Author Karen Valandra Builds Children’s Courage and Confidence Through Picture Book

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New book ‘Pebble’ regales kids with a lesson-filled tale of true friendship.

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Like Pebble, people also start with rough edges. The problems they encounter will teach them lessons and eventually, they will become smooth stones.

As a former teacher, author Karen Valandra witnessed several cases of bullying. For her, bullying is an unacceptable behavior that needs to be corrected. In her picture book, “Pebble,” she discourages bullying and instills responsibility lessons within young readers.

“Pebble” tells the story of Travis, a boy who needs confidence. One day, he finds a piece of smooth granite and decides to take it home. Travis names the stone Pebble. Pebble becomes his friend and constant companion. When Travis has a problem, Pebble gives him the courage he needs to make good decisions. Pebble, on the other hand, enjoys Travis’ company. He likes it when Travis puts him in the pocket before he goes to school. He loves their adventures together and with Travis, he feels safe and comfortable.

Written for children, “Pebble” is a story of how a lonely stone finally finds genuine friendship. The book teaches young readers about life and making good decisions. In one of the duo’s adventures, Travis encounters a friend being bullied. He defended him and drove the bully away. This scenario encourages confidence and lets children know it is alright to speak up, especially in supporting and helping others.

Aside from bullying, author Valandra uses “Pebble” as an example of how difficulties develop people’s character and their ability to face life’s trials. Travis came to this realization when his teacher, Mr. Wolf, told him about Pebble’s beginnings. According to Mr. Wolf, “Pebble didn’t start out just fitting in someone’s hand all smooth and round like he is today. He used to have sharp sides and pointed edges. He was just a large piece of gravel at one time.”

Like Pebble, people also start with rough edges. The problems they encounter will teach them lessons and eventually, they will become smooth stones.

Packed with endearing illustrations and adventures, Valandra brings a pebble to life in this picture book!

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About the Author
Karen Valandra is a retired grandmother living in Spokane, Wash. She sings in a choir, paints with watercolors and knits. She taught in elementary schools and loves reading books to children. She and her husband have two daughters, five grandchildren and two dogs.

Pebble * by Karen Valandra
Publication Date: April 15, 2014
Picture Book; $31.99; 50 pages; 9781493198627
Picture Book Hardcover; $41.99; 50 pages; 9781493198641
e-book; $3.99; 9781493198634

Members of the media who wish to review this book may request a complimentary paperback copy by contacting the publisher at (888) 795-4274 x. 7879. To purchase copies of the book for resale, please fax Xlibris at (812) 355-4079 or call (888) 795-4274 x. 7879.

For more information on self-publishing or marketing with Xlibris, visit To receive a free publishing guide, please call (888) 795-4274.

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