Friends, thank you so much for celebrating the release of When Lightning Struck!: The Story of Martin Luther, written for your middle and high school students (and as a family read-aloud) with me! I’m so blessed to have such a fabulous group of people to share my excitement with.
As we wrap up the release celebrations, I want to share with you the reactions that other homeschool and kid ministry bloggers have had to the book. I had a great release team, and they’ve all spent time evaluating the book for your benefit. I’m certain you’ll find some great new sites, as well. I’ve linked directly to each review, so you can read the whole thing if you’d like.
“Cooley’s book is a real key to understanding the Reformation and its place in the timeline of history. It’s incredibly well-researched, and an exciting (while sometimes shocking) story to read. Don’t miss this excellent retelling of the life and times of Martin Luther!” ~ Melanie Reynolds, The Old Schoolhouse
“Another imagery that I especially loved, was the image of Satan as a dragon. Throughout Martin Luther’s life, he imagines he hears dragons’ wings beating, and feels the hot fiery breath of the dragon in moments when he is engaged in spiritual warfare of some sort. I appreciated this imagery for myself, and think it is also an effective imagery to help young people see that we truly are in a fight, not against flesh and blood.” ~ LaRee, Broad Horizons
“As a language arts teacher, I love the style of writing, the flow of it, and the use of interesting and entertaining adjectives! Just what middle and high school students need to stay interested in the narrative.” ~ Joyice, Raising Boys Homeschool
“As a whole-book based history teacher, I am always looking for solid books, fiction and non-fiction, to bring history alive for my students. I certainly found one in the book, When Lightning Struck, by Danika Cooley. It’s not unusual for me to do reviews of products, particularly when I want to help out a fellow writer, blogger or homeschooler. I also think that reviews can greatly benefit my readers by allowing them to explore new books and materials that may not come to their attention otherwise. But, with this book, I am seriously considering adding it to my World History I course. It’s that good.” ~ Beth, Classes by Beth
“This book was beautifully written and it would be a wonderful read as a family discussion or even a small group, or youth group study. … It is full of action and I think many would enjoy reading it, and learning some history in a fun way.” ~ Kelly, Raising Samuels Homeschool
“Overall, this is a beautifully written, historically accurate, adventure packed, hilarious at times, and interesting book. It is a history piece, regardless of your faith. This book should be in the library of, not only every Christian Lutheran in the world, but also every school library (home or public) for its rich lessons in history!” ~ Clarissa R. West, Counting Our Blessings
“I found the description of Martin’s spiritual search clear and moving: from his vain attempt to confess every sin and his attempts at mortifying the flesh to realizing that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone and that faith is the gift of God.” ~ SarahElisabeth Jones, Delivering Grace
“When Lightning Struck! is theologically rich and filled with many wonderful lessons. One such lesson, drawn from the life of Luther, is that, in order to save one’s life, one must be willing to lose it for the sake of Christ. For what would you be willing to die? Luther was willing to sacrifice his life that all may come to a true knowledge of the love and grace of Jesus Christ who lived a perfect life and died in the place of sinners that all may have peace with God.” ~ Mrs. David Hankins, The Hankins Family
“I love the way Danika Cooley just pulls you right into the story with her writing style. Every time I finished a chapter the kids were wanting another! Martin Luther is portrayed as a real person, not just the dry facts you would find in many books. You learn that he was temperamental, impatient and really struggled with his anger. Martin was also very witty and compassionate.” ~ Kim Mills, Homestead Acres
“It was a breath of fresh air reading such an engaging book. I loved every minute of it! “When Lightning Struck!” is a book that I highly recommend, not only for tween and teens, but also for young adults and homeschooling parents.” ~ Tanya, The Natural Homeschool
“The flow of Ms. Cooley’s writing style often kept me on the edge of my seat to find out what was going to happen to Luther next. This is a wonderful read aloud book for families. My children also waited impatiently as our next reading time drew near. ” ~ Melissa, Grace Christian Homeschool
“I especially love some of the questions that inquisitive young Martin had and how those questions even foretell of his future and all God had called him to do. Even from a young age, we read in this book how he had questions about going to heaven, earning his way to heaven and much more. I’m so thankful that these portions of the book were included in the story.” ~ Candace, His Mercy is New
“As the 500th anniversary of the Reformation approaches in October 2017, this volume will be a great resource for readers, young and old alike, who wish to learn about Dr. Martin Luther, a pivotal figure of the Reformation.” ~ Martha, The Joy of School
“I was already familiar with Danika Cooley because of Bible Road Trip, her amazing Bible study curriculum for Preschool through grade 12. My experience using BRT convinced me that she is a kindred spirit who shares my passion for teaching about both the Bible and what God has done in history, and that passion comes through in her presentation of Martin Luther’s life. While the material has been painstakingly researched (as evidenced by abundant footnotes), Cooley makes sure that she tells an exciting story, with plenty of dialogue to move the story along through the entire 265-page book.” ~ Deanna, His Treasure Seekers
“Danika Cooley does an excellent job communicating the facts of Martin Luther’s life and his actions which made such a powerful impact on the Church while making the writing interesting and alive and compelling to the reader. I thoroughly enjoyed the story, and I know that it will hold the interest of younger readers as well.” ~ Leah, As We Walk Along the Road
“I found When Lightning Struck hard to put down. I felt captivated by the story from the very first page. Danika has a way of drawing you into the story. She ends a chapter in a way that begs you to continue on to the next one.” ~ Amanda Pelser, Kids in the Word
“This is the most important reason to read this book! Many teens are going through the same confusing beliefs as Martin Luther did. They will follow him through his struggles and how he finally came to the truth about God’s grace and how to gain salvation.” ~ Gena Mayo, I Choose Joy
“When Lightning Struck is written by Danika Cooley, an author, writer, and blogger who also developed a wonderful Bible Curriculum, Bible Road Trip, which I have enjoyed using with the boys. Knowing her love for truth and sound theology, as demonstrated in her Bible curriculum I knew it would shine through in this book, even as she seeks to paint a realistic picture of the development in Martin Luther’s journey.” ~ Joelle, Homeschooling for His Glory
“It will grab your attention in the first sentence and not let go until God has touched your heart and mind and shown you the meaning of true change. This biography was truly a joy and a pleasure to read and review. It is one I definitely recommend.” ~ Lori Hooten, At Home: Where Life Happens
“I have been reading the ebook and have shared portions with my husband. He is a Martin Luther fan. He has collected books and articles on Martin Luther for years, so he was interested in this new book. He is not one to read a book on the iPad though, so he is waiting for a hard copy. He did tell me that he thought the writer was doing a very good job on the parts I read out loud.” ~ Lori Lyman, At the Fence
“You can see the hours and hours of meticulous research Danika put into the book. She does such a great job in vividly painting the life and times of Martin Luther. We can see the inner struggle in his life and feel his fiery convictions. There are also plenty of adventures…a kidnapping, war and talk of bowels (such interesting things for the boy in my house!).” ~ Rebekah Teague, There Will Be a $5 Charge for Whining
“Most recognize the name Martin Luther as the Father of the Reformation, but it can be difficult to identify with him as a real person. Through thorough research and faithfulness to historical accounts, Danika Cooley makes it possible to imagine the real Martin Luther. She does not shy away from Luther’s foibles either, showing him as a multi-dimensional person who wanted to follow the will of God no matter the cost.” ~ Sara, Embracing Destiny
“With an emphasis on action, the story starts off with the life-changing thunderstorm in 1505 that led Luther to become a monk. The story then shifts back to his childhood and goes sequentially from there. We’ve been using this as a read-aloud with children ages 9 to 18. It certainly keeps everyone’s attention!” ~ Debra, Footprints in the Butter
“Danika Cooley delivers a story packed with excitement and conveys facts through the story in a way that does not feel like a list of dates or events. Incredibly well researched, her book recounts history in an enjoyable and engaging manner.” ~ Kimberly A. Vogel
“This is truly a lovely book. It is action packed. It draws heavily on Luther’s ideas and allows for us to see how his theology is developed. For the first time, it really clicked with me to see how his struggle with faith was what formed him into the person he is. This is really meaningful to me because, for me, every once of faith I have is a gift from God against the struggle that is all too real of doubt and discord in my life. Just seeing this struggle mirrored in one of our great church fathers is definitely worth the read in my book.” ~ Rebecca Ray, Raventhreads
“Not only is this a well written biography about Martin Luther, but it is an adventure story of how one life can be used by God to change the course of history. Through an “inside the head” perspective, the reader witnesses the inner struggles of a man who desperately wants to please the Lord, but is not sure that the known church was teaching biblical salvation. Danika accurately describes the church of Luther’s Day and explains theological issues in an age-appropriate way, such that teens and adults alike, will easily learn why we have protestant churches today. Plus, it’s a good story!!” ~ Anne Marie, Future Flying Saucers
“When Lightning Struck has it all. I didn’t remember the study of Martin Luther being this exciting – but it really is. There is no doubt in my mind that Danika Cooley was called to write this book, and I’m thrilled at the thought that so many will be hugely effected by it. It is an honor to share this resource with my family!” ~ Kelli Becton, Adventure Homeschool
Learn more about When Lightning Struck.
When Lightning Struck! is available in both a 264-page hardcover and an ebook format.
There’s more than one way to order!
Amazon ~ Kindle and Hardcover
~ Danika Cooley
Danika Cooley is the author of When Lightning Struck! The Story of Martin Luther (Fortress Press, 2015), Wonderfully Made (CF4K, 2016), and Bible Road Trip. Her work has been featured in internationally-recognized children's magazines over 150 times.