September 23 2014

Review by Michelle Robertson, Readers’ Favorite – 5 stars

Reviewed By Michelle Robertson for Readers’ Favorite

Jackson is a young artist who is intrigued by airplanes and how they work. He is going to take his first flight on an airplane and decides to find more information on airplanes and the process of flying. He soon came to realize that painting reduced the anxious feeling he was having about flying on his own. Will Jackson overcome his anxiety about flying alone? Will his love for painting help him get through his emotional experience? Come join Jackson on his Aviation Adventure and find out!

Jackson’s Aviation Adventure (Jackson’s Adventures Book 2) by Rita Goldner is a charming and educational children’s pictorial book which introduces young readers to the concepts of flying, painting, and conquering fears. Children love to learn new things as well as find things to comfort them in their time of need. The author introduces young readers to both of those things by having the main character, Jackson, discover new facts about planes and aviation, and learning that painting helped soothe his anxiety about flying alone.

The book is highly relatable to other children feeling a similar emotion and looking for a way to ease it. A reader can expect to learn about the beginning of the airplane world by being introduced to the Wright Brothers and how they invented the first airplane, and the scientific information behind how it works. The book is not only a fun and exciting read filled with brightly colored, brilliantly illustrated pictures, but is chock full of information for those interested in both painting and the aviation process.



September 16, 2014

Jackson’s Aviation Adventure, written and illustrated by Rita Goldner, is a warm, whimsical story that will appeal to young readers.  Creative, wonderfully colored drawings enhance the story of Jackson, who is about to take his first long flight alone.  To calm his jitters, he used his favorite activity, painting, to tell himself the story of flight.  This is the second in the Jackson’s Adventure series – the first has Jackson using his painting to create a history report for his teacher.  Goldner is on to something here – the combination of lively, splashy, colorful pictures, a young boy who uses his special talent to confront problems, and some serious content about history and science, is a winner.  The Common Core differentiates between the skills for “reading literature” and “reading informational text” (to the chagrin of some educators), but Goldner deftly combines both skills in her Jackson’s Adventure series.


Common Core Standards addressed by this grade level 2 to 4 story include:


Reading Literature (RL)


  • Describe how characters in a story respond to major events and challenges.  Grade 2 RL: Key Ideas and Details #3
  • Describe the overall structure of a story, including describing how the beginning introduces the story and the ending concludes the action.  Grade 2 RL: Craft and Structure #5
  • Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.  Grade 3 RL: Key Ideas and Details #3
  • Explain how specific aspects of a text’s illustrations contribute to what is conveyed by the words in a story (e.g. create mood, emphasize aspects of a character or setting).  Grade 3 RL: Integration of Knowledge and Ideas #7
  • Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character’s thoughts, words, or actions). Grade 4 RL: Key Ideas and Details #3



Reading Informational Text (RI)


  • Describe the connection between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text.  Grade 2 RI: Key Ideas and Details #3
  • Explain how specific images (e.g., a diagram showing how a machine works)contribute to and clarify a text.  Grade 2 RI: Integration of knowledge and ideas #7
  • Describe the relationship between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text, using language that pertains to time, sequence, and cause/effect. Grade 3.RI:  Key Ideas and Details #3


Dr. Josephine Kelleher

Instructor, Extended Campuses

Northern Arizona University



December 16 2013

Readers Favorite - Book Reviews and Award Contest
Review Notice

Hello Rita Goldner (author and illustrator),

Your Readers’ Favorite review is complete!

Jackson’s History Adventure

Rating: 5.0 stars

Reviewed by Melinda Hills for Readers’ Favorite

Almost any child can relate to not wanting to do a History Report for school, but Rita Goldner provides great inspiration in her children’s book Jackson’s History Adventure. Jackson loves art and realizes that he can paint his way through history to tell the story of man through the ages. Jackson’s adventure takes the reader from the earliest days of art with cave men and their paintings, then on to the Middle Ages with a bustling town and castle. Jackson also shares images of Columbus and the discovery of the New World and the first Thanksgiving as Pilgrims and Native Americans share in a feast. Fast forwarding to the Space Age, Jackson paints the Man in the Moon and shows the scene of the Lunar Landing and exploration. With his report finished, Jackson is back at school and pleased that History is, in fact, interesting. Now, he is ready to embark on another adventure with his paints and crayons to learn even more!

Jackson’s History Adventure is a unique approach to getting children interested in different events from history. Any child can identify with the idea that school is ‘boring.’ They will end up being surprised how much fun it can actually be with the brief explanations provided by Jackson, followed up with links to further information to expand their knowledge. Jackson’s History Adventure is a wonderful combination of ‘literature’ and technology, and offers a terrific opportunity to capitalize on a teachable moment. Rita Goldner has provided the key to opening the door for children to learn more about their world while having fun.

The following are optional personal comments from the reviewer that will NOT appear in your review:

I love this! It is a great way to allow children to explore further and learn more!


Book Review Mini-Critique
Below you will find ratings (scale of 1-5) with descriptions for the major parts of your book followed by
your Readers’ Favorite review. We hope these ratings will give you an insight into how others may view
the different components of your book.

Title: Jackson’s History Adventure
Author: Rita Goldner (author and illustrator)
Genre: Children – Educational

Appearance: Cover, Construction, Chapter Headings, Illustrations, Table of Contents – 5
The appearance of a book makes a dramatic difference in the experience of the
reader. Appearance includes everything from an enticing cover and intriguing
table of contents, to interesting chapter headings and eye-catching illustrations.
This book excelled in all of these areas.

Plot: Concept, Characters, Originality – 5
The characters of a book should be well defined, and while they do not have to
be likable, the reader does have to be able to form a connection with them. The
theme should be consistent and the plot should be original or told from a unique
perspective. All of these elements are exceptionally well done in this book.

Development: Description, Dialogue, Creativity, Organization, Length, Fluidity, Coherence – 5
Besides the plot, the development of a book is the most critical. The dialogue
should be realistic, the descriptions should be vivid, and the material should be
concise and flow smoothly. The development of this book is very well done.

Formatting: Editing, Proofreading, Layout – 5
Editing and proofreading is where most authors fail. An author should have more than one person proofread their book. The best plot will fail if the reader has to stumble through misspelled words, misused words, bad punctuation, and poor grammar. This book is well edited.

Marketability: Theme, Subject Matter, Size of Target Audience – 5
Marketability refers to how well your book can be marketed and sold. The larger
the target audience a book has, the greater the value it will have to publishers
and retailers. Although this element is not indicative of the quality of a book, it is
important to the success of a book. This book has a wide appeal and can be
marketed to many types of readers.
Overall Opinion: Overall Starred Rating – 5

This rating takes into account all previous elements and the reader’s overall
opinion of the book. This is an excellent, very well written book.

Nov 30, 2013

Jackson’s History Adventure 


Written and Illustrated by Rita Goldner

Early in this delightful picture book and story, Jackson declares that the only thing he really likes about school is ART!  And that it’s hard for him to pay attention when his teacher talks about history.

By the end of the story, Jackson has solved his problem by resourcefully combining his love for adventure and his love for art to produce his required history report.

Jackson embarks on a journey through time, using his imagination to enter the past worlds of history and paint what he sees.

Goldner’s writing is simple, but lively and compelling, and her artwork glows with vibrant color.

Kids will enjoy the “clues” at the end of each history scenario leading to the next one.

Jackson’s History Adventure is a great read for all early elementary students, but it will especially resonate with those who love to learn in non-traditional ways.

I look forward to further adventures with Jackson and his art!


Dr. Josephine Kelleher

Instructor, Extended Campuses

Northern Arizona University


Nov 22, 2013

Jackson’s History Adventure, written and illustrated by Rita Goldner, is a charming, interactive picture book available on iPad and iTunes. I took an immediate liking to the story’s spunky namesake character, Jackson—a boy who lives to paint and finds it difficult to pay attention in school. His spiky hair reminds me a little of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s equally spunky character. Like Le Petit Prince, there is also a touch of melancholy in Jackson. I can also see a bit of van Gogh in the character, as is evident by Goldner’s bright splashes of color throughout the story. Jackson’s travels back in time as he seeks to paint history are both fun and thought-provoking. There is so much going in each illustration that I frequently found myself going back for another look to see what I might have missed. I loved the artist’s whimsical touches, as she has Jackson wielding a paintbrush in lieu of a sword as he stands around a table with medieval knights. Indeed, in his various expressions, I detect an appealing mischievousness and rebelliousness in Jackson—he’s the kind of guy you just know is heading for trouble. I look forward to finding out more about him in future adventures. A 5-star book that will appeal not only to children and parents, but to teachers looking for new ways to stimulate their students.

Gene Twaronite, Children’s Book Author and Educator