Check out this excerpt... KidVenture: Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue by Steve Searfoss (Excerpt & #Giveaway) #middlegrade @prismbooktours

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Welcome! Read an excerpt and enter the giveaway below...

KidVenture: Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue
(KidVenture #1)
By Steve Searfoss
Middle Grade Fiction, Contemporary
Paperback & ebook, 125 Pages
January 26, 2020 by Steve Searfoss


Chance Sterling launches a pool cleaning business over the summer. Join Chance as he looks for new customers, discovers how much to charge them, takes on a business partner, recruits an employee, deals with difficult clients, and figures out how to make a profit. He has twelve weeks to reach his goal. Will he make it? Only if he takes some chances.

KidVenture stories are business adventures where kids figure out how to market their company, understand risk, and negotiate. Each chapter ends with a challenge, including business decisions, ethical dilemmas and interpersonal conflict for young readers to wrestle with. As the story progresses, the characters track revenue, costs, profit margin, and other key metrics which are explained in simple, fun ways that tie into the story.

(Affiliate links included.)


Dad was the first to get home. I told him all about my adventures at Larry’s house. I slowly unfurled the $20 bill I had tucked into my pocket and showed him my very first payment ever from a real customer. He told me he was proud of me and gave me a big high five. That made me happy.

“Oh, I almost forgot,” I said. “I need a new net. Ours broke while I was cleaning Larry’s pool.”

“Good thing you just got paid,” my dad said. “You should be able to find a nice net for under $20.”

“What!” I exclaimed. “What do you mean?”

“Well you need a good net if you’re going to be in the pool cleaning business, right?”


“Yes?” My dad raised an eyebrow dramatically. I hate when he does that.

“Well...well, I guess I just assumed you’d buy another one.”

“Oh I will,” my dad said.

Whew. That was close. “I thought you meant that I had to buy it.”

“I’m buying a new net for our pool, but you need to buy one for your pool cleaning business.”

“What? Why can’t I just use yours?”

“Because I don’t want to have to keep buying a new net every time it breaks while you’re cleaning somebody else’s pool.”


“If you’re going to have a pool cleaning business, you need to buy your own equipment.”

“But those cost money. A lot of money!”

“Good thing you’re making $20 every time you clean a pool,” my dad smirked.

“But why does that mean I have to buy my own equipment?”

“You were the one who said you wanted to be an official vendor, remember?”


“Well a vendor has his own on equipment and tools to do the job.”

So this is what my dad meant. I have to admit, I did not see this coming. “But I don’t want to spend all my money on nets and buckets!”

“You don’t have to spend all your money, just some of it. If you want to have a business, then you have to make some investments. Spend money now on tools, so you can do more jobs and make even more money later. That’s how it works.”

“Or do you want to just go back to cleaning our pool for $10?”

“Maybe,” I said grumpily. No one said anything about having to buy equipment.

“It’s up to you, Son.”

”Maybe I don’t want to make investments,” I cried out. “I’m just trying to buy a bike!”

“Sounds like you have some thinking to do, buddy.”

“This is harder than I thought,” I said. “I don’t want to work all summer and at the end all I really have are a couple buckets and nets.”

“Well then you need to track your expenses carefully and keep an eye on your bottom line.”

“My bottom what?”

“Your bottom line,” my dad said. “Your profits.”

“What’s that?”

“Well your top line is the money you get from doing these jobs. It’s your revenue. And from that you have to subtract your expenses. What’s left at the bottom is the money you get to keep. That’s your profit.”

“Why can’t I just keep all the money at the top?”

“Because money doesn’t grow on trees.”

“No, but it does grow in my dad‘s wallet.”

He laughed. “I wish Son. I have to do the same thing, keep an eye on our expenses and make sure we’re spending less than we make. I will buy a net for our family pool from my top line and you’ll buy a net for your cleaning business from yours.”

“I need to think about this,” I said defiantly. “Maybe I have no business being in business. Maybe I should just spend my summer playing soccer and eating ice cream.”
“Maybe,” my dad said. And then he picked up the newspaper and resumed reading.

Excerpted from Kidventure: Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue by Steve Searfoss, Copyright © 2022 by Steve Searfoss. Published by Steve Searfoss.

About the Author

Steve Searfoss: I wrote my first KidVenture book after years of making up stories to teach my kids about business and economics. Whenever they'd ask how something works or why things were a certain way, I would say, "Let's pretend you have a business that sells..." and off we'd go. What would start as a simple hypothetical to explain a concept would become an adventure spanning several days as my kids would come back with new questions which would spawn more plot twists. Rather than give them quick answers, I tried to create cliffhangers to get them to really think through an idea and make the experience as interactive as possible.

I try to bring that same spirit of fun, curiosity and challenge to each KidVenture book. That’s why every chapter ends with a dilemma and a set of questions. KidVenture books are fun for kids to read alone, and even more fun to read together and discuss. There are plenty of books where kids learn about being doctors and astronauts and firefighters. There are hardly any where they learn what it’s like to run small business. KidVenture is different. The companies the kids start are modest and simple, but the themes are serious and important.

I’m an entrepreneur who has started a half dozen or so businesses and have had my share of failures. My dad was an entrepreneur and as a kid I used to love asking him about his business and learning the ins and outs of what to do and not do. Mistakes make the best stories — and the best lessons. I wanted to write a business book that was realistic, where you get to see the characters stumble and wander and reset, the way entrepreneurs do in real life. Unlike most books and movies where business is portrayed as easy, where all you need is one good idea and the desire to be successful, the characters in KidVenture find that every day brings new problems to solve.

Tour Schedule

Tour-Wide Giveaway

One winner will receive a print copy of KidVenture: Twelve Weeks to Midnight Blue and a $15 Amazon gift card (US, UK, Canada only)

Ends March 2, 2022

Grab Our Button!

What did you think of the excerpt? Would you or someone you know enjoy reading this one?

No comments

Post a Comment

I love comments! I try to read and reply to them all. Feel free to agree or disagree and generally share your thoughts with me.