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what to read next in independent publishing

Who is Titus? A chicken farmer at 12 years of age, US Army Paratrooper in Japan at 17, All-Scholastic Football player, Football Coach, Biology Teacher, Professional Photographer, Bank Incorporator, Presidential Confidant, Chiropractor and a critic’s quote,

“TITUS OUT GUMPS FORREST!!” The story of a young mill town sports hero. Grit, focus and an ability to weave through all obstacles dominated his life game on the field .......... and off !!!!! Ensuing years finds the sports hero hanging up the cleats and one day dining with a US president and going on to professional brilliance and international acclaim. Never far from hometown yet lightyears from his humble beginnings. This engaging tale will inspire others in pursuit of their own distant personal goal posts!!!! Available at

Titus & Senator Marco Rubio, exchanging books, two great examples of the “American Dream”


Margaret Brown fo u n d e r a n d p u b l i sh e r Anna Nair edito r i n ch i e f Christina Davidson c re a t i ve d i re c tor Ben Minton circ u l a t i on ma n a g e r Patricia McClain c o py e d i to r Marc Schuster c o n t r i b u t i n g e d i tor Sarah Kloth s o c i a l me d i a st ra te g i st

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Photograph: Surfing with Sartre by Aaron James

what to read next in independent publishing



Interview Tired of California, The Beach Boys’ Holland Revisited by Marc Schuster


Interview Surfing with Sartre by Aaron James


Review The Swim by Jens Colting



Essay The Swimmer by John Cheever


Most Checked-Out Books

DEPARTMENTS 44 Recommended Reading | 64 Books to Read | 68 Small Press Reviews | 69 Last Words

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A PHOTOGRAPHIC JOURNEY THROUGH THE EVERDAY LIFE IN HAVANA, CUBA. These captured shots within Split Seconds Havana occur smack in the midst of the pre-normalization of Cuban/US relations followed by the signing of the accord between the 2 nations, President Obama’s visit, and Fidel Castro’s death. This collection of black and white photos situates Havana inside of the dying embers of its 57 year relationship with orthodox communism. But now with its feet firmly planted in the pre-post Castro dance of modernity and change, bets are on that Havana is set to change and in a big way. The author is not sure how much change is in the cards. Nor how quickly it will manifest. Havana will reinvent itself regardless of change, rates of change, confluences or conflicts of influences he says. The shots presented here cut through the politics and the gossip of endless predictions spun by the international and local rumor mills. They portray a timeless face of Havana. A captivating and repeating humanity. “Generational Generalities” as he likes to say. Devoid of its powerful tropical flavors via his cancelation of color, landscapes and seascapes, Havana is stripped bare and reveals its inner city urban pulse. The metronome of its Habaneros.

Introducing a present-day La Bohème—a must-read novel for all opera lovers.

by Yorker Keith The Other La Bohème is literary fiction that depicts a group of four opera singers, named the Dolci Quattro, who are to perform the nearlyforgotten opera La Bohème by Leoncavallo, also known as “the other La Bohème.” Set in the rich artistic backdrop of New York City, the Dolci Quattro’s lives and loves go through ups and downs in joy and despair, while they give one another much-needed moral support. As the opening night nears, the Dolci Quattro make their utmost efforts to perfect their singing for the opera that will determine their future.




Book 1 OPAL RIDGE “A modern romance with shades of Pride and Prejudice set in the Australian outback.” —Jill Allen Forword Clarion Review

Book 2 THE GOVERNESS “I don’t often review books, because I am not a writer.
This story deserves someone to say some thing good about it though.
I really loved reading the whole book.” —Kindle customer  



Coming Soon!

This book is about Tony, the most dashing, colourful, exciting of the three friends.

Look out for it!


“Fiona Ingram’s middle-grade series is dead-on: the plot is crisp, the characters are relatable, and they leave the reader wanting more.” Terry Doherty, CEO, The Reading Tub, Inc. (USA) THE SECRET OF THE SACRED SCARAB BOOK I A 5000-year-old mystery comes to life when a scruffy peddler gives Adam and Justin Sinclair an old Egyptian scarab on their very first day in Egypt. The cousins are plunged into a whirlpool of hazardous and mysterious events when the evil Dr. Khalid kidnaps them. They learn more about the ancient Seven Stones of Power and the mysterious Shemsu-Hor. They must translate the hieroglyphic clues on the underside of the scarab, as well as rescue the missing archaeologist James Kinnaird, and their friend, the Egyptologist Ebrahim Faza, before time runs out!


THE SEARCH FOR THE STONE OF EXCALIBUR BOOK II Continuing the adventure that began in Egypt a few months prior in The Secret of the Sacred Scarab, cousins Adam and Justin Sinclair are hot on the trail of the second Stone of Power, one of seven ancient stones lost centuries ago. This stone might be embedded in the hilt of a newly discovered sword that archaeologists believe belonged to King Arthur: Excalibur. However, their longstanding enemy, Dr. Khalid, is following them as they travel to Scotland to investigate an old castle. Little do they know there is another deadly force, the Eaters of Poison, who have their own mission to complete. Time is running out as the confluence of the planets draws closer. Can Justin and Adam find the second Stone of Power and survive? And why did Aunt Isabel send a girl with them?



Continuing the adventure that ended in Britain just a short while ago, cousins Adam and Justin Sinclair, with their friend Kim Maleka, are now hunting for the third Stone of Power, one of seven mysterious stones lost centuries ago. The third stone might be located in an ancient city, hidden in the depths of the Mexican jungle. When their small plane crashes in the jungle, Adam, Justin, Kim, and James are rescued by an uncontacted tribe. James, who is wounded, must stay behind as the kids, with only a young boy, Tukum, as their guide, make their way through the dense and dangerous jungle to find the city. River rafting on a crocodile-infested river and evading predators are just part of this hazardous task.

In a small sleepy town in North Carolina, thirteen year old Jake Winston discovered he carries a unique genetic trait; one that a covert government agency will stop at nothing to obtain. After the tragic death of his father, a local firefighting hero, Jake’s absent grandfather returns and sends the boy off on a journey into the gated forest at the edge of town, bringing him face-to-face with a family of dragons thought long extinct. Determined to grasp the power of the blood flowing through Jake’s veins, an agent from the secret ONX facility begins killing every dragon in his path. This forces Jake in the middle of a battle between the government and the dragons of Asheville, where the true potential of his power is revealed.

“Wonderfully descriptive, delightfully quirky. Reminds me of the movie Super 8!” BlueInk Review

“Finely wrought, well-crafted with wonderful humor...anyone can get easily wrapped up in Jake’s improbable quest.” Publishers Daily Reviews

“Inventive and never predictable. I was immersed.” Paula Stewart

Available at

Lamb to the

Slaughter by Pete Delohery A novel about love and cour age, sin and redemption “Iron” Mike McGann is facing the twilight of his prizefighting career. Desperate for his future, he has refused to honor his promise to his wife to quit the ring and start a family. Rufus “Hurricane” Hilliard is the most menacing presence in prizefighting. But behind his menacing ring presence lives a man nobody knows, a complex man who despises his own image. Rufus “Hurricane” Hilliard vs. “Iron” Mike McGann, just another fight shown on The Continuous Sports Network, but by the time it is over the lives of these and many others will be forever different.

“This heartfelt tale makes a powerful emotional impact.” —Blue Ink Starred Review Also in Spanish: El Cordero al matadero Available in print and e-book at Amazon, xlibris, and Barnes & Noble.

w w w. p e t e d e l o h e r y. c o m

Goodreads— Peggy rated it 5 stars “One heck of a read! Page turner! Fast paced and well written with amazingly thought out characters! This author knows what readers want!”

Cynthia Kumanchik is a public relations and marketing professional based out of Pasadena, California. After spending time in the healthcare, entertainment, and computer industries, she began writing young adult and women’s novels.

Try as she might, Lily Lane can’t remember what happened that fateful night she was left to die on the lake. It’s important that she does. Lily needs to discover the truth surrounding her death and move on from this stage of existence. If she doesn’t solve the mystery in time, more people could die… As Lily pieces together her last steps, she manages to make a strange psychic connection to Rose, a reporter with a secret of her own. With the help of Rose and Jeremy, the best friend Lily left behind, this ghost will solve the mystery that haunts them all.

Kumanchik received her degree in journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She is also a member of the SCBWI and Pasadena Area Writers Society.

For more information about her work, visit her at or @Ckumanchik

Available at



Tired of California examines the efforts of the Beach Boys to reinvent themselves in the early 1970s as they recorded their critically acclaimed Holland album.



Tired of California:

The Beach Boys’ Holland Revisited

by Marc Schuster Smashwords

Shelf Unbound: Your new book Tired of California: The Beach Boys’ Holland Revisited explores the album recorded in the Netherlands. What inspired you to tackle this particular work? Marc Schuster: I was in high school the first time I listened to Holland, and it threw me for a bit of a loop because it didn’t sound at all like what I thought the Beach Boys should sound like. No catchy surf-guitars, no lyrics about surfing or hotrods. I couldn’t even begin to guess which member of the band was singing on the opening track, and the CD ended with a slightly bizarre fairy tale. So the album was always a fascinating mystery to me. Since then, I’ve always kept my eyes peeled for any information I could find on the topic. When it all came to a critical mass, I decided I needed to synthesize everything I’d discovered in book form, just in case anyone else out there had the same questions I did.   Shelf: Clearly you are an avid fan and you discuss this work in depth. Would you agree it should be better known? Can you shed light on why this isn’t the case? Schuster: One reason Holland isn’t

better known is that it doesn’t match most people’s preconceived notions of the Beach Boys, and it also doesn’t quite fit into the history of the band that most people are familiar with. Early on, it was easy for their record company and radio programmers to slot them into a particular category, but as they grew up and their music changed, people weren’t sure how to deal with them. But the album is certainly worth listening to. Tracks like “Sail on, Sailor” and “The Trader” would definitely fit nicely into classic rock playlists alongside music by bands like Fleetwood Mac and Chicago. Shelf: Do you think the emergence of the Beatles factored into the decline of The Beach Boys as a popular group? In other words had their initial success with surf and hot car themes run its course? Schuster: A lot of the early Beach Boys hits were contemporaneous with hits by the Beatles, but the Beatles managed to evolve from their teen idol image much more successfully than the Beach Boys did. Part of the problem for the Beach Boys, I think, is that while the Beatles all wanted to move forward as an artistic unit, the Beach Boys were split into



factions. Some members of the band wanted to break new ground while others wanted to keep cranking out hits that adhered to a fairly strict formula. One of the things their publicist Jack Rieley tried to do in the early 1970s was to push the band in a more unified artistic direction. Shelf: Ultimately is Jack Rieley a hero or villain in your estimation? Schuster: He was definitely self-serving and deceitful in a lot of ways, but he was also responsible for pushing the Beach Boys to create some of their most interesting if under-appreciated work. Early on, for example, Rieley told the band that he’d won a Peabody Award for his work as NBC’s news bureau chief in Puerto Rico, but the story was completely fabricated. NBC didn’t even have a news bureau in Puerto Rico. But Rieley’s ability to spin what some people today might call “alternative facts” created a space in which the Beach Boys could attempt to reinvent themselves. Shelf: Brian Wilson’s mental illness has been well documented. How do you think his mental health impacted the final product? Schuster: Brian Wilson’s biggest contribution to Holland was a spoken-word fairytale titled “Mount Vernon and Fairway.”



It’s an admittedly odd recording, and when the album was released, it was relegated to a separate seven-inch disk that came with the twelve-inch LP. If Brian had been in better shape and had gotten a little more support from the band, the fairytale might have been more central to the project. The final product may have sounded something like Harry Nilsson’s The Point, an album that uses a mix of songs and spoken-word passages to tell a story. Shelf: Which, in your opinion, is the stronger, more lasting accomplishment Smile or Holland? Schuster: I think Smile had the more lasting effect on the popular imagination by virtue of the fact that it went unfinished for so long. That album was supposed to come out after Pet Sounds, and there was a lot of hype surrounding its production. When Brian Wilson abandoned the project in 1967, it became the stuff of legend—a lost masterpiece. Its absence is what defined the album and made it so great. The only thing fans could do until the release of Brian Wilson Presents Smile in 2004 was imagine how good the album would have been if Brian had finished it. No matter how good Holland was, there was no way it could ever compete with the idealized versions of Smile that fans had been imagining for years. 


“An unrelenting portrayal of a strong female character driven to dark deeds in a foreign land— and the heart-pounding search to find her.” Publishers Daily Reviews

Tokyo—a great place to live, a frightening place to die Detective Hiroshi Shimizu investigates white collar crime in Tokyo. When an American businessman turns up dead, he’s called out to the site of a grisly murder—or is it just suicide? A slip or jump off the train platform? A security camera video suggests the killer was a woman, but in Japan, that seems unlikely. Hiroshi and ex-sumo wrestler-turned-detective Sakaguchi scour Tokyo’s sacred temples, skyscraper offices and industrial wastelands to find out what was in the past of one Tokyo woman that drove her to murder.

“An absorbing investigation and memorable backdrop put this series launch on the right track.” Kirkus Reviews “For anyone who loves crime and cop novels, or Japanophiles in general, this is a terrific thriller. Fans of Barry Eisler’s early novels will find the same satisfactions here.” BlueInk Starred Review


Shelf: Why do you think neither album was a commercial success? How did their re-invention help or hurt this enterprise? Schuster: The problem with Smile was that it never came out, and that was a stumble the Beach Boys never fully recovered from. By the time Jack Rieley came along, the band was playing catch-up, and the re-invention that he championed placed them in direct competition with bands that they had influenced—bands that had taken their sound and already begun to adapt it to the new decade. And look at the competition! Holland came out in 1973—the same year as Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy, the Who’s Quadrophenia, David Bowie’s Aladdin Sane, Elton John’s Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, Paul McCartney’s Band on the Run, and Bruce Springsteen’s Greetings from Asbury Park, New Jersey and The Wild, The Innocent, and the E Street Shuffle. In the context of classics like these, it’s easy to see how even a reimagined, adult-contemporary version of the Beach Boys got lost in the shuffle. But that’s the great thing about living in the digital age. It’s easier than ever to go back and check out some of the music we may have missed out on the first time around. If anything, that’s the point of my book—to argue that a quirky yet



overlooked album from a legendary band deserves a second listen. And, of course, to tell the story of how that album came to be.

Right after Mark’s next-door neighbor is murdered, he gets a new neighbor—the beautiful but mysterious Sylvia, who has just arrived from London. Mark is drawn into a mutually obsessive relationship with Sylvia. She is secretive regarding her past and Mark’s friends caution him that she can’t be trusted. But Mark won’t listen to his friends or to the priest who later claims that Sylvia is a deadly threat. Mark is enchanted by Sylvia’s beauty and charm, even though dating her has its challenges. Whether it’s performing gymnastics on the ledge of the Golden Gate Bridge, creating an embarrassing scene at the wedding of Mark’s best friend, or shocking Mark with her unusual sexual proclivities, Sylvia never misses an opportunity to make a bad first impression. When Mark first meets Sylvia, he tells her, “You’re the girl of my dreams!” Sylvia smiles and responds with a warning—“Be careful what you wish for.”

“The Vampire Girl Next Door

is a choice pick for one looking for a romance with a supernatural twist, highly recommended.” John Burroughs Midwest Book Review

In The Vampire Girl Next Door, Mark fell in love with Sylvia, the beautiful, but quirky girl next door, not realizing that she was a vampire who killed his last neighbor. Now, in The Vampire Girl in London, they fly from Mark’s San Francisco to Sylvia’s London. They tangle with terrorists, are shadowed by a CIA agent, and are pursued by a vampirehunting cult. Even more challenging, they must cope with living in a mansion full of Sylvia’s vampire friends—some of whom she can’t really trust. And Mark still has to deal with Sylvia’s sexual hijinks. Will Mark and Sylvia’s love be enough to survive it all?

“The Vampire Girl in London

would satisfy supernatural fans and I’m once again entertained by Arbib’s fascinating couple, Sylvia and Mark.” Lit Amri, Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews Available at in paperback and Kindle. Paperback and all e-book formats available on author’s website.



Author, Aaron James, begs to differ with Jean-Paul Sartre, who once declared waterskiing to be “the ideal limit of aquatic sports.”



Surfing With Sartre An Aquatic Inquiry into a Life of Meaning by Aaron James Penguin Random House

Shelf Unbound: Sartre famously said in his seminal work No Exit that ‘hell is other people’ yet surfing tends to be made up of communities—it seems a disconnect, please speak to this seeming dichotomy, couldn’t surfing be considered an elite pasttime, available to the more well heeled—if so wouldn’t this fly in the face of Sartre’s general philosophy? Aaron James: A surfer in a crowded line-up can definitely relate to Sartre’s “hell is other people” sentiment! But Sartre thought people can’t really ever really recognize each other, not in a sustained way. What the surfing line up brings out, though, is that the conflictual hell is a product more of circumstance than of the human condition itself. Maybe the tide changes and the waves turn on and everyone is getting a few. The surf-line up hell can quickly turn to stoke and bonhomie all around. That guy I was giving stink eye an hour ago, whatever! We’re scoring, now maybe hooting each other on. So my idea is that surf etiquette already does a lot to create orderly relations of mutual recognition, and most of the time, the human condition isn’t Sartre’s hell. It’s actually really fun, and something to be grateful for. And, yes, maybe surfing

is mostly for relatively affluent people who are fortunate enough to live near the coast. But, for almost anyone, being together with others in nature, maybe fishing down at the lake, can be a big part of why life is meaningful in and of itself, lived for those moments, for its own sake. Shelf: You talk of surfing and flow stating that the surfer acquiesces to the shifting moments by giving up the need of control but isn’t control the only way to stay on the surfboard? James: Definitely—as far as basic control of the body and surfboard goes. But as every surfer knows, that’s a small part of actually riding a wave, let alone riding a wave very well. Once you’re beyond basics, a lot of surfing involves letting go of the need to control and just watching, moment by moment, to be better attuned. It’s when we can respond in an attuned way to the shifting moments of the wave that “flow” happens, as a coalescence of skill and circumstance. That isn’t just a state of mind—you really are flowing through the wave sections. But, as surfers know, being in wave’s flow brings a profound sense of joy, a sense of fortune or gratitude—a feeling of being very glad to be alive, rather than not, just to be there for it. That, I think, is the essence of “stoke.”



Shelf: Please expand on your argument of surfer class versus workaholics. James: If climate change is one of our big problems, then working too much is also a big problem. Work for money is one of the main ways we create greenhouse gas emissions. So if you’re willing to work less and do something less consumptive instead—like go surfing—you’re actually contributing something to society! Surfers aren’t lazy, no good, good-for-nothing, freeloaders who should really get a job They’re the new model of civic virtue. The workaholic is the new problem child. Still, okay, maybe it wouldn’t be cool to force the workaholic to work less. That’s fine, too, as long as enough surfers are surfing to “offset” their emissions, keeping our overall work hours down to some acceptable low average. It sounds odd to a culture reared in the Protestant Work Ethic, but workaholics are in that way parasitic on the surfer’s making his or her distinctive contribution to society.     Shelf: Sartre speaks of skiing as the perfect experience, do you feel he would have continued to believe that had he experienced surfing? Why? James: Sartre has these great passages in Being and Nothingness about skiing and waterskiing and why it exemplifies freedom. You get the sense that he almost found his way to what’s special about surfing, by pure



reason! At the same time, when you really think hard about why surfing is freedom, it causes problems for his view of freedom as self-creation from nothing. Freedom in surfing is much more about attunement to what is beyond your control, and the flowing dynamic that emerges from it. So I think Sartre would have at least found surfing totally fascinating, and, who knows, maybe he would have changed his view of freedom itself. Shelf: If surfers surf for the joy of the activity, the command of man over nature, if you will, do you think Sartre’s philosophy would validate or invalidate pursuing it sheerly in the pursuit of pleasure? Expand! James: Sartre might see surfing as valuable in the way climbing to the top of a mountain is valuable. You did it, you owned it, which only testifies to your power in action. But I think Sartre would have appreciated that the joy of flowing attunement in surfing comes precisely from giving up any need to be so controlling or domineering. You’re just present with the wave, responding moment by moment, and good things just happen. It’s beautiful, and sublime, and eminently worthy of one’s limited time in life. If Sartre had seen that, I think he would have found a way out of his rather dark existential predicament.


An epic fantasy novel complete with sorcery, superpowers, ancient history, and demonic wars across time, Intrinsic is the first book in a new series from debut author Jerry Collins. In a world where nothing is as it seems comes a woman with the power to possess the souls and wills of men, to do with as she pleases. Jatara thirsts for world domination, moved by an unrelenting drive to capture and control the minds of her subjects. This saga of horrific pain, betrayal and death takes place in ancient Europe, but the story transcends time, to the present and beyond. Jatara’s plan for world conquest is only obstructed by Derideon, an omnipotent ruler of the underworld, who wants Jatara to join his regime and praise him as her master.

Will she obey, or will she defy him?


Available at







“The Verdict is in—


Attorney Christopher Leibig offers a legal thriller for the ages. Realistic yet unpredictable, with a clever metaphysical twist, Almost Mortal is a thrilling roller coaster ride.”

Can Sam solve the “Rosslyn Ripper” case before the killer strikes again?

Robert Dugoni, New York Times and Amazon number one bestselling author of “My Sister’s Grave.” “A poised protagonist leads this serpentine but engaging legal tale.” —Kirkus Reviews

“A page-turner that you’ll probably want to read twice.” – Patricia McCardle, author of Amazon’s awardwinning novel, Farishta.

Camille shares an old journal anonymously mailed to the Church, which she believes may have been authored by the killer/confessor. The journal purports to tell the life story of a man with mind control and other special powers who claims to be a descendant of the fallen angels cast of out Heaven by God. As he learns more about the murders, the mystery author, and Camille, Sam begins to realize the so called “Rosslyn Ripper” case may have implications beyond his imagination—including his own past.

Christopher Leibig is a novelist and criminal defense lawyer who lives and works in Alexandria, Virginia. His first two published books, Saving Saddam (2008), and Montanamo (2010) were published by Artnik Books in London. Saving Saddam was released in 2014 in the United States under the title Black Rabbit. Chris also has several published short stories – Secret Admirer (The Cynic on-line magazine 2004) Coldcocked (Skyline magazine FICTION: Thrillers/Legal 2004), Fly (The Cynic on-line magazine 2009), Intervention (Traveller’s Playground Press 2014), and Paradise City (Traveller’s Playground Press 2014). Chris has also published numerous articles on criminal defense and related topics – including in the Huffington Post and The Examiner – and appeared as a legal expert regularly since 2009 in print and television media – including Fox News, CNN, The Washington Post, $15.95 The New York Times, and Sports Illustrated. He and his colleagues regularly lecture at law schools throughout Europe and the Caribbean.









“The verdict is in–Attorney Christopher Leibig offers a legal thriller for the ages. Realistic yet unpredictable, with a clever metaphysical twist, Almost Mortal is a thrilling roller coaster ride!” —Robert Dugoni, #1 Amazon, New York Times and Wall Street Journal Best Selling Author of My Sister’s Grave

christopher Leibig

emerging criminal defense attorney Sam Young has always known he had a gift. Or a curse. He thinks of them as minor psychic abilities. When Sam is hired by an attractive young nun named Camille Paradisi, he agrees to help discover the identity of a serial killer in order to prevent Camille’s pastor from being exposed for not reporting the man after a confession – thereby allowing another murder to occur. While Sam’s psychic abilities increase as he investigates the case and gets closer to Camille, he realizes that the enigmatic nun is not revealing the complete truth. Camille shares an old journal anonymously mailed to the church, which she believes may have been authored by the killer/ confessor. The journal, which begins in Argentina in the 1940’s, purports to tell the life story of a man with mind control and other special powers who claims to be a descendant of the fallen angels cast out of heaven by God. As Sam learns more about the murders, the journal author, and Camille, he begins to realize the so called “Rosslyn Ripper” case may have ancient implications beyond his imagination.


Emerging criminal defense attorney Sam Young has always known he had a gift. Or a curse. He thinks of them as just minor psychic abilities. When Sam is hired by an attractive young nun named Camille Paradisi, he must discover the identity of a serial killer. Otherwise Camille’s Pastor will be exposed for not having turned in the man after a confession—thereby allowing another murder to occur. While Sam’s psychic abilities increase as he investigates the case, he quickly learns that the enigmatic Camille is not revealing the complete truth.



Winner 2016 Next Generation Indie Book Award

köehlerbooks 2016 Chanticleer Grand Prize Winner—Fiction: Paranormal TM







Christopher Leibig is a novelist and criminal defense lawyer who lives and works in Alexandria, Virginia.



The Way I See IT

Joseph Chan was born with two rather restrictive birth defects. One of them is a genetic eye disease known as retinitis pigmentosa (RP), which is progressive with age. The other is paroxysmal kinesigenic dyskinesia (PKD), an involuntary muscular spasm brought on by other sudden movements such as standing up from a sitting position; a condition that actually lessened after age forty. In The Way I See It, Mr. Chan talks candidly about the challenges of growing up with these two birth defects. Despite facing the fear and frustration of falling behind in school as a little child, and stigma for being different, this is a story of love, faith, and personal triumph over fate. The Way I See It is Joseph Chan’s spiritual journey to discover his life’s purpose and to share the hope and inspiration that he has found with those who might also bene t from it.


s e . n y


f h a n t y e , l o s

“In a book filled with wisdom, one of the most remarkable lessons is the way in which the author views his physical limitations.” By Foreword Reviews

4 stars out of 5

by Foreword Reviews



Limbo Life is idyllic for the Martin family until a drunk driver crosses their path and four-year-old Missy is killed in the accident. The young girl’s parents mourn their daughter’s death in very different ways.  Levi Martin internalizes his depression and heartbreak while Sherry projects rage towards the driver who destroyed her family and vows vengeance. In Levi’s mind all hope is lost so he takes off on a crosscountry road trip.

Mirrors in the Dark During a jaunt to Tijuana with his buddies in 1970, Randy “Scout” Monroe was looking forward to a day of partying while on summer break from college. After a few too many beers cloud the boys’ judgment, they consider a tempting proposal to buy drugs from some local teens.  When the drug dealers turn the transaction into an ambush the results are catastrophic and Scout ends up in an illegal prison cell for the next five years.

From author William Graney...

A series of thought-provoking novels filled with serious dilemmas, humor, and love.   Connections between past are present are explored and the mystical side of life is frequently hovering in the background. The reading experience is a journey filled with unexpected twists and turns.

Mountaintop USA As a comet is about to pass by Earth, the people of who live in the town of Mountaintop learn that their location will be perfect for viewing the icy orb. The quirky residents gather together with their telescopes to gaze at the comet and have a party.  To their surprise, the night will be illuminated by revelations.

Saving Grace When Grace Harridge turns fifty years old on New Year’s Day in the year 2000 she expects the upcoming new year to be as uneventful and lonely as those that preceded it but there are some unexpected surprises in store as she is about to meet the love of her life and face a terrifying threat from a serial killer.



imid, 14-year-old Tiny undertakes a life-saving swim sparked by an unlikely friendship with Goliath. Bonding over their imperfections, they form a deep friendship, quickly becoming inseparable. Goliath, 12 years old, studious and clever, is wheelchair bound and his health is rapidly deteriorating. The only thing that can save him is an expensive, experimental treatment, and this devastating reality inspires Tiny, ironically not tiny at all, to conjure up an unfathomable dream—swimming across the Atlantic Ocean to get his friend the treatment he so desperately needs. Trusting his friend, Goliath responds to Tiny’s certainty that he’ll swim across the ocean with 2 words, “oh, boy”, and off they are on the adventure of a lifetime. Focused singularly on saving his friend’s life, Tiny calmly realizes that a completed swim could also break the current world record for 26


the longest swim in the world, garnering the needed attention for Goliath’s treatment. Both boys, facing seemingly unconquerable struggles each day, tap into their remarkable grit and determination in order to take on this epic adventure full of battling storms and high seas, frightening ocean creatures, and cruel whale hunters. Tiny and Goliath are brought together ultimately by their differences from their peers. Through their friendship, they teach each other that their perceived flaws are what make them unique. Readers of this magical adventure will be encouraged to tap into the astounding power that is unleashed when they realize their special qualities, discover strength in themselves they never imagined, and open up their hearts to help others. —Kim Telander


mastering the power of your emotions second edition How to control what happens in you irrespective of what happens to you

A useful, upbeat, and well-organized guide to managing emotions and building resilience and strength.

—Kirkus review

Mastering the Power of Your Emotions has a simple but undeniable premise: Emotions are at the centre of everything we do. If you can control your emotions, you can control your life. But as straightforward as this sound, most people are not the masters of their emotions. This is evident by the epidemic of depression, anxiety, suicides, violence, and broken relationships in today’s society. To help correct this, Elisha Ogbonna explores how temperament and character influ-

ences emotional response; how to respond rather than react to a situation; the five Laws of Emotions; how to handle rejection, abandonment, depression, and grief; and how to release and replace negative emotions with positive ones. Using his personal experiences, the laws of science, real-life examples, and scripture and other stories, Ogbonna pulls out all the stops to provide readers with a better understanding of good emotional health and the tips and tools to make sure they achieve it AVAILABLE AT FRIESEN PRESS, AMAZON, BARNES & U N B O UAND N D ITUNES 27 NOBLE, GOOGLE, INDIGO,

DAIV HOUSE PUBLICATIONS PRESENTS The riveting saga of two individuals who never met physically yet when their worlds collided, the impact created an explosion heard around the world.

DYING FOR CHRIST COMING SOON! JUNE/JULY 2018 Christian for One Day introduced you to the man from Chad, who consequentially was beheaded the day he became a Christian. But there was so much more that had occurred prior to his story.


Why did a Chadian citizen, who had not believed in Christ previously, choose to die for Him, along with 20 of his Coptic Christians friends? Because he saw how much they loved God. Read the true story of a man, who professed his allegiance to God just one day after witnessing their commitment. This man, who was facing death by beheading, could have saved his life, if he denied the Christian faith. Instead, he defiantly replied, “Their God is my God.” Written with wit, commentary, as well as biblical scriptures that will give enlightenment. Proverbs Chapter 3 verse 31 states, “Do not envy the violent nor choose any of their ways.” The man from Chad made the right choice, what choice would you make? 


The prequel, Dying for Christ, chronicles the various circumstances of one woman who put the wheels of his fate as well as the fate of 20 other men into motion, causing the horrific ending we know today. As James Chapter 1 verses 19-20 states, “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: We should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.” Everyone involved should have heeded this advice. 

If you were given messages from loved ones beyond the grave would it comfort you to know this life is not the end and know that you will meet your loved ones again?

Would this change your outlook on life? Would you live it differently with new meaning?

Astrid Brown is an Author and a Professional Medium/Psychic who writes vastly on her experiences, some of which are in her books and others on her blogs and personal web pages. With a background in nursing she became interested in holistic therapies, as we are more than just mind and body. She is an experienced College Lecturer in Holistic Studies and Reiki Master/Teacher. She currently freelances and writes periodically for an online magazine and works for a large well-known international psychic company as a professional psychic medium. She resides in the UK.


Available at


Reading John Cheever’s “The Swimmer” by Charles May


wo of John Cheever’s best known early stories, “Torch Song” and “The Enormous Radio,” are outright fantasies. Later stories, such as “O Youth and Beauty” and “The Country Husband,” are more realistic treatments of middle-aged men trying to hold on to youth and some meaningful place in life. “The Swimmer” combines this typical realistic Cheever theme with his penchant for the fantastic.   The basic problem in reading “The Swimmer” is determining the nature of



the reality of the events at any given point in the story. As suggested by Hal Blythe and Charlie Sweet (Blythe, Hal, and Charlie Sweet. “Man-Made versus. Natural Cycles: What Really Happens in ‘The Swimmer’.” Studies in Short Fiction 27 (1990): 415-18), the reader must decide if the first part is fantasy, as Neddy thinks of earlier and happier times, or if the last part is a fantasy that Neddy projects of his future as he waits in the gazebo for the storm to pass.



STOLEN OBSESSION When Annalisse Drury discovers the body of her friend and confidant, she immediately suspects foul play, as her friend is missing her antique bracelet believed to carry a 500-year-old secret. At a gallery opening in Manhattan, Annalisse uncovers a necklace of horse heads matching her friend’s stolen bracelet. Convinced that the necklace is part of the evil collection and must be destroyed, Annalisse enlists the gallery owner’s womanizing son, Alec Zavos. Alec has his mother’s ear but doubts Annalisse—until a second victim tumbles them into a world of murder, art theft and 16th century curses. Together, Annalisse and Alec race through exotic lands and enter an unimaginable future, while a killer closes in…

“An irresistible page turner with a splash of international adventure and plenty of surprises.” —Starred Review from SPR (Self-Publishing Review)




Clues to the time distortion are: the tree that is losing its leaves in summer; Neddy’s wondering if his memory is failing him; the references to misfortunes he seems to know nothing about; his lose of weight that makes his trunks feel loose; his increasing sense of fatigue and age. This story is a reversal in some ways of Ambrose Bierce’s experimentation with the distortion of time in his famous “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge.” Whereas in Bierce’s story, a short period of “real time” seems to be unnaturally lengthened, in Cheever’s fantasy, a long period of “real time” seems unnaturally foreshortened. Clues are given to this distortion in both stories, because in Bierce’s story the central character must be convinced that what he thinks is happening is “really happening,” whereas in Cheever’s story the central character must be allowed to believe that his metaphoric swim through future or past time (depending on your perspective) is actually a swim in present time through space. The metaphoric nature of the swim is suggested at various points in the story. For example the idea that he is an explorer, a legendary figure, prepares the reader for the tragic nature of his experience; the fact that he thinks of the pool as a river suggests the conventional fabulistic metaphor of “the river of life”; and the fact that near the end of the story he feels he has been

“immersed too long” suggests a basic flaw in his character for which his fantasy experience is a symbolic embodiment. An interesting full-length film version of this story was released in 1968. Directed by Frank Perry and starring Burt Lancaster as Neddy, the film represents an effort rare among Hollywood films to remain true to the ambiguous dream/reality status of the original story. Although the film necessarily invents additional scenes -- the most cliched being a series of corny and predictable scenes between Lancaster and a young girl who once was a baby-sitter for his children -- for the most part the film does an excellent job of presenting Neddy’s movement through space as actually a movement through time. The basic difference between the story and the film is that whereas Cheever’s original story has a dream-like fable nature, Perry’s film focuses more on the character of Neddy as a man who, although growing older and wishing to hang on to young, has neglected his family and allowed his life to pass him by. The final scene when, tired and worn, he hammers on the door of his deserted house, is shocking and powerful, even tragic.  A brief footnote: In one of the scenes where Neddy stops at a pool party, John Cheever can be seen in a bit part walk-on. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.



Available at








M O .C s5 e g a For


Here is the book that so many early readers are going crazy over. It is the TRUE story of the REAL American hero who risked his life in 1947 to fly the X-1 rocket plane through the sound barrier and take the world of aviation into the modern age. The risks were great with some scary ups and downs, but Chuck Yeager was steady and determined and he did it. What is the sound barrier? This book gives a careful explanation. You and your children will never forget this story. See the movie at



Dr. Arthur Noble is a brilliant first-year medical resident in San Francisco, who has a stellar career ahead of him. However, all of Noble’s skills are put to the test when he encounters a strange new illness.  The ailment seemingly appears out of nowhere, and serves its victims a most horrible and brutal death.   Noble struggles to find answers to the medical mystery, even as many researchers and society refuse to believe it is a serious threat, or that it even exists.   1980 is an authentic medical story about a disease that will eventually have an unimaginable impact on the entire world.

Available at

Print ISBN: 978-1-54392-803-7 eBook ISBN: 978-1-54392-804-4

Check out David Cornish’s first novel, 1918, about the influenza pandemic that killed 100 million people.

Print ISBN: 9780692334805 eBook ISBN: 9780692334812


A fictional journey into a future America. This series examines the human condition by exploring society’s intersecting dichotomies: politics and organized crime, technology and nature, and medicine and mysticism.

“A myriad of possible culprits crops up, from environmental catastrophes to homegrown terrorism to simple negligence. The story highlights issues prevalent in modern society but thankfully never sermonizes.” —Foreword Review for Manufractured, Book 1




AL FONNER “A SPIRITUAL AND PHILOSOPHICAL JOURNEY.” “Good futuristic views into the science and technology of the next century, and ample opportunities to exercise and examine your moral values.”

“This is deep, very deep. It makes you think about what’s really important. How observant of a man to notice the little things that women go through. The author is definitely a deep thinker with emotions that go beyond the norm.”

—John C., Amazon Review

—Lisa M., Amazon Review

“Al Fonner, I felt, was inside of my mind and thoughts throughout this book. ... It was so amazing to me that he portrayed the female thoughts in a very accurate way! ”

“I usually don’t read fiction, but I just couldn’t wait to see what choice the main character was going to make about the baby growing inside of her.”

—Corina R., Amazon Review

—Pam A., Amazon Review

g, truth is. But most

Where it is t is always

flows into s’ of those


ous one or

me ethical answer....

Jenna wasn’t planning a family; but fate puts her on a sharp learning curve that threatens to alter her life forever. Faced with an unplanned pregnancy, she must choose between her own desires and the viability of the fetus growing within her womb. As the reality unfolds in this story, Jenna learns about truth: sometimes, it is both elusive and unpleasant.




1 Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

5 When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

6 The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo





Looking for a few good books to read by the pool this summer? Or just curious to see which books were favorites in these states in 2017? Check out this list of most checkedout books. 38


2 The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

The Undoing Project by Michael Lewis

8 All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

9 The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

3 Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

4 The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

10 Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

LITERARY LOU DISCOVER A Small amount of courage has a giant impact in this book that is sure to be fun for the whole family. When a small, fluffy cat teams up with an advice giving canary, a cockatoo, some jazzloving alley cats and a fancy mouse to protect their home from a villainous hoodlum rat, a hero is born.

Discover the imagination of author

Louis Paul DeGrado

Four Times Book of the Year Finalist, Three Times Editor’s Choice Award and 2017 Gold Award for Juvenile Fiction.

Destiny is a choice in this Fantasy Adventure!


Within the towering walls of the city by the sea, a dark secret is being kept. Its history wiped out two hundred years ago by foreign invasion; even now the city stands poised to repel another attack and lives in fear of the people across the sea.

The Questor’s are BACK! Pueblo, Colorado—What do you call a group of young boys who dare to seek out and investigate the paranormal? They called themselves the Questors! What happens when four young boys visit a haunted house? Excitement, adventure and mayhem.

Evil once controlled the 13th Month and is looking to do so again! When a revered priest, Father Frank Keller learns that a family in his parish has been targeted by evil entities, he’s thrust into a covert battle between forcesUof N Bgood O U N D and 39 evil.



1 Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

5 Today Will Be Different by Maria Semple


1 Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Moonglow by Michael Chabon

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

3 Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right by Arlie Russell Hochschild

9 Lincoln in the Bardo by George Saunders

10 You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir by Sherman Alexie

4 Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah 40




A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman


Tao Bao Bao Jian by Dayan

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo

7 2


2 The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead


Season of the Witch: Enchantment, Terror, and Deliverance in the City of Love by David Talbot

9 The Whistler by John Grisham

Dragonfish by Vu Tran

4 All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

5 Black Against Empire: The History and Politics of the Black Panther Party by Joshua Bloom and Waldo E. Martin

10 The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly

“A very enjoyable book with a fast pace and no dull moments.” —Sefina Hawke, Readers Favorite

“An especially skilled author.” —Midwest Review of Books

ADAM ALEXANDER The Saviors appeared in the sky on Judgment Day and created the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth—by force. Under the Saviors’ forbidding guidance, no one starves and no one dies of disease and angels keep the peace. But when 16-year old Yasmeen Robertson fishes a drowning boy out of the Chicago River, peace is the last thing she finds. Yaz and the boy have stumbled upon a yatsa drev, a piece of Savior-tech that makes them the subject of unwanted—and deadly—attention. Demons, whose hatred of the Saviors knows no bounds, are determined to have it for themselves. The Saviors, who have dispatched an archangel for the purpose, are determined to have it back. Neither are known for their mercy or understanding. If Yaz and the boy surrender to the archangel, they run the risk of being executed. If they throw their lot in with demons, there’s a good chance of being murdered. On the run, they struggle to unravel the yatsa drev’s mysteries. But Yaz has another problem: whether to trust the boy, whose uncle is the archangel pursuing them.

Distributed by DartFrog books. Available only at good independent bookstores and



1 The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

5 A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

1 Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

6 Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty

The Girls by Emma Cline


The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

3 The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

4 Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance

3 8 Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

9 The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

10 All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doer

Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right by Arlie Russell Hochschild


7 2


The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Great Books of the Western World by Mortimer J. Adler and Clifton Fadiman

9 Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City by Matthew Desmond

4 A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

5 Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine

6 News of the World by Paulette Jiles

10 The Sellout by Paul Beatty

a cowb g n i m o c e B can't be that hard, oy

can it?

It certainly looks easy to Franklyn “Frank” Ellington Seton IV. Smothered by both his overbearing mother and stuffy Maryland Society, Frank escapes to the vistas of his childhood. He will soon learn, however, that the one thing the movies left out was the smell. And the dirt. And the horses. As Frank makes his way through mid-twentieth century America, he searches for a place he truly belongs. And if being an actual cowboy is too difficult, why not try Hollywood?

“With a mixture of nostalgia, melancholy, and heaps of humor, The True Life of a Singing Cowboy will lasso you from the first note.”





READING Take a bite from your next favorite book.



The Other La Bohème by Yorker Keith

Overture Begin your song, oh Muses. Let me join the zesty tune. My heart needs no more sorrow, Neither discord nor despair. Induce me to embrace love, Peace, and hope in harmony. Lift, lift me up, oh Muses. Let us sing a song of joy. Act I Scene 1


uses were singing in glory in the fine October sky—the image Henry saw in the clouds as he strolled along Broadway near 72nd Street, several blocks from the Metropolitan Opera House. He even recognized the Muses’ sweet song. His chest swelled in anticipation as he continued a few blocks to the Café Momus, where his friend Stephanie was working as a waitress. The restaurant attracted a loyal clientele among connoisseurs of opera and classical music, who appreciated the authentic French cuisine at reasonable prices, especially before or

after a performance at one of the many nearby theaters. Henry paused outside the window and peered in. Since it was not yet five o’clock, patrons occupied fewer than half of the thirty-odd tables. Stephanie stood before the bar in her black uniform, casually watching the customers. Henry fished a digital pitch-maker from his pocket and found C-sharp. He cleared his throat and inhaled, assuming the role of Marcello. Then he burst through the door and began singing, extending his hand toward Stephanie. “O Musette, o gioconda sorridente!” (“Oh Musette, oh radiant smile!”) Stephanie broke into just such a smile as Henry continued his serenade in his burning tenor voice, praising her charms. His rich tones reverberated in the intimate restaurant. Stephanie immediately replied to his aria in her coloratura mezzosoprano, wagging her right index finger. “Badate! I miei difetti non

nascondo.” (“Mind you! I don’t hide my defects.”) She cautioned Marcello that she was a capricious vagrant, living day to day. When she completed her aria, both joined in a duet: Marcello, adoring her, and Musette, warning him. The music entwined to a dramatic climax with a soaring high A, then descended slowly, ending with their simultaneous murmur: “Musette!”…“Badate!” “Bravo!” Waiters and waitresses shouted their kudos while the patrons applauded. Henry bowed and Stephanie curtsied. As they rose, they met each other’s eyes and laughed. …



The Governess by Victoria Capper


ne night, Bruce walked in to the doorway of the room where Thea was curled up in a chair, quietly reading a book. She looked up. He didn’t say a word, just grinned at her and crooked his finger. Thea was puzzled, “What is it?” He just stood there for a moment just watching her, smiling all the while, then said. “Follow me.” Thea followed him into his office and there, along the window ledge outside the office was a python. It was a beautiful creature, blue and black and grey diamond pattern about as thick as your wrist and four or five feet long. Thea didn’t notice or appreciate its beauty. She just stared at it, horrified, frozen on the spot. Then she gasped and turned to Bruce and threw her arms around him and

buried her head into his chest. Bruce instinctively responded by folding his arms around her, cradling her protectively. How long they stood there wrapped in their embrace neither ever knew—a few moments— all the time in the world. She felt safe and comforted and strangely warm. Bruce, for his part wanted to deepen their engagement but he felt protective and knew he couldn’t take advantage of this wonderful woman who had turned to him for protection and care. Slowly Thea realized what she had just done and hesitantly turned to move out of his arms and looked at the window again. Bruce jolted out of his trance thought, Ooooops what had just happened here? Thea couldn’t believe she was now calmly looking at

the biggest snake she had ever seen. She’d come a long way in learning to live in the bush. Just the same she didn’t really want it to be around the house where she was living. Bruce couldn’t always be there to take her in his arms. She hoped big pythons had to be moved away for their own safety. “Yes” Bruce said, “I’ll take her straight down to the wool shed. She’ll be safe from the cats and can eat the mice down there.”



Titus The Life Story of Dr. Titus Plomaritis by Titus Plomaritis

RIDE TO THE HOSPITAL (A short story on page 40)


his would be the appropriate time to relate my one bad experience related to splitting wood. It was a hot summer day and I was home alone when I decided to surprise my brothers and split a pile of wood. I was 12 years of age at that time. As I was splitting the wood at a fairly good clip, the axe apparently was getting dull and needed sharpening, but I just ignored the warning and kept chopping away. This one time the axe got stuck and I was having a difficult time separating it from the block of wood. I pulled real hard on the long handle—and it released

suddenly. Losing my balance, I fell to the ground and landed on a broken bottle. Then I noticed blood squirting out of my left upper thigh.  I ran into the house and jumped into the bathtub with a bottle of peroxide and a towel. I kept pouring the peroxide on the wound until the bottle was empty, keeping the towel pressed on the wound. I then took one of my father’s neckties and tied it around my leg, ran down the stairs jumped on my bicycle and rode it to Lowell General Hospital, which was located one and a half miles from our house. I ran into someone’s office, and that someone in turn took me to the emergency room. After explaining the details

of the accident to the doctor, he cleaned up the messy necktie bandage ensemble, added a few stitches and sent me off. I don’t remember if the hospital ever sent my father a bill, if so I’m sure it was deducted from my shoe shine account, as was the necktie.



Jake & the Dragons of Asheville by Brian Kacica


s the Krill wound their way through the ancient passages, getting closer to the earth’s surface, the quakes grew in strength. The state-of-the-art engineering that went into building the ONX facility was no match. The titanium welds were beginning to crack at their weaker points. The first Krill to break through the lower floor of the building, stopped abruptly when he slammed his head into the ceiling of a holding cage. Three soldiers were positioned outside the massive titanium bars. The men laughed, thinking it was trapped, but their chuckles quickly turned to screams of horror when the sinister looking beast bent back the bars, skewered the men on one talon and barbecued the three to a crisp. ~ Not too far from the ONX, Jake was maneuvering

Mort and the others to a large flat area at the top of a neighboring mountain. Once he felt safe, he stepped out of the orb and walked over to Mort, who was lying in a patch of tall dry grass overlooking the forest with Asheville in the distance. The old dragon looked weak from battle, his eyes bloodshot and skin horribly scarred. Jake placed his hand on the force field, changing its energy. It wasn’t long before Mort was on his feet and speaking again. “Jake Winston—” “Mortayvious, King of the Dragons.” There was a prolonged silence between the two. Jake’s eyes watered out of joy. Mort swung his right wing around him in a protective position. The winds kicked up, blowing Jake’s hair into his face and forcing a large sneeze from Mort. The two shared a laugh, before Jake returned to the business at hand.

Spread out in the open field, the other dragons were now healed. One after the other, they nodded their heads to the king, then took flight, heading in the direction of their cave. Instinctively they knew it was time to return to a safe haven and wait out the Krill. “The sepulchral stones,” Mort said, as he handed Jake the luminous green rocks, “You will use them to return the Krill.”




If you like these five books, you’re sure to like...

Jake & The Dragons of Asheville by Brian Kacica



Lake Girl

by Cynthia Kumanchik Labor Day weekend, Friday 11:00 p.m. I followed my instincts for love, which ended my life. You know when you think someone’s in love with you and all you can think about is that person. And I felt that way about Mike. From the day I met him, with his beautiful piercing eyes and sexy smile, I knew he was the one for me. He towered over me and could easily scoop me up in his long arms. My heart melted when I saw him, and I felt goosebumps all over my body. The way we looked at each other and especially that text he sent me. He said he wanted to see me and had something important to tell me—maybe that he loved me. So I rushed out of work, not caring about the customers or my coworkers. Just wanting to see Mike tonight. I know it was impulsive and selfish, but I didn’t care. Besides, I needed a break from that chaotic place—the Shorebird,

the most popular place in Lakeview Shores, where everyone goes after boating on the lake. But then it happened so quickly that I don’t know who or what hit me. I got to the end of the docks to meet him, and it was more than a shock—something I pushed out of my mind. All I can remember is that someone shoved my body off the side of a boat. I fell to the bottom of the clear lake, bouncing off the sharp coral along the way. Ow, the pain that traveled through my body like an electric current. It ran deep and swift as I headed downward, bubbles rising from my mouth. But it was not like the stabbing pain in my heart after realizing he wasn’t there. Where was Mike? He said he loved me and wanted to see me and had asked me to meet him here. But someone or something hurt me instead. I don’t understand why anyone would want to harm

me. Not now, not ever. I was just a teenage girl looking for fun at the lake and spending the summer with my grandma. Water rushed through my mouth, lungs, and stomach. Panic hit when I heard the boat’s motor roar as it took off across the lake. They were leaving me. I smelled seaweed and pee as I moved rapidly to save myself, probably wetting myself. I felt sick to my stomach, knowing that I was in this desperate situation.



Intrinsic by Jerry Collins CHAPTER 1


man draped in a cloak tossed a torch into the barn that joined the guest and servants’ cottages. He entered the main house and looted the library of books before setting the house ablaze. Afterwards, he released the livestock before they perished in the flames. This dastardly fiend committed robbery and murder, while the family dwelling within slumbered quietly through the night. A raging fire erupted, engulfing the house in minutes, leaving young Jatara and her family to die in a swirling inferno. Jatara awoke to the sounds of agonized shrieks coming from her parents’ room, followed by deafening cries for help. “Mama, Papa… where are you? I’m scared!” she wailed to the empty room. As she opened the door and entered the hallway leading from her room, an enormous heat wave pushed her down the staircase. Jatara’s small five-year-old frame rolled and tumbled to the front door. She pleaded once more for her

loved ones to come out from that furnace of death. “Mama! Papa! Help me! It’s hot and I can’t breathe… Please, Papa! I’m scared!” In that moment, the arsonist burst through the door, grabbed Jatara and carried her away from the house in the instants before it collapsed. “Come on, girl! You’re no use to me dead! A heifer like you will make a great slave that will serve me well.” He dropped her on the ground and took off on foot before the villagers who had seen the flames had time to arrive. She shivered in the mud, wet and afraid, as feelings of despair and abandonment consumed her. Jatara was petrified, knowing that her loving family had just been destroyed. She could see nothing but sorrow and vengeance in the future to come. The approaching villagers would decide the orphan’s fate. Egor and his companion, Zorka, the family’s ex-servants, were the first to arrive. They found Jatara on the ground and stood her up. Egor

and his wife had accumulated a great deal of wealth working for the child’s parents. Egor was also the first parasite to initiate conversation. “Child, where are our masters? Have they been incinerated in that treacherous fire? Answer me, girl… what have you done? Were you playing with the oil lamp?” Jatara humbly submitted herself to Egor’s inquisition, and tried to answer honestly. “Lord Egor, I do not know what has happen to my mama and papa. I woke up to their screams.” “Did they make it out with you? How did you survive?”



An Angel’s Feather by Astrid Brown


f you believe there is a greater power and after we die we go on to live eternally how do you view your life? I feel this makes us more hopeful and it gives life more meaning and its more comforting to think our loved ones will live on. It makes our life feel more like a preparation for the next and it makes us more aware of how we should live our life and you can view life as a learning process. But supposing you are given definite proof we don’t die at all and you are given evidence that your loved ones live on? Supposing you are given evidence by those who have died messages beyond the grave, only something you

could possibly know or better still where a third party has to verify this evidence? Would this comfort you to know, this life is not the end and know that you will meet your loved ones again? Would this change your outlook on life, would you live it differently with new meaning? I firmly believe when you are given this hard evidence from spirit, you do see the bigger picture, it enables you to understand why we are here on Earth and it is comforting and it takes away the fear of death. For its fear of the unknown that causes the distress. It helps us view what is important in life and makes us realize material objects are just objects and

do not matter in the scheme of things. Importantly it also fans that spark of righteousness that’s within all of us to live our lives better and to treat others better. It brings us contentment.”



Beheaded by Dina M. Jones FOREWORD


oomsday. That’s the word my mother used ever since I was a little girl. She said it for many scenarios, such as, “Don’t have me waiting until doomsday!” “That will take until doomsday!” And many other applications of the word “doomsday.” One day, having heard that word a gazillion times, I asked my mom, “What is Doomsday?” My mother, not one to mince her words or sugarcoat anything, even for a very young child replied, “Oh, it’s the day when the world will end.” Wait? Say what now? I just got here! What in the heck is going on with this place? And so the journey began. I had to find out more about this world ending and what the heck do I do about that! But more on that in the future. You are reading this book right now. It is much more important than my Christian life story, thoughts, hopes, and dreams. It is for every person alive right now on this earth. It is THE most important book you will ever read in your life. FOR your life. It is the book of revelation. Explained in simple terms, so

that ANYONE can understand it. It is meant to be understood for the world in which we are living now. Simply stated, I wanted to tell the truth. I wanted to be a real person with flaws, hopes, dreams, shortcomings, heartache, and also fear, not some “holier than thou” type of preaching individual who can do no wrong. I am just a human. I am not perfect. And I’m not your average Christian. For the Bible states, there is NONE righteous, no, not one. No one on this earth has the right to make another individual feel less than or ashamed, based on faith. The Bible states that we need to remove the plank from our OWN eye BEFORE we try to remove the splinter from someone else’s eye! In other words, God is saying, you have your own flawed crap to deal with, quit trying to fix OTHER people’s crap. Mind your own business! We ALL fall short of the glory of God. We are all equal with the same opportunity to go to heaven as anyone that has ever lived or is alive on this earth! I wanted, with the writing of this book, to do my part, to let God use

me as a means of conveying His message of the gospel, the opportunity of everlasting life to every living soul upon this earth. Jesus came to heal the sick. Not just physically sick, but spiritually sick. Does a healthy person need to call 911? No. Only those in need of immediate attention of losing their lives. Although that is a metaphor, in actuality, it’s the truth. A great number of mankind is in danger of losing their “life.” Their REAL LIFE. Their souls. For all eternity. Call 911. Now. Call on the name of Jesus Christ as your lord and savior. Believe that He died for you and is alive today, seated at the right hand of the Father.



Ones Such as These by Al Fonner

CHAPTER 14: TRUTH ( Jenna) sighed and said, “I’m just trying to find the truth.” Roxanne ... smiled. “Truth... what is truth? Throughout eternity, many have searched for truth. But it is an elusive thing, truth is. So, most fail in their quest. Oh, some do find it, I suppose: Jesus, Gandhi, Jung, Mohammed, and Confucius, to name a few. But most don’t. “Truth is found only at the highest level of consciousness. It is like a river that flows through the Universal Mind. Where it is shallow, it runs swiftly; in the deep part, there is calm. The deepest truths are where we find peace and serenity. And like a river, it is always changing. Each place on the river is unique. “Every life that lives, whether it is human or not, has its own truth which resides

within that life. And each life’s truth flows into the great river of universal truth like a tributary into an earthly river. My truth is not the same as yours, any more than the writers’ of those passages truth is my truth.” Jenna considered these things.... “So, what you’re saying, then, is that what these men wrote apply only to their own lives?” “Yes.” “But if the One transcends all things, why doesn’t a revelation or truth given to one individual apply to all?” “Because the universe is eternal, ever changing,” Roxanne answered. “A given moment is never the same as the previous one or the next. You see, within that moment, something has changed.” “But we’re not talking about a physical reality,” Jenna declared. “Consciousness

transcends the physical. Isn’t there some ethical standard that can guide us along through our journey?” Roxanne sat back and sighed. “Well, Jenna, I don’t know. You’ll just have to meditate on that one. I think you’ll find the answer.... Jenna, can I ask you something?” “Well, yeah. I guess so.” “Are you pregnant, Jenna?”



Mastering the Power of Your Emotions Second Edition by Elisha O. Ogbonna


very one of us is emotionally wired to be happy or sad. Our individual desires move us to pursue things that we believe will give us pleasure or joy. Everything we do in this life is either influenced by our emotions or will to do otherwise. The pursuit of happiness and satisfaction is everyone’s goal. This is evident when we move from one city to another, one job to another or one career to another. It is all about happiness and fulfillment. Whatever we have acquired or look forward to acquiring—house, furniture, car, education, or business success—is connected to our desires. We work hard and smart to get what we believe will meet our needs. What is the bottom line for all our toil and labor under the sun? It is in my opinion to be happy and find some level of

satisfaction. When we achieve our goal, we are happy, and with good feeling from our accomplishment, we are often motivated to accomplish more. Positive emotions—enthusiasm, anticipation, hope, or joy—are uplifting and charming. We love and want them. We love it when things are going well on our terms. It is true for every human. However, emotions are like day and night and the seasons of nature. Daytime comes and makes way for the night at sunset. Nighttime likewise makes way to the day at dawn. Regardless of how much we love summer, when the time comes, winter must show up. Positive emotions are good, and we desire to hold on to them tightfistedly, but the time usually comes when they disappear. They disappear when we face challenges, meet obstacles, or are rejected.

Whereas it is great not to experience rejection, failure, or loss, it is impossible to escape them as long as we are alive, have family, or meet people. The ups and downs that go with life are no respecter of persons. They will definitely at one point find their way into our life to stir our emotions for actions. When our desire hits a roadblock, we may experience [varieties of emotions].



Stolen Obsession by Marlene M. Bell


ursing under her breath, Annalisse saw her prized possession, a two-foot bronze statue of a shepherdess with a pair of sheep grazing near her feet, lying on its side next to a toppled plant stand. An expensive work of art from Florence she’d had no business buying, but she couldn’t resist. When Generosa had called from Italy describing it, Annalisse had to have it. Everyone who knew her well understood her love for sheep. Even if she’d declined Generosa’s offer to bring it back for her, she’d felt certain the bronze would end up in her hands eventually. Alec waited by the stairs and whispered, “Your bedroom up there?” He pointed upstairs. She nodded, lifted the mahogany stand upright and, with both hands, replaced the hefty bronze to its rightful place next to the desk. “Stay downstairs. You’ll be safer. I won’t be long, and I’ll

look for your cat.” Alec hit the first step. “Be careful.” Whoever destroyed her home had acted with malice. They had her personal data and internet search history, where she shopped online, email correspondence as well as business contacts. A privacy breach she couldn’t afford. Compiling a list of possible suspects in her head, she felt so violated, even more so than by what had happened with Peter. Names and faces blurred together. With fingertips pressed at her temples, she willed the jackhammers in her head to stop. Raising her arms, as if a make-believe thief told her to, she said, “I give up. I may as well set a match to this place, for all the good it’s going to do me now.” Alec uttered a sentence upstairs she couldn’t make out. “Alec, did you find Boris?” The sound of shuffling

filtered downstairs then a thump. “Alec, what fell?” Annalisse looked up at an empty landing. The unnatural silence pricked the hairs straight out on her neck. “Answer me.” A mechanical voice broke the silence. “Don’t move.” She stopped breathing and froze, afraid to look up, but then looked anyway. A figure in a brownish ski mask…





It was the chance of a lifetime—to witness China’s greatest engineering exploit since the Great Wall in person. He would perform research for his dissertation and help his friend’s family move to higher ground. But Joe’s plans are suddenly altered by a debilitating accident. The unexpected detour brings the civil engineering graduate more than he had planned. While recuperating from his injury in modern-day Arcadia, he is commissioned to carry out a four-hundredyear-old tradition soon to be submerged by the construction of the mega dam. Now equipped with unsurpassable martial mastery, Joe pursues a lost heirloom and a crafty killer.




BOOK SHELF Ghosts of War by David Kerr Chivers


llie Morton encounters, a ghost from over a hundred years before, with Ollie's name, and whose past life mirrors Ollie's present. The story shifts to Pittsfield in 1861 where two brothers, Oliver and Ben Morton, are heading off to war, and dealing with their own growing rivalry, played out on the battlefields of the Civil War. As Ollie's own problems with Ben head to their climax, is he doomed to repeat the mistakes of his family's past? Will the ghosts of his family's past lead Ollie to safety, or push him into a fight that echoes down the generations? Available at Amazon. The Infinity Trap by Ian C. Douglas


Mistress Suffragette by Diana Forbes


ex and suffrage collide in Mistress Suffragette. At the Memorial Day Ball during the Panic of 1893, impoverished but feisty Penelope Stanton quickly draws the unwanted advances of a villainous millionaire banker who preys on distressed women. During a glittering age where a woman’s reputation is her most valuable possession, Penelope must decide whether to compromise her principles for love. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iTunes, and Smashwords. ​The Centurion’s Woman ​Book I: Maiden by Amanda Flieder

eke Hailey bluffs his way into the psychic academy on Mars, searching for his missing father. Mindreading teachers and telekinetic bullies are the least of his problems. An evil archaeologist is searching for alien technology of immense power. After a Martian relic boosts Zeke’s brainpower, he alone can save humanity from a monster as old as the universe.

lex fell asleep at a work retreat and woke up in the wrong time. She’s rescued by a Roman Centurion, but that doesn’t help with the trouble that always finds her … Ixillius had been on a routine razing, but Alex—imprisoned and injured—is anything but typical. He claims her as his slave, but needs to know: who is she? Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Waterstones. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Chapters.Indigo


BOOK SHELF Making a Living Making a Life by Daniel Rose


real estate developer and philanthropist presents a masterful debut collection of exceptionally cogent and timely speeches and essays.

Beyond the Floathouse, Gunhild’s Granddaughter by Myrtle Siebert


—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

granddaughter of Norwegian immigrants, Myrtle’s story moves through bewildering and sometimes lonely experiences, with adjustments from home-schooling in a floathouse kitchen to a one-room land-based school, to the independence of high school in a world of strangers, when at age 13 she was on her own. To learn “the rest of her story” read, Beyond the Floathouse, People and Places in 2016.

Available at Amazon. Available at the author’s website and Amazon.

“Ever the stylist, his succinct, well-cadenced prose shows an engaged mind, sharply tuned wit, and compassion and intellect that provide a model for civic engagement.” “A wise, well-honed collection of speeches that address vital issues with fresh, penetrating insight.”

If You Were Me and Lived in... Colonial America by Carole P. Roman


oin Carole P. Roman and travel through time to visit the most interesting civilizations throughout history. Learn what Colonial American children did for fun. If You Were Me and Lived in... Colonial America does for history what her other award-winning series did for culture. So come and discover the world through the eyes of a young person just like you. FACEBOOK LINK | TWITTER LINK Available at Amazon.

Mr. Mouthful Learns His Lesson by Joseph Kimble Mr. Mouthful is a fancy talker who causes trouble and confusion for kids—until he has to respond to an emergency. Kids will learn lots of new words, like froufrou and blather and titter and chapeau. BlueInk calls the book “charming” and “amusing,” with “polished illustrations”; says “young readers will delight in the fun drawings, captivating characters, and silly situations.” Foreword Clarion calls it “a funny book.” Available at Amazon.

BOOK SHELF A Bitter Wind by Anita Merrick


hen Alexander ‘Ramses’ Smith is assigned to decipher hieroglyphs at Temple of Khnum—all heka breaks loose. A strange darkness cloaks everything: the temple, spirits and supernatural beings, all seemingly conspiring to reawaken his clairvoyance over logic/scholarship. Lex goes on an emotional rollercoaster ride where a time entanglement shatters all sense of reality, putting him dangerously susceptible to ancient secrets infused in stone; re-defining the lines between imagination and reality—or losing a battle for sanity.—Read: Kirkus Recommendation (Website) Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Friesen Press, Google Play, iTunes, Kindle, and Kobo.

Precious Bones by Mike Ashley-Hollinger


s the summer of 1949 is drawing to an end Bones discovers something horrible out in her family’s beloved swamp. Their small community is rocked by the news of two murders. As evidence pointing toward Bones’ father mounts up, Bones’s life begins to unravel. The thin thread of hope that her father will be found innocent is held in the hands of bumbling Sheriff LeRoy. Will the sheriff come through? Is Nolay innocent? Bones is determined to take matters into her own hands. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and indiebound.

Blood Lake By R.L. Herron

The Weight of Living by Michael Stephen Daigle


Satisfying...An involving thriller. —Kirkus Review

ward-winning author R.L. Herron has created a spine-tingling modern horror thriller based on the curse of a Cherokee prophet executed for defying the forced migration of the Cherokee people in 1838 known as “The Trail of Tears.” As John Burnett is about to discover, Tsali’s bitter curse has followed the only sons of the Burnett family for eight generations. Readers’ Favorite Bronze Medal Winner ● ● Foreword INDIE Book-of-the-Year Finalist ● ● Shelf Unbound Notable 100 for 2016 ● ● Available at Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

Ironton, NJ—In the third Frank Nagler Mystery, Detective Nagler must find the name and family of a young girl abandoned on a cold winter night. The search leads down a dark, dangerous path. Previous Nagler books: The Swamps of Jersey; A Game Called Dead (A 2016 Shelf-Unbound Runner-Up) The Weight of Living is a 2018 Shelf-Unbound Notable 100 Book and a 2017 First Place winner in the Royal Dragonfly Book Awards. Named a Distinguished Favorite, 2018 Independent Press Awards. Available online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, NJ bookstores and libraries.

BOOK SHELF The Compilations of Foresta Gump by Donna Thompson


he Compilations of Foresta Gump is unique in it’s perspective in it’s multi-genre in one book. It is not a novel, but a compelling desire will keep you reading to the end giving you more enlightenment to increase your fascination with it. Included in this read are multi-best selling authors Joe Vitale, Tracy Repchuk, and Marsha Friedman. Also, included are true short amazing stories you’ve never heard before—and Foresta Gump’s Perspectives and Foresta’s Friends— Humor—Tall Tales—News—Pieces of Tale—for my reader’s enjoyment. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Xlibris


Promote your book in Shelf Unbound in our Special Advertising Section for Authors. Each issue of Shelf Unbound is distributed to more than 125,000 people in the U.S. and 62 countries around the globe. Our introductory ad rate for this section is $375/quarter page as seen here. Contact publisher Margaret Brown to reserve your space. 214.704.4182.

California Cures! by Don C. Reed “Imminently readable.” —5 stars, NN Lights Book Heaven “...Personal, eye-witness account... extraordinary scientists.... The California Stem Cell Program... is changing the world.” —Mary Wooley, President/CEO, Research!America “No collection covering stem cell advancements should be without this book.” —Midwestern Book Review “Don Reed is a force of nature...” —Maria T. Millan, M.D., President/CEO, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine Available at Amazon and World Scientific. You Shall Know Our Names by Ezekiel Nieto Benzion

FINALIST National Jewish Book Award, 2014


s my grandfather gave me the 200-year-old journals, he pleaded, “I must know what is hidden here. You read the ancient language. Who were these men? What did they do? Why did the family preserve these books for centuries?” So my journey began. By its end I had discovered my history and the secrets in my name. Available at Amazon.

BOOK SHELF Take a Byte Out of Murder by Millie Mack


he New Year bells have barely finished tolling before Carrie and Charles Faraday discover a dead body on the beach near their vacation home in the quiet resort of Pear Cove. Murders, blackmail, computer espionage— there are lots of clues. Can the Faradays’ detecting skills put all the puzzle pieces together before the wrong person is charged with murder? Available in print and audio book at Amazon. Shopping for the Real You by Andrea Pflaumer “The chapter on the LBD (little black dress) alone is worth the price!” “I found this to be the best book for advice on color and style, easy to read and understand.” “It is loaded with information, all clearly explained. Definitely the best book I have read on the subject.” Available at Amazon and the author’s website.

Beyond Control by Kat Martin “It’s delightfully fast-paced, riveting, and amazingly compelling.” —RT Book Reviews, 4.5 Stars, Top Pick “Bestseller Martin brings her Texas Trilogy … to a hair-raising finish with the gripping tale of a single mother on the run and the Marine veteran who offers her a second chance at happily-ever-after. Martin has a consummate skill for developing the most lovable and the most despicable characters.” —Publishers Weekly Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Indiebound, Kobo, Google Play, and iTunes.


Promote your book in Shelf Unbound in our Special Advertising Section for Authors. Each issue of Shelf Unbound is distributed to more than 125,000 people in the U.S. and 62 countries around the globe. Our introductory ad rate for this section is $375/quarter page as seen here. Contact publisher Margaret Brown to reserve your space. 214.704.4182.

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Books to Read in 2018 ENTER NOW and receive a FREE LISTING in Shelf Unbound magazine’s

“Books to Read in 2018” The following books have been submitted for the 2018 Shelf Unbound Best Indie Book Award. Deadline for entry is December 31, 2018. ENTRY DETAILS HERE:

You will also receive a free digital subscription to Shelf Unbound magazine.


JUST PRU by Anne Pfeffer

“Provides remarkable evidence for the ability of dreams to inspire, to empower, and to heal.” —Stanley Krippner, Ph.D. Coauthor of Extraordinary Dreams and How to Work with Them

“A necessary and welcome basis for exploring . . . everyday life. [This] work is deep and easy to understand.” —Arny Mindell Author of Dreaming While Awake and Earth Based Psychology MINDFULNESS


Cheryl Wilfong shows us how to cultivate the inner garden with lovely, often funny, and always wise stories and reflections. The more I read, the happier I got! —R H, PD; author, Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom

Discover with fresh eyes the beauty and perfection all around us and the goodness and wisdom right inside us. A beautiful book in every way! —J B; founding teacher, Spirit Rock Meditation Center; author, Awakening Joy

—Martha Lawrence Author of Pisces Rising and Ashes of Aries

“For anyone who believes there is a vibrational shift now occurring, this book is a must read.” —Bill Manahan, M.D.

365 DAYS

Past President, American Holistic Medical Association Assistant Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota Medical School

“This important book delves into the miraculous while remaining grounded in real life experiences.” —Hal Zina Bennett Author of The Lens of Perception


Cheryl Wilfong


GARDEN WISDOM by Cheryl Wilfong



Transcendent Dreaming



n this illuminating book, Dr. Christina

Donnell chronicles a series of dreams that,

much to her surprise, revealed the presence within her of certain transcendent capacities. The more they surfaced, the clearer it became that in her dreams she was gradually approaching a state of oneness with all of creation—an awareness she proposes lies dormant in humankind, ready to be awakened. Transcendent Dreaming provides both a riveting account of these discoveries and a viable means for realizing them. Through example, it invites readers to access their infinite nature by delving deeply into their own dream experiences. It then helps bridge the chasm between identifying with one’s individual self and with the underlying intelligence pervading the universe. In offering this blueprint for a transcendent





hristina Donnell, Ph.D., a classically trained clinical psychologist, has studied Eastern traditions and the shamanic Nature and mindfulness are a a hand and glove fit. energy practices of the Q’ero Indians —J B MD PD; Director of Research, Center for Mindfulness; Associate Professor, Medicine and Psychiatry, University of Massachusetts Medical School; Adjunct Assistant Professor, of Peru for nearly two decades. She Yale School of Medicine; Research Affiliate, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, MIT currently maintains a consultation Fresh and fun and insightful. —J F; author, When Fear Falls Away: The Story of A Sudden Awakening and The Freedom practice and travels extensively, conof Being: At Ease With What Is Grow the wisdom of your heart with these inspiring daily reminders ofducting mindfulness. workshop intensives, giving —L B; author, Right Concentration: A Practical Guide to the Jhanas public lectures, and leading experiential C     W      teaches mindfulness at Vermont Insight Meditation Center when she isn’t rearranging one of her expeditions. She lives in Minneapolis, 28 flower beds or tending her out-of-control vegetable garden. Master Gardener and mistress of metaphor, she delivers the Dharma into daily life with her award-winning blog: Minnesota. Cheryl’s newest book tells you how to journey from the garden to the Garden by way of mindfulness. —S Y; author, The Science of Enlightenment


Christina Donnell, Ph.D.




“A revolutionary book. The implications of Dr. Donnell’s work will be of interest to philosophers and physicists alike.”




humanity, Transcendent Dreaming gives us back our heritage and guides us toward a future of inner peace, joy, and wonderment independent of external circumstances.

TRANSCENDENT DREAMING by Christina Donnell, Ph.D.


HOPE ISLAND by Diana G. Hankla

Books to Read in 2018

CHESTER GIGOLO by Christina Potter

HEAD OF THE PACK by Christina Potter

INSIDER TRAINING by Christina Potter

After he is severely wounded at the Battle of Lookout Mountain on November 24, 1863, Mark is captured by Union soldiers and placed in a federal military hospital in Chattanooga, Tennessee. There he is nursed back to health by the lovely Ruth Taylor, a Quaker nurse/volunteer at the hospital. Falling in love with the gentle and caring Ruth, he eventually wins her hand in marriage. The war ends. Mark converts to the Society of Friends, and Mark and Ruth settle into what would seem to be a “happily ever after” life of farming in the lush valleys of the Appalachian Mountains near Allentown, Pennsylvania. But Ruth feels a call in her life to serve as a missionary to the Brule Lakota (Sioux) in Western Nebraska—a tribe that is slowly being decimated by white encroachment. With deep misgivings, Mark agrees to accompany her, and the couple moves to the West to answer Ruth’s calling.





Can Ruth survive the tough, brutal life of a Great Plains wife and missionary? Can Mark serve as both a companion to his wife and a mentor to the distrusting Native American tribe while withstanding the pressures inherent to an Indian agent? Most importantly, can Mark, with the grace of God and a spirit of self-forgiveness, find redemption for his many transgressions by becoming a missionary to a dying race on the bleak, windswept barrens of the western Great Plains?

Peace in the VaLLey

Mark Gamble is one of the greatest sharpshooters in the Civil War’s Confederate Army of Tennessee. He is well-known on both sides of the battle line: revered by his compatriots and feared by his enemies. Mark’s own fear is that his soul is lost forever as his lust for killing increasingly takes over his entire being.

A Quest for

Redemption in the Old West J OHN E RIC V INING WITH


SEVEN, DELETE by Donna Kay Kakonge

Peace in the VaLLey


THE FEARFUL LION by Almas Akhtar

PEACE IN THE VALLEY by John Eric Vining


MARX’S SOPHISTRIES by Lawrence Eubank

THE LIBERAL ETHOS by Lawrence Eubank




Books to Read in 2018


Pat Boone Fan Club: My Life as a White Anglo-Saxon Jew

ssays, Melissa Grunow brings to light the ten, and the discarded days. Her agile seness gaze reveal insights that reach past d toward a rare clarity that is a searching

I Don’t Belong Here

“The greatest challenge for a writer is to appear emotionally naked on the page and make that seem completely natural. Melissa Grunow does this with audacity, aplomb, and grace. Grunow illuminates 21st century issues regarding sex, body image, emotional stability, and self-realization with a fearlessness that few others can match. This is a book whose moment in history is exactly now.”

I Don’t




uthor of Pain Woman Takes Your Keys, and Other Nervous System

r of Awaiting Identification, Love & Vodka: My ures in Ukraine, and Tales from the Dork Side


w’s prose is a dazzling display of pathos, ything in-between—like life itself. Landing een Sloane Crosley and Megan Stielstra— avid Sedaris—Grunow is a bold new voice to be savored by all. We can all see slivers rying degrees throughout these pages. For rse.”



I DON’T BELONG HERE by Melissa Grunow

PRAY THE GAY AWAY by Michael & Zach Zakar

MAP OF THE SPIRIT by Michael F. Cantwell, MD, MPH

THE FOREST TABERNACLE by Dr. Patrick D. Milroy


THE CALLING by Priya Kumar

THE WISE MAN SAID by Priya Kumar


WATERMARK by Elise Schiller

THE CHOKER by Lee Carl

THE LAND by Steve and Martha Huddy




for Best Indie/Self-Published Books.

Any independently published book in any genre is eligible for entry. Entry fee is $75 per book. The winning entry will be selected by the editors of Shelf Unbound magazine. The author of the book named as the Best Independently Published book will receive $500 and editorial coverage in the April/May 2019 issue of Shelf Unbound. Five finalists will receive editorial coverage in the April/May 2019 issue of Shelf Unbound. More than 100 books deemed by the editors as “notable” entries in the competition will also be featured in the April/May 2019 issue of Shelf Unbound. The winner of the Pete Delohery Award for Best Sports Book will receive $1,000.


small press reviews Lovepain by Curtis Smith



lthough Lovepain is by no means a suspense novel, Curtis Smith proves throughout to be a master of the suspended moment and a connoisseur of unresolved tension. The novel centers on a cuckold named Eli whose precocious young son, Mark, is as obsessed with birds as he is the disappearance of his mother. Eli, meanwhile, struggles to right the wrongs of the world by day in his capacity as a social worker and by night as the assistant director of the parish Christmas pageant, a role, like so many others in his life, he appears to have stumbled into by default. Complicating matters, a lynx has escaped from the local zoo, and one of Eli’s clients has found herself pregnant with the child of a small-time drug dealer. Given the relative brevity of the novel (146 pages) in relation to the number of story elements, it isn’t surprising that Smith spikes the narrative with plot twists at fairly short intervals. As a veteran storyteller, however, he has the patience and wisdom to let each twist hang for a while—and often a very long while—before returning to it and eventually resolving it. When Eli spots a car accident on the side of the road in the opening pages of the novel, for example, something terrible is clearly afoot, but it isn’t until some pages later that the true nature of the unfolding tragedy becomes apparent. No spoilers here, but it has little to do with the car-wreck per se. All told, Lovepain is an emotionally mature novel by a seasoned author with the good sense to let information sink in before letting the reader move on. The result is a haunting novel that explores the all-toohuman desire to make the world right even as it crumbles around us. —Marc Schuster, Shelf Unbound Contributing Editor Marc Schuster is the author of The Grievers, The Singular Exploits of Wonder Mom and Party Girl, Don DeLillo, Jean Baudrillard, and the Consumer Conundrum, and, with Tom Powers, The Greatest Show in the Galaxy: The Discerning Fan’s Guide to Doctor Who. He is the editor of Small Press Reviews, and his work has appeared in numerous magazines and journals. Marc teaches writing and literature courses at Montgomery County Community College in Blue Bell, Pennsylvania.



SoCal Surfin’ is the only life the only way for me. Now come on pretty baby and surf with me. ―from Surfin’ Safari (1962) by the Beach Boys



Profile for Shelf Media Group

Shelf Unbound June/July 2018  

Reads for the summer

Shelf Unbound June/July 2018  

Reads for the summer

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