the General reading audience. She is a member of Women’s Fiction Writers Association and The Historical Novel Society. Born in Brooklyn, New York, she has now been living in upstate, rural New York with her husband for more years than her stint as a city gal. She enjoys long walks down country roads, visiting New England towns, and of course, a good book.



“For anyone who loved All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, this is another beautiful journey of not just one woman’s story through the turbulent times of Nazi Germany, but two. A story which will touch your heart, and perhaps bring a few tears to wipe away, showing how love does indeed break barriers and sees beyond human labels and disabilities. You will absolutely fall in love with Zofia and Aanya, and how strong friendships were forged in the heat of oppression from Hitler’s Germany despite their different faiths.”
— Historical Fiction Company

“Drawing from her own family’s history, author Elaine Stock has created a compelling story of enduring friendship, heart wrenching sacrifice, and resilient strength. While set during one of the darkest moments on history’s stage, We Shall Not Shatter’s themes—conveyed through characters who will inhabit your heart—have much to say to readers in today’s world, too.”
— Carrie Schmidt, ReadingIsMySuperPower.org

“Elaine Stock’s novel, We Shall Not Shatter, the first of a promised trilogy, Resilient Women of WWII, is a poignant and heartfelt tale of perseverance, of friendship across boundaries, of making families in different ways, of horror and of healing. In the characters of Zofia and Aanya, and the families they make and lose in their native Poland, the barbarities of war, the added peril of Aanya’s deafness, and their harrowing escape, the story is offset by the plot strands of Christians helping Jews, Germans helping Poles, hearing people cherishing the strength of the deaf, and the deaf healing others. This is a story not only of resilience, but of the victory of love and friendship over pain and suffering.”
— Barbara Stark-Nemon, author of the award-winning novels, Even in Darkness and Hard Cider, Speech-language therapist and Teacher Consultant for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

We Shall Not Shatter is a compelling novel, inspired by real-life events in Brzeziny, Poland that so dramatically changed the fortunes of both a close-knit Jewish family and a Catholic family during the Hitler years. Elaine Stock’s poignant narrative charts the despair, confusion and sheer will to survive during this terrible period in modern European history. This is a story that oozes tragedy, hope, love and courage in the face of adversity.”
— Ron Vincent, author of The House on Thrömerstrasse: A Story of Rebirth and Renewal in the Wake of the Holocaust

“The story and its characters will linger in the reader’s heart for days… perhaps forever.”
— Patricia Bradley, Author of the Logan Point Series, Memphis Cold Case Novels, Natchez Trace Park Ranger Series

We Shall Not Shatter takes readers on a rare journey of life-tested relationships and uncompromising courage. Stock brilliantly creates a time and place that is terrible and heartbreaking only to reveal the beauty that awaits on the other side of devastation. This story will stay with you long after the last page is turned.”
— London Clarke, #1 Amazon bestselling author of Wildfell and The Meadows


An unforgettable story of friendship, family and hope as two courageous young women face one of history’s most horrific tragedies.

Brzeziny, Poland, 1939 Zofia’s comfortable-lifestyle overturns when her husband, Jabez, who monitors Nazi activity, has gone missing. Rather than fleeing the country with her young son, as she had promised Jabez who is fearing retaliation, she decides to stay. She cannot possibly leave her friend, Aanya. Since their childhood they have amazed fellow Brzeziners that it does not matter that Aanya is Jewish and deaf, and that Zofia is Catholic and hearing. Now, more than ever with war looming, Zofia will do whatever is necessary to protect her family and Aanya.

As both love and war approach their Polish town, Zofia and Aanya must make choices that will change the meaning of family, home, and their precious friendship. The journey, decisions and the no-going-back consequences the women face will either help them to survive—or not—as Hitler’s Third Reich revs up its control of the world.

Inspired by the author’s paternal heritage from Brzeziny, this is a heartbreaking yet beautiful story of two women who are determined to remain united in friendship and to live freely despite the odds.

Quote of the Week

“No coward soul is mine,
No trembler in the world’s storm troubled sphere:
I see Heaven’s glories shine,
And faith shines equal, arming me from fear.”

Emily Bronte [1818-1848]

“Last Lines” Stanza 1. 1846.

Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations by John Bartlett.
Published by Little, Brown and Company. 1955.
Page 592.