Boots and Buckets By Deb Watley


Friendship, adventure, archaeology, and horseback riding intertwine in a heartwarming tale of courage and discovery.

Boots and Buckets by Deb Watley is a delightful tale that intricately weaves together themes of friendship, adventure, and overcoming fears. Set in the quaint town of Yankton, S.D., the story follows twelve-year-old Gwen Bell as she navigates the challenges of middle school, marching band camp, and her newfound interest in archaeology.

Watley skillfully crafts complex relationships between characters, particularly Gwen’s dynamic with her best friend Olivia and the enigmatic Harper. As Gwen’s passion for archaeology grows, tensions rise between her and Olivia, further complicated by Harper’s involvement. The exploration of these friendships adds depth to the narrative, allowing readers to empathize with Gwen’s internal struggles.

The narrative takes an exciting turn when Gwen faces her fear of horses, setting off on a thrilling adventure with Harper to uncover a rumored treasure on Harper’s family farm. Through this journey, Gwen not only conquers her fear but also learns the value of true friendship and loyalty.

Watley’s attention to detail is evident throughout the story, from the vivid descriptions of the South Dakota landscape to the historical elements woven into the plot. The inclusion of archaeological digs and treasure hunts adds an element of mystery and intrigue, keeping readers engaged until the very end.Boots and Buckets is a heartwarming tale that celebrates the power of friendship, courage, and self-discovery. With its relatable characters and captivating storyline, this middle-grade novel is sure to resonate with readers of all ages.

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