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what to read next in independent publishing

Literary fiction debut weaves elegant, exciting tale of friendship, love, and international intrigue.

Remembrance of Blue Roses follows a man and a married couple in New York City, whose intricate relationship oscillates among friendship, love, love-triangle, and even obsession. Its romantic ambience is interwoven with classical music, opera, art, family legend, and international affairs. “A deftly crafted, multi-layered, compelling read from beginning to end, Remembrance of Blue Roses establishes novelist Yorker Keith as an extraordinarily gifted storyteller.” —Midwest Book Review “A skillful tale that explores relationship nuances and redemption.” —Kirkus Reviews

“A gem of a novel, providing a deep and satisfying journey with flesh-and-blood characters, excellent writing that occasionally soars to memorable heights... Highly recommended!” —The Columbia Review


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 Hayley Whitehead e d i to r i a l i n te r n

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Morgan Siem c on su l ta n t , soc i a l me d i a Kasia Piasecka so c i a l me d i a ma n a g e r Jane Miller ac c o u n t i n g ma n a g e r For a dve r tising inqu ir ie s: c al l 2 14.704.4182 or e- mail m a rga ret@ s he l fm e di agrou p.c om For editor ial inqu ir ie s: e- mail m a rga ret@ s he l fm e di agrou p.c om or write to Shelf U nbou nd, P O B ox 852321 R ich ard s on, TX 75085

Photograph: Welcome to Nightvale Podcast

what to read next in independent publishing



+ The Crossover Issue A mashup of book-related podcasts and podcast-related books


Welcome to Nightvale interview with writer Joseph Fink


Homecoming interviews with co-authors Eli Horowitz and Micah Bloomberg


Everything I Don’t Remember interview with novelist August Prize-winning novelist Jonas Hassen Khemiri


The Moth Presents: All These Wonders A new collection of stories edited by Catherine Burns


Lean & Hungry: Romeo & Juliet winner of Podster Magazine’s Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition


Adnan’s Story: The Search for Truth and Justice After Serial spotlight on Rabia Chaudry’s in-depth look at the case


a note from the publisher


photo essay

106 Podster competition finalists 124 dystopian fangirl 126 on our shelf 128 small press review 129 last words

Above Photography: (top) from Everything I Don’t Remember by Jonas Hassen Khemiri. (bottom) Homecoming podcast.



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.

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

Available March 1 at Amazon in paperback and Kindle

Michael Bowe

“Five Stars”

“A balanced combination of fact, fiction, engaging dialogue, and a flurry of twists and turns, Skyscraper of a Man is a stunning and inimitable debut with Silver Screen potential.” —San Francisco Book Review

S ky s c ra per of a Man A Novel

“A truly American story” “Bowe pens a poignant tale...” MORE AT GOODREADS

“Expect an intense and shocking ride.” The Writers’ Digest Reviews Team

A Breathless,

Nail-Biting Holocaust Drama. “A stunning novel, marvellously well written and a real page-turner.”

“...a stylishly written and cunningly plotted Holocaust revenge thriller. Its gripping narrative of retribution moves to a tense and shattering conclusion. Combines the time-frame of a Tarantino movie with the pace and detail of an early Frederick Forsyth novel.”   (5 Stars), Roger Katz, Manager, Hatchard’s of Piccadilly

(5 Stars), Ellis Douek, Surgeon Emeritus, Ear, Nose & Throat, Guys Hospital, London

W W W.T O X I C D I S T O R T I O N S . C O . U K W W W. G O L D S T E I N T H O U G H T S . C O M

a word from the




elcome to this special “crossover” edition of Shelf Unbound and our sister publication Podster, a mashup of book-related podcasts and podcastrelated books. We start with Joseph Fink, author of the top-of-the-charts fictional Welcome to Night Vale podcast and a standalone Welcome to Night Vale novel. With the recent release of two volumes of Night Vale episode scripts, we talked to Fink about his writing process. We’ve interviewed author Eli Horowitz twice before about his novels The Silent History and The New World. He has recently joined with writer Micah Bloomberg to create the psychological thriller podcast Homecoming. We talked to both authors about the process of creating narrative in a new format, and we take a look at the novels that inspired their approach to Homecoming. Fans of the popular podcast the Moth, in which both unknown and famous (Tig Notaro, Louis C.K.) people share their stories before a live audience, will welcome the arrival of a collection of stories from the Moth edited by the show’s artistic director Catherine Burns. All These Wonders is a wonder of a book and a perfect introduction to the Moth. We also interview Jonas Hassen Khemiri, whose August Prize-winning novel Everything I Don’t Remember has been compared to the podcast Serial. And on the subject of Serial, we spotlight Undisclosed podcast host Rabia Chaudry’s book Adnan’s Story: The Search for Truth and Justice After Serial. Shakespeare, anyone? The Lean and Hungry Podcast’s first season exploring Romeo & Juliet made us dig out an old copy and start re-reading. Congratulations to host Jessica Hansen, whom you will meet in these pages, for Lean and Hungry winning the first Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition. Enjoy the issue. Margaret Brown publisher 8


Photograph: Debra Pandak



“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


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!






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 long-standing 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 crocodileinfested river and evading predators are just part of this hazardous task.

All royalties donated to The Wounded Warrior's Project and the Hilton Head Humane Association.

The Seventh Treasure by Len Camarda


his thriller follows the exploits of Secret Service agent Gene Cerone, who travels to Spain to investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding his sister's death. Teaming up with Lieutenant Mercedes Garcia of the National Police Force, their investigation unwittingly uncovers an unfathomable conspiracy that dates back to the time the Moors surrendered their kingdom in Granada in 1492.

Available as e-book, soft and hard cover at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and AuthorHouse.

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.”




Joseph Fink: Welcome to Night Vale

The popular fiction podcast is fun to listen to and now fun to read with a novel and two volumes of episode scripts.


favorite fiction podcast with a devoted fan base, Welcome to Night Vale recently celebrated its 100th episode, released a standalone Welcome to Night Vale novel, and published Volumes 1 and 2 of scripts from its first two seasons with commentary from authors Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor and others involved with its production. Night Vale is described as “a twice-monthly podcast in the style of community updates for the small desert town of Night Vale, featuring local weather, news, announcements from the Sheriff’s Secret Police, mysterious lights in the night sky, dark hooded figures with unknowable powers, and cultural events.” We are hooked on the podcast and the books and were thrilled to have the opportunity to talk to Joseph Fink.



Shelf Unbound/Podster: I read on Twitter this morning that you just finished the manuscript for the second Night Vale novel. Will will see any familiar characters in this one? Joseph Fink: The second one is a standalone novel, not a direct sequel to the first novel, but it does take place in the same continuity. So people who have read the novel and listened to the podcast will recognize all sorts of characters but it can also be read on its own by people new to Night Vale. Shelf Unbound/Podster: How does the process of writing the novel differ from writing the podcast? Joseph: The work flow is the same. Jeffrey and I have been writing together for seven years or so and we’ve developed a work flow that works. We get together and talk about what the story is and we assign parts and then we go our separate ways and write separately. That said, a novel is a very different thing. We approach writing it very differently, as we are thinking about writing for the page and

developing a story on a much larger scale than with the podcast. With a podcast we can develop a larger story incrementally over several months, but with a novel we need to know where we are going at the start. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Did you have any idea when you started the podcast that you would still be going strong 100 episodes in? Joseph: We had no expectations at all. It was just a thing that we were doing for fun. It didn’t occur to us that a podcast was something you could do on a large scale; it was just that we both liked podcasts and we had the ability to do it. That said, even if we had never found an audience and were never able to make it our full-time jobs, I think we would still be doing it because it is fun to do. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What did you read growing up that influenced your work? Joseph: I read a lot as a kid; my parents didn’t let me watch much TV. I was a huge Redwall fan as a little kid. In high school I was into Douglas Adams. And I was very into



folktales, especially Jewish folktales. I read Howard Schwartz’s collections of Jewish folktales, Mariam’s Tambourine and Elijah’s Violin—they have a certain rhythm to them that influenced my writing. Shelf Unbound/Podster: When did you know you wanted to be a writer? Joseph: I’ve wanted to be a writer since I understood what the concept was, around the age of 4. Chris Van Allsburg, who wrote Jumanji, is someone whose work I really love and he had a book called The Mysteries of Harris Burdick. Each two-page spread was one illustration and a title and a sentence, and the idea was to encourage you to write your own story. I wrote a short story called The Harp, which was probably similar in structure to the folktales I was reading. I don’t remember a lot of the details but it was about a kid who wakes up in a magical forest. Whenever I couldn’t figure out how to get a character out of a narrative problem in my stories I would have them fall unconscious and then when they woke up everything would be taken care of. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Do you have a favorite character in Night Vale to write?



Joseph: A lot of characters are fun to write but the most fun ones are those that have a specific pattern of speech. Like the Faceless Old Woman has a very distinctive way of talking, and Michelle Nguyen has a great rhythm to the way she talks that is a lot of fun to write. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Do you ever struggle to come up with new ideas after all these years of writing Night Vale? Joseph: I’ve been doing this my whole life and so I’ve had years and years of practice. Writing is exactly like playing the violin or being a doctor—there are specific things you do and you have to practice them over and over. In lots of ways it is a technical thing. You have to practice and after years of practice you reach a point where you need to write two pages and you trust your brain to fill that in. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What elements did you have to learn in writing a podcast? Joseph: Both Jeffrey and I came out of downtown New York theatre— that’s where we met—and we did a lot of work there before doing the podcast. We wanted to write a fiction podcast in the same way we were already writing for theatre. In downtown New York theatre there

“Rich language,memorable characters, and sharp dialogue are clearly Watson’s stock in trade. Cage Life takes you on a trip through the world of mixed martial arts and then makes a detour, dropping you smack dab in the middle of the New York City mob.” [ John Fortunato, Tony Hillerman prize-winning author of Dark Reservations ] “The fight scenes—in and out of the professional cage—are stirringly described, cataclysms of feral but controlled aggression... Pulsing with violence, this mob tale provides plenty of excitement.”

“As one of the best MMA fighters in the world, protagonist Mickey Watts knows how to defend a take down and can get out of the tightest submissions. But when he enters the mob’s cage, he learns there is no tapping out.”

[ Kirkus Reviews ]

[ John Dixon, Bram Stoker Award-Winning Author of Devil’s Pocket ]

It’s the punch you don’t see coming that drops you. Any fighter can tell you that. And Mickey Watts isn’t just any fighter; he’s one of the best in mixed martial arts, a top contender who seems to have it all: looks, brains and rich girlfriend who’s crazy about him. The fact his family is mobbed-up to its Irish-Italian eyebrows has never been a problem... until Mick throws one punch too many and finds that some debts can only be paid in blood.

When mixed martial artist Mickey Watts returns to New York after three years in exile, he just wants to forget his bloody days with the mob and do what he does best—fight. But when his ex-fiancee is threatened by the same vicious gangsters that ran him out of town, he gets a chance not only to win her back, to but to settle some old scores in the process. Trouble is, Mick’s not the only one with vengeance on his mind. Because the city that never sleeps, never forgives.


are not a lot of sets and costumes and big theatrical elements because nobody has any money. There are performances where someone is standing on a bare stage in normal clothes and what they are saying has to be enough to hold you. I love that because it is about how perfect can you make the storytelling, how gripping can a single voice telling you a story be? Shelf Unbound/Podster: You’ve been doing live shows across the country for a few years. What’s it like at the live shows? Joseph: Because we come out of the theatre we love to do the live shows and we bring a lot of experience to them. They are designed to be standalone stories that can be enjoyed by people who have no idea who we are. We go back to the idea of how gripping can you make a person on a stage telling you a story. The answer is: very gripping. Cecil Baldwin is a trained stage actor, so he is able to take an audience places and control an audience with his performance. We try to write for live energy—which is not the same way we write the podcast. With a live audience in mind we’ve even included the audience in the story at times. I’ve seen a lot of live theatre in my life and feel like we put on one hell of a live show.



“An imaginative journey of the soul.”

Tradition holds that Austen lived a contemplative, unmarried life. But what if, during the “lost years” of her twenties, she wed a man as passionate and intelligent as she? What if, together, they faced the biggest challenges of life in 1805? Find out why readers have praised it as “a magical tale”—“one of the best love stories I have read in a long time”—“wickedly clever”—“highly imagined, playful”—“so well-researched and respectfully written … it’s easy to imagine she could have found love.” “Hemingway has a talent for witty banter and wry observations that would make Elizabeth Bennet proud. An enjoyable first novel in an imaginative, well-researched series.”

“Hemingway … [places] a very human Jane into a vibrant, turbulent England. … He captures the energy of the times, while also writing with the irony and sly humor of Austen herself. … Truly a worthy addition to the Austen legacy.”

—Kirkus Reviews

—Blueink Starred Review “The adventure of a true romantic partnership and all the excitement that the nineteenth century had to offer. … [The] novel invites you to linger, to savor, and to enjoy.” —Foreword Reviews

Mostly Void, Partially Stars: Welcome to Night Vale Episodes, Volume 1 by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor

A friendly desert community, where the sun is hot, the moon is beautiful, and mysterious lights pass overhead while we all pretend to sleep. WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE. Harper Perennial

Hello listeners.

at the hooded figures. The Dog Park will not harm you. And now the news. To start things off, I’ve been Old Woman Josie, out near asked to read this brief notice. the car lot, says the angels The City Council announces revealed themselves to her. Said the opening of a new Dog they were ten feet tall, radiant, Park at the corner of Earl and one of them was black. Said Summerset, near the Ralphs. they helped her with various They would like to remind household chores. One of them everyone that dogs are not allowed in the Dog Park. People changed a lightbulb for her, the porch light. She’s offering to are not allowed in the Dog sell the old lightbulb, which has Park. It is possible you will see hooded figures in the Dog Park. been touched by an angel (it was Do not approach them. Do not the black angel, if that sweetens the pot for anyone). If you’re approach the Dog Park. The interested, contact Old Woman fence is electrified and highly Josie. She’s out near the car lot. dangerous. Try not to look at A new man came into town the Dog Park and especially do today. Who is he? What does he not look for any period of time 18


want from us? Why his perfect and beautiful haircut? Why his perfect and beautiful coat? He says he is a scientist. Well, we have all been scientists at one point or another in our lives. But why now? Why here? And just what does he plan to do with all those beakers and humming electrical instruments in that lab he’s renting, the one next to Big Rico’s Pizza. No one does a slice like Big Rico. No one. From Mostly Void, Partially Stars: Welcome to Night Vale Episodes, Volume 1 by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor, Harper Perennial, Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

Hollywood made him a blacksmith; Arab chronicles said he was like a king. He served a leper but defied Richard the Lionheart. He was a warrior and a diplomat both: Balian d’Ibelin Balian has walked away a free man after the surrender of Jerusalem, but he is baron of nothing in a kingdom that no longer exists. Haunted by the tens of thousands of Christians enslaved by the Saracens, he is determined to regain what has been lost. The arrival of a crusading army under the legendary Richard the Lionheart offers hope—but also conflict as crusaders and natives clash and French and English quarrel.

“...a literary oeuvre constructed in keeping with the highest academic principles for research and verifiable accuracy.” REAL CRUSADES HISTORY

“Schrader, a career diplomat with a PhD in history, delivers a meticulous historical drama full of telling details... [T]he story presents both Christian and Muslim points of view, so there is no facile stereotyping of villains....[R]eaders are sure to find the author’s enthusiasm...infectious.” BLUE INK

“...this is one of the best historical series ever written!” FEATHERED QUILL

Check out Schrader’s first two award winning books in the series. UNBOUND


Fun Reading!

Make Andy a part of your children’ s book Collection!

ISBN 978-0-578-13847-3

51895 >

ISBN 978-0-578-13847-3

51895 >

AGES 3-9 9 780578 138473

9 780578 138473

From Author Carolee Russell

A bit of tongue-in-cheek humor adds a bit of lightness to this murder mystery story. The second half of the book provides the information and instructions needed to perform this story in an ad lib play format in the privacy of your home with your friends. There are many characters for a greater number of participants to experience stepping into a different persona if only for an intriguing evening of murder… just for fun. WWW.RUSSELLRIGINALS.COM

“A Wish for Algie” is about a fish named Algie who seemingly has a perfect life but believes he would be much happier as a bird. His wish is fulfilled, but the consequences of trying to adapting to such a different life makes Algie realize he has made a mistake in leaving the good life he had as a fish and now he regrets having wished at all. With the guidance of a wise owl who befriended him, Algie regains his life as a fish with greater appreciation of that life.

This book was written for my niece, Gail, from a fragmented two page story she had written and wanted so much to see it in print. The yolk of the story is hers but I have created the rest of the egg, so to speak. It is about a Christian family who, with other families of similar values, broke from a wagon train headed west and settled in a secluded canyon to set up their farms and raise their families dedicated to the Lord. A severe two-year drought tests their faith and devotion. One young, physically challenged little girl (much like Gail is physically challenged) takes on God personally, resulting in God’s blessings for all. With faith and love, anything is possible.



Eli Horowitz: Homecoming

The author of The Silent History brings his literary skills to the creation of the psychological thriller podcast Homecoming, now headed for TV.




e’ve interviewed Eli Horowitz twice previously about his literary projects The Silent History and The New World. Now he’s back with one of our favorite narrative podcasts, Homecoming, from Gimlet Media. The podcast stars Catherine Keener, Oscar Isaac, David Schwimmer, David Cross, and Amy Sedaris and “centers on a caseworker at an experimental facility, her ambitious supervisor, and a soldier eager to rejoin civilian life — presented in an enigmatic collage of telephone calls, therapy sessions, and overheard conversations.” The six episodes of Season 1 are all available for binging; we’re pretty sure you’ll be staying up all night.

Shelf Unbound/Podster: How did Homecoming come about? Eli Horowitz: I started, kind of like I do with all things, with the form. I started by looking at the shape of the thing and what kind of story could fit into that. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What did that mean for you? Eli: I wanted to avoid the artificiality that can sometimes come from having a narrator or any kind of heavyhanded exposition. It was a challenge; it’s hard in audio to convey where the characters are, who’s talking, what the movement is, without the corniness that comes from trying to insert that thing. Like, “I’m running. I’m running through a field, there’s a lot of grass in the field!” So I tried to think of what kind of situations would give rise by themselves to episodic storytelling. That’s how I came up with the element of repeated therapy sessions because I wanted conversation rather than physical action to be at the core. Then you begin to conjure the story: Okay, there’s two people talking. Why are they talking? Why is this repeating every week? How long, how many

weeks is this going to go for? Why are they talking about the same thing again and again? Shelf Unbound/Podster: Have you ever written anything where the dialogue needed to be so tight? Eli: I’ve never written a script before, which is why I partnered with Micah Bloomberg, who has experience as a screenwriter. Plus it made it more fun. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What was your process like in working together? Eli: We figured it out along the way. I had the germ of the idea, and then we’d send drafts back and forth. I think I was more useful with some of the structural things and he was more useful for the seemingly trivial turns of phrase—like putting a plot beat into a scene format. For instance, for the scenes where Colin the boss was talking to Heidi, I knew what needed to happen from a story perspective, but Micah was great about Colin being in different places for each of those calls. That came from imagining the actual reality of these moments



rather than just story function of these moments. Most of the other podcasts I was listening to were conversation based or interview based. I was fascinated by how suddenly powerful the conversations can be when they drop into being honest and genuine and you hear the person think. So I was wanting us to take the power of human conversation with the voice immediately in your ear and put that within a plot structure. Shelf Unbound/Podster: You have some well known cast members; how did that come about? Eli: That was totally ridiculous. I was working with an indie movie producer named Alicia Van Couvering, on the casting process, and she encouraged us to just go for whoever we wanted to cast. So we made a list and ranked them. Catherine Keener was our first choice, and I don’t know what it was but she agreed. I guess because the script was fun or she was looking for something weird to do. Shelf Unbound/Podster: It’s a great part and she’s fantastic. Eli: Yes, she is. She commented to me that one of the things that drew her into it was how simple these scripts are, in that there’s nothing in them aside from the dialogue. I think it strikes something that’s central to



why they are doing this job in the first place. But still, it was a total fluke, no doubt about it. Shelf Unbound/Podster: You’ve got six episodes in the first season. Did you do them all at once? Eli: We recorded them all at once in the course of about a week. We did all of the Heidi and Walter scenes in one day and all of the Heidi and Collin scenes another day. Then we turned it all over to the sound designer Mark Henry Phillips and he would put everything in sequence. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Are you going to have a second season? Eli: Yes, I’m working on it today, actually. It takes up pretty quickly where Season 1 leaves off. I’m also excited to give each season its own engine and its own flavor. It’s not just the same mystery continuing to unspool—what does she remember, what does not? Even though the pieces are the same, the engine behind it and the concerns of the season are totally new. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What interests you about pioneering new ways of storytelling as technology evolves? Eli: When I reduce a project to pieces and build from those, it’s like my mind is searching for a logical rational solution to a problem. And



by Chris Thomas

When does good end and evil begin?

A tale of conflict and moral dilemmas arising from the best of intentions, Until Philosophers Become Kings explores the gray and blurred lines of morality.

Available at

“An intense crime thriller from debut author Thomas that follows an undercover agent embedded deep within a Mexican drug cartel...the dynamic tale takes the reader along for one harrowing journey.” —Kirkus Reviews

Shelf Unbound/Podster: Do you have other fiction podcasts planned? Eli: Gimlet and I are looking for more shows to add and I’m excited for those to be created by totally outside people. Maybe I’ll do editing, maybe I’ll advise. It will get really fun when other people start coming to us with their own ideas. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Do you have any authors that you would love to work with on a podcast? Eli: Oh sure. One person I’ve been thinking about is, Patrick DeWitt, who wrote The Sisters Brothers. I am in a slow seduction pattern with him to try to get him on board. There’s so many people. It’s interesting because I’m trying to get a sense of am I looking at authors? Am I looking at screenwriters? Or TV writers? What’s the best source of these things? A big part of it is seeing who is going to be really eager and really open. Who’s going to take this, who is going to bring a lot of skill and expertise but also a sense of experimentation? It’s a really nice moment in podcasting where the audience is there, the energy is there, and it just needs fun new material.




it feels like there’s more room to run when everyone else is also trying to figure out the form, instead swimming upstream against it.

Eli: I’m going to sort of bracket out all the Gimlet shows cause that seems— Shelf Unbound/Podster: We’ll assume you listen to Gimlet. Eli: I like You Must Remember This. I like bastketball podcasts so The Lowe Post Show, you have to care about NBA news, but I love it. Song Exploder I am enjoying a lot. Hello from the Magic Tavern is a fiction podcast but it’s more like a fake talk show podcast. It’s like a jokey Middle Earth talk show.


Back in New York, Sergeant Samuel is demoted to work in the traffic police. He is teamed up with Huang, an experienced and deeply religious police officer. At Penn Station in New York, Samuel comes across Olis, a brilliant but illegally performing street singer with no memory of his past. As the goodhearted Samuel—against the advice of Huang—decides to help Olis, he gradually becomes embedded in a complex case with its roots in the Vatican. With the help of Melera, a top gang leader deeply conflicted by being abused as a boy serving the church, Samuel uncovers how the servants of the church, driven by greed and deep, dark instincts, ruthlessly exploit innocent and loving individuals, who are driven to insanity. He also uncovers how the cardinal Marchetto Caccini with all means—including modern sciences—pursues the highest positions in the church. At the end, the good-hearted Samuel is faced with the choice of either following his heart or revealing the horrifying secrets of the cardinal.


In her authorship, Josephine deBois explores the edge between the real and the unreal, which she approaches in captivating stories developed from her exceptional imagination and deep psychological insight. She constantly explores the deep, fundamental questions of being and not being a human being, bringing the fundamentals of science, art, and religion faceto-face in stunning encounters of life, death, and love. She also writes children’s books and is a columnist covering scientific subjects.



Micah Bloomberg: Homecoming

Shelf Unbound/Podster: What led to your writing career? Micah Bloomberg: I went to NYU undergrad for film production. You just get thrown into the mix—you’re 17 or 18 and think you’re going to be the next Orson Wells or Wes Anderson. I wanted to write and direct, but I discovered I could do neither, which was a bitter pill to swallow. But in taking all kinds of classes—writing, film theory, acting—I found that I had a knack for production sound. When you shoot something you need a camera, actors, a director, costumes, and makeup, and you also need a production sound mixer. That person’s job is to record the sound of the dialogue on set. I found that I had a knack for that one position, so I ended up pursuing that and doing that for years. I was secretly writing the whole time, but in the meantime I did 35 feature films as a sound mixer and was nominated for a BAFTA. It came to a point with my writing where I was increasingly able to show it to other people and take feedback and make adjustments. I also started writing shorter, more manageable things. Those allowed me to transition



from sound to full-time writing. I’ve done two movies: Stand Clear of the Closing Doors, taken from a true life story about a young autistic boy who runs away and travels the subway for 11 days. That script existed and I was brought on to re-write it with Sam Fleischner. It went on to Tribeca and won jury. Another director, Ben Dickinson, read some one-act plays I had written that were focused on attacking the ad industry. He was writing a satire about that and thought it would be a great fit if we wrote it together. The result, Creative Control, went to SXSW and won a jury prize, and was picked up by Amazon. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Tell us about working on Homecoming. Micah: Eli was working with Gimlet to develop a narrative podcast and was looking for someone who had written scripts before because it was going to be driven by dialogue. He called me up and we talked about a couple of prompts that he had worked up. One was about people in a bunker, which through a convoluted multifaceted process led to Homecoming.

Her love for Montana and her desire to share the story of her unique and wonderful family prompted Mary Ellen Connelly to write a witty and candid memoir.

Window To The Big Sky

vividly depicts a variety of events that shaped Mary’s life and the lives of her children. Set against the sweet and beautiful backdrop of the Big Sky Country, this journey depicts what life is like growing up and living in a place close to one’s heart. Delightful,..... JUM & MUZ I Forget - A Caregivers View of Alzheimers There are many things we cannot understand; fathomless questions that confront and confuse us, but the most baffling is the human mind. With that thought, I have tried to show my observation of the twenty years dealing with my husbands battle with Alzheimers. I hope this book will remind us what a kind, sweet, considerate and compassionate person Jim was. Thank you to my family for being the thoughtful, caring people you are. And to Jim’s friends, a special thank you. I could not have survived without.....


When you have to tell a story through what people are saying, it can be difficult to get the characters to do the beats on an outline. You put the characters in the room and they need to move the story forward. What people find challenging when they go to write a movie or play is that they know what they want to happen, but the tricky part is getting the characters to do it and to tell the story without seeming like robots. Eli had some concepts and things he wanted to explore, but his experience was prose and novel writing, which follow different rules to move the story forward. He needed a more specific set of skills to move the story where you could only hear people talking. Giving character through voice and through speech is what I brought to the table. What I discovered is that we were dealing with a different format than film, which should have been apparent to me up front. We had an early pilot that made it clear we needed to think hard about the format and listen to some other podcasts and radio plays. We realized there are fundamental things that need to be addressed. You can’t see faces or props, so who is speaking, where are they, and what are they holding in their hands—all of those need to make a distinct sound. It could be a voice or the way that they

speak; there’s a harmonica, there’s the aquarium in the office—they are selected for story purposes but they also need to make a sound so they can be registered in a scene. When denied the physical storytelling of making a movie, I had to go back to the drawing board and think about how information was being delivered aside from the actual dialogue. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What have you enjoyed about working in this format? Micah: To me the best part is that there is no production limit—it’s basically your imagination. When you are writing for film you need to be conscious of what you are asking them to create when you write it. If you write an airplane, someone is going to need to make that. There are limitations in how many parts you write for a podcast but the rest is just up to you and what you want to have happening. In that way it’s been really liberating and fun. And then the theatrical focus on telling the story through words doesn’t happen as much in movies. It’s been a refreshing focus on what is expressed through what people are saying. Dialogue is the start of the show.

“Grodt handles this admittedly manipulative setup with smooth precision...(a) tense novel...unfailingly gripping... well-orchestrated climactic chapters. A well-executed revenge drama in which every bad deed carries consequences.” —Kirkus Reviews Widower Brad Wallace is a regular guy. He owns a successful small business, loves cars, beer, football—and his only son. One morning after a few too many, Brad awakens...still a regular guy, but one with a horrifying secret. Time passes and he thinks he has eluded the moral consequences of his nightmare, until the nightmare shows up in his living room: wearing pumps and rolling in the arms of his son, Jared. Now, Brad must battle the demons of lust, insecurity, and guilt. Can he stanch the blood flow of collateral damage caused by one moment of weakness, or will he succumb to his own craven, egomaniacal desire?


Books that Inspired


EPISODE 1: Books that Pull You In

“Each week I’ve been curating a special collection of titles so you can explore the stories that inspired Homecoming,” says Eli Horowitz at the end of each episode in a partnership with iBooks. Find links to the books at

The Moviegoer by Walker Percy Frankenstein by Mary Shelley Beloved by Tony Morrison One Thousand and One Nights by Hanan Al-Shaykh If on a winter’s night a traveler by Italo Calvino

EPISODE 2: Unpredictable Characters The First Bad Man by Miranda July A Fan’s Notes by Frederick Exley The Beautiful Bureaucrat by Helen Phillips Cruddy by Lynda Barry Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem



EPISODE 3: Powerful Dialogue The Silent History by Eli Horowitz & Matthew Derby The New World by Chris Adrian & Eli Horowitz Arkansas by John Brandon The Dog of the South by Charles Portis The Quick and the Dead by Joy Williams

EPISODE 4: Memory and Forgetting Healthy Brain, Happy Life by Wendy Suzuku & Billie Fitzpatrick Swann’s Way by Marcel Proust About Alice by Calvin Trillin Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov

EPISODE 5: Expanding the World Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi Sharp Teeth by Toby Barlow Martin Dressler by Steven Millhauser Coming Through Slaughter by Michael Ondaatje The Instructions by Adam Levin

EPISODE 6: Endings … ? A Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan The Mysterious Disappearance of Leon (I Mean Noel) by Ellen Raskin Every Man a Menace by Patrick Hoffman Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez Train Dreams by Denis Johnson



Ever thought of moving to Italy? Think again (and then do it anyway)!

Read the book “Living in Italy: the Real Deal” to learn about the horrendous and the hilarious adventures of two Dutchmen who took the plunge (and nearly drowned). In 2008 Stef Smulders, his partner Nico and their dog Saar emigrated to Italy to start a new life and set up their B&B Villa I Due Padroni ( They sold their home, left their friends and family behind and took a leap into the unknown. Now Stef shares his experiences in a collection of 60 witty short stories.  The book treats the trials and tribulations of an emigration: what it was like to buy and renovate a house, to import a car, to gain residency, and much more. The reader is introduced to a full range of Italian characters, from the trustworthy to the rogue, from the gentle to the shameless, flesh and blood Italians. Some are stereotype, others unexpectedly original. Yet they never fail to amuse and entertain.

“There is more of the flavor of Italy in this book than in ... Frances Mayes’ ‘Under the Tuscan Sun’” Amazon review by Grady Harp HALL OF FAME TOP 100

“A comical, often downright hilarious account.” Reader’s Favorite Review

“For those who wish to laugh and see a more up-close-andpersonal Italy, this is most definitely the book for you!” Feathered Quill Review

Click HERE for Author website/Sneak preview.

“ insightful and moving look at the unique challenges caregivers face on a daily basis and inspires us all to take action.” —Steve Schwab, Executive Director, The Elizabeth Dole Foundation

Imagine sending your spouse to war with a heavy heart, then receiving a life-shattering phone call telling you he’s been badly injured. Your beloved returns to your arms, but changed, broken, angry, conflicted, and in need of around-the-clock care.

What do you do? Meet the women who drew upon their inner resilience and prevailed. Their vivid personal accounts provide inspiration to those who face daunting challenges, and offer a path forward. Each one of these brave, strong military spouses shares her personal tale of reuniting, recovering, and rebuilding with her catastrophically wounded warrior. “After more than a decade of Americans fighting battles on multiple fronts, this is a deeply necessary and poignant offering.” —Publisher’s Weekly—



Described as being “reminiscent of the podcast Serial,” Khemiri’s beautiful and deeply meaningful novel is the winner of the August Prize, Sweden’s top literary award.



Everything I Don’t Remember by Jonas Hassen Khemiri

Atria Books

Shelf Unbound/Podster: Your novel has been compared to the podcast Serial, in that a novelist seeks to determine whether the main character Samuel’s death was an accident or suicide by piecing together a picture of his life through interviews with his friends, family, and neighbors. Why did you decide to tell this story in this fragmented style? Jonas Hassen Khemiri: I think one ambition was to try to capture how I actually remember things. My memory has never felt like a trustworthy third person narrator. I always remember things in fragments. Often there are nameless voices that keep disagreeing about what really happened rumbling around in my brains. In this novel I was able to invite these voices to recreate the life of Samuel. As I was writing the novel I also had a close friend who passed away. I was struck with how all of us who were grieving were really good at defending our version of what had happened. We were constantly remembering

the things that could rid us of guilt— the version of the truth that could convince us that we could not have done anything differently. This is reminiscent of what happens in the novel. Shelf Unbound/Podster: How did you go about creating the character of Samuel? Jonas: Samuel goes around with a panicky feeling that everything in life is perishable. When writing his life I thought a lot about how much time and energy I have devoted to trying to acquire certain memories and how many words I have written down with the ambition of making life permanent. In the novel Samuel is being remembered in different ways, and we are never 100 percent sure of who has the final version of who he is. Readers have to piece Samuel together from all the memories that he has left behind. Personally I have always been a big fan of books that force me as a reader to take an active part in assembling the fiction.



Shelf Unbound/Podster: Vandad, Samuel’s close friend and one-time housemate, remains the most enigmatic character as the novel progresses. Why did you want to keep him in the shadows? Jonas: Vandad is Vandad. He is the only character who follows the reader from the beginning to end. He is the fuel of the novel. He claims not to care about money but is the only character who demands money to share his memories. He claims to be loyal but ends up playing a part in betraying Samuel. I think he needs some shadows in order to be ready to share his story. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Even in his last moments alive, Samuel is contemplating his emptiness: “… all I see is that blank face, that false body that has never had a genuine emotion, that has never kissed someone without thinking about how the kiss will look to outsiders, that is still waiting for emotion to win out over control someday, and when the red light turns green I put the pedal to the metal …” Did you know at the start that this story would lead to this moment of existential crisis, that he would be thinking these thoughts at the very end?



Jonas: No. I never know where a novel will take me. I only know that if I know where I will end up, the novel tends to die a sad and slow death. No outlines or Excel sheets can revive it. So my working strategy has always been: Listen to the voices. Try (even though it’s hard) not to be scared of letting go of control. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Immigration policies are a theme in this book. In 2013, your “An Open Letter to Beatrice Ask,” the Swedish Minister of Justice, went viral on social media. In it you poignantly describe your experiences from a young age on of being racially profiled. What message about this topic do you hope readers will take away from this novel? Jonas: For me shorter political texts demand clarity and anger. Novel writing needs confusion and not being sure about things. In this novel I was not sure about a number of things, for example: How was my home town being transformed when economic forces changed the housing structure? How much I would be ready to pay for feeling safe? Is there a clear-cut boundary between friendship and love? All of these questions play a big part in the novel. But hopefully none of them receive a simple answer.

LINDA COLLISON Fifteen-year-old James McCafferty is an unwilling sailor aboard a traditional Chinese junk operated as adventure-therapy for troubled teens. Once at sea, James believes the ship is being taken over by the spirits of courtiers who fled the Imperial palace during the Ming Dynasty, more than 600 years ago, and sailing to its doom. WWW.LINDACOLLISON.COM

“A witty YA voyage with plenty of narrative power” —Kirkus Reviews

“An ancient Chinese junk packed with delinquent teens and ghosts alike sets off on a dangerous voyage in this fantastic book” —Susan Waggoner, Foreword Reviews

“Down Under romance with tinges of Austen.” —Jill Allen, Clarion Foreword Reviews

I love the setting, the story, and the characters! —Amazon Review Romance featuring Australian outback and two characters that really have kept me hooked reading it from the very start. —Amazon Review

of of

A psychological thriller and thought-provoking discussion about the meaning of life. This book is definitely going on my list of favorite books of all time. — Kathy Schneider, NetGalley

p w e n a r e n ractitio p l a ic h p o s o ght li s ’t n s e o d Eric is a phil t bu easonpractitioner—a r Ericpishaasphilosophical s e iz now is m d n ie r that enew lf ir g old profession that is emphasizes h t u b , h ge ic o r t ’t k c isn but doesn’t slight a b t Hereason e g to nts emotions. a w e h S . s u ver morich, but his old girlfriend e r a d faisn’t s le anHe y t s e and lif ls a o g ir e h t ts wa n She but both rich and famous. e li c himis, now is H . g goin with him, is d in m wants to get back together ’s r e h ves. li ir His fat e h t e v li to owlifestyles but their goals h and are very

different. His father’s mind is going. n befo e e s r e v His clients want atonknow how to live e n he’s m o w a d Anlives. their to kill him.

49 And a woman he’s never seen before 0 7 6 5 3 9 ISBN 978-1 Amazon.c wants to kill him. n See reviews


ISBN 978-1-935670-94-0 See reviews on Amazon

Dialogue is razor-sharp. Hilarious, incisive observations about all things great and small. — Robert Bidinotto, author of the bestseller Hunter


The Moth Presents

All These Wonders: True Stories about Facing the Unknown forward by Neil Gaiman edited by Catherine Burns

Crown Archetype Shelf Unbound/Podster: You’ve been with the Moth for decades—how did you select which stories to include in this anthology? Catherine Burns: We transcribed and read most of the stories that have been told since we put our last collection together back in 2012. So our editor at Crown, Matt Inman, and I read about 300 stories. We were primarily looking for stories that worked as well on the page as they did live. Sometimes a story can be amazing in the room or on the radio, but not quite land on the page. We were also looking for a wide range of 42


You’ve probably heard memorable stories told live by Tig Notaro, Louis C.K., and new voices on the top-of-the-charts radio show and podcast the Moth. Now, in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the Moth, the show’s artistic director Catherine Burns has assembled a superb collection of these stories in a new book. All These Wonders is, indeed, a wonder. Here, Catherine introduces the collection. voices coming from people with diverse backgrounds and life experiences. We wanted grandmothers and teenagers. Famous voices like John Turturro, Tig Notaro and Louis C.K., but also less familiar names who have extraordinary stories to tell like a young woman who fled Afghanistan with her family. Shelf Unbound/Podster: The Moth began in the 1990s as a series of live events with people telling stories from their lives and then the Moth Radio Hour debuted in 2007 and now we have the popular the Moth Podcast. What do

you think are the common denominators of these stories that make them so arresting in all these formats, even in the print book? Catherine: The number one quality all great Moth storytellers share is their willingness to be vulnerable—to dare to be their most authentic selves, whether we are hearing them live or reading the story in a book after the fact. Most of the best stories are told by people who are willing to tell on themselves, because doing so makes you relatable. What most connects us to each other are our foibles, or mistakes. Our missteps make us interesting.


Allanoria is shifting into a new age—a world without mage’ic. For reasons unknown, I sense this is a passing phase, and that one day the land’s mage’ic will return. San’Ferath readies to succumb to my final spell, The Undying Sleep. Invoking such power shall end my life, but I go willingly, as does he, for when the need is shall he wake. In a land that has lost its mage’ic, something is stirring—something that has been dormant for over five hundred years. A classic fantasy novel seeped in secrets, betrayal, mage’ic and sacrifice.

... Jerlo has spared not a milligram of her imagination during the construction of this novel. The world she has invented brims with intriguing settings, characters, and themes, which give a reader much to savor in the book’s pages. —Nathrad Sheare, OnLine Book Club AVAILABLE AT UNBOUND



Shelf Unbound/Podster: In your introduction to the anthology, you close with: “And when we dare to listen, we remember that there is no ‘other,’ there is only us, and what we have in common will always be greater than what separates us.” Is there a particular story in the anthology that changed or enlightened your perspective on a person or topic? Catherine: One story that stays with me is Hasan Minaj’s Prom. The story is about his prom date—a girl named Bethany—ditching him at the last minute because her parents don’t approve of her going to the dance with Hasan, whose parents immigrated from India. On the surface, the story is about a young man trying to fit in, and being excluded because of the color of his skin. But at the end of the story, he tells his father what happened, and his father chastises him for being angry with Bethany and her family. His father says, “When I first emigrated from Aligarh, I was scared. I was scared of everything that America had to offer. I was afraid that you were gonna get caught up in the wrong crowds. I was afraid that you were gonna get into drugs, which is why I tried to protect you from everything. And see, 44


Bethany’s family, they were scared, too. They were scared of people that looked like us for whatever reason. And you were scared of me, and Bethany was scared of her parents. Everybody was scared of everybody. But, Hasan, you have to be brave, and the courage to do what’s right has to be greater than your fear of getting hurt.” I love the idea that we can only combat racism and ugliness in our own communities by being fearless ourselves— that we can’t let other people’s fear of what we are stop us from doing what’s right.  Shelf Unbound/Podster: I was particularly moved by the story from the man who had been a 9-year-old boy at the Bergen Belsen concentration camp in Nazi Germany. How did you find this man and his story and encourage him to share it? Catherine: That’s the amazing Tomi Reichental. We had a Mainstage in Dublin, and Meg Bowles, who is one of our lead Mainstage directors, was reading in a local newspaper about a community award Tomi was given—so she googled him to find out more about him and learned he had been in Bergen Belsen. She dug further and found his

book and then the story. One of the things that’s so special about the story is how, until we get to the end, we really experience the story with him at age nine—it’s a child’s view of Bergen Belsen. Chilling.  Shelf Unbound/Podster: Do you have a favorite story in the anthology? Catherine: Well that’s kind of like asking me to choose among children! On the fun end, Jessi Klein’s “Tired From New York,” about getting her dream job at SNL but then discovering that the day-today reality of it is a nightmare. On the more serious side is the story told by Hector Black. Hector is a Quaker whose daughter was murdered by a man who broke into her house one night. Hector’s hatred of her murderer was eating him up, and so he decided to try to learn more about the man who had taken the life of his child. In discovering what had brought the man to this place, Hector was able to find compassion for him and, ultimately, forgive him. The last line of the story is, “I think forgiveness is possible, even for the worst among us. And I do believe we all need forgiveness, God knows.” Amen to that. 



“As good as anything I’ve read in courtroom fiction.”

—The Reporter

Capital Kill

Horns of the Devil

“Federal prosecutor Jeff Trask returns to work on a case involving Salvadoran gang members. Soon, several are marked for death by hit men, including Trask himself.  A well-paced mystery featuring an entertainingly complicated protagonist, supported by a robust cast.” —Kirkus Reviews.

“Lawyer Jeff Trask is a new Assistant U.S. Attorney when he becomes embroiled in a high-stakes international case. … Trask, an engaging main character, works to find out who is behind the heinous murders plaguing D.C. Despite being extremely intelligent, he comes across as an everyman. … The book’s intense action, realistic tone and memorable characters will keep readers engrossed in this thriller with a superb payoff.” —Kirkus Reviews

From former federal prosecutor Marc Rainer, Capital Kill and Horns of the Devil are available at Amazon.

w w w. m a r c r a i n e r. c o m

From Author


A Dark Journey Into The Light

is an interesting and thought provoking read for anyone who has questioned urges and desires familiar to us all. I spent sixty years of my life in “limbo” trying to understand what was driving me to explore every fantasy I could find. We all enjoy sex but the book provides interesting insights into the workings of the mind of a sex addict. We are much more than what we feel, and less than what we think. This book explores what is possible when we find balance between the two. This is not a story of finding redemption through “finding God.” It’s simply the story of finding myself.


WINNER Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

Lean & Hungry LISTEN 48


WINNER “A brand new podcast that breaks down the classics piece by piece.” Our judges loved the delightful, informative, accessible, and enlightening examination of Romeo and Juliet in Season 1. Here, we interview host Jessica Hansen.

Podster: What is the premise of your podcast? Jessica Hansen: Lean & Hungry examines classic works of literature, primarily Shakespeare, in a way that hasn’t been done before. Each season looks at a different classic work (Romeo and Juliet was our first) and explores the question, “why does this still matter?” in a compelling and entertaining way. Over the course of each season we play the entire adapted version of the play, which features professional actors and an original soundscape. Then we bring in experts to help us understand what happened during key scenes of the play and also connect the major themes to a modern context.

Podster: How do you go about selecting topics and guests? Jessica: First we examine the play’s themes; the host and producers discuss and decide which play themes will best support the podcast’s mission to keep the play fun and accessible, while maintaining the artistic integrity of Lean & Hungry’s original adaptation of the play. Once we’ve decided the theme of the season, we articulate episode themes. Based on the episode and season themes, we brainstorm who would be the most fun, interesting, or elucidating guests for each episode. Then, we chase down the best guests!

Photography: Teresa Castracane UNBOUND


WINNER Podster: What do you hope your listeners will take away from your podcast? Jessica: Our goal is to make the classics relevant to people who might never think of tuning into Shakespeare to be entertained while also offering a new and

different take to culture vultures. Ideally, listeners will not only have a laugh and learn something, but also be inspired to go see the play or read the book! If we leave listeners feeling like the story is more interesting than they’d thought, then we’ve done our job.

Lean & Hungry Season 1 Podcast Producer Alex Curley listens to: Love + Radio: Nick van der Kolk and Brendan Baker’s wonderful and weird podcast has always been my stock answer for any podcast-related questions or guidance. How do you use sound design effectively? Listen to Love + Radio. How do you talk to an audience without pandering to them? Listen to Love + Radio. How do you do something weird on a podcast? Listen to Love + Radio. We had to find our own way of presenting a non-linear podcast and having Love + Radio to draw inspiration from was a huge help. Homecoming: Good fictional podcast dramas are hard to come by, mostly because it’s really difficult to convince an audience to suspend their disbelief. What Gimlet’s excellent drama does well are the same things that I initially heard in Lean & Hungry Theater’s productions when I agreed to come on for the first season: atmosphere and natural acting. homecoming/




Ferguson, Chicago, Berkeley... today’s headlines turned to riveting story... “A serious novel with an amusing premise.” —Kirkus





“Mark Conkling has written a doggone good tale about animals and the people who love (and abuse) them. This is a nicely written novel that keeps you jumping and engages the reader in the lives of the main characters as well as the animals. It’s written with a spirituality that doesn’t beat you over the head. If you are looking for a feel good tale invest in Dog Shelter Blues.” John Crudele, Columnist for the New York Post and dog lover

“Mark Conkling offers the reader a wonderful way to explore the northern seas and those most mysterious creatures of the deep, cold waters, the whales. You will enjoy every moment of this book and come away with a newfound respect for both the researchers who spend their lives pursuing whales, and the writer whose imagination weaves a tale that is part mystery, part call to action, and part love story. “ Brent Spencer, author of Rattlesnake Daddy (2011)

A portion of the proceeds from sales goes to charities we support. Go to to find out how you can help. Available in paperback and Kindle at

“Prairie Dog Blues ignited feelings and emotions that are always simmering on the back burner of my mind. The Corley family is like so many if not most families. Striving for perfection that will never be achieved, and going through the motions of what the perfect family should be. What appealed to me was the spiritual discussions between Mom and Pastor June, the very real and painful issues of addiction, and having to cope with the illness and loss of someone who you love deeply. Like with any good book, Prairie Dog Blues left me wondering: What’s going to happen next?” Vicky Chavez, Bibliophie

— Kirkus Reviews

— BlueInk Reviews U.S. $XX.XX

“Genuously hilarious...”

E. Rawlins

“A heartfelt and engaging read”

Learning to Live with Fritz

“A thoroughly readable account of a woman, a dog and a spiritual journey.”

Available at Amazon, Barnes+Noble and IUniverse

— Clarion Reviews

w w


A new book from Rabia Chaudry, co-host of the Undisclosed podcast, digs deep into the conviction of Adnan Syed, picking up where the Serial podcast left off and providing fascinating new details. St. Martin’s Press



Shelf Unbound/Podster: What are a few of the most significant findings about the Adnan Syed case that Undisclosed has uncovered? Undisclosed: First, at the end of Serial, most people thought Asia seeing Adnan until 2:40 P.M. was factually irrelevant because Summer, Hae’s co-

manager for the wrestling match, saw Hae still at school after 2:40 P.M. and talked to her about the wrestling match that day. As it turns out, however, there was no wrestling match on the day Hae disappeared. Second, the lividity evidence— evidence of the pattern of blood settling in Hae’s body—establishes that Hae was not on her side in the trunk of her Sentra for four to five hours after she died or buried on her right side in the 7:00 hour. Both of these claims were key to Jay’s story and the prosecution’s case. Third, the cell tower pings that supposedly placed Adnan’s cell phone in Leakin Park—the site of Hae’s burial—in the 7:00 hour were both calls based upon incoming pings. Susan discovered that the disclaimer accompanying the cell tower records indicated that incoming calls are not reliable for determining location. When this disclaimer was shown to the cell tower expert who testified at Adnan’s trial, he recanted his testimony. Shelf Unbound/Podster: What do you make of the world’s fascination with this case? Undisclosed: Many cases capture the public attention for short periods of time. What’s maintained the public’s attention for so long with this case is that something just doesn’t feel right here. Whether it be Jay changing

his story based upon a misplaced cell tower or completely changing his story in his Intercept interview, the more we learn about the case, the less we know. Shelf Unbound/Podster: How did the three of you become connected? Undisclosed: As Serial aired, Susan and I started blogging about the case. Rabia began reading our blogs and mentioning what we had uncovered in talks she was giving, but most of the audience was not aware of developments postSerial. This led to the idea that we should create a podcast where a wider audience could learn more about the case and what was being uncovered. Shelf Unbound/Podster: Do you think our criminal justice system needs reform and if so what would that look like? Undisclosed: There needs to be more science in forensic science and more discipline for prosecutors who engage in misconduct. Public defenders’ offices are woefully underfunded, and many police departments continue to use interrogation and identification procedures that have been proven to result in wrongful convictions. Mandatory minimum sentences can create punishments that don’t match many crimes while many judges impose sentences that are too light for certain egregious crimes, such as rape. UNBOUND





READING Take a bite from your next favorite book.



God Never Says “Oops!” by Blondina Howes Jeffrey


nmates in prisons and jails are not the only ones in our communities, towns, and cities who are incarcerated because of their past. There are many people walking “freely” outside the walls of our penitentiaries who are bound: guilt, regret, shame, and fear are their jailers. Unable to reconcile with their past errors, afraid of the opinions of men and of being unmasked, they become experts at passing blame, judging and condemning others, and repressing their emotions by immersing themselves in spirituality, good deeds, and religious exercises. They do all this in an effort to drown out the accusing voices of the past. Many Christians, though redeemed, ransomed, and forgiven, find themselves in this group, limping through life, stalked by guilt and shame over their past, not living in their freedom.

I have written God Never Says, “Oops!” for such Christians. This book looks at this human problem and addresses it as essentially a spiritual issue. It speaks primarily to Christians who find themselves troubled by guilt and regret over the past, and makes the claim that even when we mess up, make poor choices, or sin against our God, our mistakes and sins don’t startle or confuse God. God is never and can never be shocked, baffled, or surprised by our sins and mistakes—neither can they deter his eternal purpose and plan. We do not see God scratching his divine head in horror at Adam and Eve’s disobedience, wondering which plan he should then put in place. Adam and Eve did not mess up God’s ultimate and perfect plan, for God has no A, B or C plans. The God who never says,

“Oops!” has only one eternal plan and purpose for man, made before the foundation of the worlds, and to this day it stands fast: “That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:7). God Never Says, “Oops!” offers hope and encouragement to those who wish they could turn back the clock—those who have spilled milk—who are suffering the consequences.



Meet Walt on YouTube: Walt Brown Authorhouse…

You’ll see society/history repeat itself. Today is a reflection of the past: with shootings, riots, an overseas war (that one in Viet Nam,) effecting our lives then, as now. There was a fight for gender equality. Richard Nixon signed Title IX for equal rights in athletics. There was “Black Power,” and the “Battle of the Sexes.” Share private moments with your heroes from the past: Ali, Musial, Mays, Jesse Owens, Dan Marino, IndyCar... NasCar...F1...drivers, Billie Jean King, Cindy Potter, Wilt, Rod Laver, George C. Scott, Bob Hope, Jerry Rice, the Kennedy family, golf and hockey stars, most of the major names of the last half of the 20th Century..... 58



WALT BROWN is a retired radio and television broadcaster who did playby-play of more than 20 different sports. This began while he was a broadcast student at Stanford University and continued while he was a Naval Officer at the Armed Forces Radio Television Service in Hollywood. Professionally, he covered sports and news in Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Nebraska during his 30 year career.

Athletes, Celebrities, Personal Moments The 60s and 70s by Walt Brown

A Personal Moment with Muhammad Ali


he station host introduced himself to the Muslim guard, and to Ali. I saw him gesture toward me and the leader of the guard shake his head “no.” Ali smiled and, in turn, shook his head at the guardians; nodding at me to come on over. I signaled my videographer to join us. As we approached, my videographer seemed scared by the guards, and held back. Ali noticed the girl, and walked to the bench. With a friendly smile, he asked the girl why she was there. I said

to Ali, “she’s a champ, too, Champ; national age group track champion.” Ali said to the girl, “You are? Let’s see how you run.” The girl got up and started jogging around the room. Ali joined her. I whispered to my videographer, “get them jogging!” He didn’t turn on his camera. And we missed out on what would have been one of the great Ali videos of all time; jogging in a reception room alongside a Junior Olympic Champion pre-teen white girl. It was joyful and warm.



Tough Karma: A Race Against Time by Laura Simmons


s she became fully conscious, she had a feeling she wasn’t alone. She didn’t remember the telepathic conversation she had with him, just a portion of a beautiful beach dream which didn’t last long enough and ended with a loud, blaring sound. Even though she was in a terrible place, she felt calm and rested and knew he was there in his astral form. She said out loud, “Bryce, I want you to know that I love you beyond anything that makes sense. I have a feeling it’s because of you that I feel better. You’ve given me strength to face my captor. Please be safe. I want you to get here in one piece so you can beat the hell out of him or kill him. Either one is fine with me. I want to watch. If I have an opportunity to escape, I’m going to take it and borrow

someone’s phone to call you.” He was still there, lying next to her. He knew she wouldn’t be able to hear him, but he responded anyway, “If you can escape, go for it and keep running. I will find you.” The sound of a banging door and loud voices in the hotel hallway brought him back to his physical body, and he decided it was time to take a shower and hit the road. He would soon discover the reason behind the angry voices down the hall. She got up an hour later after lying on the bed thinking of her plight and creating escape scenarios in her head. She walked slowly down the stairs, cursing her shackles and cuffs. Her head was clear and she looked around the dark and dingy shed wanting to kill Mike. She was terribly

thirsty and shuffled to the grimy, dirty sink hoping that the water would come out clear and drinkable. She turned the knob, and the water looked clear. She leaned down taking a sip from the running spigot. It tasted good, and she continued swallowing it. Her heart sank when she heard the door unlatch, and Mike walked in.



Now That We’re Adults by Lynn Almengor


ain dribbled down the window glass, the sky a sheet of grey behind it. Slouched in the recliner, Wade stared at the screen with zombie eyes, mashing buttons on the X-Box controller. His brain throbbed from lack of sleep but he couldn’t shut it off. “We weren’t even fighting.” Sprawled on the couch, Rob kept his eyes on the game. “If you haven’t figured it out by now, you probably won’t. You’ll just have to wait until she tells you.” “How does it even work when a girl rejects your proposal—do you automatically break up, or do you stay together and pretend it didn’t happen?” “Which do you want?” “I wanna figure out what I did wrong and make it right.” The doorbell rang, freezing his insides. “Is that her?” Rob peeked through the

mini-blinds. “Yeah. She’s got a box.” The shrapnel in Wade’s gut inflamed anew as he shut his eyes and dug his fingers into his forehead. It was over. “You want me to go?” Rob asked. “No.” Wade peeled himself out of the recliner, legs numb from sitting so long. “I don’t wanna be alone when she leaves.” Rob plopped back down on the couch as Wade hobbled over to open the door. On the other side stood Jill, balancing the cardboard box against her hip and holding a jacket over her head. She smiled as if she hadn’t shattered his heart less than 24 hours ago. “Hey, let me in, it’s awful out here.” She pushed past him but stopped short, noticing Rob. She lowered her voice. “Can we go to your room?” Wade shrugged and led

the way. She chose a spot on his bed, picking up the corner of the blanket and smoothing it between her fingers. “I’m sorry about the way I acted last night.” She forced a laugh, but then stared at the ceiling, tears pooling in her eyes. Even when he was mad, he could never stand watching her cry. Holding back his own tears, he sat down beside her, rubbing her back as she wiped her eyes with the blanket.



The Mermaids of Lake Michigan by Suzanne Kamata


f I had to declare the exact moment my life changed forever, I’d name a steamy July afternoon in my seventeenth year. It was a week after my little sister Amanda made her debut with the Grand Rapids Junior Ballet, and two weeks before the beginning of the carnival. I was holed up in my room, deeply engrossed in The Blood of Others, overcome by the tragic love of French Resistance fighters. Bullets were whizzing about my head. There might have been a soundtrack, too— violins or the plaint of piano keys. I was caught up in the danger, the secrecy, the romance. Ooh, la la. There was a knock on the door. I knew it was Mom. Amanda usually barged right in. Besides, she was still at her ballet lesson. “What?” I called out, hoping my voice held the

right note of irritation. Mom opened the door and stepped into my room. I didn’t look at her, but I figured she was taking stock of the clothes lying in soft piles on the floor. “Mrs. Churchill just called to invite you over for tea,” she said. “She wants you to meet her granddaughter.” Mrs. Churchill was the widow who lived a few houses down and across the street from ours. These days I rarely saw her, and to me her life was as far away from mine as the moon is from earth. Mom, however, considered her a friend. They went to Bible study together at the Methodist church, and sometimes Mom brought her a loaf of freshly baked bread or a jar of homemade dill pickles. I kept my eyes focused on the book in front of me. “Tell her thanks, but no

thanks. I’m extremely busy with various activities.” “Her name is Chiara. She’s the same age as you. In fact, you might be in some classes together this fall.” “Oh, hell,” I muttered under my breath. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad. Plus, the idea of “tea” was just quaint enough to seem interesting. I wondered if there would be crumpets.



A Pigeon’s Tale by S.A. Mahan


hat’s going on, Michael?” One of the arriving men asked. “The little pigeon brought us a message, Steve,” Michael answered, “with very small print. Do you have your bifocals with you?” “Certainly,” Steve answered. He slipped his hand into his shirt pocket and pulled out a pair of glasses. He was wearing a hat, and had a long, white beard, just like Grandpa’s. “Greetings,” he read aloud to everyone, “the bird who brought you this message is Professor Walter Pigeon. Please extend to him the same courtesy and respect you would extend to any one of your colleagues.” Steve stopped reading for a moment and glanced over his glasses at me. “Welcome to Camp Shackleton, Professor Walter,” he said. Everyone cheered! He continued to read. “Professor Walter is an expert at International Morse Code and Star Navigation. We have

included a copy of the Morse Code on the opposite side of this note. Please use it to communicate with him. He will tell you everything about Project Skynest. If you have an operative computer, he can also type in English. Best regards, Sir Alfred Jerome.” Steve looked at Michael and then at me. “I should have paid closer attention to Sir Alfred’s work,” he said, “Professor Walter, I am Dr. Steve Conroy, of the U.S. Antarctic research team. You have met Dr. Michael Thorden and Dr. Kiersten Thorden from the Norwegian research team. We banded together out on the Ross Ice Shelf after everything came apart three years ago. “When we realized that Antarctica was shifting to a warmer region,” Michael explained, “we abandoned the ice shelf and moved to solid land. Quite a few of us died. We weathered terrible, terrible times.” “Tsunamis,” Steve continued for him, “black,

fire-rain from volcanoes, incredible earthquakes. Then, just as it says in the Bible, the stars slowly dropped from the sky.” “The world shifted,” Kiersten broke in, “which I’m sure you already know. We were lucky at first to be out on the ice shelf, it withstood the worst of quakes and tsunamis. But when it started to fracture, we knew we had to move.” A tear rolled down Kiersten’s cheek. “We started with over forty scientists,” she said sadly, “we are now down to fifteen.” I flew over to her shoulder and kissed her on the cheek.



Journey Into Darkness | Blake’s Story, Revenge and Forgiveness

by J. Arthur Moore


ee,” Jonah’s voice startled him from his thoughts. “Will Johnny go to heaven? Will he be with God?” The voice and the question caught the youth completely by surprise. “I ain’t knowin fer sher, Jonah.” Duane pulled himself from his dreams and reflections. “He sher oughtta.” Jonah had been wakened by his companion’s song and had listened without moving until it was over. Now he stretched, sat up, and moved to the window to gaze at the passing countryside, washed in the radiant glow of the dawning day. “Is God really there?” he asked without turning from the window. “He has ta be, Jonah.” Duane faced the small voice. “We ain’t no accident. The flowers ‘n trees ‘n living creatures ya’s lookin at ain’t no accident neither.”

“How’d you know what I was seein?” “What else would ya be seein?” The two smiled at each other. “Is Johnny with God?” Jonah asked. “He sher is, Jonah,” Duane replied. “An’ he’s with us, too. As long as we ain’t fergittin ar time tageth’r, he ain’t neve’ goin from us.” “What about the box?” “He’s ther, too. But he’s in thet trunk as has his thin’s. An when his box is in the ground, his thin’s ‘ll still be with me, an’ so will he.”


hy are you in this war?” Christopher asked. This time Blake was caught off guard and didn’t want to answer. He hesitated a long time. All sipped their coffee in silence, and waited. Jimmy watched his young friend’s face and saw an unexpected hurt. “My father was kilt at Shiloh,” he began, then stopped. The boy remained silent for several minutes. No one spoke. Then he simply stated, “I thought I wanted ta kill Yanks.” That was all. He said no more.



The Quartz

An Inspector Kwong Mystery

by Vic Warren


low, to Matson, was not like slogging through a marsh. Rather it reminded Kwong of racing the shine on the harbor at sunset. He hurried along and saw Matson pause two blocks ahead of him. When he reached him, Matson asked, “There are more than two hundred rentals in this building. Which one is she in?” “There is only one unit at this address that I know Two Feathers uses. Shall we try that?” Fortunately for Kwong, the Two Feathers Triad rental was on the third floor rather than the eighth. They climbed the interior stairway and walked quietly down the hallway, listening to the cries of infants and the chatter of multiple TVs. Matson recognized the powerful smells of kimchee, sesame and bacon fat that he had lived with in times past. Kwong stopped and looked at a piece of paper

he had pulled from the pocket of his vest, then pointed at the door one unit ahead of them on the right. “There should only be two of them guarding her,” he whispered to Matson. “We have the element of surprise. Draw your gun, but use it only if necessary, and aim for their knees.” He put his hand delicately on the knob and turned it. It was unlocked, and he threw it open. A tall, slender man with long hair stood with his back to them not ten feet away. The other, stockier with a pockmarked face, was sitting on a couch with a cocker spaniel lying in his lap. Kwong swung his cane and swept the closer man’s legs out from under him. Matson stepped forward holding the gun, and the second man frowned and put his hands up, kicking the dog to the floor. It wagged its tail and crossed to Kwong for a treat.

They cuffed them both and called out to Charlotte. Kwong heard the muffled sound of someone speaking through a gag and opened the door to a tiny bedroom. Charlotte lay on a cot, her wrists bound and her mouth gagged with a cloth. He untied it, and she began to cry with relief. “Your timing was perfect, young lady,” he said, untying her wrists. “We were just down the street sightseeing.”



The Tail Wags the Dog by Dr. Amy Beth Taublieb


orking with people as they plowed through their psychological struggles of varying severity taught me an enormous amount about the human life condition. By guiding people through their tears, anger, grief, pain, laughter, fears, hallucinations, delusions, obsessions, anxieties, insecurities I learned that therapy is not “just listening to people’s problems” and applying the latest empirically proven treatment methods. Rather it is experiencing the vast array of emotions along with the people with whom one is working so that the therapist can provide them with the skills to help them successfully maneuver their way through the forest of their emotional pain. In so doing, I soon realized that I was getting as much (if not more) wisdom from my patients as they were from me. Although this may superficially appear to be contradictory, after several years of doing therapy, I began to recognize

certain patterns in human interactions. There were certain principles which seemed to surface time and time again—significant patterns, which, when recognized and heeded, helped my patients understand why we behave, feel and interact with others the manner in which we do. The eventual acknowledgement and subsequent respect of these so-called life lessons served as the genesis of this book. Whether relevant to parenting children, struggling with psychological/psychiatric symptoms, interacting with a spouse or family member, functioning in the workplace, or, simply conversing with those with whom we interact in our daily life, this books is designed to share those basic truisms which I have been fortunate enough to learn from my patients over the years. Having the privilege of sharing the inner most thoughts and feelings of

so many people as they foraged their way through their psychological struggles, allowed me to be exposed to more wisdom than any person could learn in a lifetime of formalized education. It is this wisdom (presented in terms of basic statements which can serve as actual guides to living life) which this book offers its readers. It is presented with genuine pride and the sincere hope that these lessons learned from my patients prove to be as valuable to the reader as they have been to so many others with whom I have some into contact.



Games of Mind by Dennis Quiles


was caught between a rock and a hard place. I was still sitting down on the seat, my hands and legs bound, and my body felt like a high-speed train had run over me. I swallowed hard, knowing that my options for getting out of this one alive were becoming thinner by the minute. I never believed in giving up. As my trusted friend Andrew Connors said, however, “There are always possibilities.” There was a possibility that, when he said that, he was not tied down and sentenced to death. Everyone left the room, and I found myself alone. I looked to my right and then my left, and there was nothing I could use to

get myself out of this one. I knew that I was in bad shape; my uncle was going to kill the vice president of the United States, and there was nothing I could do about it. I felt worthless and noticed that my shirt was wet with my own sweat. The fear I had wasn’t about my pitiful situation but more about the good intelligence information I had in my possession, which if something happened to me, would go with me to the grave. I had to do something; the clock was ticking, and I was the only one who knew Mr. Lindberg and Dr. Harjo’s plan. It was my duty to escape. I had to use every ounce of my

mind and energy to stop this Machiavellian plan, but how? Think, Jack, think! I have to get out of here! I could not allow Mr. Lindberg’s plans to succeed; the thought of it consumed every inch of my mind and was driving me crazy.”



The Seduction of Paradise by Kevin J. Ward


he situation is not beyond repair,” the woman said. “It’s too late to find a new location. It’s Paradise or nowhere. But Salvo is right about one thing: there can be no more killings. You are the one who is supposed to be in charge up there.” “Wait just a minute, Thompson. I think I’ve done a pretty good job. The problem is with the damn Jamaicans. Their answer to everything is to shoot somebody. Salvo should have left them in Miami and let me handle this alone.” Joe listened with horror from his concealed spot just around the corner. Every muscle in His body stiffened with tension as the recognition of Thompson’s name sent fear bolting down his spine like lightning. Cool droplets of perspiration formed on his entire body almost immediately. Thompson, he thought. Special Agent Thompson from the FBI, whom he called after seeing Spencer murdered, was a woman. The coincidence

was too great. This must be that same person. But if that were true, everything took on a whole new perspective. Things were not at all as he had thought. It was not the case that the FBI did not believe him but that they were involved. And since Joe had called this Special Agent Thompson, she knew everything. That must be why he was being followed. They have known everything all along. They were just playing with Joe and his family, probably hoping to find the missing document from the package. What else was different from what he had previously believed? Was Beth really a spy too? Maybe they convinced her to try and win Joe over. My God, he thought. His family was back there, totally defenseless. And then the most terrifying part of all: even if he was able to get incriminating evidence, who could he give it to? The hole he was in kept getting deeper and deeper, and

now, for the first time, he truly believed there was no way out. “What about Hoffman? Does Salvo know yet?” Thompson asked. “He knows he was killed, but he doesn’t know he turned up at McGowen’s,” Capsner said. Joe’s eyes grew wide in horror. He felt his body begin to tremble, and only with supreme effort could he get himself under control. How did they know? he thought. There must have been more than one shadow.



Jesus: The Jew No One Knows by D.C. Smith International Books Award: Best In Non-fiction History!


his short book describes Jesus of Nazareth as he lived day to day, walking the hill country of Herod’s domain nearly two-thousand years ago, sharing communal meals along the way, teaching neighbors and fellow travelers not only what to believe, but how to behave. Unfortunately, it did not take long for the king to hear about what was happening. Informants reported that ordinary people were responding to the new rabbi in ever-increasing numbers and that Zealots may even have joined his messianic movement. Worse still, it appeared certain that the youthful teacher had recently formed an alliance with John the Baptist, the most popular preacher of the age. Together they would join forces to bring an end to Roman rule so they could build a new nation dedicated to God. We all know what came next. Both men were executed, leaving their disciples in disarray, especially the followers

of Jesus who expected a miraculous return and who hoped to keep the memory of his earlier pilgrimage alive. Yet their master’s mission and his revolutionary message began to slowly fade away, distorted over time by selfappointed apostles claiming to speak on his behalf, by gospel writers who never knew him, and by church fathers competing for control of their fledgling faith. To satisfy Jews they doctored the genealogical record and moved his place of birth from Galilee to Judea. To attract Gentiles they made his mother “a perpetual virgin,” his father “an adopted caretaker,” and his brothers “reluctant bystanders” instead of comrades and co-conspirators. Even his name and his birthday were changed because “Joshua” offended non-Jews and December 25th glorified a god-man named Mithras. Local aristocrats, foreigners and narcissistic

emperors could not abide who he seemed to be, another Galilean rebel inciting insurrection! So they manufactured a very different story where Romans were exonerated, Judeans vilified and his descendants cruelly exterminated. Anyone wanting to discover the truth about this ultimate icon of the ages, whether for religious reasons or merely because he’s such a fascinating historical figure, has found the right book to read. D. C. Smith, Big Bear Lake, California



Shot Down

by Steve Snyder

CHAPTER 1 February 8, 1944 he bursting of the Focke-Wulf ’s 20 mm cannons around our ship was the first indication that we had been singled out. Then the celestial dome blew up in front of me. After that I could hear 20 mm striking and exploding as they hit the ship. Pieces of equipment and parts of the ship were flying about, striking my feet and legs. When the oxygen cylinders exploded, I didn’t realize what had happened. The noise of the explosion was muffled by my helmet and headset, but the concussion stunned me for a few moments. Someone lighting a match in a gas-filled room would cause much the same effect as the explosion. Only, instead of flames decreasing immediately after the explosion, they seemed to


continue all around us with the same intensity. In a half-dazed state, I became slowly conscious that the entire cockpit was filled with smoke and flames. I must have been knocked unconscious for a period of time. It was difficult to see through the smoke and flames, but I could see the terrified face of Eike, his eyes almost out of his head, looking crazily around him as he tore frantically at his flaksuit and safety belt. I think Holbert had already jumped as I couldn’t see him at all. As I looked back at Eike, after trying to see Holbert, he seemed absolutely mad and out of his head. Then, as my mind seemed to clear a little more, I too became absolutely terrified. I had been frightened before but never completely lost my wits from terror. It was horrible.

I tried to yell or scream, but the sound died in my throat and my open mouth emitted no sound. I tried to jump out of my seat, but my safety belt held me there. My only thought was to get out of that terrible fire. I couldn’t think as I clawed wildly for my safety belt. The fact that I had buckled my safety belt under my flak suit on this raid, instead of over it in my usual way, was the only reason I was able to regain a semblance of sanity.



Making a Living Making a Life by Daniel Rose


he ancient Greeks loved words, and one of their best was “oxymoron,” a contradiction in terms, such as a hot ice cube or a tiny giant. At times, it seems that my subject today, “business ethics,” qualifies perfectly as an oxymoron. This year’s headline stories about the atmosphere of corruption that prevailed at General Dynamics, the nation’s third largest defense contractor, recall the bribery stories at Lockheed in the 1970’s, the General Electric scandals of the decade before, and so on. In the broader society, municipal corruption seem so widespread; shabby influence-peddling even at the level of the White House staff; insider trading accepted matter-of-factly on Wall Street; the casual indifference with which our country’s largest and most respected banks laundered huge amounts of what was obviously criminal

cash—all of these (and the other scandals that will undoubtedly be revealed in next week’s or next month’s headlines) pose fearful problems for those leaving university and entering the business world. The public today seems to believe that throughout the business world sharp practice is admired, duplicity and deliberate misrepresentation are the norm, and the only crime involved in outright fraud is getting caught. The average businessman is seen as echoing Mark Twain’s view that while he believed in honesty, he didn’t “make a fetish of it.” Worst of all is a widelyheld perception that such a low standard is expected of you, and that you cannot succeed in business without it. Perhaps even your family and friends are nervously wondering if, for business success, you must make some Faust-like pact with Mephistopheles.

Relax; your souls are safe. That is, that are safe if you want them to be. For that is what history tells us. Morality and worldly success are not now and never have been, necessarily incompatible. Just as every society contains some people with larceny in their hearts, so every society known to man has had people who conducted themselves honorably and who led satisfying and fulfilling lives in the process.



Return of the Convict by William Alan Thomas

Dec. 16, 2143 here were forty-five of us transports crammed into the space bus, and even though everyone was sedated, the two and a half day trip was arduous. After we docked there was a slight shaking. Our capsule shot backward, and stopped. With a hissing of air, the door slid open. “Welcome to Mir,” a man’s voice said. “Everybody out.” The artificial gravity here was less than the moon’s; I got up without much difficulty. Two uniformed guards checked us off as we came out. “You’re Dominic Tessier,” one said crisply, when she touched my ID tag with a scanner. My legs uncertain, I stepped onto a moving sidewalk that took us through a tunnel. In a few minutes the passageway curved, and the main terminus area of the


space station came into view. I held tight to the railing and stared. The people here arrived and departed from all over the solar system: personnel from the space ships, businessmen, and new-world workers. Some, while roughly dressed, had a special swagger. I thought they might be prospectors. Then a group of T-men walked through in unisex suits and skull caps. Although silent, their expressions and gestures showed communication. Thanks to their brain implants, they were telepathic. Only a few months earlier, I’d been a student at the Space Training Academy. My brain was being transformed through implants, and I looked forward myself, to a career in space as a T-man administrator. An awful injustice had been done to

me, and my dreams were trashed. Yet I felt no regret, resentment, or any emotion at all. A silver bracelet around my wrist created a chemically-induced docility, more powerful than chains. Our guards took us along a walkway above a large, brightly lit loading

dock. Through the sidemesh I could see the Stellar Blossom. The ship’s blue hull seemed to stretch on forever; it dwarfed the men gathered to service her.



Remembrance of Blue Roses by Yorker Keith


have heard a wise man say that love is a form of friendship, and friendship a form of love; the line between the two is misty. I happen to know that this holds true because I have roamed that misty line. Time has passed since then, but I cherish the memory of the blue roses in grace and perpetuity—our blue roses. It all began with a fortuitous encounter. *** On a fine day in early April 1999, I was sketching in the sculpture court at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I felt hesitant working in such a public space, but this was a homework assignment for the art class I was taking. The object of my sketch was a sculpture of an adorable young woman, a nude, reclining on a mosscovered rock surrounded by an abundance of flowers. The smooth texture of the white marble sensually expressed her lively body, which shone with bright

sunlight beneath the glass ceiling of the court. I had almost completed sketching the woman’s body and was working on the rock and flowers. I was not doing badly, I thought, for a small crowd of museum visitors had gathered around me, showing approving faces and nods. “Ah, this is excellent!” one man exclaimed. I recognized the voice and turned to see Hans Schmidt, standing amid the crowd wearing a big grin. “What a surprise!” he continued. “I didn’t know you had such an artistic talent, Mark. How are you?” He came forward and firmly shook my hand. I greeted him, then pointed to my drawing. “I’ve been working on this for a while. I wasn’t sure how it would come out. But it’s coming along all right, I guess.” “I don’t know much about drawing, but this looks great.” He gestured enthusiastically to a young

woman next to him. “What do you think?” “It’s pretty.” Her voice sounded like a bell. “This is Yukari, my wife.” He guided her toward me, his hand lingering at the small of her back. I swallowed. I knew Hans was married, but this was my first time to meet his wife. Hans’s wife is Japanese? How lovely she is. Hans, you devil, you’re a lucky man! “Pleased to meet you.” I gently shook her small refined hand. “I’m Mark Sanders. Hans and I are good friends.”



The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen, Vol. 1 by Collins Hemingway

Chapter 4 he hot-air balloon rose until the woods and farmlands formed a patchwork quilt of light and dark greens, with here and there a stripe of yellow; the texture of the ground resembled wool and moss. The basket swayed, then steadied. “Monsieur Dennis,” said Monsieur Garnerin. “To impress this young woman, you have purchased the balloon—and taken away my livelihood.” He unstrapped an odd device from the carriage. It resembled a large umbrella with wooden sticks that went down to a small woven bucket. “But you did not purchase me.” He hopped onto the side of the carriage, stepped into the bucket, and pushed off. The balloon heaved sideways and simultaneously shot up. They saw the white umbrella blossom. Monsieur Garnerin disappeared beneath it.


The parachute swayed below them, drifting like a dandelion puffball across the green fields. “The weather is perfect,” Ashton said. “The company is delightful. We will drift along nicely and come down fine. We might exasperate a cow or two, but I doubt that any other damage will be done.” The breeze strengthened. She could feel the wind cut through her thin summer dress. Yet she could also feel the sun on her face and the enchantment of the view. She understood the lure of the sky: woods and fields undulating beneath them, the blue reflective sheen of streams, a hawk hunting below them. But she sensed that something was not quite right. Of a sudden, the ground seemed to be welcoming them with rather too much eagerness. “We are falling too quickly! The balloon has cooled!” She took the large wooden fork and tossed a flake of

fuel into the brazier. “Help, Mr. Dennis! I cannot do this alone!” They worked furiously, but for the next thirty or forty seconds their rate of descent increased terrifyingly. At last the sensation of falling eased; the balloon stabilized a few hundred feet above the earth. “We have done it,” she said. The brazier burned furiously. They both recognized what was going to happen. The balloon began to rise. Soon it was rocketing skyward. …



The Marriage of Miss Jane Austen, Vol. 2 by Collins Hemingway

Chapter 13 ow can you look at a creature as exquisite as the butterfly and not believe in God?” Jane asked. “I believe in the wonder of a butterfly as much as you,” Ashton replied. “What could be simpler than the fact that God created the butterfly? All the creatures, in all their glory?” “It’s pointless to invoke God as the answer. It’s like a child asking why the sky is blue and we say, because. Why does the sun shine? God. Why does the moon rise? God. The answer brings all inquiry to a halt.” “How could butterflies come in so many different designs? Do the ladies get together to determine what to wear?” “Man has used selective breeding to improve our cattle and sheep, crossbred plants to improve our crops. Surely Nature with all its resources has a mechanism to effect even greater change.”


“Whatever the mechanism may be, it requires a Being to create it,” Jane argued. “Mr. Paley put forth the argument very well. If the world is as complex as a watch, then there must be a Watchmaker.” “This isn’t about butterflies, is it?” He spoke with a surprisingly quiet voice. “We are having a baby.” “Ah, I see.” “How can two human beings, by themselves, create something that becomes a new and precious human being?” “Nature has had eons to practice, and millions of forms of life to practice on.” “It is inconceivable that such a miracle could occur without God’s intervention.” “To make you happy, I must believe? You are afraid for my soul, Jane?” “I am afraid for our children. That you will teach them things I find

offensive. I promise to keep our sanctimonious vicar at bay—if you will promise not to undermine my instruction of the children through sarcasm and disbelief.” “Sarcasm is not a tool to be used on the innocent.” “I will not let you poison our children against the Church.” “No poison. The gentlest of vaccinations, perhaps.” “We will raise our children Christians.” “Make them Methodists, would you? Anglicans could do with a bit of enthusiasm.”



The Replicants by Gerry Burke


he Zolt was Planetarium Corporation’s last commissioned space cruiser. The manufacturer had promised a state-of-the-art people mover and lauded its sleek dart design which would provide maximum energy diffusion and propulsion. Commander Jerome PBX5 was in charge but, as we take up this story, Chief Navigator Po was supervising the control deck. The Zolt had only been on its mission for fifteen thousand light years but to Schnikle Po it seemed like an eternity. He was half way through the paranoia shift and the navigator was stuck with notorious bumble brain, Vinicus Ah, a competent pilot but a one dimensional conversationalist. The pilot’s prognostications on this occasion related to the new comfort girl attached to the Superior B passenger unit. “I’m sure she likes me, Schnikle. I saw all four

of her bazookas light up when I smiled at her. Those transparent uniforms don’t hide much and my tentacles certainly responded.” The rise of the machines, thought Po, who was amused by his friend’s enthusiasm. Ah and the girl were both robots and they were not programmed for emotion. Nevertheless, he didn’t like to deflate the pilot’s opinion of himself, especially as it was common knowledge that all robots weren’t created equal. “Let’s talk about your love life another time, Vinicus. The approach to planet Earth is rather tricky and I need you to look out for unidentified flying objects. These earthlings may have heard of our athletic prowess and try to impede our arrival.” In point of fact, the earthlings were looking forward to welcoming the athletes from Planet Schmoo. The Intergalactic Games were held every

millennium and Earth was the host planet. However, this was the first time an invited participant had traveled so far to compete and, quite frankly, little was known of these aliens except that they were supposedly very athletic and quite intelligent. Imperial Grand Master of the Intergalactic Games Ronald Hump thought it would be a good idea to have a few marching girls on hand for their arrival. You can’t go wrong with marching girls.



Minoan Signs


by GJK Campbell-Dunn

t is about a hundred years now since Sir Arthur Evans discovered the Minoan scripts. Linear B was deciphered in the fifties by Ventris, with subsequent work by John Chadwick and others. Linear A has continued to pose a problem. But that problem has now been solved. The texts of Linear A are Niger-Congo. That is, the signs of the script, so far as their phonetics are known, can be identified as objects (bird, house, sun, eye, slave etc) matching Niger-Congo names (ku, su, gwe, do, kwa). This is now true of signs including Chadwick’s NI “fig” and SA “flax”. The identification of the Ankh-sign, phonetic ZA, with PWS dza “blood” (blood soul) or PCS *za / *ja was particularly significant. Linear A Z is known to represent [dz]. Over 75 signs are now almost certain. The Vai script from West Africa provides some parallels. Thus Vai kpu, kpa,

mba signs match the forms of Linear A KU “bird”, KA “wheel” and WA “cloth” ; Vai do matches Linear A RO “cross” = “total”, Vai mã matches Linear A ME “goat” and Vai nã matches Linear A NE “water”. As one might expect the matches are not exact. And in any case the Vai script appears designed not for Vai, but some other language.

Greek had added a final –s. Most of the words are nouns. We are now sure that Linear A (Minoan) was a member of the Atlantic subgroup of NigerCongo, quite close to Fula. But Minoan is nearer in its morphology to Gola. Gola has the labiovelar and is also called Gura.

Chadwick suggested that KURO “total” and KIRO “deficit” were known words of Linear A. Both of these have now been explained as Niger-Congo. KU and KI are quantifying prefixes. RO means “total”. We can now explain full words from the Linear A tablets, of which MARU = Fula mbaalu “sheep” is the best, but not the only example. Chadwick identified this word as the same as Linear B maro and compared Greek mallos ”fleece”. Many years ago Professor Kidd pointed out to me that Vergil’s surname Maro was the Latin equivalent.

Linear A Tablet

NJOPBO! TJHOT An African Decipherment


GJK Campbell-Dunn MA (NZ), MA (Camb), PhD (Cant) 2014



Angel Blade

by Carrie Merrill


ikka worked at hailing a cab, and it didn’t take too long for one to pull up next to her, the tires sending shoots of water rushing out onto the sidewalk. The driver rolled down the passenger window and leaned over to speak to her. “Where to?” he asked. She felt a tickle across her skin moving over her arms and legs. Those tattoos were really starting to itch and she scratched at her arms as she looked over the taxi. Nikka crouched down, ready to relay the address in the northern suburbs, at least a good 30 minute drive. But something wasn’t right. At first she saw a middle aged man, his mustache peppered with

gray and his hair cut a little too short for his round face. Perhaps it was a trick of the light and the rain, but his face changed right in front of her. His skin melted off his bones, leaving only a layer of black, decaying skin. The eyes morphed into black slits surrounded in yellow. A foul odor seeped from the car and into the night, an odor too familiar to her. It was the stench that she remembered from her dreams, when the beast in the fog opened its mouth and spoke to her. She couldn’t speak and staggered backward, falling into the puddles of the sidewalk. “Lady, what the hell’s wrong with you?” the cab driver called out to her. The stench emanated

from the vehicle even stronger, as though the car was filled with the bodies of slaughtered animals. She struggled to her feet and ran as fast as she could down the street, glancing back once to see the cab drive off into the street and through the stop light.



Vanquish of the Dragon Shroud by Gregory E. Seller


s she left her cabin and came back upstairs, she heard the others out on deck. At first, it sounded like laughter, very loud and raucous. As she climbed the stairs, she could hear that it was not laughter but yelling. The stairs took her to the salon, where she heard her companions arguing even more loudly. She opened the salon door to join the others on deck, when suddenly there was an explosion. It knocked her to the floor, and the boat listed sharply to the port side. Her husband Logan burst into the salon. His face was bleeding from a deep gash in his cheek. He pulled Maxine up off the floor. “Oh my God, Logan! Your cheek! What happened?” Picking her up in his arms, blood dripping from his face onto her dress, Logan simply said, “You’ll forgive me.” He rushed her outside to the deck, but the others

were gone. Before she knew what was happening, her husband lifted her up and threw her over the railing into the dark ocean. She hit the water headfirst and went under. When she came to the surface, she screamed and looked back at the boat. “My God, Logan, what are you doing?” Logan was leaning over the railing and looking at her, but he did not jump in to save her. He had a pained look on his face and stared right at her. Blood was running down his face to his neck, and over his white tuxedo shirt. Max, struggling to stay afloat, yelled again for Logan. “For God’s sake, Logan, please, help me!” The boat was on fire and the horn was sounding a distress call. The current was strong, and she could feel herself rapidly drifting away from the boat.

Logan stood at the railing for a moment. He then said something to her that she could not hear. He turned and ran back inside the burning boat. Maxine screamed, “Logan! Logan!” but no one was on deck. She tried to swim back to the boat, but the current was too strong. A second explosion forced Maxine underwater. When she came to the surface, the ship was gone.









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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.



in the investigation of his sister’s murder. Working with Lieutenant Mercedes Garcia Rico, the two uncover an unfathomable conspiracy dating back to the time the Moors surrendered their kingdom in Granada to the catholic monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabela in 1492.


The Seventh Treasure An International Thriller by Len Camarda



young American woman dies in a tragic roadway accident in the mountains outside of the city of Granada, Spain. Her brother, who heads up a training unit of the US Secret Service, travels to Spain to bring her body back to America. There, and in the company of a female lieutenant of Spain’s National Police Force, it is discovered there was foul play associated with his sister’s Gina’s death. Soon, the consequences of this incident generate a cascade of mysterious murders that confound local authorities and shut down all leads as to why Gina Cerone was killed. After a thirty year career in the Secret Service, Gene Cerone retires so that he can participate

Reviews: “Set in modern-day Spain and painted with layers of history and forgotten lore, this novel combines Tom Clancy’s knack for political suspense with Dan Brown’s love of secret societies.” —The Clarion Review “…some might see echoes of Dan Brown in its fictionalization of history based on a few truths. But this novel is awash with the rich culture and vibrancy of the Iberian Peninsula. Camarda has obviously done his research and his travels in the region lend credence to the book’s fertile setting and story. Readers who appreciate a complex plot and engaging historical fantasy will find much room to roam in The Seventh Treasure.” —BlueInk Review “If you like historical thrillers or are just looking for a good read, I suggest Len Camarda’s The Seventh Treasure—and of course, a trip to Spain.” —ByLanderSea Book Review Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and local book stores.


What reviewers are saying about The Friday Edition:


“A smart, nimble treat of a mystery.” —Kirkus Reviews


“A host of unpredictable twists and turns that will keep readers guessing and involved right up to a satisfying conclusion.” —D. Donovan, eBook reviewer, MBR

The Friday Edition by Betta Ferrendelli The Friday Edition is the first book in the award-winning mystery series featuring reporter Samantha Church. It has been well-received commercially since publishing in July 2012, with more than 70,000 downloads and nearly 500 reviews. The Friday Edition was named one of the best books of 2013 by Kirkus Reviews; won the 2014 Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal Award in the fiction, mystery, sleuth category; and was named Best Mystery in the 9th annual National Indie Excellence Awards for 2015.


“A definite page turner with unbelievable twists and turns and just the right dose of crime and mystery for a thrilling reading experience.” —5-star Readers’ Favorite Review What readers are saying: “I just finished reading this book, and I can assure you it is fabulous. Part of it was difficult to read, knowing the main character Samantha aka Sam was a full blown alcoholic. The book will keep you interested in trying to solve the mystery portion. Just be prepared for the ending, not what I had expected, but truly amazing.” —5-star Amazon review “Loved the book and could not put it down. The mystery was the best! The characters were real as if they existed in all of our lives.” —5-star Amazon review


“Scapegoat is a taut, suspenseful history. The opening chapters prompt heart-pounding excitement as Corsetti describes the dive from the perspective of both the crew and the passengers. The book is enthralling throughout, even as it shifts from the near crash to the more mundane hearings and investigations that followed.”


—Katerie Porter, Foreward Reviews “Scapegoat is an incredible book that you won’t be able to put down.” —Capt. Jerry Lawler (TWA, Ret.) Air Line Pilot Magazine Scapegoat—A Flight Crew’s Journey from Heroes to Villains to Redemption by Emilio Corsetti lll



n April 4, 1979, a Boeing 727 with 82 passengers and a crew of 7 rolled over and plummeted from an altitude of 39,000 feet to within seconds of crashing were it not for the crew’s actions to save the plane. The cause of the unexplained dive was the subject of one of the longest NTSB investigations at that time. While the crew’s efforts to save TWA 841 were initially hailed as heroic, that all changed when safety inspectors found twenty-one minutes of the thirtyminute cockpit voice recorder tape blank. The captain of the flight, Harvey “Hoot” Gibson, subsequently came under suspicion for deliberately erasing the tape in an effort to hide

incriminating evidence. The voice recorder was never evaluated for any deficiencies. From that moment on, the investigation was focused on the crew to the exclusion of all other evidence. It was an investigation based on rumors, innuendos, and speculation. Eventually the NTSB, despite sworn testimony to the contrary, blamed the crew for the incident by having improperly manipulated the controls, leading to the dive. This is the story of an NTSB investigation gone awry and one pilot’s decades-long battle to clear his name. Availability Scapegoat is available as an eBook, hardcover, and audio download. The book is available at all major retailers and wholesalers.

Children’s - FiCtion



have you ever wished you could be someone or something else so you could get out of doing things you don’t want to do? that’s exactly what the boy in this story does.

The boy thinks of all the things rhinos don’t like, such as haircuts, eating dinner, and going to school. He also imagines that rhinos don’t like their teachers and would rather go outside and play than sit in class. The boy starts pretending to be a rhino, which makes his mother upset. Eventually, he realizes that all the things he’s trying to avoid aren’t so bad—and that they may even be good for him. Every child will find it easy to relate to the boy and rhino in this story. Most of them have the same problems, but deep down inside, they know that even things they don’t like are often worth doing.


Rhinos Don’t Like it

AnD neitheR Do i! Written and Illustrated by

Riccardo J. simpson

Rhinos Don’t Like It and Neither Do I! by Riccardo J. Simpson 9X7 landscape Perfect Bound SC


ave you ever wished you could be someone (or something) else so you could get out of doing things you don’t want to do? That’s exactly what the boy in this story does. He pretends to be a rhino, and he imagines all the things rhinos probably don’t like: baths, haircuts, school, etc. Acting like a rhino upsets those around him, including his parents and his teacher, and eventually, he realizes that the things he’s trying to avoid aren’t so bad—they may even be good for him. Every child will find it easy to relate to the boy and rhino in this story. Most kids know that even things they don’t like are often worthwhile. Readers Favorite calls it “a great book to share with a child.” product-22389072.html SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION dontlikeit/?fref=hovercard


“It’s difficult to believe it happens, but forced guardianship fraud runs unchecked throughout international probate courts. Deemed incapacitated by the courts, elderly citizens are robbed of all decision-making rights and assigned professional guardians whose only interest lies in profiting from their vulnerable charges’ estates.” —The Washington Examiner


Guardianship Fraud by M Larsen   “A simple slip-and-fall can put someone into the guardianship of unknown persons with no knowledge to family and friends until the deed is done. Forced incompetency; get control over everything and the ward (senior) loses all rights.” —Robert W Melton, Pinellas County Internal Auditor, “Dirty Tricks of Guardianships – The Need for Change,” April 2004


“You are a target because you have assets. You don’t necessarily have to be very old. You can even be quite lucid. That won’t stop these predators. When it comes to removing your rights and your money, these folks are experts.” —Money Magazine.

“There is a web of murderous profiteering, all sanctioned by a corrupt legal system. As guardianship firms take everything they can, state attorneys turn a blind eye. Crooked cops harass family members into silence, while the very attorneys you hired won’t help for fear of losing their licenses.” —Katherine Hein, Journalist “Instead of serving to protect the assets of incapacitated persons, the existing guardianship system presents the opportunity for unscrupulous guardians to loot the assets of their wards and enrich themselves with impunity.” —New York Grand Jury “These are the people who may one day control your loved one’s health care, living arrangements, finances, and very life. Ostensibly created to prevent financial abuse by caregivers and family members, professional guardianship instead gave the legal system carte blanche to destroy lives.” —Dr. Angela Woodhull


“Barbara McNally shines the spotlight on the 1.1 million Post-9/11 military and veteran caregivers who so often live in the shadows. The women featured in this book are unsung heroes, that face daily challenges, caring for their families that have been forever changed by the wars.” —Lorie Van Tilburg, Executive Director, Southern Caregiver Resource Center


Wounded Warrior Wounded Wife by Barbara K. Mcnally Wounded Warrior, Wounded Wife offers an intimate look into the chaotic and demanding lives of military spouses as they adjust to living with injured combat veterans. These women are thrust into caretaker roles for soldiers who return home with amputated limbs, brain injuries, burns, and disabilities, with virtually no support or training. Post-traumatic stress tears their families apart, and they must wrestle with huge, imposing questions: Does he still love me? Must I sacrifice my career forever? How will this affect my kids, my sex life, my happiness?


“Barbara’s approach on Sexuality through a very genuine dialogue of women experiencing challenges with intimacy was a high point for me. As a clinician that works with those living with a disability, this relatable chapter will be a major reference in practice. She clearly points out the importance of knowing that you are not the only one needing an alternate solution to reclaiming intimacy. I was overwhelmed by the stories of resiliency and creativity.” —Nicole J. Johnson, MSW, MA, LCSW; US Department of Veteran Affairs “I applaud Barbara McNally for bringing greater attention and awareness to a subject that so many struggle with. Through the stories and inspiration in Wounded Warrior Wounded Wife, we see the opportunity to find healing at the end of an often very dark tunnel.” —Dave Towe, Executive Director, Wave Academy

BOOK SHELF The Vampire Girl Next Door by Richard Arbib


The Vampire Girl in London by Richard Arbib


ark falls in love with Sylvia, the beautiful, but quirky girl next door, not realizing that she’s a vampire who killed his last neighbor. 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.”

n this sequel to The Vampire Girl Next Door, Mark and Sylvia must deal with terrorists, a CIA agent, a vampire-hunting cult, and a mansion full of Sylvia’s vampire friends— some of whom she can’t really trust. Will Mark and Sylvia’s love be enough to survive it all?

“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

“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 Amazon in paperback and Kindle.

Paperback and all e-book formats available on author’s website.

Angel Blade by Carrie Merrill


ikka is dying of cancer when a stranger approaches her with a cure, but it comes at a steep cost: she must become a seraph, an angelic being with the power to exorcise and destroy demons.

Available at in paperback and Kindle. Paperback and all e-book formats available on author’s website.

The Other Side of Quiet by Tara C. Allred


lues from a murder investigation cause police authorities to confiscate students’ journals. Writing intended to be private is no longer. Words meant to liberate now condemn. And an innocent writing project, meant to empower students, as well as rescue Mrs. Childs from her own personal tragedy, now open deep conflicts within a class. “...a powerful story about murder and secrets in a small Utah town.” —Deseret News, Book Review Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Play, and Kobo.

BOOK SHELF Black Tree by Deanna Skaggs

Forgotten by Marc Liebman

“Yet this tree, for all that it seemed a patch of darkness past understanding, fascinated me.”

The Forgotten are six American POWs kept hidden after the Vietnam War ended in a remote jungle camp converting opium into morphine. Their captor wants millions in ransom money.

Black Tree is a novel by Deanna Skaggs of the path from darkness back to light, set against the backdrop of the Southwest. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, and Lulu. Snaygill by Michelle B. Assor


n the slithering kingdom of Snaygill, two snake princes navigate a world of wonder and deception. In a unique, limbless civilization, nothing can deceive unless it bears a plausible resemblance to reality. A compelling, futuristic fantasy. The calamitous twist ending guarantees readers will slither back for the sequel. The first book of The Snaygill Trilogies. Available at Amazon

One of the POW’s wives learns a set of deadly skills in Cuba and makes a life style choice. When the Forgotten return, two men know their existence could send one to jail and the other to a firing squad. Available at Amazon and Deeds Publishing. Tough Karma: A Race Against Time by Laura Simmons


mber Macklin’s world is shattered when she loses her baby girl three months after her husband’s sudden death. Her cousin, Bryce, provides solace and he has loved her for a long time. They soon discover they aren’t related and romance blooms, until she is abducted and Bryce uses his psychic ability to find her. But will he be too late? Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble

BOOK SHELF A Game Called Dead by Michael Stephen Daigle “I can burn a city down.” So declares Internet poster #ARMAGEDDON in the propulsive Frank Nagler Mystery, A Game Called Dead. Ironton, N.J., Detective Frank Nagler faces the wise-cracking, spooky killer and terrorist who challenges Nagler to play the so-called Game Called Dead with deadly consequences. A Game Called Dead, is a 2016 Shelf Unbound Best Indie Book Runner-Up. Available at Amazon, Kobo, Nook, and Wal-Mart. The Friday Edition by Betta Ferrendelli


beautiful, young DA falls from her balcony to her death on Christmas Eve. Police suspect suicide, but the DA’s sister, Samantha Church isn’t buying it. Can she write the biggest story of her career before it’s too late and she’s targeted herself? A compelling and suspenseful read for those who love James Patterson, David Baldacci and Sue Grafton. “The Friday Edition is a page-turner from start to finish.” —Readers’ Favorite, 2014 Readers’ Favorite Gold Medal Winner Available at Amazon.

Clues of Chaos by Gary Caplan


art mystery, part fantasy with a twist of science fiction, Clues of Chaos is brimming with suspense and adventure that will have you racing to the end yourself.

“Author Gary Caplan boasts a masterful command of classic murder mystery tropes, and this fluency makes his book a refreshing entry into the canon.” —BlueInk Review Winner 2016 Pacific Rim Book Festival in Science Fiction category. Honored as an International Book award Finalist in the “Fiction: Cross Genre” category. Available at Amazon. The Brook by John Sinsimer “The Brook” Has Now Been Recognized and Awarded by Three Organizations The Brook is the compelling story of a small town mayor and his crew of experts as they embark on a race against time to save their town and its people from the tragic effects of corporate greed. “Fabulous book on a very important subject!” “A very important book, written by a very brave man...” Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

BOOK SHELF Blowing Sandstorm by Horace Crenshaw Jr.


lowing Sandstorm chronicles the author’s experiences of being a commander that was put in charge of an Army Reserve Petroleum Unit during the initial months of Operation Iraqi Freedom. What started as a unit thrown together at the last minute by soldiers from six states, excelled under Crenshaw’s leadership to participate in the greatest distribution, storage, and receipt of petroleum/fuel in the history of modern warfare. Taking readers back to his childhood, Crenshaw tells the story from the core of his faith, offering readers an empowering reminder that hope always prevails Available at Amazon.

At the End of the Road by Nancy Peckinpaugh This is the story of four children being reared in the folds of Colorado’s northern Rockies. Although many Americans are experiencing the postwar economic vitality of the 1950s, life on their grandparents’ farm remains simple for Ezra, Caleb, Eva and Luke. Here they learn that faith and determination will lead them over life’s bumpy trail. It is a heart warming tale of a tightly knit family who love, laugh and live in a time and place where this is enough.

Available at Amazon.

Escaping Viet Nam– H’Yoanh’s Story: A Memoir of Determination, Defiance and Deliverance

by Harriet T. Hill and H’Yoanh K. Buonya

“What an inspiring book! When I hear some Americans talking about their trials and tribulations, I wonder how they would fare under the same circumstances as the Montagnard people faced in their persecution.”

—Paul Morsen, 1st Lt., 281st Assault Helicopter Co. in Nha Trang, RVN 1968-1969

After Saigon falls in 1975, a 16-year-old girl follows other Montagnards into the jungles of the Central Highlands to flee persecution by the North Viet Nam Communist Regime. For the next 11 years, danger, starvation, death and faith are her constant companions. Now That We’re Adults by Lynn Almengor Wade is programming a video game to get over heartbreak. His brother Ian is struggling to connect with pregnant wife Kat, who secretly doubts she wants a baby. And painfully shy Eleanor is stalking her high school crush. As each struggles to adapt to post-college life, they’ll need to let go of outdated expectations or risk losing each other in the process. “Poignant, quirky, cleverly humorous, and infinitely relatable.” –Booklist (Starred Review) Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, and more.

BOOK SHELF Gullible’s Travels Raw & Uncut by J. Lee Webster

Flaming Retribution by Laura Hawks


omance novelist Kendall Roberts finds herself in desperate need of appeasing her artistic appetite, and becomes embroiled in events which could end her life. Male dancer Skye Falcon notices Kendall at his club and quickly discovers she is the object of someone intent on killing her. He needs to solve the mystery to prevent their murderous attempts. Numerous fire bombs put Kendall in Skye’s path and she has to wonder if it’s fate or devious design? Available at Amazon, Kindle, and Smashwords. The Mermaids of Lake Michigan by Suzanne Kamata FINALIST for the Helen Sheehan Book Award

Based on the story of a true 1st Placed USA team that the US media ignored. “Gullible’s Travels: Raw & Uncut” follows the naughty and humorous antics of two friends on a USA ladies sports team and their 1st Place stretch both domestically and internationally. Go USA! Find out what countries were destroyed in their path, on and off the field. “...This author proves racy reading can be done funny, without the S&M, whips and chains.” (Full page ad in Dec/Jan Shelf Unbound issue)



@ j.leewebster Available at fine bookstores everywhere. Minoan Signs by GJK Campbell-Dunn MA (NZ), MA (Camb), PhD (Cant)


“a novel of great charm and depth” —Margaret Willey, folklorist and author of Beetle Boy

he Minoan Linear Signs have now been explained, in terms of their meanings and phonetics, as Niger-Congo. And some twenty five full words have been related to Fula, a nomadic African language extending from Senegal across west Africa to Adamawa near Lake Chad. A new African language, 4,000 years old, with prefixes and suffixes as in Gola, has come to light. So Minoan is deciphered. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Powell’s. Available at Amazon and BookWhirl.

“A lyrical, compelling coming-of-age story with magical elements.” —Kirkus Reviews “In this intricately woven coming-of-age tale, Kamata explores destiny and regret.” —Publisher’s Weekly

BOOK SHELF A Pigeon’s Tale by S.A. Mahan

or ng ly





Rhinos Don’t Like it

AnD neitheR Do i! Written and Illustrated by

Riccardo J. simpson

Rhinos Don’t Like It and Neither Do I! by Riccardo J. Simpson 9X7 landscape Perfect Bound SC


ave you ever wished you could be someone else to get out of things you don’t want to do? The boy in this story pretends to be a rhino until he realizes the things he’s trying to avoid aren’t so bad—they may even be good for him. Readers Favorite calls it “a great book to share with a child.” Available at Lulu.


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.

Blue Ink Review Best Book of 2016. An epic Sci/Fi Fantasy about a young homing pigeon who evolves to play a pivotal role in saving mankind from The Big One, a cosmic life destroying world shift. How can a tiny bird make a difference? Read and you will believe! Loved by adult to mid-grade readers, don’t miss out!

Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords. 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.

BOOK SHELF Last Night with the Duke by Amelia Grey


riffin has never lived down his reputation as one of the Rakes of St. James. Hiring a chaperone for his sisters is the only thing on his mind—until he meets the intriguing Esmeralda. In ways he couldn’t have expected, she arouses more than his curiosity. Esmeralda considered herself too sensible to fall for a scoundrel, but that was before she met London’s most notorious rake. Available at Amazon and Target. Maybe Tomorrow by Kim Golden


ddy and Henrik had stopped believing in love. The last thing they expected was to find each other one fateful Midsummer’s Eve— especially when Eddy has already decided to move back to the US. Will their love last beyond the summer...and can they find their own Happily Ever After even with an ocean separating them? Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iBooks.

Coltrane Corners A historical western romance by USA Today Bestselling Author, Teri Riggs.


lizabeth Coltrane and Chase Cameron have both sworn off relationships until Elizabeth returns to Coltrane Corners and tragedy throws them together again. Will they continue to fight their attraction to each other, or will they finally give in to the passion and longing they have for each other? Available at Amazon. The Tangled Wed by Phyllis Falls Rogers


ith intriguing characters, the plot of this mystery has some tantalizing twists: any of the characters could have murdered Jasper, and when the true murderer is revealed, it’s a satisfying conclusion. Jasper’s death leaves a web of unanswered questions, and the answers to those questions weave a web through Bibly, as murder binds people together in unimaginable ways. What will happen to those left behind as a result? Available at Amazon and AuthorHouse.

BOOK SHELF The Commandments of God: Are They Burdensome? Are They Abolished? by Cornie Banman


he Holy Scriptures show us that the Eternal God set His Laws in motion for our benefit and welfare, and for our health; for all eternity. In this book you will see that liberty can be obtained by following God’s Laws and Commandments, and that man’s burdens come from following man’s commandments/traditions. Available at Amazon and iUniverse.

Traditional Anti-Torah Church Doctrines by Cornie Banman


ornie Banman gives readers an informative and comprehensive guide on the methods to validate the doctrines they abide by. He believes that humans have a strong desire to agree with anything that comes out from the pulpit. He desires to give everyone the ability to discern between what should be faithfully followed and what shouldn’t, so that they would be in alignment with the will of God. He digs deep into Scripture and history to solidify his methods of discernment. Available at Amazon and iUniverse. Before the Court of Heaven by Jack Mayer


Love’s Destiny, When Dreams and Visions Collide, and Love’s Legacy by Dr. Ngozi M. Obi


r. Ngozi M. Obi is an American author whose love for writing has evolved into 3 published novels to date. Love’s Destiny, her 1st novel, is an intriguing tale of love lost & found. Her 2nd novel, When Dreams & Visions Collide, is an uplifting tale of fulfilling dreams despite arduous challenges. Her 3rd novel, Love’s Legacy, continues the quest of true love in a riveting sequel to her first novel. Visit to learn more.

istorical fiction based on the true story of Ernst Techow, the 1922 fascist assassin of the highest-ranking Jew in Weimar Germany, Walther Rathenau. Rathenau’s mother’s letter, read at Techow’s trial, offering forgiveness becomes the fulcrum of his redemption. A vivid history of Germany from the beginning of the 20th Century to W. W II, a tender love story and a cautionary tale for today. Available at Amazon, Ingram, and independent bookstores.

BOOK SHELF Scapegoat—A Flight Crew’s Journey from Heroes to Villains to Redemption by Emilio Corsetti lll


he true story of a flight crew wrongly blamed for causing a near-fatal accident and the captain’s decades-long battle to clear his name.

“Fasten your seatbelt for an incredible story of injustice.” —Karlene Petitt, international airline pilot, safety consultant, and best-selling author Available everywhere in eBook, print, and audio download Claims of Family by Ezekiel Nieto Benzion


ienna, 1803. The male brothel, The Riding Club, provides sanctuary for men with secrets. There, Antonio Nance performs as “Miss Nancy,” satirizing the forces of repression that rule their lives. Nance will sacrifice everything, including love, to achieve his own dreams. So when men from another hidden society promise to help, he doesn’t ask how or how much. So is his freedom just an illusion? Available at Amazon.

Pokergeist by Michael Phillip Cash


n awful gambler trying to scrape by as a professional poker player, Telly becomes the protégé of world famous poker champion Clutch Henderson. The only catch…Clutch is a ghost. Telly and Clutch navigate the Las Vegas gambling life learning to trust each other in order to win the elusive International Series of Poker, repair their shattered relationships and find redemption. FACEBOOK LINK | TWITTER LINK Available at Amazon. Aranya: Shapeshifter Dragons Book l by Marc Secchia Chained to a rock, tossed off a cliff—what if she did not die? What if she could spread her wings, and fly? “He spins a mythical yarn, achieving a notable balance between luxurious detail and intense action,” says Stephan J Myers, author of The Prayer. Discover Aranya, princess, criminal and dragon shapeshifter. Embark on the dragonride of your life. Available at Amazon, Audible, and iTunes.

BOOK SHELF Shopping for the Real You by Andrea Pflaumer

Exploring Wine Regions – Argentina by Michael C. Higgins, PhD

“The chapter on the LBD (little black dress) alone is worth the price!”


his book is beautiful! Coffeetable quality. Insiders travel guide. Packed with spectacular photography, entertaining stories and educational journeys into exploring Argentina. Thirteen weeks working with people at the forefront of wine and wine hospitality… brings this one-of-a-kind book. If you have any interest in Argentina wines, Malbec or other varietals, and especially if you want to travel to Argentina, this book is exactly what you need. 352 full-color pages 565 spectacular photographic images Dream On, Dancing Queen by Chloe Laube


ould you like to dance?” the debonair stranger asked. Would she ever! Just one look and Cara’s heart is hooked as she dances into his arms. But is this handsome, cavalier Italian guy for real or is he a no-good opportunist? Hang on for a round-the-world odyssey filled with pasta, passion, and an untamed temper. Winner, NABE Award, Best Romance Summer, 2016 Available at Amazon in paperback and ebook.

“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. OMG We’re Getting Married! by Dr. Karen Phillip


nternational Author & leading relationship authority Dr. Karen Phillip shares her essential relationship secrets in this ground breaking book. You will find innovative and thought provoking advice that will ensure your marriage will be an incredible and amazing relationship that lasts forever. These successful strategies prepare couples for challenging times often faced with communication, kids, career, household tasks, finances, in-laws ... Available Kindle available at Amazon and Booktopia.

BOOK SHELF Toru: Wayfarer Returns by Stephanie R. Sorensen

I Livia, the Counterfeit Criminal by Mary Mudd

“The paths of sword and steam cross brilliantly.” —Awesome Indies 5 Stars

I Livia, the Counterfeit Criminal proves false the popular notion that Caesar Augustus’ beloved third wife was a conniving dynastic murderess.

A Japan that might have been…

“Cool alternative-history of yester-century Nippon.” —Kirkus Reviews “A terrifically vivid historical novel set in an 1852 Japan re-imagined along Steampunk lines.” —Historical Novel Society FINALIST, Fantasy, 2016 Next Generation Indie Book Awards BRONZE MEDAL, Multicultural Fiction, 2016 eLit Book Awards IndieB.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree Available through bookstores and at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and iTunes.

Bougainvillea Blues by Dublin Galyean A heartfelt tale of love and loss in 1960’s San Diego.

A much-needed corrective to a long tradition of Livia-bashing, this highly readable text belongs in the hands of history students and general readers interested in the foundations of our society alike. —The U.S. Review of Books Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Echoing Time by Michelle Stojic


“Told from an adult perspective, the voice that Galyean gives Joey is at once romantic, nostalgic, self-effacing, and angry. The fairly adult subject matter is at times frank and disturbing, but the world the author creates for Joey is always rich with emotion and detail.” —Kirkus Review

choing Time takes readers on a highflying, thrilling adventure involving interdimensional travel to parallel universes by charting the journey of an arrogant, entitled, alien, boy who’s seeking revenge, yet finds redemption. But not until he kidnaps an Arapaho girl, forcing her to relive the horrors of Earth’s history. There is something happening on every page; archeology, science, the DOD, FBI, NSA, and a pot smoking hippie commune invigorate the journey. Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound. Available at Xlibris, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble.

BOOK SHELF Truth Evolves by Dustin Arand


rawing on the insights of philosophers, psychologists, linguists, and computer scientists, among others, Truth Evolves articulates a theory of knowledge that shows how science, religion, and art are all expressions of a continuous evolutionary process, and how understanding this process can help us address the most controversial questions about morality, politics, and our individual search for meaning and value.

“I just finished reading X-OPS. It’s fast moving and unbelievable that these things could be happening… or is it a real story, about the dark side of government and its various agencies, the involvement in drugs, chemical altering and money funneling. The characters are well developed and read as, very real… are they agents gone rogue, or just trying to protect and defend the constitution? These characters take you on a RIDE like no other, all over the world.”


Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and iTunes.




A Doctor’s Daughter












ce Mary ElizabEth bradlEy







Jack Bear, X-Ops by RF Jeppesen

A Doctor’s


A Doctor’s Daughter: Growing Up At A State Tuberculosis Sanatorium by Mary Elizabeth Bradley


Doctor’s Daughter: Growing Up At A State Tuberculosis Sanatorium tells of a girl growing up at a sanatorium in southeastern Oklahoma following WW II. Starting with the history of her family, tales of the war, and getting to know a founder of the Boy Scouts, it focuses on the simplicity of her youth and her life after the sanatorium. Growing up at a State Tuberculosis Sanatorium

Mary ElizabEth bradlEy

Available at Amazon, BooksAMillion, Alibris, and Christianbook.


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.

photo essay



“Picasso and Rivera: Conversations Across Time presents moments of

intersection in the formation of modernism both in Europe and Latin America, and asks how these towering figures of the twentieth century engaged with their respective ancient Mediterranean and Pre-Columbian worlds. The exhibition compares their artistic trajectories beginning with their similar academic training to their shared investment in Cubism and their return to an engagement with antiquity from the 1920s through the 1950s.” — 100 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H




Pablo Picasso, Self-Portrait (Autoportrait), 1906, oil on canvas, 25 5/8 x 21 1/4 in., Musée Picasso, Paris, © 2016 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, photo © RMN-Grand Palais/Art Resource, NY, by René-Gabriel Ojéda

Diego Rivera, Self-Portrait, 1906, oil on canvas, 22 × 21 1/4 in., Museo de Arte de Sinaloa, Gobierno del Estado de Sinaloa Colección ISIC-MASIN, © 2016 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, photo courtesy Museo de Arte de Sinaloa, olección ISIC-MASIN, by Agustin Estrada


Pablo Picasso, Student with a Newspaper (L’etudiant au journal), 1913–14, oil and sand on canvas, 28 3/4 × 23 3/8 in., Leonard A. Lauder Cubist Collection, © 2016 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society ARS), New York, photo © The Metropolitan Museum of Art


Diego Rivera, Sailor at Lunch (Marinero almorzando), 1914, oil on canvas, 44 7/8 × 27 1/2 in., Museo Casa Diego Rivera, Guanajuato, Marte R. Gómez Collection, INBA, © 2016 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F./ Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, photo courtesy Museo Casa Estudio Diego Rivera y Frida Kahlo, Guanajuato UNBOUND




Pablo Picasso, Three Women at the Spring (Trois femmes á la fontaine), Fontainebleau, Summer 1921, oil on canvas, 80 1/4 x 68 1/2 in., The Museum of Modern Art, NY, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Allan D. Emil, © 2016 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, digital Image © The Museum of Modern Art/Licensed by SCALA/Art Resource, NY

Diego Rivera, Flower Day (Día de Flores), 1925, oil on canvas, 58 x 47 1/2 in., Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Fund, © 2016 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, photo © Museum Associates/LACMA





Pablo Picasso, The Poet (Le poète), 1912, oil on canvas, 23 5/8 × 18 7/8 in., Kunstmuseum Basel, gift of Maja Sacher-Stehlin, deposited by the commune of inhabitants of the canton BaselStadt, 1967, © 2016 Estate of Pablo Picasso/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, photo credit: Kunstmuseum, Basel, Switzerland/De Agostini Picture Library/Bridgeman Images.

Diego Rivera, Portrait of Sculptor Elie Indenbaum (Retrato del escultor Elie Indenbaum, Hombre del cigarrillo), 1913, oil on canvas, 31 1/2 × 27 1/2 in., Modern Art International Foundation, © 2016 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, photo © Modern Art International Foundation




FINALIST Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood LISTEN 106 D E C E M B E R / J A N U A R Y


Photography: Jennifer Lee Photography

FINALIST Two moms “raising six kids ages 4 to 14” tackle parenting challenges with a healthy dose of humor. Podster talked to hosts Margaret Ables and Amy Wilson.

Podster: What is the premise of What Fresh Hell? Amy: Margaret and I are both comedians and mothers of three, and we each deal with the same hassles any parent does, albeit with slightly differing styles. Margaret tends toward the laissez-faire; I tend more toward the Tracy Flick. In each episode, we discuss a parenting issue from multiple perspectives—namely, our usually completely opposite approaches and the accompanying research that may or may not support them. But by the end of the episode, we find common ground enabling us to wrestle said parenting issue to the ground in a total victory for parents everywhere.

Podster: How do you go about selecting topics? Amy: Topics are easy for us to find, living hip-deep in the parenting quagmire as we do. But because the parenting community is so active on social media, it’s easy to tune in to what other moms are talking about, so we find plenty of inspiration there as well.  Podster: What do you hope your listeners will take away from your podcast? Amy: We hope our listeners laugh along with us but also take away concrete advice. Our goal is to be funny with a point. We talk about it, laugh about it, call out each other’s BS, as friends do. But then we get it done.

Amy and Margaret listen to: Amy: I’m a big fan of The Long Shot (hilarious, I’ve been listening to Sean Conroy and the gang for years) and Little Known Facts with Ilana Levine. Ilana’s a fabulous interviewer— a warmer and fuzzier Marc Maron. Margaret: I love Call Your Girlfriend— it’s for everyone out there in need of a virtual BFF (or two). Also League of Awkward Unicorns. Funny, irreverent and all about mental illness? Sign me up.




FINALIST Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

What’s the Score? The Sports News Quiz LISTEN 108 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


FINALIST “The show that puts contestants to the test with their sports knowledge from the past week’s news,” with hosts Baxter Colburn and Josh Scheibe. We talked to Baxter about the podcast. Podster: What is the premise of your podcast? Baxter Colburn: What’s the Score is a weekly quiz show that covers the past week’s sports news. Podster: How do you go about selecting guests and contestants? Baxter: The guests for What’s the Score are chosen from an eligible list created at the beginning of each month. Our panelists are local personalities with a Sports Media background. As for our contestants, we welcome them from anywhere on the globe. Contestants can throw

their name into the hat by visiting our website (, as well as by contacting us through our Facebook and Twitter pages. Podster: What do you hope your listeners will take away from your podcast? Baxter: What’s the Score is all about the personalities and engaging content we provide. We hope to foster a family, a fun community based on camaraderie and healthy competition. Our aim is for listeners to feel encouraged to participate, no matter their level of sports knowledge.

Baxter listens to: We at What’s the Score recommend the following podcasts: The Morning Uplift, 2 Up Front, Broadcast X, The DADpod.




FINALIST Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

Death Denied: Medill Justice Project LISTEN 110 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


FINALIST Reminiscent of Serial, Death Denied digs into the case of a man convicted of a quadruple homicide four decades ago. We talked to host Fallon Schlossman. Podster: What is the premise of your podcast? Fallon Schlossman: Death Denied follows 10 graduate and undergraduate students as they investigate a quadruple homicide that took place on Christmas Eve in 1975. Over the course of 10 weeks, Medill Justice Project students at Northwestern University re-examine Tommy Zeigler’s conviction. The Medill Justice Project is meant to be a learning experience for the students. For many of the students, it’s their first investigation; for some, their first foray into the world of journalism. Like any other class, students do their readings, complete their assignments and share their findings. But it is unlike any other class because it extends so far beyond the borders of a classroom, because it is founded on a 40-year-old tragedy, because there is

a man on death row. In their search for the truth, the students examine ballistics, comb through court documents, build models of the crime scene, time out driving routes and talk to surviving witnesses, lawyers and police on duty the night of the crime. And they interview Tommy Zeigler himself. I think what makes this series different from many true-crime podcasts is that it really focuses on the students’ experience. It’s a complicated case, filled with questions that are hard to ask and even harder to answer. Through the students, we not only participate in the investigation but we also share their frustrations and their growth from first look at the case to nuanced understanding of the intricacies of a crime that happened well before any of them were born.



FINALIST Podster: How did you decide on the structure of the podcast? Fallon: Throughout the series, I focused on finding a balance between the students’ experience and the case itself. Bridging the geographic divide and the four decades since the crime was committed, I aimed to integrate the voices of the students and of the subjects of their investigation in every episode. I wanted to give listeners insight into the investigation as it unfolded, chronologically following the students’ process and progress.

Podster: What do you hope your listeners will take away from your podcast? Fallon: I hope listeners connect with the students’ honesty, their excitement at a new find, their frustration at the criminal justice system. As the students grapple with guilt and innocence, with putting aside their own beliefs and biases in search of any verifiable truth, listeners have the opportunity to learn along with the students what it really takes to investigate a potentially wrongful conviction.

Fallon listens to: I’m always searching for podcasts that showcase different styles of storytelling. My all-time favorites are Radiolab, Snap Judgment, The Moth, and 2 Dope Queens. While their methodologies are different— whether it’s Snap Judgment’s application of musical composition to the spoken word or 2 Dope Queen’s emphasis on real talk from a diverse set of voices—these four podcasts always leave me with something to think, laugh, or cry about.

112 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H








FINALIST Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

Stride & Saunter LISTEN 114 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


FINALIST “Every week, we take a deep look at a topic concerning our humanity, our world and how we think about both.” We talked to host Kip Clark. Podster: What is the premise of your podcast? Kip Clark: Stride & Saunter is designed to challenge the way people think about humanity and the world we inhabit. This involves discussing some sensitive topics tied to firm beliefs but also “mundane” topics which we feel are actually fascinating under the proper consideration. Just as Roman Mars, Ira Glass and Megan Tan have sparked better understanding of design, captivating stories and the Millennial generation respectively, we seek to cultivate a more thorough appreciation of the thought process. Our purpose is to provide a healthy space for more considerate and genuine discourse which highlights the beautiful, confusing and sometimes challenging aspects of humanity. Podster: How do you go about selecting guests?

Kip: We started this podcast in college, so we have approached guests who were classmates, peers and friends with interesting viewpoints and articulate opinions. We request discussions on the basis of nuanced ideas and communicative ability. What we lack in name recognition or professional expertise of our guests, we make up for in insight, clarity and intellectual honesty. Regarding topics, I keep a running list of notes when I notice certain behavior, attitudes or perspectives which fascinate me. As I suspect longtime listeners would agree, the process of finding topics (and by extension, our episodes) has become more precise over time. With practice and consistent attempts to develop a critical eye for even the most minute social habit, underlying wisdom is waiting to be put into words. If a topic is particularly relevant, we try to discuss it in a timely manner. Sometimes we correspond episodes



FINALIST with important dates or events, but otherwise we arrange episodes so that a variety of issues and ideas are discussed week to week. Podster: What do you hope listeners will take away from your podcast? Kip: I hope listeners come away with an appreciation for conversation as one of the most natural and widespread means of exchanging ideas. In a cultural climate where I feel being correct is often treated as sacred, anything else becomes sacrilege. But Stride & Saunter is meant to focus on the process over the product and to reveal the gradual journeys of thought which often

accompany true understanding and empathy. We may continue to collectively champion “truth” as a culture, but I want listeners to know that we reach elements and moments of truth through (sometimes uncomfortable) exploration. And that avenue of conversational exploration is open to people of all backgrounds, beliefs and levels of socioeconomic status. To me, that humbling fact makes the principles of the show a natural fit for this form. Both podcasts and dialogue are free, easily accessible and often under-appreciated. What’s more, they have the capacity to connect seemingly disparate individuals and communities with one another.

Kip listens to: I particularly enjoy How Do We Fix It? (Twitter: @fixitshow), In Theory (@InTheoryPod), Us & Them (@usthempodcast), Around the Table (@ TheATTPodcast) and Memory Motel (@MemoryMotel). I think it’s important to consume other shows to develop your own voice, so if readers have any recommendations, I’m all ears!

116 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


ss le d a h rs e sh li b u -p lf se , e Once upon a tim d e w ie v re s k o o b ir e th g in of a chance gett ked ic w r e h g n si a le p d a h a ll than Cindere . d e g n a h c s a h y r o st t a Th stepmother. BlueInk Review: because every book

might not be a princess, but they all deserve a shot at the ball.

serious reviews of self-published books


FINALIST Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

Build Your House Yourself Universtiy LISTEN 118 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


FINALIST The ins and outs of residential construction are demystified so you can better manage and care for your house in this podcast. We talked to host Michelle Nelson. Podster: What is the premise of your podcast? Michelle Nelson: I started BYHYU so, together, my audience and I could learn the basics of home design and construction. I’m teaching listeners the knowledge that I’m acquiring as I prepare to build my own home. It’s like we’re a big study group, and I’m the study group leader— a student teaching other students. Since a house is the biggest investment that most of us will ever make, the goal is to simplify the design-build process so laypeople can make informed decisions about that investment. The show helps anyone who wants to become an educated consumer, even if they prefer to buy, rather than build, a new house. I’m betting that if we educate ourselves BEFORE we break ground, building our homes will be much easier and more enjoyable (and probably cheaper too).

The show empowers people to build high quality dream homes, with, or without, a general contractor. Although initially produced for laypeople, to my surprise, BYHYU has attracted new builders and new house flippers as regular listeners. Podster: How do you go about selecting guests/topics? Michelle: Topics and guests are chosen based on my interests and educational needs (since I am my target audience). I also take into account the requests of my listeners. Most shows are mini lessons which cover design trends or building materials and methods. Complex construction jargon and best practices are explained in easy to understand terms. There are also interviews with industry professionals and ownerbuilders, so listeners know what to expect during the building process.



FINALIST Podster: What do you hope your listeners will take away from your podcast? Michelle: The confidence and competence to make smart decisions about their homes. People sometimes spend more time researching and educating themselves about a $500 smart phone, or a $2500 vacation, than they spend educating themselves about their house, which can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. My goal is to give laypeople a good foundation of knowledge so they can get the biggest bang for their buck. Many contractors like to do

things the way they’ve always done them, even if better options are available. I want to give my audience the information they need to intelligently make decisions, and even suggestions, about what’s best for their home. My hope is that we end up with dream homes that are well-built and energy efficient, and not just pretty. Well-built is the New Pretty.

Michelle listens to: Young House Love Has a Podcast, Pastor Rick’s Daily Hope, She Podcasts, Half Size Me, Smart Passive Income

120 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H







FINALIST Podster Magazine Best Undiscovered Podcast Competition

Our Better Half LISTEN 122 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


FINALIST “An easily amused but smart podcast about sex over 50.” We talked to host Laura Lyster-Mensh.

Podster: What is the premise of your podcast? Laura Lyster-Mensh: A middleaged prude starts asking questions about sex in the “second half ” of life and meets a fascinating cast of characters along the way. It’s modern sex for classic bodies, with appropriate blushing. Podster: How do you go about selecting guests? Laura: It has to be surprising and fun. I’m less interested in guests being famous or promoting their careers than I am delighting

the audience. So, if you are a 50-something vulva ventriloquist, you’re in. If you are a urologist who brags he’s seen enough penises to fill a football stadium, I am all ears. Podster: What do you hope your listeners will take away from your podcast? Laura: That we have to keep asking questions, and that being a prude isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Prudes have sex, too, and people may not TALK about sex over 50 but that doesn’t mean they aren’t doing it, and can’t learn anything.

Laura listens to: My favorites are: Audacity to Podcast, Hidden Brain, Life on the Swingset, and You Must Remember This!



dystopian fangirl

H2O by Virginia Bergin Sourcebooks What to read next in YA dystopian fiction? Our intrepid fangirl Sarah Kloth reviews some of her favorites.

H20 is a story about killer rain. Killer rain that comes with no warning. What if one day out of nowhere all the rain and water—including water from the sink, the water in the toilet, etc.—is all poison and just one drop will kill you. Imagine how fast everyone would die without any warning. That is what Ruby has to face in H20—deadly rain and deadly water, with no explanation why. H2O is up there with my favorite books of all times. Ruby battles an unknown threat, but unlike your typical dystopian heroine, Ruby is a normal 15-year-old who makes some stupid life-threatening decisions and gets lucky. Throughout the book, Ruby finds herself alone, and instead of making great choices on the path to safety, Ruby fumbles her way through life. The entire time I was reading this book I was wondering how Ruby, or anyone, has survived so long without taking a shower. But Ruby handles all challenges with a good humor that really endeared her to me. Side note: One entire chapter is devoted to Ruby breaking into houses freeing all the animals (who for some reason are unaffected by the killer rain and water). So I think we all need to take a moment and really appreciate Ruby—when the world is ending, she still takes time to free the animals.

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The Association of Independent Authors (AiA) is a global not-for-profit membership organization representing, advancing, supporting and encouraging self-published (independent) authors. Our membership spans five continents, with directors based in the USA, Asia, Australia and South Africa. The role of the AiA is to guide, educate, support, encourage and unite authors who have chosen to self-publish. Our Body of Knowledge (BoK) is a comprehensive resource on all aspects of selfpublishing and running a small business—today’s authors must understand the business side of publishing (sales, marketing, promotion, legal and financial issues) and how to sell a book in a global marketplace.

Our vision is that independent publishing will be the preferred, first choice, for all authors.

Our mission is to create a culture of excellence, teamwork and professionalism in a community environment where sharing and collaboration benefits each individual member and independent authors as a whole. Annual membership subscription (Associate, Member) US$50. Affiliate level is free. Come join us! (Mention promo code SHELF to receive an additional three months membership for the annual subscription of US$50.)

on our shelf

MIRTH DEFECTS (BABY & ME) (VOLUME 1) With a vivid voice, Clint Forgy writes a story of JD Ferguson, a boy growing up in middle America in the early ‘70s. Forgy is a brilliant author with the rare skill of growing JD’s voice from boy to man. His delightful sense of humor and flair for dangerous pranks left me breathlessly reading, wondering how JD and his cast of characters, including best friend Gasser, younger brother Bob, and the lovely Lana, would escape unscathed. —Carole P. Roman Mirth Defects (Baby & Me) (Volume 1) by Clint Forgy, 126 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H


I CAN SEE YOU (EMMA WILLIS BOOK 1) A 10-year-old girl with psychic abilities becomes embroiled in a search for a serial killer stalking young girls in her town. Eventually recruited by a local detective, Emma finds her own life in danger. Landry has created a page-turner that also includes a family drama and a sexy romance between the detective and Emma’s teacher. Readers will champion brave Emma and look forward to the next book in the series. —Margaret Brown I Can See You (Emma Willis Book 1) by Joss Landry, Book Beatles LLC,

ELIJAH: A SUSPENSE NOVEL Elijah Raven’s unusual superpower—a form of telepathy in which animals tell him about evil taking place in the world around him—lands him reluctantly in the midst of danger. Trying to put his rough childhood behind him, Elijah pursues both criminals and love in this fast-paced thriller that is impossible to put down. An impressive debut novel that will leave you in anticipation of Redman’s next one. —Margaret Brown Elijah: A Suspense Novel by Frank Redman, Inspire Publishing,

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small press reviews Gender and the Quest in British Science Fiction Television by Tom Powers


McFarland Books

n Gender and the Quest in British Science Fiction Television, Tom Powers examines Doctor Who, Torchwood, Red Dwarf, and Blake’s 7. As the book’s title suggests, in addition to genre, one thing Powers sees as the common thread shared by the programs in question is that their heroes’ various journeys of self-discovery have as much to do with their sense of gender identity as they do with defeating threats from the near and far reaches of the universe. While a working knowledge of social theorists like Pierre Bourdieu and Michel de Certeau will certainly help readers make their way through Gender and the Quest, Powers is at pains to explain key concepts clearly and succinctly throughout his analysis. Additionally, his own apparent love for the programs in question does not blind Powers to the fact that many of his readers may not be overly familiar with the more obscure elements of the programs in question, particularly with respect to Blake’s 7 and Red Dwarf. Indeed, Powers comes off as most engaged with his material when he’s guiding readers through key moments of each show’s history, both onscreen and behind the scenes. All told, Gender and the Quest is a thoughtful examination of the ways in which individuals and systems interact with each other to bring about change that applies not only to television but to society writ large. Ultimately, we are all simultaneously producers and consumers of culture in one way or another, Powers suggests, and in our roles as both, we shape the world we live in—even if we do so at a glacial pace. —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.

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WELCOME Friends, listeners, there’s a real tarantula problem here in Night Vale. ―from Mostly Void, Partially Stars: Welcome to Night Vale Episodes, Volume 1 by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor



Profile for Shelf Media Group

Shelf Unbound February-March 2017  

Special crossover issue with our sister publication Podster, featuring podcast-related books and book-related podcasts.

Shelf Unbound February-March 2017  

Special crossover issue with our sister publication Podster, featuring podcast-related books and book-related podcasts.