Coop Messes Up

Sarah Reju
(5 reviews) Write a Review
Coop Messes Up
Coop Messes Up
Coop Messes Up
Coop Messes Up
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In Coop Messes Up, the youngest member of the Wheelie family learns a big lesson in forgiveness and God's love when he breaks one of the rules.

Coop Wheelie is the youngest in his family, and like many little ones, he has a problem obeying the rules—and there are a lot of them! When Coop runs out of gas, his sister, Lucy, tries to help him learn to follow the rules, but finds herself right in the middle of the trouble too. Through Coop's story, kids will discover that making mistakes can be an important way to learn about forgiveness and the gospel.

The first in The Wheelies series, written by Sarah Reju and illustrated by Tania Rex, Coop Messes Up will teach children ages 3–8 about God's unconditional love for us.

  • Children and parents will learn from Coop that being a Christian is not about keeping all the rules.
  • Children will become engaged through a fun story about a family of cars and trucks.
  • Uses easy-to-understand, simple concepts to explain gospel truth to young children.


Sarah Reju, MDiv, is a pastor's wife and mother living in Washington, DC. She is the author of Jesus Saves, God Is Better Than Trucks, and God Is Better Than Princesses. Sarah and her husband, Deepak, have five children.


Tania Rex was born and raised in Vilnius, Lithuania. She's happiest when she can take an idea and turn it into a picture. Experimenting with styles and drawing is how she spends most of her spare time. Tania draws inspiration from little everyday miracles, aiming to point audience attention to the ever-present magic of real life.

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"Whether or not we care to admit it, there are times when every one of us can relate to Coop and Lucy's struggles. I love how this book illustrates beautiful, childlike faith. Sarah Reju's colorfully engaging book will help parents talk with their kids about God's love (and enjoy the reminder for themselves)."
Gloria Furman, Author of Labor with Hope and Missional Motherhood

"Coop Messes Up is the charming tale of a distracted little car who doesn't follow the rules. But don't be fooled by the vibrant, comical illustrations: these pages contain the most profound, powerful story of all time. We all mess up. We all need the fresh start only God can provide. If you're looking for a kid-friendly way to explain God's grace, love, and sacrifice, check out this lively, relatable read!"
Daniel Huerta, Vice President, Parenting & Youth—Focus on the Family

"With endearing characters, adorable illustrations, and engaging text, Coop Messes Up will speak directly to your young child's heart about the beautiful truth of the gospel. You will gladly read this again and again every time they ask!"
Korrie Johnson, Good Book Mom, Christian children's book reviewer,

"Sarah Reju understands young kids. She's written a series of books that will be particularly engaging for boys and girls who love fast cars and big trucks. Sarah also gets the good news. In Coop Messes Up, she speaks directly to kids growing up in a performance-oriented, keep-the-rules world, reminding them that while the law is good, it cannot change a sinful heart. Only the love of God shown to us in Jesus Christ can bring that change. That's a message every child (and adult) needs to hear!"
Jared Kennedy, Editor, The Gospel Coalition; author of The Beginner's Gospel Story Bible and Keeping Your Children's Ministry on Mission

"Readers young and old will connect with the story about cars and the consequences of breaking rules. It also shows the struggle we all have with wanting to do things our own way and the importance of repentance. This charming story illustrates God's unconditional love even when Coop messes up."
Tom and Diane Schreiner, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

"Books that capture gospel truth in compelling stories speak to our hearts. Coop Messes Up draws in small and big hearts alike to show us the importance of honesty, integrity, and looking to Jesus for his grace. We are always looking for books our kids love to read, and we've certainly added this one to our list!"
Garrett and Carrie Kell, Del Ray Baptist Church

"Using a whimsical tale about cars, Sarah Reju has creatively depicted our inability to perfectly obey commands. At the end she includes a gospel message for parents to help them explain the good news to their children. The book is colorfully illustrated and appealing to children."
Sally Michael, Author; director of publishing and training, Truth78

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5 Reviews

  • 5
    Children's book - Coop Messes Up

    Posted by Karen Roedell on 06 09 2024

    I read this aloud to a 3 year old guest, with her mother present. It kept the child's attention, and the (unsaved) mother appreciated the emphasis on "I love you because I love you".

  • 5
    Introduce your little ones to the truth of the Gospel

    Posted by Lia Ross Reads on 05 27 2024

    This book does such a great job of remaining faithful to a Gospel message while providing an engaging read for little ones. The main character is a cute little car named Coop who has a hard time obeying the rules. Kids will discover that making mistakes can be an important way to learn about forgiveness and the gospel.

  • 4
    Fun Series Starter!

    Posted by Rebecca Maney on 03 24 2024

    Children will love and learn from this practical little story!

  • 5
    A big hit!

    Posted by Lexi on 02 23 2024

    In this super cute story, Coop runs out of gas (again) even after his parents’ reminder. So he asks his older sister to help him follow the rules. His sister teaches him about all sorts of traffic laws (they start to feel pretty good about themselves and look down upon others who mess up) but they both end up running out of gas again! There’s an important message about making mistakes and unconditional love. About 3/4 of the way through reviewing a digital copy of this book, my oldest said “Mommy, I love this book. Are we going to have it forever?” I think he was a bit unsure why we were reading it on my computer, but when I told him we could read this one anytime he wanted, he got a huge grin and said he was so glad. It’s always heartwarming to see my boys enchanted by good books.

  • 5
    Gospel picture book

    Posted by Judith Birkey on 02 07 2024

    Coop Messes Up is an adorable picture book that contains the most important message I want my children to hear. The story quickly catches the attention of young readers, who follow along with the adventures of Coop, a car that has trouble obeying the rules. As the story progresses, we meet a police car, Lucy, who is a rule-follower, and fire truck Ma, whom Lucy & Coop perceive as the rule-enforcer. We learn that even Lucy doesn’t follow all the rules, and Ma admits that she is a rule-breaker, too. More importantly, Ma explains both her unconditional love for her children and also God’s unconditional love for them. My favorite line in the book is, “He loves you so much that he sent his Son Jesus to obey for you, and to die for you, so you can be forgiven for all your rule-breaking.” In our home we love the New Growth Press picture books that illustrate the gospel so well for children. This looks like the start of another great series!

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