Titles

Tuck-a-tuck Dragon Tuck-a-tuck Dragon

Tuck-a-tuck Dragon

Tuck-a-tuck Dragon

Tuck-a-tuck Dragon

“Here’s a rhyming bedtime story with a difference…Tuck-a-tuck Dragon, fierily illustrated by Stephan and Nicole Theo. It’s all about an outsider at a draconic sleepover party … Tan Dragon.” ―Bookloons

Audiobook Excerpt

 


TV Interview Coming Soon on Culturescope.eu
 
 
   
 
 
 
   

Delightful dragons lead the way through this diverse, rhyming children’s book to overcome childhood fears

Audio, ebook and hardback formats bring to life the soothing tale of an outcast dragon who overcomes childhood fears, bravely lulling a pair of scary babies to sleep with his magical sand. The “boring Tan Dragon” wins the respect of his colorful peers when he faces his fear and realizes his special gift. Brilliant, often abstract, paintings by Stephan Theo and Nicole Theo illustrate this enchanting rhyme-Stephan Theo from the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television voice acts the audio book, to singer-songwriter Nicole Theo’s guitar accompaniment. The dragons in this bedtime story frolic to poetry, while delighting, empowering and motivating. Kids will love the award-winning author’s charming tale of a rainbow of silly dragon friends pulling together and overcoming their fear of the littlest humans. Teaches: facing fear to find unique virtues; diversity; colors; reading words finishing rhymes.

More reviews

“A cute rhyming children’s book teaching colors and co-operation.”

― Melissa Dials, Teacher, Cool Ridge, West Virginia; Rating: 9 out of 10

 
“Much love for Tuck-a-tuck Dragon,”

― Beenish Arif, Children’s Book Reviewer

“Rating: 9 out of 10,”

―Derek Uibelhoer, School Librarian, Livingston, NJ

“A strength of this book for little children is how it presents the often-petty behaviour of young ones, and the casually hurtful way in which they can interact, even with accepted members being subjected to jeering and cutting behaviour. The story meanders through the dragons’ play, with them eventually settling down to a traditional end to any children’s get-together by telling tales to scare each other for fun. And what scares dragons the most? It is children! Because ‘babies throw tantrums, as everyone knows!’ The climax of the story is when the ‘last picked for teams’ Tan Dragon is sent to deal with a wailing baby, and how our hero, Tan Dragon, overcomes his fear, to settle both baby and the other dragons to sleep.”

The Book Review, Literary Trust

 

“I enjoyed the story in this book. Each of the dragons is a unique colour and they all enjoy having fun and playing games together. I love how some of the dragons are described like the white dragon being made of cloud. While the dragons all enjoy their games they are annoyed when Tan dragon, who is late, arrives. The way the dragons think of and treat Tan Dragon is reminiscent of how some children can be treated unfairly among their peers, but I like what happens in this story and how later, Tan Dragon essentially ‘saves the day’ for all of the other dragons…. There is a good rhyming pattern throughout the story, and I like how this book sounds when heard as an audiobook. I was lucky enough to have access to both a digital copy and to hear an excerpt of the audiobook which features some nice music, mainly some nice and subtle guitar music playing throughout in between the narrator’s sentences…. I love some of these illustrations especially when you can see the dragons like the cloud white dragon in the sky and the others flying in the sky together. All of the illustrations have a quality that make them look a bit like children’s paintings which I actually love…”

The Strawberry Post

 

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Tuck-a-tuck Dragon


Illustrated by Stephan Theo & Nicole Theo; written by JL Morin and Stephan Theo
Fully returnable
Release date: June 19, 2021
Genre: Children's Rhyming Picture Book; Diverse Verse
Price: $16.99
Hardback ISBN: 9781941861714; Audio 978-1-941861-73-8; eBook 978-1-941861-74-5;
Greek language hardback 978-1-941861-75-2; Greek language eBook ASIN: B09BG6Q3TF
58 pages, 8 x 10 inches
Interest Age Range 0 - 11; Grade Range: pre-Kindergarten to 5th grade
Available through Gardners, Bertram Books, Waterstones, Amazon, Ingram, Coresource, iTunes, Nook, Kindle, Rakuten Kobo, Overdrive, Findaway, B&T

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Now translated into Greek,
 
French and Spanish


 

Excerpt of Tuck-a-tuck Dragon

One blustery autumn, three dragons came out
To romp, stomp and tumble and frolic about.
On their way to a sleepover party they flew,
Big Red Dragon, Pink, and Small Green Dragon, too.

Toward Sun Yellow’s huge house, three dragons did fly,
Where they saw seven more dragons mount to the sky!
Old Blue came, and White, made out of cloud,
With a mountain of Purple, who rumbled out loud.

They found the right house, dropped their bags by the wall,
Then started the games for one dragon and all.
The Grey Dragon soared, with his wings full of rain!
And everyone played, until Tan Dragon came.

The last picked for teams, in the game Knights and Knaves,
He was last up the hill, fast asleep in the caves.
They would not let him in, till the rain started pouring,
And said, “There was never ever a dragon so boring.”

Now, to play, play, and play was just never enough,
But without any sleep, it was ever so tough,
So they rolled out their bags, and got in them, each one,
Telling stories to frighten each other for fun…FOR MORE, REQUEST YOUR REVIEW COPY
 


 

Get the audiobook at Apple
 
& at Google Play

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All At Once by Alisa Clements
All at Once All at Once

All at Once

All at Once

All at Once

Alisa Clements

Desperate to escape the tedium of small island life, Florian finds himself drawn to Zar, not realizing how thoroughly her unconventional spirit will challenge his beliefs. The arrival of Emily relieves some of the tension that exists between the two, but hidden agendas provide new sources of conflict as the three characters discover each other and themselves. Elsewhere in the space-time continuum, Jo, an American in Brazil, stumbles upon an anarchist theater group studying the Outernet, a plane of paranormal consciousness that functions as a global communications system. As her latent psychic talents emerge, Jo is drawn into a high-stakes battle to escape the constriction of the ego and overthrow a totalitarian consortium. All at Once constructs an Escher-like world of illusion and exquisite detail, where lost identities surface in unexpected places. The novel invites the reader to new heights of awareness by leading them nowhere and everywhere at once, blurring the boundaries between fiction and reality.

 
 

Read an excerpt of All at Once.

Praise for All at Once

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All At Once


by Alisa Clements
Release date: November 15, 2012
Genre: Visionary, Science Fiction, Multicultural, Suspense
Paperback Price: $15.95
Kindle eBook: $9.99
ISBN: 978-0-9833216-4-4

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“All at Once is a bit like the syncretic cults that enter its plot. Past and present, feminine and masculine, mysticism and modernity intermingle and recompose under a thickening menace. The story is constructed through the fragmentary perceptions of the characters, some of which are able to access a reality that subsumes our own. Sound is always present, infusing the settings…. Alisa Clements is a specialist in the dissection of vibrations. An enthusiastic explorer of the psychoacoustic terrain and fan of the music of ordinary sounds, she has studied, composed, performed and taught experimental and electronic music, first as teaching assistant and manager of the Harvard Electronic Music Studio under the direction of Ivan Tcherepnin, then as instructor at the Massachusetts College of Art, giving classes in electronic music, installations, and the polygamous marriage of sound, movement, and image.”

Afrikadaa, p. 268 POLITICS OF SOUND

“The boundaries of human imagination are explored in Alisa Clements’s intelligent fantasy novel ALL AT ONCE. Clements presents two romantic triangles, centuries apart, whose participants all share psychic abilities beyond the norm. Much of this beautifully written novel centers on the story of Josephine, a scholar researching native religious practices in a more or less modern-day Brazil, and her encounters with a group of people, rebels against the government, who seem to have harnessed their psychic powers in a manner that promises great things for humanity but threatens the power structure. How Clements connects the dots between the two fraught relationships is just one of the rewards of this clever and entertaining book.”

Midwest Book Review

“Love triangles, international adventure, psychic awareness, evil plans for world domination. All at Once will not let you put it down! A beautifully rendered novel.”

—Faulkner Fox, author, Dispatches from a Not-So-Perfect Life

About the Author

Alisa Clements is the author of All at Once, a novel that invites readers to new heights of awareness by leading them nowhere and everywhere at once. The Midwest Review praised Clements’ exploration of “the boundaries of the imagination,” and indeed, the boundaries between fiction and reality blur when her protagonists attempt to ‘logon’ to the far-out ‘Outernet’ for a meeting of the minds. You can read an excerpt of the novel here.

Clements decided at age seven that she would be a writer when she grew up, but this vocation was eclipsed in college by the exploration of other media, primarily electronic music. As a student at Harvard University, she became a teaching assistant in the electronic music studio and stayed on after graduation, later taking the role of studio manager.

She then entered the Studio for Interrelated Media program at the Massachusetts College of Art to pursue her interests in experimental music, performance, and film. Upon receiving her MFA degree, she became an instructor at the college, teaching classes in electronic sound composition. Her experience in this fieldas a performer, composer, and teacherenters into All at Once in the guise of arcane facts about the effects of audio stimuli on human consciousness.

After a journey that has spanned several professions and countries, including thirteen years spent in Bahia, in northeastern Brazil, Alisa now lives in the Sirius intentional community in the woods of Western Massachusetts.

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The Road Not Taken The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken

by Susan Rubin

Request a review copy of The Road Not Taken, by Susan Rubin

This is the story of a woman who is suddenly widowed at 50. Left with money but no direction to her life, she moves back to the West Village where she grew up. She is deep in transition from suburban housewife to living in the big city with a child from whom she is emotionally detached when she meets a woman who appears to be her identical twin. The woman is in fact, a member of the Lost: a group of 100 fully formed people dropped off on earth as it cooled down – they have lived on the planet as it developed the many species and geography of today.

The Lost show her the myriad dimensions of Time and Space, taking her to mythic lands: ancient Egypt as well as very real places from the past, Weimar Germany. They show her planets without inhabitants, and introduce her to loved ones she has lost to death. Having casual affairs with Osiris of Egypt, being raped by his brother, Set, finding a lover among the Lost, she lives many truths that are new to her.They walk with her into a painting of a house in Arles and meets Vincent Van Gogh. In her friendship with “Vincent” she learns who she needs to become.

But it is her friendship with Vincent that drives her deeper into an exploration of the world. Vincent grieves for his paintings – his poetry, heartbroken to discover they have been sold to rich people for huge sums of money. Deborah (our protagonist’s new name) joins with painters of the 19th century who can make exact copies of Vincent’s paintings – the ones that sit in back bedrooms of the ultra-rich. Berthe Morisot, Monet, Matisse and Otto Dix join in the project until all of Vincent’s high jacked paintings have been recreated. Then Deborah calls on her mother, who is dead, but who was a fundraiser and organizer in her lifetime.

Together with her Lost alter ego, now called Vita, the three of them scheme successfully to steal all of Vincent’s paintings and replace them with unimpeachable copies. In the course of this process, Vincent encourages Deborah to find her own talent, and her Contract with Creation: things she has never sought. As the story unfolds, Deborah must figure out what she did with the first half of her life, why she never attached to any real study or creative endeavor, and what she can do now to walk The Road Not Taken.

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The Road Not Taken


by Susan Rubin
Release date: September 4, 2020
Genre: Fiction; Humor
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-941861-68-4

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“Playwright Rubin’s debut novel is a complex story that uses science fiction as a literary device, like Vonnegut did in Slaughterhouse-Five…. Like the poem it’s named for, this story is the re-framing of Deborah’s past life in the context of her current one, a kind of coming-of-age story for a woman entering mid-life with nothing to hold her back from what she might become.”

Booklist

“The compelling story, told with effortless grace, of a suburban woman driven to become a warrior, a hero, a priestess.”

Ms Magazine

“Do the creatures of Earth have enough ability to learn to be nonviolent yet still artistically creative so our planet can be saved? Only Deborah can judge. With its mishmash of Freudian theory, Egyptian mythology, self-assured characters, and meandering plot, this book is mostly for fans of New Age fiction.”

Library Journal

“An inherently and absolutely fascinating science fiction novel by an author with a genuine flair for original and the commendable ability to hold the reader’s fully entertained attention from first page to last, “The Road Not Taken” by Susan Rubin is an extraordinary treat for all dedicated science fiction fans and unreservedly recommended for community library Science Fiction collections.”

Midwest Book Review


“Susan Rubin’s The Road Not Taken offers a magical tale of transformation and joy. A pleasure to read.”

— Alicia Hoge Adams, Artistic Director, Bootleg Theater, Hollywood

“The Road Not Taken by Susan Rubin is a unique work of magical realism. It is filled with fantastic imagery, irony, and amazing ideas. This book sits next to Isabelle Allende and Neil Gaiman on my reading table. If you want to take a unique journey, filled with humor, fantastic imagery, ideas, and irony, grab a copy.”

— Luisah Teish, author, Jambalaya

In the News

Podcast: Dr. D’s Social Network talks to Susan Rubin, author of The Road Not Taken
Ms. Magazine Article: “Susan Rubin Wants More Women to Explore The Road Not Taken
BookPleasures.com Interview: “In Conversation With Playwright & Novelist Susan Rubin
JB’s Bookworms Brandy Mulder Interviews Susan Rubin

Blog posts at SusanRubinWriter.com

About the Author

Rubin’s writing talents range broad and deep: her Funny or Die sketches have survived to amuse readers for nearly a decade. In contrast, Rubin has written over two dozen documentaries that deal in the unfunny issues facing women worldwide: Domestic Violence, Forced Child Marriage, Untested Rape kits accumulating in police evidence rooms by the tens of thousands. In each documentary, Rubin has used her skill, empathy, and compassion to render these darkest of topics into accessible films distributed to tens of thousands of college classrooms, to educate young people about the gravity of the situation for women in the USA and worldwide.

As a playwright, Rubin has been the recipient of 20 years of Los Angeles County Arts Commission Grants and Los Angeles Cultural Affairs Department Grants. She also was honored with a six-year residency at the prestigious Los Angeles Theatre Center.

Her plays have been seen at New York Theatre Workshop, Baltimore Cen-ter Stage, and at every major 99 seat theatre in Los Angeles including co-productions with Bootleg Theatre, Circle X, Skylight Theatre to name a few. She is the recipient of Garland, Ovation and LA Weekly Awards for her plays and the critical response has been exceptional, for example:

“In its mythological themes, modernist irony and imaginative visual styling, ‘Liana and Ben’ is something of a companion piece to Circle X’s memorable 2006 production of Sarah Ruhl’s ‘Eurydice’.”

Los Angeles Times

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Invictus Invictus

Invictus

Invictus

Next Generation Indie Book Award finalist

The Landmark Prize for Fiction finalist (under the working title, Intensia)

Goethe Award Shortlist

Invictus, by L.L. Holt

 
 

A timely novel on how the young musician overcame prejudice to become an international phenomenon as the entire world celebrates the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven’s birth

L.L. Holt talks about her diverse, historical novel, INVICTUS,
on Princeton TV’s “Backstory”

Hosted by sociologist and educator Joan Goldstein, the program will explore current issues of the day, both national and local, with guests invited for their expertise or particular viewpoints. One of the largest public producers of original content in New Jersey, Princeton Community Television is a Public, educational, and government access (PEG) cable TV channel in Princeton, New Jersey. Mon. at 7:00 am, Wed. at 8:30 pm and Sun. at 5:30 p.m., the station is carried on Comcast channel 30 and Verizon FIOS channel 45 in the Princeton, New Jersey area.

 
 

 
 

The year was 1770, the place, Bonn, Germany. A drunken father took his first look at his baby’s dark complexion and lost his temper. The mother insisted the child was his. This was the beginning of a youth filled with anxiety, prejudice, and uncertainty for young Luis. We know him as Beethoven.

Descriptions by neighbors and friends often begin, “He was black,” meaning darker than others, and therefore subject to discrimination in the German north. Was Beethoven black in contemporary terms? There is little doubt that the child, perhaps with Moorish roots, who grew up under the thumb of a domineering, alcoholic father, did not look like other members of his family, nor even his community. We may never know why.

Invictus, a new novel by L.L. Holt published by Harvard Square Editions, takes Beethoven’s otherness as a point of departure as it explores the child’s journey from birth to a series of setbacks in his 16th year. But the obstacles and catastrophes that the resilient child navigates are not the final word: we know how this story will end.

Invictus is woven through with several other themes rooted in the revolutionary age in which the boy lived. This was an age in which European scientists were exploring the notion of race and reason. While young Beethoven (known as “Luis” in this story) was growing up, a scientific experiment was taking place in Kassel, less than 200 miles away, in which Africans were kept without their permission and subjected to tests. Most eventually died in the cold northern climate. Yet, at the same time, there were other scientists who asserted that race as we think of it did not exist, and that truly, as Beethoven was to declare through Schiller’s Ode to Joy late in his life, “All men are brothers.”

Another theme is the rise and fall of the Illuminati, which originated in Germany and spread north. Beethoven’s childhood teacher, Christian Neefe (NAY fuh), was the head of the local Illuminati chapter, soon to be outlawed, with death a penalty for membership. Many believe the great composer was a Mason and Illuminati member, a position this book upholds and explores in scenes filled with intrigue and adventure.

Luis falls in love, gains a champion, and is sent to Vienna to expand his gifts in this fictionalized view of his early life seldom previously explored, but must return to parochial Bonn when his mother, the only person who truly loved him, is on the brink of death. She dies, his sister dies, his father sinks further into alcoholism. Yet, something stirs within his heart. And from the other side of history, we know his dreams have not been in vain.

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Invictus


by L.L. Holt
Release date: April 10, 2019
Genre: Historical novel
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-941861-64-6

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Praise for Invictus

“This book is spot on to the contemporary issues of today’s world. A blend of historic fact and fiction, Invictus tackles many of the big issues of our time: bigotry, bullying, and prejudice. The Beethoven we thought we knew is a pale shadow of the genius he became. Adversity helped ignite his extraordinary gifts, inspiring each of us to reach beyond obstacles to embrace our dreams. I loved this book and its message for today of courage, determination, perseverance, and hope.”

—Don Browne, Executive VP NBC Network News, ret., President of NBC’s Telemundo Network, ret.

“An absorbing novel about the young Beethoven and the circumstances that shaped his musical career. Especially interesting because it takes seriously the implications of 18th century racism and rumors about African ancestry in Beethoven’s family.”

—K.M. Reeds, historian of biology and medicine

 

“L.L. Holt captures an exciting time in history when revolution was in the air, and an intense debate about race and equality raged in universities, salons, and secret societies. Well-written and engaging.”

—Lina Genovesi, Ph.D., J.D.

 

“In Invictus, Holt makes precise references to Joseph Bologne, aka Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges, whose life as an 18th century Black composer and swordsman in Western Europe is an important reminder that sometimes you have to excel in many different fields in order to survive. And still, the accomplishments can and will speak for themselves decades, centuries after the fact.”

—Le Chevalier de Saint Georges Facebook page administrator

 

“Invictus embodies the spirit of the Age of Revolution in this tale of a young boy breaking free from obstacles of poverty and prejudice.”

—Kairy Koshoeva, concert pianist

 

About The Black Spaniard by L.L. Holt:

 

In her wonderful new novel, L.L. Holt captures the dynamic magic of Beethoven and his music.  She is able to recreate the original sounds of Beethoven’s fingers on the piano as well as the nature of the characters who surrounded him in his climb to fame as one of the most original composers.

“This novel reimagines the surprising backstory behind Beethoven’s early years, bringing its scenes to life as only fiction can. The result makes for intriguing reading.”

—Winifred Hughes, author of The Maniac in the Cellar: Sensation Novels of the 1860’s

 

“Beethoven is a unique character and this book captures that quality. Great reading and informative background offer an experience that is both entertaining and educational. Ms. Holt deserves great accolades for this excellent novel on a highly engaging perspective of musical history.”

–Dr. David Ryback, author of Beethoven in Love

Top customer reviews from Amazon.com:

5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable for readers of all ages!

“A fresh, entertaining view of Beethoven for young readers and adults alike. Told in semifictional style, it focus largely on his early triumphs in his twenties as the champion piano virtuoso of Vienna’s music scene. The ‘black Spaniard’ refers to Beethoven himself for his dark complexion and black hair. He’s called “Luis” instead of the German “Ludwig,” and he’s fairly likeable, his famous tantrums are toned down. We follow him through the onset of his tragic deafness and the composing of his heroic Third Symphony. In this story, the black Spaniard is the real hero.”

–musiclady

 

 

5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping tale of arrogance, dissolution, and redemption

“A gripping tale that turns the tables on our expectations about Beethoven. What, if as so many believe, he was Black? What if he was a revolutionary in the Illuminati and Freemasonry? What if the Immortal Beloved was someone we never expected? The novel blends factual information with flights of imagination and fancy to present a compelling portrait of the composer during a dozen years in which he first arrived in Vienna and learned he was losing his hearing at an alarming rate. An inspiring story for all who seek to overcome prejudice and oppression and never to surrender their ideals.” 

–Amazon Customer

 

5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely worth the read and comes from a great small press

“Holt’s book envisions the life of Beethoven in a way that I couldn’t have imagined myself. Definitely worth the read and comes from a great small press.”

lilmisseditor

 

 

More Novels by L.L. Holt:

The Black Spaniard (2016)

Written as Simone Marnier:

White Tiger, Green Dragon (2000)

Black Tortoise, Red Raven (2006)

Tigre Blanco, Dragón Verde (2007)

 

About the Author

L.L. Holt is a Humanities professor and author of the international prize-winning novel, Invictus, about Beethoven’s overcoming discrimination to enter the world stage, and The Black Spaniard, a novel about music (Unsolicited Press, 2016). She has a doctorate in Arts and Letters from Drew University and reviews classical music for Fanfare Magazine, Bachtrack, Concertonet, and Broad Street Review, and her articles have appeared in New York Classical Review. Following a successful career in communications, she is devoting herself to writing about the inspiring power of music as well as the common ground shared by eastern and western spiritual traditions. Holt lives in New Jersey.

 

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The Handbook for Literary Analysis
Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 1 Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 1

Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 1

Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 1

The Handbook for Literary Analysis:

How to Evaluate Prose Fiction, Drama, and Poetry  

James P. Stobaugh

This handbook reclaims the metaphor, rhetoric, and literary analysis. It takes a high view of the reader, the critic, and the student. All three are invited to think critically and to discuss thoroughly the great literary works of all civilizations. Systematically, this Handbook defines, explains, and illustrates a wide range of significant literary terms in fiction, drama, and poetry.

Along the way, readers explore copious, inspired examples, including biblical examples. Finally, readers read real literary analytical essays by American high school students.  If readers learn how to do literary analysis well, they will be better able to create and to share vital truths with future generations. (Also see book II)

 
 
 
 

Order

Handbook for Literary Analysis Book I: How to Evaluate Prose Fiction, Drama, and Poetry


by James P. Stobaugh
Release date: April 18, 2013
Genre: Text book; Literary analysis
Price: $39.99
ISBN: 978-0-9833216-7-5

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“Dr. Stobaugh’s Handbook of Literary Criticism is an outstanding resource for educators and the students.  Over the past several decades, the influence of literature produced by Christians has significantly declined.  From my perspective as a Christian culture influencer, I  believe we must reverse that trend.  We need more effective authors who are producing world class literature framed in the Christian worldview.  I see Dr. Stobaugh’s handbook to be essential to reverse that trend.  I highly recommend it.”

—Ray Traylor, Homeschool Dad, Author, True Riches; & Besetting Sin
 
 
 
 

“This book is appropriate for junior high students through adults. You can work through the book sequentially or selectively, depending upon your need. The book reads like a literature text with plentiful use of literary excerpts, including many from Scripture, as examples. It also should help familiarize readers with some great literary works. There are no questions or assignments as you would find in a course. Instead, it is expected that the reader will be using it for self-directed education. Parents might assign particular sections for the student lacking self-direction, then follow up with a discussion regarding what they have read.”

—Cathy Duffy, Homeschool Review Guru

 

About the Author

 

JimS

Jim and Karen Stobaugh have four home educated adult children. They are deeply committed to the new emerging homeschool leadership community.  Jim was a Merrill Fellow at Harvard University and holds a B.A. cum laude from Vanderbilt, an M.A. from Rutgers University, an M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a D.Min. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. An experienced teacher, he is a recognized leader in homeschooling and has published several books for students and teachers. Jim is also a Presbyterian pastor. He pastors Covenant Presbyterian Church near his home. He lives near Hollsopple, Pennsylvania, and travels widely to speak at conventions about literature, teaching, and education.

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The Handbook for Literary Analysis - Book II
Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 2 Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 2

Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 2

Handbook for Literary Analysis Vol 2

The Handbook for Literary Analysis:

How to Evaluate Prose Fiction, Drama, and Poetry  

James P. Stobaugh

This handbook reclaims the metaphor, rhetoric, and literary analysis. It takes a high view of the reader, the critic, and the student. All three are invited to think critically and to discuss thoroughly the great literary works of all civilizations. Systematically, this Handbook defines, explains, and illustrates a wide range of significant literary terms in fiction, drama, and poetry.

Along the way, readers explore copious, inspired examples, including biblical examples. Finally, readers read real literary analytical essays by American high school students.  If readers learn how to do literary analysis well, they will be better able to create and to share vital truths with future generations. (Also see book I)

 
 
 
 

Order

Handbook for Literary Analysis Book II: How to Evaluate Prose Fiction, Drama, and Poetry


by James P. Stobaugh
Release date: May 8, 2013
Genre: Text book; Literary analysis
Price: $39.99
ISBN: 978-0983321682

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“Dr. Stobaugh’s Handbook of Literary Criticism is an outstanding resource for educators and the students.  Over the past several decades, the influence of literature produced by Christians has significantly declined.  From my perspective as a Christian culture influencer, I  believe we must reverse that trend.  We need more effective authors who are producing world class literature framed in the Christian worldview.  I see Dr. Stobaugh’s handbook to be essential to reverse that trend.  I highly recommend it.”

—Ray Traylor, Homeschool Dad, Author, True Riches; & Besetting Sin
 
 
 
 

“This book is appropriate for junior high students through adults. You can work through the book sequentially or selectively, depending upon your need. The book reads like a literature text with plentiful use of literary excerpts, including many from Scripture, as examples. It also should help familiarize readers with some great literary works. There are no questions or assignments as you would find in a course. Instead, it is expected that the reader will be using it for self-directed education. Parents might assign particular sections for the student lacking self-direction, then follow up with a discussion regarding what they have read.”

—Cathy Duffy, Homeschool Review Guru

 

About the Author

 

JimS

Jim and Karen Stobaugh have four home educated adult children. They are deeply committed to the new emerging homeschool leadership community.  Jim was a Merrill Fellow at Harvard University and holds a B.A. cum laude from Vanderbilt, an M.A. from Rutgers University, an M.Div. from Princeton Theological Seminary, and a D.Min. from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. An experienced teacher, he is a recognized leader in homeschooling and has published several books for students and teachers. Jim is also a Presbyterian pastor. He pastors Covenant Presbyterian Church near his home. He lives near Hollsopple, Pennsylvania, and travels widely to speak at conventions about literature, teaching, and education.

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Loveoid Loveoid

Loveoid

Loveoid

Loveoid

by JL Morin, author of the award-winning novel Nature’s Confession

Cygnus 1st Place Sci-fi Award Winner; Book Excellence Award Finalist, Erotica; ScreenCraft Semifinalist (top 12% of submissions); Fish shortlist (top 4% of submissions);  Global Thriller Book Awards for High Stakes and Lab Lit Novels shortlist
 

Listen to the beginning

 
 

An American euthanasist and an Egyptian astrological farmer delve into the evolution of the collective soul, as an extremophile virus targets a select few.

 

Cli-Fi at its best, where the twisted scientific changes of our present-day lives catalyze love in parallel universes. Loveoid grapples with the dilemmas of the latest generation of humankind ⎯ that the loving don’t survive. In the present-day novel Loveoid, Olivia unravels a virus that only harms the corporate upper crust. In combat with media, governments and corporations, as love-lacking predators on top kill off life on earth, Olivia finds love, and comes to question her own ideals. The impossibly mixed match encounters life-threatening obstacles, as Khalid elicits her darkest fears, yet lights the way with astrological farming, ancient holistic remedies and spiritualism. Will love allow them to stay human?

 
 
 
Order

Loveoid

by JL Morin
Genre: eco-fiction, cli-fi, literary fiction,
speculative fiction, sci-fi, romance
Paperback: $11.95
eBook: $9.99
Audiobook: $2.99
Pages: 278
December 6, 2020
ISBN: 978-1-941861-54-7

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Praise for Loveoid

“Loveoid is a wildly unique and immensely realized science fiction thriller set in a dystopian present in which overpopulation is decimating the Earth and its natural resources at a rapid rate. Additionally, the world of the story is incredibly deep, filled with dense detail and nuance that give the impression of a very realized universe.”

⎯ScreenCraft

“With a new, scary virus as the backdrop, Olivia and Khalid navigate love, cures, and a different world. A timely novel with an interesting message about love and nature”

Booklist
 
 

“About time some serious writers and artists took on the biggest issue of our time⎯⎯maybe all time. This novel shows that engagement fully underway!”

⎯Bill McKibben, Founder 350.org

“The smart choice to set this eco-thriller in the present brings home the tenebrous climate prognostications we usually reserve for another year.”

Brussels Express

“I take heart from JL Morin’s authorial intuition: true love is what eventually will separate man from vegetable.”

⎯A. Bergsten, author, The Rift

“As overpopulation grows, natural resources are depleted, species go extinct, and the polar ice caps continue to melt. People now check into euthanasia hotels to escape a hopeless future…. The story’s premise is interesting.”

Library Journal

“This is a short, interesting read bordering on eco-fiction that would make for a fascinating movie”

⎯Denver Public Library

“In Loveoid, J.L. Morin spins a tale of awakening and vision, a tale that has hopefulness in it but does not overdo the optimism. Morin writes with both passion and great intelligence, at ease with complex philosophical ideas. She is not afraid to tackle head-on the most pressing and dire issues of today, and she does so with focus, storytelling verve, and an admirable clarity.”

DoSomeDamage.com

 

 
 
 
 

“Loveoid is a rare and most accurate reflection of contemporary LGBTI people: I both love and find highly enlightening JL Morin’s particular reference to the Navajo culture—it reminds me of the recent apology of Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau for suppressing the ‘two-spirit Canadian Indigenous peoples’ values and beliefs’. Many ancient cultures accepted non-binary people, and it is important to be constantly reminded of this, given the current confusion, deliberate misunderstandings and hatred around this subject. Also, focusing on love (rather than sex, which is primarily linked to reproduction) is the perfect romantic, humane and noble premise.”

—Dimitris Politis, author, LGBTI rights champion

“Loveoid is one of the most incredibly meaningful books I’ve read in recent times. Author J.L. Morin, very cleverly discusses so many topics in one story. We, being in a pandemic situation right now, can relate to the story so much. After reading this book, my faith in love is restored since I, too, believe that love is the cure for many ailments in this world.”

—Madhuri Palaji, author and book reviewer, The Clipped Nightingale

“Loveoid, the new novel from JL Morin, aims to change the evolutionary trajectory of life on Earth by putting power into the hands of those who love rather than those who prey…. The often poetic narrative looks at life on a grand scale while also magnifying a story of unlikely lovers…. Most intriguing and satisfying are Morin’s blending of Nature on Earth—light, shadow, sea turtle, snake, extinct species,and sandstorm—with self and ponderance. The author lifts the gaze of humans to what exists outside our walls and windows and establishes how these things shape and inspire us. Breathing life into ancient wisdom, Loveoid demonstrates how we might fit in with Nature, or get back to it. How we might preserve it before it’s too late.”   

—Mary Woodbury, eco-literature curator, Dragonfly.eco

“The author is quite obviously a talented writer with a flowering imagination….I loved the thought that the act of loving could cure. ‘Love heals all wounds.’ ”

Tattooed Bibliophile

News

ScreenCraft Names Short Story Semifinalists: Semifinalists have been announced for the 2017 ScreenCraft Short Story Contest, representing the top 12 percent of submissions received —MovieBytes

On the ‘New and Noteworthy’ shelf at —NewPages

Quotes

” ‘Animals don’t love,’ she said. ‘Is that what you think? Let me do the thinking.'”

*

“If money’s not a problem, it will be.”

*

He rolled his eyes. “They told me who you were with these last few months. What’s next, Olivia, a saber-toothed tiger?”

*

The dilemma ebbed from every chain of life, the loving perished, while predators stalked the food chain, chain of command, blockchain…

*

“They might want to put him out of his misery. Euthanasia is legal here, as is assisted suicide.”

As secretary to the director, she actually felt for Luther, with a kind of love that wouldn’t let her do the obvious.

*

Olivia nodded doubtfully, unsure she’d even want to go on living inside a giant mind with galaxies for neurons. She found it highly unlikely that she’d gravitated toward any particular constellation happening to brand the sky when she’d ‘manifested on the material plane’. If she could make such an impression on the universe, she would have done it already in the lab.

*

ON GLOBALIZATION AND TERRORISM

“We’re in World War III…Chéri.”

“You realized? With three eyes closed! Laisse tomber. You’re safe here. I’m not a terrorist. I don’t even like globalization.”

*

“We also didn’t agree with your linking overpopulation to a rise in homosexuality,” said a willowy scientist.

“Well, it would champion homosexuals as a cure for overpopulation, but why get hung up on sex? The more interesting issue is love. For man to use people and worship things is robotic. No surprise that nature would force him to re-connect with his roots.”

“You say ‘his’.”

“When you bring in a female case, I’ll add ‘her’.”

Of course, there were plenty of female cases, just none running the top corporations and getting the red-carpet treatment.

The discussion proceeded with pre-ordained circularity. The scientists exchanged glances. One muttered, “Love as a survival skill!”

 

About the Author

JLMimosa

JL Morin grew up in inner-city Detroit. She proffered moral support while her parents sacrificed all to a failed system. Wondering what the Japanese were doing right, she decamped to Tokyo. Her debut Japan novel, Sazzae, won an eLit Gold Medal, and a Living Now Book Award. Her second novel, Travelling Light, was a USA Best Book Awards finalist, and her third, Trading Dreams, became ‘Occupy’s first bestselling novel’. Her climate fiction novel, Nature’s Confession, won first place in the Dante Rossetti Book Awards; a Readers’ Favorite Book Award; a LitPick 5-Star Review Award; and an excerpt received an Honorable Mention in the Eco-Fiction Story Contest, published in the Winds of Change anthology of eco-fiction. Her second cli-fi novel, Loveoid, is a Cygnus Sci-fi 1st place winner, among others.

Her cli-fi novels are on course syllabi at many universities. Ivy League professors have facilitated discussions with JL Morin’s writing, and it is discussed in textbooks, such as Science Fiction and Climate Change: A Sociological Approach, by Andrew Milner, ‎and J. R. Burgmann, 2020, published by Oxford University Press.

Her most recent work, Tuck-a-tuck Dragon, is a diverse rhyming children’s book illustrated by children throughout their childhood from the ages of 2–21.

JL Morin’s writing draws on a breadth of experience. She traded derivatives in New York while studying nights for her MBA at New York University’s Stern School of Business; worked for the Federal Reserve Bank posted to the 103rd floor of the World Trade Center; presented the news as a TV broadcaster; and she is adjunct faculty at Boston University. Morin’s fiction has appeared in The Harvard Advocate and Harvard Yisei, and her articles and translations in The Huffington Post, Library Journal, The Detroit News, European Daily, Livonia Observer Eccentric Newspapers, The Harvard Crimson, and Agence France Presse while she worked in their Middle East Headquarters.

 

 

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Clovis Clovis

Clovis

Clovis

Clovis

 

The debut, eco-novel by Jack Clinton
 
Winner of the 2019 Best Book Award for LGBTQ Fiction

 

Montana NPR interviews Jack Clinton on April 19, 2018.

Workshop and book signing with Jack Clinton at the Jackson Hole Writer’s Conference, June 28, 2018; and at the Mendocino Coast Writer’s Conference. 2-4 August, 2018

Trapped in the orbit of the buttes and a black obsidian Clovis, Hanna is sure there’s nothing romantic about her hot and dusty job as an archeologist in the cultural and real desert. As she negotiates the misogyny of this no-woman’s-land, she’s on the move to evade physical and spiritual abuse at the hands of oil-field boys, and guard the damaged and angelic Paul. She’s vegetarian in a fast food wasteland and a transcendentalist who can’t quite catch the wave of nothingness. Her clan of fellow archeologists tries to keep her from harm, but everything she truly needs lies outside the aegis of their reach.

Clovis casts an eye across the vast, empty lands of the Western American basins where the endless clamor of petroleum developments rings tirelessly. Told from the point of view of a working crew of archeological contractors who labor to save endangered artifacts from the churning machinations of the CanAm gas pipeline, Clovis bears witness to the quiet environmental usurpation of American public lands.

Clinton’s novel explores the possible history of the Clovis people and their apocalyptic demise at the hands of their own elegant invention, the Clovis Point. The relevance of the eclipsed culture to the precarious balance of our own clouds the intense joys the characters feel as they navigate the wealth of the natural world.

Clinton’s novel is an artful literary response to the unutterable and largely ignored decline of our collective natural wealth. Clinton mixes a sardonic misanthropy of our own current environmental course with jubilation, and the joy of love, the celebration of the human condition, and the intense passion of being immersed in the natural world.

Clovis will continue Harvard Square Editions’ tradition of promoting fiction that furthers civil and environmental causes in a market that would rather leave such voices unheard.

 

 

 

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Clovis by Jack Clinton

Clovis

by Jack Clinton

Giveaway ends January 20, 2018.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway


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Clovis

by Jack Clinton

Release date: January 12, 2018
Genre: LGBT; eco-Fiction
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-941861-53-0

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Praise for Clovis

 

“Clinton’s novel is an artful literary response to the unutterable and largely ignored decline of our collective natural wealth. Clinton mixes a sardonic misanthropy of our own current environmental course with jubilation, and the joy of love, the celebration of the human condition, and the intense passion of being immersed in the natural world. Clovis will continue Harvard Square Editions’ tradition of promoting fiction that furthers civil and environmental causes in a market that would rather leave such voices unheard.”

Eco-Fiction.com

 

“In Clovis, Jack Clinton spins a wonder-filled tale poetically rendered in the Western landscape, ripe with classic, modern-day struggles, and inhabited by characters you grow to love.”

Jackson Hole Skier Magazine

“Clovis is a lyrical tale set in the New West where the interests of oil companies clash with the need to preserve and record the artefacts left by long gone inhabitants of the land. In this novel, Hanna and her archeological compatriots are hired by CanAm Oil Company to assess the impact of an oil line on historical native sites. The complex relationships between her and her co-workers fascinate. The lush descriptions of the natural beauty she encounters are seductive. This is truly a wonderful look into the unique personality of people who choose to make a living doing field work. They are a breed apart. An excellent read that keeps you engaged from the beginning.”

Big Sky Independent Press, 4.5/5 Stars

“Clovis is a wonder of a novel that will dazzle you with its impassioned understanding of archeology, Western landscapes, and human connection. Jack Clinton’s writing about hiking and climbing and seeking solace in the outdoors is among the best I’ve ever read. In Hanna, Clinton has created an unconventional heroine for all seasons, a humane and restless seeker who can master every terrain except that of her own heart.”

—Alyson Hagy, author of Boleto

 

About the Author

Jack Clinton is the winner of the The Neltje Blanchan Award, for which $1,000, is given for the best poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or script which is informed by a relationship with the natural world.

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Transoceanic Lights Transoceanic Lights

Transoceanic Lights

Transoceanic Lights

award-seal-5-und-35

Transoceanic Lights

2016 National Book Foundation ‘5 Under 35 Award’ Winner

Leapfrog Fiction Contest Semifinalist; Asheville Award Finalist; Willow Books Literature Award Finalist

First published by Harvard Square Editions, March 2, 2015 – Read an excerpt on Electric Lit

Listen to S.Li reading an excerpt at the National Book Foundation Celebration

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Tears Before Exaltation Tears Before Exaltation

Tears Before Exaltation

Tears Before Exaltation


National Indie Excellence Award Winner; Reviewer’s Choice Award Winner; CIPA EVVY Award Winner; and
Readers’ Favorite Award Winner

Tears Before

Exaltation

A diverse, medical novel by Fidelis O. Mkparu

At Barnes & Noble’s Summer 2018 Local Author Exhibition, Akron, OH

When Ben Ava, a struggling medical student facing insurmountable financial worries, receives a scholarship offer for a Medical Center in Memphis, he thinks that his tenuous future is finally secure. But Ben’s past will not leave him alone. His fellow scholarship winner is his old friend Brenda—a young medical student with extraordinary talent whose troubled past has made her self-destructive and dangerous. In Memphis, their lives become increasingly tangled as Ben is pulled into Brenda’s orbit. Soon, he finds himself risking his medical education, his new romance, and his entire future in the hopes of steering himself and Brenda through the tumult of their shared loneliness and trauma.

Tears Before Exaltation is a literary drama about coping with the past, surviving the present, and the blurred lines between courage and insanity, hate and love.

Order

Tears Before Exaltation

by Fidelis O. Mkparu
Release date: March 16, 2018
Genre: Fiction; Diverse Fiction
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-941861-60-8

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WDPN AM-1310 Interviews Fidelis O. Mkparu >>

 

“When Ben Ava, a struggling medical student facing insurmountable financial worries, receives a scholarship offer for a Medical Center in Memphis, he thinks that his tenuous future is finally secure. But Ben’s past will not leave him alone. His fellow scholarship winner is his old friend Brenda—a young medical student with extraordinary talent whose troubled past has made her self-destructive and dangerous. In Memphis, their lives become increasingly tangled as Ben is pulled into Brenda’s orbit. Soon, he finds himself risking his medical education, his new romance, and his entire future in the hopes of steering himself and Brenda through the tumult of their shared loneliness and trauma. Drawing upon his own medical background, Tears Before Exaltation by Fidelis O. Mkparu is a deftly scripted literary drama about coping with the past, surviving the present, and the blurred lines between courage and insanity, hate and love. While very highly recommended for both community and academic library Contemporary Literary Fiction collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that Tears Before Exaltation is also available in a digital book format (Kindle, $9.99).”

Midwest Book Review

 

“Tears Before Exaltation is a stunning literary drama that combines key elements such as romance, suspense, and psychological intrigue. The author immediately caught my attention by creating a likable, compassionate hero who rules his life by acting with integrity. He is surrounded by several key players who do not share his ethical standards. The writing is contemporary and compassionate, tackling highly relevant social issues such as mental illness, including alcoholism and depression. The story has an engaging pace that makes it hard to put down with twists and excitement that will leave you wanting more.”

Reader Views

 

“Fidelis O. Mkparu succeeds in making readers fall in love with his protagonist, making Ben very real and believable. I enjoyed the pacing, the gorgeous prose, and the exciting conversations. Tears Before Exaltation is one of those novels that explores the struggles of medical students, and it succinctly captures the drama that takes place behind closed doors in hospitals. A very engaging story!”

Readers’ Favorite 5-Star Review, Arya Fomonyuy

 

“Tears before Exaltation is an engaging story that won’t leave you indifferent, a page-turner that will keep you reading eagerly until the end.”

Consuelo Murgia

 

“In his new novel Tears before Exaltation, Fidelis O. Mkparu’s literary growth is evident as he delves deeper into matters only touched on in his previous novel, Love’s Affliction. His characters are dealing with realistic issues that you and I can identify with, but with a twist of suspense, curiosity and intrigue. Packed with pathos, the impact of Fidelis O. Mkparu, Tears Before Exaltation, will stay with you long after you put it down. Fidelis O. Mkparu has written yet another worthwhile read.”

—Kayron El-Kildani, Michigan Book Club

 

“Tears Before Exaltation is a story that is filled with a lot of emotion, and the writing itself is compassionate. Fidelis O. Mkparu’s prose flows gracefully, adding a powerful ingredient to an already quickened pace. The author crafts dialogues that are real and engaging, using them to heighten the tension and build conflict as well as character. Ben is a character that the modern American student will easily empathize with, and they will love how he explores the medical system and brings to light the challenges that millions are going through. The story feels so real that one could imagine it happening just next door.”

Readers’ Favorite 5-Star Review, Romuald Dzemo

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Tears Before Exaltation by Fidelis O. Mkparu

Tears Before Exaltation

by Fidelis O. Mkparu

Giveaway ends March 29, 2018.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter Giveaway

“Tears before Exaltation is a suspenseful book that drives the readers in high gear sparking curiosity and a craving for more.”

—Patrick Achebe, Author of Whispering Waves

“Ben is the type of character that anyone can find ways to relate to. He’s overwhelmed, torn, emotionally wrung out, stressed and more, but at the same time he is kind, supportive, dedicated and a passionate friend. In this book, not only do you see all of that, but you see him grow and become even more developed as time goes on. You never know what’s going to happen to him or what’s going to happen to any of the characters throughout this book, but you’ll definitely want to. I loved the way the story unfolded and the way that each of the characters continued to become stronger because of each other. Tears Before Exaltation by Fidelis O. Mkparu is a story about overcoming obstacles and most certainly a story about friendship.”

—Samantha Dewitt (Rivera), Readers’ Favorite 5-Star Review

“The story of the relationships between the doctor character and Brenda is captivating and easily draws the reader into a narrative that successfully blends social, economic, intercultural, and interracial issues. This book is part of a literary production which is very important and deserves both critical attention and analysis.”

—Babacar M’Baye, PhD, Professor, Kent State University, author of The Trickster Comes West

About the Author

Fidelis O. Mkparu is a Harvard-trained cardiologist who has written medical articles for both scientific and lay audiences. His previous novel, Love’s Affliction, was a 2016 Nautilus Book Awards Silver Winner for Fiction, a Reader Views Literary Award Winner for 2015/2016, and a finalist for the 2015 INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award for Multicultural Fiction. He lives in Canton, Ohio. Web site: http://fidelismkparu.com

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A Duplicate Daughter A Duplicate Daughter

A Duplicate Daughter

A Duplicate Daughter

A Duplicate Daughter

By Randy Nelson

 
 
 

Twelve years after a botched kidnapping, young Mía Muñoz gets returned to a life of wealth and privilege in California. It’s the right name. But it’s the wrong girl.

High in the Sierra Madre mountains of northern Mexico, impoverished Amedeo Munoz rescues an anonymous baby girl during a 1936 earthquake, insisting that she is his daughter. Twelve years later, when young Maria is ‘rescued’ again, this time by detective Gerald Manley, a more glamorous lie takes hold.–What happens when the princess and the pauper are the same person?

Mia, as she is known, adapts well to her new life, never doubting the narrative that has absorbed her…until she has to choose between two worlds.
 
 
 

Order

A Duplicate Daughter


by Randy Nelson
Release date: October 31, 2017
Genre: Literary Fiction; Crime; Suspense
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-941861-49-3

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Praise for A Duplicate Daughter

“I stayed up way too late last night finishing this gorgeous novel – one of the most beautifully written stories I’ve read in a while … the kind that really envelops and transports the reader.”

—Towles Kintz, Proximity Magazine

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

About the Author

Randy Nelson is a multiple-award-winning writer whose work has appeared in numerous national and international publications. His short story collection, The Imaginary Lives of Mechanical Men won the Flannery O’Connor Award for short fiction. The San Francisco Chronicle wrote that “Nelson is expert at crafting scenes of desperation resolved, zealotry succumbed to and disaffection upended—all while refusing to repeat instance, image or idea,” and Publishers Weekly praised Nelson’s collection “Running the gamut from weird to outright creepy, these thirteen stories shed sympathetic light on the unseemly, the ungainly and the unrefined.”

Nelson’s individual stories have also been recognized in Pushcart Prize Stories, Best American Short Stories, and as a Carson McCullers Award winner in Story. With his wife Susan he lives in Davidson, NC, where he is the Virginia Lasater Irvin Professor of English at Davidson College.

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How Fast Can You Run How Fast Can You Run

How Fast Can You Run

How Fast Can You Run

How Fast Can You Run

IPPY medalist

Living Now Book Award medalist
INDIEFAB Finalist#1 Amazon bestseller in biographical fiction
Featured in Drexel Magazine

 

Harriet Levin Millan at

Split This Rock Social Change Book Fair | April 19-21, 2018 | 10 am to 3:30 pm in Washington D.C.

How Fast Can You Run at the New Delhi World Book Fair


Included in Reader’s Digest’s Best Books That Inspire You to Travel

A migrant novel based on the true story of Lost Boy of Sudan Michael Majok Kuch

 

“The best war novel told from a young boy’s perspective since Jerzy Kozinski’s The Painted Bird.” —Nyoul Lueth Tong, author of There is a Country: New Writing from the New Country of South Sudan

 

Set across a backdrop of refugee migration that spans Africa, America and Australia, How Fast Can You Run is the inspiring story of Michael Majok Kuch and his journey to find his mother. In 1988, Majok, as a five-year-old boy, fled his burning village in southern Sudan when the North systematically destroyed it, searching for John Garang, the South’s leader. Majok, along with thousands of other fleeing people, many of them unaccompanied minors, trekked through the wilderness in Sudan, Ethiopia, and Kenya to arrive at a series of refugee camps where he would live for the next ten years. When the U.S. brokered an agreement, granting approximately 4,000 unaccompanied minors political asylum, Majok, now Michael, was given a new start in the U.S. Yet his new life was not without trauma. He faced prejudice once again, disrupting the promise of his new beginnings. This is a story of a survivor who in facing challenge after challenge summons the courageous spirit of millions of refugees throughout history and today.

Order

How Fast Can You Run


by Harriet Levin Millan
Release date: October 28, 2016
Genre: True Fiction, Migrant Fiction, Suspense
Price: $22.95 ISBN: 978-1-941861-20-2 paperback
$35.50 ISBN: 978-1-941861-41-7 hardback

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Harriet Levin Millan on Aspen, CO Public Radio

Iowa Public Radio interviews Harriet Levin Millan

Join “The Smart Set Read” book discussion on Goodreads, and get your free copy of How Fast Can You Run, as a download on Amazon.com from April 3-7.

Click here to accept the invitation.

WTOP Radio News Anchor Bruce Alan talks with author Harriet Levin Millan about her very real story of a young boy separated from his family at the age of 5 when his village was destroyed in Sudan’s civil war — how he survived — and what he’s up to now.


“Many people have heard of Africa’s lost boys, but none tell their story quite so well as Harriet Levin Millan, who shares her first-hand account, in this elegantly written book. As inspirational as it is lustrous, the book follows the journey of lost boy, Michael Majok Kuch, as he sets off to find his mother, after his village is burned down in Southern Sudan.”

Reader’s Digest

“…the strength here is in Millan’s ability to fully inhabit Majok’s consciousness; she has crafted a rich tale that authentically portrays—and doesn’t exploit—Majok’s refugee experience. A deeply felt novel of grace and intelligence.”

Kirkus

“For Majok, committing to a future in the U.S. feels like giving up on the prospect of resuming life with his family in Sudan. The novel brilliantly conveys how he carries the cumulative weight of his experiences, sometimes feeling most exhausted by it in quiet moments. Healing is not a straight trajectory, but a winding path through surprising places.”

Iowa Review

“Generosity and justice prevail in the storytelling . . . an unforgettable individual portrait of all-too-impersonal war. ”

The Rumpus

“How Fast Can You Run is an insightful, gripping, and compassionate account of the second Sudanese Civil War and refugee life in America. Michael Majok Kuch’s observations, as the author has written them, about what happens to him over the course of his young life are heartbreaking and hopeful in equal measure. Refugees are individuals. They are not the faceless, nameless millions we in the West encounter only on the evening news. How Fast Can You Run is an important reminder of this.”

Consequence Magazine

“The circuitous journey in How Fast You Can Run is like a story that never ends. The main character Majok struggles with warfare and starvation even within the confines of refugee camps. When he comes to America, he deals with the terror of a new country and betrayal.”

Frederick News Post

“The un-imaginable journey of Sudanese refugee Michael Majok Kuch becomes an epic tale through the telling of Harriet Levin Millan’s How Fast Can You Run. Genre bursting, this part memoir, part bildunsroman, part adventure tale, and part heart-felt family reunion avoids the pitfalls of many of its predecessors. Full characterization from Sudan to Philadelphia, exacting detail from beginning to end, clearly visualized African landscapes in all their complexity; there are no broad brushstrokes of civil war, refugee plight and immigration here. A fuller story than How Fast Can You Run cannot have been told of the tragic events of war in Sudan that uproot the young boy from the Dinka plains of Southern Sudan to Kakuma refugee camp to Nairobi and Philadelphia and how he has to fight a different kind of war in America from which he emerges victorious. Epic.”

—Bill Kahora, Editor, Kwani

“…an unforgettable individual portrait of all-too-impersonal war. A book like How Fast Can You Run is an eye-opening experience, awakening empathy for a much wider world.”

prickofthespindle.org

“In How Fast Can You Run Harriet Levin Millan turns novel-biography into a genre of its own and shows how empathy can turn into a true solidarity. This is a beautiful and crucial story told by two people, one Sudanese with dreams of independence, the other, an American poet who listens to Michael Majok Kuch through her imagination. For Mike in the United States, Halloween with strange fruit hanging triggers PTSD, ethnicity becomes race, soldiers become white police, tragedy there becomes tragedy here and in the end there is only one life for Mike to live. An enduring image for me – a refugee boy blowing up a discarded bloody surgical glove to make a soccer ball, this bio-novel reminds us that the most human of all activities, the one thing that binds us all is finding beauty even in impossible situations.”

—Mukoma Wa Ngugi, author of Nairobi Heat

“Harriet Levin Millan has transformed the story of one “lost boy” into an earthy, grittily told, highly affecting novel. With a poet’s piercing eye, attuned ear, and facility for recognizing resonant moments, Ms. Millan has written an emotionally rich-veined, dramatically moving and ultimately triumphant story. I emerged from this ingenious, fast-paced novel with the sensation of having been taken along by its protagonist on a poignant, heart-pounding journey, enlarged, and changed.”

—Okey Ndibe, author Foreign Gods, Inc.

“And an excellent wordsmith can bring everything together in a story line that’s completely accessible to newcomers to this history…. Few accounts can adequately capture such experiences, but where nonfiction may falter, How Fast Can You Run proves that an adept writer can step in and use the fiction format to capture the drama, psychology, and tension of civil war from a child’s eye (in this case, Michael Majok Kuch)….Because How Fast Can You Run is based on a true saga, the viewpoints and experiences of Kuch come to vivid life and weave a powerful saga of politics, struggle, and survival that’s hard to put down. Any reader interested in accounts of the Sudanese war will find this a compelling method of absorbing history at its most meaningful: through the eyes of a young eyewitness who didn’t just observe events, but lived through and survived them.”

—D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

“How Fast Can You Run is the story of the indomitable spirit of a boy who overcomes inconceivable loss and countless instances of physical and emotional danger, exiled from everything he had ever known. Millan’s telling of Kuch’s story is a refugee’s dark odyssey that witnesses the vicious realities of the Sudanese conflict and the power of a single human life to overcome impossible trauma with perseverance, hard-won wisdom, and an unyielding grace. Devastating, moving, full of magical grace.”

—Tyler Meier, Executive Director, University of Arizona Poetry Center

“In How Fast Can You Run, Harriet Levin Millan tells the story of one boy’s search for a mother’s love through almost unimaginable pain and suffering. After being separated from his family at the age of five during Sudan’s civil war, Majok and later Mike, the novel’s real-life South Sudanese protagonist, braved war, hunger, and desperate illness before arriving in the United States as a refugee. Millan, who met Michael Majok Kuch when her creative writing class interviewed Sudanese immigrants, brilliantly renders the contours of Dinka and refugee life as well as the internal life of a young refugee tormented by the loss of his family and his childhood. Congratulations to Millan. How Fast Can You Run is a marvelous achievement.”

—Deborah Scroggins, author, Emma’s War: A True Story of Love and Death in Sudan

Michael Majok Kuch returned to his homeland of South Sudan in 2010, after attending high school, college, and graduate school in Philadelphia. In 2005, he was featured in the PBS Documentary, Dinka Diaries, as one of the Lost Boys of Sudan. In 2008, he was the recipient of a Fulbright U.S. Department of Education Scholarship to Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya. He currently works for the government of the Republic of South Sudan, where he is an advisor in Research and Policy in the Office of the President. He lives in Juba with his wife and daughter.

Readings & Presentations

Sept 13, 2016, 6:00 PM, Katz JCC, 1301 Springdale Road, Cherry Hill, NJ

Sept. 27, 2016, 7:00 PM, Federation for Jewish Philanthropy of Upper Fairfield County, Fairfield, Conn

October 13 2016, Merchantville Book Club, 7-9 PM

*October 28, 2016, 4:00-6:00 PM Book Launch, Drexel University, Pearlstein Gallery
(concurrent with Warp & Weft; work by Caroline Lathan Steifel), 3401 Filbert Street, October 28, 4:00-6:00 PM

*October 30, 2016, 10:30 AM, Har Zion Temple, Penn Valley, PA

*November 1, 2016, Live! Radio Times with Marty Moss Coane, WHYY 90.9 10-11 AM

*November 1, 2016, 6:00 PM, Philadelphia City Institute, Free Library of Philadelphia, 1905 Locust Street

*November 2, 2016, 7:00 PM, Main Line Books, 116 North Wayne Avenue, Wayne PA

*November 3, 2016, Center for Africana Studies Center, University of Pennsylvania, 3401 Walnut Street, Phila.

*November 9th, 2016, The Peace Center, featuring a talk by Michael Majok Kuch, 109 Maple Avenue, Langhorne PA

*November 15, 2016, 4 PM, Arcadia University, 450 S. Easton Road, Glenside, PA

*November 17, 2016, Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, Lock Haven, PA

*November 18, 2016, 9:40 AM, Friends Central School, 1101 City Ave., Wynnewood, PA

*November 20, 2016, 3:00 PM Marcus Jewish Community Center, Atlanta Georgia

*November 22, 2016, Springside Chestnut Hill Academy, 500 W Willow Grove Ave, Phila., PA

*November 30, 2016, University of Pennsylvania, International Social Work Class, Fisher Bennet Hall Room 141, 5:00 PM

*December 1, 2016, University of Pittsburgh, African Studies Program, 4217 Posvar Hall, 2-3:30 PM

*December 1, 2016, 8 PM City of Asylum at Alphabet City, 40 W. North Ave. – Pittsburgh, PA – 15212

*December 12, 2016, 7 PM, Amy and Anne’s Book Club, New York New York

*December 15, 2016, 7 PM, Kesher Israel, 4th and Lombard, Philadelphia PA

December 20th, 2016, Bryn Gweled Homesteads Book Club

*January 9, 2017, Australia Book Launch The Avid Reader, Brisbane, Australia

*Jan 19, 2017, 4:30 PM, LaSalle College High School, 8605 Cheltenham Avenue, Wyndmoor, PA

*Jan 20th, 2017, 9:00 AM, Central High School, Philadelphia

*January 22, 2017, 2:00 PM, C. Burr Artz Public Library, sponsored by Curious Iguana Books, 10010 East Partick Street, Frederick MD

*January 24, 2017, 7 :00 PM, BookCulture, (with Jill Bialosky) 450 Columbus Avenue, New York, New York

*January 25, 2017, 4:30 PM, La Salle High School, 8605 Cheltenham Avenue, Glenside, PA

February 15, 2017, Merchantville Women’s Club, Merchantville, NJ

February 8-11, 2017, TBA, Associated Writing Programs Annual Conference, Washington D.C., “When Authors Move in and Out of Their Countries and Genres,” with Garth Greenwell, Dina Elenbogen and Fabienne Joshaphat.

Feb 16 or 21, 2017, 12:30 PM, Sheree’s Book Club, Bryn Mawr, PA

Feb 16, 2017, 7 PM, Wooden Shoe Books 704 South Street, Philadelphia, PA

*February 22, 2017, (Online) Charter for Compassion Global Read—Free, Register here. Charter for Compassion International is thrilled to be collaborating with Harriet Levin Millan for their Global Read Program! Charter members from all around the world have been reading Harriet’s novel How Fast Can You Run and will come together for an online conversation with Harriet (and the protagonist from the book itself!) on February 22nd at 9:00 am PST. This will be their kickoff Global Read Session of 2017!

March 1, 2017, 7 PM, SUNY Stony Brook Southampton MFA Program, Writers Speak Series with Omar Bah.

March 6, 2017, 7:00 PM, Poetry Reading, Free L library of Philadelphia (with Jill Bialosky), Philadelphia, PA

March 29, 2017, 5:00 PM Temple Beth Zion Israel, 300S 18th St. Philadelphia, PA

April 9, 2017, 10:00 AM, Beth El Men’s Club, 8215 Old Georgetown Road, Bethesda, MD

May 7, 2017, 9:30 AM, Congregation Sukkat Shalom, Willamette, IL

May 8, 2017, Prairie Lights Bookstore, Iowa City, Iowa

June 8, 2017, Explorer Book Store, Aspen, CO

June 9-11, 2017, 3-4 PM, Philadelphia Writers Conference, Novel Writing Workshop – *appearing with Michael Majok Kuch

June 12, 7:30 PM, My Book Club, Huntingdon Valley, PA

June 23, 12 noon, PEN Haiti, (Poetry Workshop) Thomassin, Haiti

*September 8, 12-2 PM, South Sudan Flag Raising Ceremony, City Hall, Mayor’s Conversation Hall, 2nd Floor, Philadelphia, PA—postponed to 2018

Sept 19, Janey’s Book Club, Cherry Hill, NJ

Sept 26, 7 PM, Gerri’s Book Club, Swarthmore, PA

*October 13, Mighty Writers West, 3861 Lancaster Avenue, Phila, PA workshop 4-5:30; reading and presentation, 6-8 PM

November 3, 7:30 PM, Bucks County Community College, 275 Swamp Road, Newtown, PA http://tickets.bucks.edu/event/b2673d8f4d475af733e199532c450346

November 8th, 7:00 PM, Temple Beth Zion – Beth Israel, 300 S. 18th Street https://bzbi.org/learn/adult-learning/sicha/

Miami Book Fair, November 18-19th, Miami Florida

Jan 31, Amherst College, Amherst, MA

March 8, AWP 2018, Tampa Florida, “Poets Who Write Prose,” with Gregory Pardlo, Marilyn Chin , Jill Bialosky and Joy Harjo

 

More news on the migrant crisis

Inside the World’s Biggest Refugee Camp‘—The BBC interviews refugees from Somalia in the largest refugee camp in the world

where 300 000 people live in Kenya.

Articles

Jewish Novelist Writes Inspirational Story of Sudanese Refugee’s Life

Refugees Run for Rio Olympic Dream Team

Article on Kakuma, the camp Mike lived in.

Malala Yousafzai Spends Her 19th Birthday in World’s Largest Refugee Camp

 

Poetry by Harriet Levin Millan

Harriet’s poetry in Ghost Town

 

About the Author

Harriet Levin Millan is a prize winning poet and writer. Her poetry collection, The Christmas Show, (Beacon Press) was selected for the Barnard New Women Poets Prize and The Poetry Society of America’s Alice Fay di Castagnola Award. She received a MFA from the University of Iowa’s Writers Workshop and has written for The Kenyon Review, Ploughshares, Prairie Schooner, The Harvard Review, The Iowa Review, PEN America, The Smart Set, among other publications. She and her family founded the Reunion Project and along with the participation of Philadelphia-area high school and college students, raised money to reunite several Lost Boys and Girls of Sudan with their mothers living abroad. She teaches creative writing in the English Department at Drexel University and directs the Certificate Program in Writing and Publishing. She lives with her husband outside Philadelphia.

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