Good Enough: A Shay James Mystery

Rated 5.00/5 based on 2 reviews
Shay is a teenage foster child who wants nothing more than to belong and she believes she has found her place at a run down stable. Her sense of belonging is threatened when the stable-owner is hurt by a mysterious attacker and in the aftermath decides to sell his horses if the criminal isn't found. Shay and her two best friends determine to find the criminal - at the cost of their own safety.
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About Brenda McCreight

Brenda McCreight, Ph.D., is a therapist, author, and consultant specializing in services for adoptive and foster families dealing with challenges such as FASD, ADHD, conduct disorder, attachment disorder, developmental delays, and cognitive impairment. Brenda is the author of “Recognizing and Managing Children with Fetal Alcohol/Syndrome” published by the Child Welfare League of America, and of “Parenting Your Older Adopted Child” published by New Harbinger Publications and “Eden’s Secret Journal: The Story of an Older Child Adoption” published by Adoption Press and “Help I’ve Been Adopted” by Tapestry Books. Brenda sees clients at her office in Nanaimo, British Columbia and she provides distance parent coaching by phone and by email. Most importantly, she is the mother of fourteen children and has seven grandchildren. She can be contacted through her web site at

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Reviews of Good Enough: A Shay James Mystery by Brenda McCreight

Maranda Russell reviewed on July 18, 2011

As a foster parent, I know it can be hard to find realistic stories featuring foster kids. Most stories either paint foster kids as juvenile delinquents or as pitiful little angels with a Pollyanna complex. I was impressed and refreshed to find a young adult novel which actually contains a realistic, but lovable young heroine in foster care.

The book, “Good Enough: A Shay James Mystery”, which was written by Brenda McCreight, not only contains an interesting mystery for young sleuths, but it also tells a story that many children share, a history of neglect and abuse. Like many real-life foster children, Shay James spent much of her life with parents who put their addictions before their children. She learned early to fend for herself and to expect her world to change at a moment’s notice.

Just when Shay finally finds some stability, her happiness is once again put at risk by the illegal actions of others. Shay is happy to have found a foster home where she is comfortable, but what truly excites her is the nearby stable where she is able to ride and take care of horses. However, Shay’s world is rocked once again when a crime occurs at the stable. Unless the culprit is found, Shay and her friends are told that they can’t return to the stable. Even worse, the stable owner is now threatening to sell the horses and the stable! Determined to save the horses, Shay and her friends decide to investigate on their own.

Although Shay makes some questionable decisions in the book and finds herself in serious danger, she displays many fine qualities such as resourcefulness, loyalty, friendship, compassion and maturity. By the time the story ends, Shay James has become a wiser teenager who has finally found what she was looking for all along…a place to truly belong.

Although any preteen or teenager would likely find the story appealing, I would especially like to recommend this book to any foster or adoptive children out there. Undoubtedly, they will find that they relate to Shay James in many ways, and perhaps her story will make them feel less alone. Any child who has experienced neglect or abuse should definitely give this book a try as well.
(reviewed 20 days after purchase)
Sonja reviewed on June 2, 2011

I loved this book! It is exciting and different in the way it looks at the life of a teen. It had an interesting take on the complicated problems teens deal with in life and how they feel in the moment: not always the way we adults expect! The mystery and plot were very good, as was the character development; it was a great read! I would have loved it as a teen and it was excellent to read as a parent of teens, although I hope none of mine ever face such problems!
(reviewed 7 months after purchase)

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