Our Story




School Visits




Hank’s latest book:


A skeleton’s hand, a huge creature with red eyes and a riddle written in blood draw the River Rats into a mystery dating back to the Civil War.

 Join Moe, Tank, Wart, Dill, Tooth and Eep, six boys who are best friends and call themselves the River Rats, and their dog General Stonewall Jackson as they again embark on a great adventure - this time to solve a riddle left by a soldier in a long-lost cave, leading to treasure and danger.



Click here to Order Riddle Me a Mystery 



A face surfaces from the murky waters of the Ohio River offering an ominous invitation- “Follow Me. I’ll show you the way.”

Two people are frightened beyond belief and fall into the dark turbulent water.  Without warning, six boys, best friends who call themselves the River Rats, are thrust into the biggest mystery to hit their town in years. 
Maybe forever.

Where did the awful face come from?
What does it want?
Why does it only appear to certain people?

Join Moe, Tank, Wart, Dill, Tooth and Eep, The River Rats, and their dog General Stonewall Jackson as they make daring river rescues, go cliff-jumping, join the circus, and see the underside of the largest foot in the world – all while trying to solve the mystery of the face in the water. 

“The River Rats” is a chapter book targeted for 9-13 year olds as well as the young at heart.

The River Rats Reviews:

Small Press Bookwatch: May 2008

"...deftly written and a highly recommended story for community libraries, " May 2008, James A. Cox, Editor-in Chief, Midwest Book Review, 278 Orchard Drive, Oregon, WI 53575

To back one up through thick and thin, to help one against insurmountable odds- that’s what friends are for.  “The River Rats” is the tale of six of these friends and their dog who must deal with the sudden emergence of the biggest mystery to hit their town in an incredibly long time.  In order to figure out this enigma, they must make river rescues, join the circus, and other seemingly unrelated acts to get through this tale with themselves and their friendships intact.  “The River Rats” is deftly written and a highly recommended story for community libraries.

"You're gonna love these River Rats," January 6, 2008, Darrell House, singer/songwriter/author/recording artist

From the opening line of Hank Racer's new middle grade chapter novel, The River Rats, readers are swept along on a mystery that will keep them engaged till the last page.

The story explodes from the first sentence with the screaming tires of a semi truck on a rainy night. Then there is the secret of the ghostly, red-eyed specter submerged in the Ohio River. An adventure for the pre-teen friends known as The River Rats, the story takes place in those lazy, waning days of summer just before the start of the new school year.

Drawing on memories of his own childhood, Racer's gentle descriptions of life in a small river town, where everyone knows everyone else, give the story unique authenticity. For those who cherish memories of growing up away from the hustle and bustle of major metropolitan areas, the characters are just like people we all knew.

Best friends, boy meets girl, and for icing on the cake, the circus comes to town.

A good story, told well. You can't ask for more than that.


Click here to Order The River Rats




Marky has red hair and barks at night.  The other pond frogs tease him because his is different.  When a fearsome creature from the forest threatens the frogs.  Marky must decide what to do. 

What would you do?

Marky The Barking Bullfrog is an engaging story about making friends, helping other and understanding differences.



Marky The Barking Bullfrog Reviews:

"A definite witty, charming, sensory pleasure!" May 2007, Mary Jane Little, Library System Director, St. Augustine, Florida

I found the text and illustrations absolutely enchanting and delightful to the senses!  Having been a practicing Children's Librarian for many years, this book literally JUMPED out at me with teasing reflections of Eric Carle's works! 

"A Most Exceptional Bullfrog!" June 10, 2007, Julie Smithers, Instructional Technology Teacher

What an engaging book to explore with your child or grandchild! Marky's bullfrog face draws you into his world as you find yourself swimming and hopping with him through the fish-filled pond and the colorful grass . As the poem winds through the woods and pages, you'll be wondering what might happen next. The detailed illustrations invite you to linger on each page seeing the marsh through Marky's unique eyes. As your children ask to visit with Marky again and again, you'll discover more and more to capture your interest as well. A sweet book with a lesson to benefit all!

"Great for Beginning Readers!" May 5, 2007, Rik Feeney "Coachrik"

If you agree that reading is important and should become something a child enjoys doing rather than a chore then you will want to get a copy of "Marky The Barking Bullfrog." The story is wonderfully quirky and shows kids that being different is not bad.  The illustrations will intrigue young children and make this book a favorite they will want you to read with them time and time again.

Click here to Order Marky The Barking Bullfrog