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Restore The Republic - The Home of the Freedom Movement!

R.P. BenDedek

Magic City Book Basket 2015 No. 24
By R.P. BenDedek
Jul 14, 2015 - 6:55:30 AM

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"Magic City Book Basket 2015" brings to the attention of readers via publication of publicity material, various new book releases. This year the frequency of publication and number of books in each basket will vary and while we still have book reviewers at Magic City we unfortunately can't do book reviews for every book. We are still offering to assist authors in promoting their books via a "No Charge - No Pay" self-promotions service. We invite authors to send in 'stand alone' articles on a topic that readership might find interesting.

  • This is not an opportunity to rehash publicity material and authors should not use their book title as the article title.
  • When we publish author articles, we do include author bios and a photograph of the book cover and additionally add the link to a purchase page.

We are extremely grateful to those authors who took advantage of this offer in 2014 and a list of those authors and their articles for July-Dec 2014 may be found here. At the end of last year our book reviewers cut back on their book requests while waiting to see what changes would occur with a new editor in 2015. With the book baskets now recommenced our reviewers have once again started requesting books and once those books are received and read, will once again be offering us their reviews. (Books Reviewed July to December 2014)

Laure McCourt Lopez Author Interviews

Interview with Author Dr. Lois Brittell Published July 13, 2015

Author Articles Since Basket No. 23

  1. Know Thyself by Edna E Craven author of "Universal Mind Revealed"
  2. Food for Thought by Elisabeth Falcone Author of "Mommy, Was Grandpa a Nazi?"
  3. Fear Shapes Our Lives by Penny Gill Author of "What in the World is Going On"
  4. Same-Sex Ruling Gift or Curse to the Nation? by Bruce Biller author of "The god-man seed of Satan"
  5. Special WW1 Remembrance -- The Baker Boys by Clinton mhic Aonghais Author of "The Baker Boys"

Book Reviews Published Since Basket No. 23

Martha Stevens-David Review: "Death of a Mill Girl" by Clyde Linsley
July 9, 2015

Death of a Mill Girl" by Clyde Linsley held my attention from the very beginning. I found the author's "historical inclusions" to be very interesting. His ability to build the "suspense" factor in his story was also very well-done. According to the publicity material for this book two million American children suffered harsh working conditions during the Industrial Revolution but fixing the problem didn't happen until the early twentieth century.

Martha Stevens-David Review: "The Sketching Detective" by Jack McCormac
July 9, 2015

This story is a murder mystery but I found that most of the story line was combined with the story of a marriage that had gone off the road and one man's attempt to get his wife to show her love for him once again. It was not easy to understand because it has so many characters involved in the plot.

Milt Gross Book Review: "The Oregon Trail" by the late Francis Parkman Jr.
July 8, 2015

The book follows in first person a trip across part of the West, and it mentions contact with wagon trails heading for Oregon. But I didn't read of any trip in the first person of the Oregon Trail itself. The incidents in the book seem to be real, including camping with Native Americans. It's a book I'd recommend, because it shares the values or lack thereof of that period in American history, not made up from today but as the values were then. I personally am glad those values have changed. Had they not, there probably would be no buffalo alive today nor any parks of any type where the visitor can see what the land was like when the parks were founded.

M. Stevens-David Review: "A Forbidden Boundary" by Shauna Springs
July 8, 2015

This book, "A Forbidden Boundary" is an "historical" fiction novel written by Shauna Springs. Set in 1902, this work details the interactions of a wealthy inestment banker and his unrelenting control over his family and its servants. As the publicity material states: "..it teaches that some things never change. There are still issues of racism, classism and women's rights. Sometimes you have to sacrifice everything, including family, to be with the one you love."

R.P. BenDedek
Email
: rpbendedek@hotmail.com
www.kingscalendar.com


No. 1

"Journey Beyond Hardship: A Practical, Hopeful Guide for Getting Through Tough Times"

By Greg Pacini

"Journey Beyond Hardship: A Practical, Hopeful Guide for Getting Through Tough Times" By Greg Pacini
ST. LOUIS -- From grief to unemployment, from infidelity to prejudice, from natural disasters to emotional abuse, to simply feeling empty, everyone faces hardship at some point. The way one moves beyond it is the primary focus of Greg Pacini's new book, "Journey Beyond Hardship". Pacini has been in the psychotherapy profession for 35 years and runs his own private practice as a counselor. He has led over 3500 group therapy sessions for hardship survivors. Now, his new book offers a compelling and practical manual for managing life's most difficult times, straight from an expert in the field.

"Hardship is part of the human condition," Pacini said. "But so is the human spirit and ability to overcome."

In his new book, Pacini details the process of recovery from hardship. In addition, he outlines the biology of hope and offers concrete tools for responding to anxiety, sleeplessness and relationship tensions, along with other expressions of his expertise.

You may be fighting with all your might to leave an abusive relationship or to recover from an addiction. Your body may be altered by illness or injury, and the adjustment may seem more than you can bear. Miscarriage may have you mourning more than you imagined possible. You may be picking up the pieces of your life after a natural disaster. You may be heartbroken. You may be a target of prejudice. You may be in terror at the news of a diagnosis. You may be struggling after months without work. Your life may feel empty for some clear reason or no reason at all. Whatever the source, if something continues to be hard for you, then it is hardship. Difficult thoughts and feelings come with difficult times. As a guide for these tough times, Journey Beyond Hardship not only provides a road map for the trip-it offers concrete tools for making your way. One technique called Reading the Edges allows you to experience emotions without being overwhelmed by them. Hope can be hard to come by during times of trauma and tragedy. Journey Beyond Hardship introduces a science-based means for generating hope. Hardship is part of the human condition. So is the human spirit to overcome. (Overview at Balboa Press)

Greg Pacini is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Certified Group Pschotherapist with 35 years of experience. He is a speaker, consultant, and psychotherapist in private practice providing dream work, spiritual quest support and help managing hardship, anxiety and depression. Visit him at www.journeybeyondhardship.com , www.gregpacini.com and on Facebook at Greg Pacini, Counselor, LLC.

"Journey Beyond Hardship: A Practical, Hopeful Guide for Getting Through Tough Times"
By Greg Pacini
Balboa Press
Published 4/23/2015
236 pages
Softcover $17
HArdcover $34
E-book $8

No. 2

"Interview With Your Self"

by Mercedes Tur Escriva

"Interview With Your Self" by Mercedes Tur Escriva
VALENCIA, Spain -- With the economic crises sweeping the planet and an oversaturated media constantly telling people what they should do, self-identity and self-empowerment are becoming increasingly more difficult to come by.

"My work with clients made me realize that all too often people are looking for answers from the outside world to solve their problems," Ayurvedic psychologist, author and teacher Mercedes Tur Escriva, said. "Once they reconnected with their inner-wise Self they realized they were capable of solving the problems on their own."

Tur Escriva wants to show people how to reconnect with their inner-wise Self in order to encourage self- examination that will lead to self-development and a greater trust in your inner-soul. Her new guide, "Interview With Your Self," can start people on that journey or guide anyone on their spiritual path. Tur Escriva has faced relationship troubles, economic battles, depression and even a suicide attempt of her own during her younger years. The principals she applies in the book helped her to get through her most trying times and now she wishes to show others how to connect with the same power inside of them.

"Interview With Your Self" provides step-by-step instructions through a number of questions, analogies and lessons that will reveal to readers how to find clarity, a path to peace and a new level of awareness.

Mercedes Tur Escriva has a BSC with honors in psychology and a master's degree in music therapy. Despite personal crises she was able to open her own practice and take her messages across the globe. She has lived in the U.K., Spain, Germany and Mexico.

"Interview With Your Self"
By Mercedes Tur Escriva
Balboa Press
Published 11/13/2014
126 pages
ISBN: 978-1-45251-985-2
Softcover $11.99
ISBN: 978-1-4525-1986
Hardcover $28.95

No. 3

"A Detail of History"

Arek Hersh

"A Detail of History" Arek Hersh
United Kingdom -- Not many of us are privileged enough to be able to read a first-hand account of what went on in the world's most notorious German prisoner of war camp. Arek Hersh, however, has made that possible for us. His writing is a chilling reminder of the atrocities of World War II and his tale an example of how, despite countless horrors being inflicted on an individual (in this case a child) the desire to live can still triumph in the end. Theoretically Arek shouldn't have survived Auschwitz. But wonderfully for us he did. This is a fascinating account of one man's incredible early life.

Synopsis: Born in Poland in 1928 to parents who were Orthodox Jews, Arek was the second youngest of five children. Aged 10 he was sent by the Germans to Otoschno Labour Camp where he worked on the Warsaw to Berlin railway until the age of 12. He was one of only 11 from 2500 Jewish individuals to survive. Aged 12 Arek was allowed to stay with his family back in Poland for two weeks. It was to be the last time he would see them alive. He was taken to an orphanage in Lodz and forced to work in a textile mill. In June 1944 the Germans ordered the orphanage to close. On 25 August 185 of the children were put onto a truck, taken to a small railway station and transported in cattle wagons to Birkenau-Auschwitz. On arrival Arek the Nazis separated people into two rows: the left and right. He was ordered to go to the left but soon realised the line was headed to the gas chamber. When the guard's attention was distracted he jumped to the right. Of the 185 orphans, only Arek and two others survived that day. In January 1945 Arek was among the thousands of men and women from Auschwitz forced onto a death march towards Germany then put onto good wagons and taken to Buchenwalk Concentration Camp for four months. Another move, this time to Weimar and the Theresienstadt ghetto. At this point they were finally liberated by the Russian army. Arek was amongst 300 children shipped to England with only eight hours of language lessons to get by on.

  • "A Detail of History" available at www.amazon.co.uk
  • It can also be found on iTunes, Nook and Kobo.

Arek Hersh, 86, is today the only surviving child of three sisters and two brothers after his family -- bar one sister - were wiped out in the Holocaust. He discovered his eldest sister Mania in Germany two years after the end of the war. Arek made England his home and settled in the Lake District where he married and had three daughters. Today he lives in Leeds and can add a further seven grandchildren to his family number. He has led a reasonably quiet and happy life where he has appreciated every moment; aware that in his earlier life survival was not always guaranteed. He spends much of his time educating youngsters on the atrocities of World War II and has indeed been rewarded with an MBE for Services to Education. He has returned to Auschwitz on educational trips.

No. 4

"A World War I Adventure"

By House of Harkness

"A World War I Adventure" By House of Harkness
QUEENS, N.Y. -- Christopher, Jeffrey, Bruce, and Timothy Harkness never knew their grandfather, so they were pleasantly surprised when their mother found his untouched diaries hidden in the bottom of an old display case. The information contained within those diaries -- a firsthand account of World War I -- astounded them. Donald E. Harkness, Sr. was a New Zealand bomber pilot for England's Royal Naval Air Service during WWI. In the new book, A World War I Adventure, his descendants have compiled his wartime diaries, letters, and original photographs, providing a compelling look inside the life of an early aviator and the role he played in the then- new form of aerial bombing during one of the deadliest wars in history.

"We felt it was important to publish his story for it contains never before printed descriptions and photos of a bloody war that he carefully recorded for his family, and the world, to remember," Bruce Harkness said.

As the world reflects upon the First World War's centennial, A World War I Adventure is a timely reminder of the dangers faced and the sacrifices made by the brave young men who flew and fought to protect freedom in the War to End All Wars.

A deeply personal and revealing eyewitness narrative of one airman's life as a bomber pilot in England's RNAS (Royal Naval Air Service) in WWI. It is a true story, an adventure, and a war memoir carefully constructed from Captain Donald E. Harkness's unpublished diaries, letters, sketches and photographs - only recently uncovered nearly a century later - that documented his remarkable experiences and military adventures over England, France and Belgium. The first book written by a highly decorated WWI flyer from New Zealand that captures the "behind the scenes" life of RNAS pilots, as well as the surprises, terrors, traumas, humor, and sheer excitement of an aerial form of combat never before experienced by anyone, anywhere - and only eleven short years after the Wright Brothers historic flight at Kitty Hawk. With a talent for writing, Don begins an epic journey at a major turning point in history when the world is poised at the dawn of flight, and bracing itself for unknown dangers of unprecedented sophistication and savagery. (Read more Overview at >"AuthorHouse)

A World War I Adventure is the result of a collaborative effort by RNAS Bomber Pilot Donald E. Harkness, Sr.'s descendants: his son, Donald E. Harkness, Jr., and his grandsons, Bruce, Jeffrey, Timothy, and Christopher. They decided to publish his stories after finding that his diaries were full of adventure, unusually complete, and well written. For more information, visit www.aww1adventure.com.

"A World War I Adventure"
By House of Harkness
AuthorHouse Publishing
Published 6/26/2014
ISBN: 978-1-4969-1409-5
582 pages
Softcover $27
Hardcover $36
E-book $4

No. 5

"Aging Wisely"

By Viola Mecke

"Aging Wisely" By Viola Mecke
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -- Everyone grows older, but few are prepared to deal with it.

Aging Wisely, the new book from Viola Mecke, PhD, ABPP, serves as a guide for navigating the emotionally challenging situations that come with growing older. Mecke examines the myriad life changes that lead many older adults to feelings of dissatisfaction and unhappiness.

"Growing older often presents very paradoxical situations," Mecke said. "Just at the time we feel comfortable with the experience and knowledge gained throughout life, we become less able to use them."

Mecke wrote the book using her experience as a psychotherapist and scholar, as well as life itself, to understand the challenges of aging. Four distinct phases, beginning at age 50, are marked by normal as well as unanticipated challenges. Each phase -- containing difficulties such as physical changes, retirement, and illness -- challenges one's self-awareness, relations with family and friends, and happiness. To approach these challenges with equanimity, resilience, and acceptance brings contentment, integrity, and peace.

"Aging offers a unique opportunity to know ourselves better. A different perspective on life comes as we become better acquainted with our inner self," Mecke said.

Viola Mecke, PhD, is a clinical psychologist with over forty years' experience in teaching and clinical practice. She was a clinical professor emerita (adjunct) in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University Medical School and emerita professor of educational psychology at the East Bay California State University. Her field of specialty has been the emotional and personality development and problems throughout the life span. She focused her interest on aging following health crises in her life. She is a cofounder of the Center for Intergenerational Relations in Santa Barbara, California.

"Aging Wisely"
By Viola Mecke, PhD, ABPP
Xlibris Press
Published 10/22/2013
ISBN: 978-1-4931-1426-9
126 pages
Softcover $17
E-book $3.50

No. 6

"Fear the Silence"

by Iain Cameron

"Fear the Silence" by Iain Cameron
United Kingdom -- When it comes to crime writing Iain Cameron has created a detective just as memorable as the fictional Rebus of his hero or the flawed police heroes of other leading crime writers. A character you can't help liking and rooting for, Scot DI Henderson deserves a break. Will Cameron give it to him?

Synopsis DI Henderson's focus right now is drug shipments -- big ones with the gall to land on his patch at Shoreham Harbour. But it's fine; he's about to have those gangsters behind bars any day now. Or at least he was. Now Kelly Langton has become the priority. The former glamour model and now smart local businesswoman has done a sinister disappearing act. The press are clamouring to know what's happened to Sussex's answer to Victoria Beckham. You can't walk around town without seeing evidence of her brand thanks to that clothing, jewellery and perfume empire of hers. The spotlight of blame lies firmly on her husband. A man who could do with brushing up on his interpersonal skills, Mr Brian Langton is the obvious candidate and the evidence seems to point that way too. DI Henderson thinks otherwise though -- especially when a second woman disappears in what appears to be eerily similar circumstances. Not only does he have to convince his superiors that they've got the wrong man, he's only too conscious of the sands of time slipping through his fingers.

A lover of the crime thriller genre, this is Iain Cameron's third novel in his detective series featuring DI Henderson, a series inspired after reading a book by Scots crime writer Ian Rankin. He hopes to go on and feature the Sussex-based detective in future books. Formerly an accountant, management consultant and retailer, he now writes full time at his home in Horsham, West Sussex. The author was born and brought up in Scotland before moving to Brighton in his twenties and later marrying. He has two daughters.

Iain Cameron is originally from Glasgow in Scotland, but has lived in Sussex for over twenty years; first in Brighton, then Crawley and now in a village not far from Horsham in West Sussex. He is married with two daughters, one at university and the other still at school. A qualified accountant he has worked in the computer, financial services and telecommunications industries. Over the years, he has accumulated a stockpile of stories, outlines, part-finished and finished books, some of which might eventually see the light of day as a published novel.

No. 7

"Incoming"

by Vic Amato

"Incoming" by Vic Amato
DETROIT, Mich. -- The literary short story is making a comeback. Writers such as Alice Munro, Anthony Doerr, and Lorrie Moore have all made waves in recent years with critically acclaimed collections of short stories. Author Vic Amato's new book, Incoming, is now another link in the chain.

Comprised of sixteen short stories, Incoming spans the breadth of human nature. With tales ranging from the extraordinary and the inspiring to the ridiculous, Amato creates a wide variety of characters all trying to cope with the vagaries of modern society.

Incoming includes tales of bad break ups and crazy old flames, consideration of a panhandler in the shadow of the World Trade Center, a death row inmate's last mortifying words, a father anguishing over his son failing the same way he did, death by peanut butter, a childhood betrayal, a lunch ripped off, and perhaps an Elvis sighting.

According to the independent Blueink Review, Amato's stories "are largely enjoyable, rendered in clear descriptive prose. . . (he) delivers original tales told by narrators who are generally likable and familiar and facing situations most readers can identify with . . . the stories vary in tone, but are often lighthearted or nostalgic, with a few darker tales thrown in."

Vic Amato explores the nature of humanity through stories that are extraordinary, inspiring and even ridiculous. In “Death by Peanut Butter,” you’ll meet Twain, a mentally challenged man with a large stock of fluffy white hair who stuffs his mouth and makes a break for it. Tourist Dan in “Manhattan Mendicant” encounters a downtown panhandler and resents him for being able to live in NYC. But when Dan sees the World Trade Center fall on TV, he can think only of the beggar. (Comments by Jim Bloch, author of The Slurpents in Overview at iUniverse)

Vic Amato holds a PhD in political science/public administration from Wayne State University, Detroit. He is a former journalist, mental health services administrator, and college instructor, and he served with the Third Infantry Division. He and his wife, Susan, live in Port Huron, Michigan.

"Incoming"
By Vic Amato
iUniverse Publishing
Published 4/2/2015
ISBN: 978-1-4917-6239-4
204 pages
Softcover $15
E-book $4

No. 8.

"Where is Robert? A Mother's Heartrending Journey"

"Where is Robert? A Mother's Heartrending Journey" by Russell W. Moore
This book exposes a provocative true story of triumph over tragedy. It provides a powerful account of a mothers courage and spiritual strength during a life fraught with an incredible succession of misfortunes, trauma, and death. The story focuses on Robert Thompson, the eighth of ten children. During the morning of Christmas Eve, 1977, fourteen-year-old Robert was roughhousing with two younger brothers while awaiting the call for breakfast. Moments before their mother made that call, Robert became upset and left the house, never to be seen or heard from again. He was the subject of a massive search that ended in shock and horror when his skeletal remains were discovered in the chimney of an abandoned halfway house a few blocks from the family home. Not only does this story reveal the power of the human spirit, it also challenges our own inner strength and philosophy of life.
(Amazon Overview)

Russell W. Moore was born and raised in the South Los Angeles community of Watts, which is infamously recognized as the flash point of catastrophic riots in 1955 that spearheaded an era of civil and racial uprisings of proportions never before seen in America. An only child, much of his formative years were spent under the roof and guidance of his maternal grandparents while his parents worked at night. Unable to connect with a network that was genuinely dedicated to abandoning the racial barriers that still existed in the late 1960s, he found the challenges and opportunities to have a positive impact on the lives of troubled youth highly rewarding from the authoritative role of a probation officer. A year after joining the Probation Department, Russell entered graduate studies at USCs School of Public Administration, earning an MPA in 1973. He spent fifteen years as a supervisor before retiring in 2003, after thirty-three years of public service.

"Where is Robert? A Mother's Heartrending Journey"
by Russell W. Moore
Shore Cliff Publishing
Published Nov 15, 2012
ISBN-10: 061538353X
ISBN-13: 978-0615383538
288 pages
Softcover $19 New
Softcover $8 USED

No. 9

"Quest of a Bipolar Soldier"

by Winston K. Redman

"Quest of a Bipolar Soldier" by Winston K. Redman
'Quest of a Bipolar Soldier,' by Winston K. Redman, is an honest, brutal tale of a man fighting in the trenches for his sanity and happiness. Trying to make sense of things while going through delusions and hallucinations, Kos is taken through one of the greatest wars mankind has ever fought. Kos reaches out to God in great desperation. When praying for help, Kos is put through torment from the abuse of drugs, alcohol, and lustful desires.

When we think of the great wars that have been fought on this earth, we might consider the Crusades, the Napoleonic Wars, and both World Wars. However, people often don't consider the war a person can fight within themselves for their own sanity. Quest of a Bipolar Soldier provides a window into such a life; author Winston K. Redman, or Kos, bravely lets his story unfold in the pages of this frank memoir.

Quest of a Bipolar Soldier begins with Kos's childhood; his family moved a great deal, and Kos remembers numerous instances of being teased and acting out. As a child, he prayed and went to church, but eventually his behavior became too much and he was sent to stay with various family members, until being sent to a boarding school for troubled teens. There, things finally began to turn around: Kos became an athlete and held a job as a dishwasher; however, it didn't last. Just before his 10th grade year, Kos began experiencing delusions and paranoia, enlisting him as a 'soldier' in the long battle for his own mind.

Quest of a Bipolar Soldier is an unflinching look at the trials one goes through when they lose touch with reality. From psych wards to incarceration and group homes, Kos's journey is a long and often arduous one. Attempting to cope through drug abuse, alcohol, and sex, all the while he searches for meaning and some kind of redemption--whether he attains it is for the reader to decide.

Winston K. Redman lives at a Mental Health Facility in Clarksburg, West Virginia.

  • "I dedicate this book to all those who are at war with mental illness and drug addiction and to all those families who have lost anyone in this great and ongoing battle."

"Quest of a Bipolar Soldier"
by Winston K. Redman
Bookstand Publishing
Published 4/14/2015
BN ID: 2940151264075
File Size 510KB
NOOK Book $6

No. 10

"Forward Pass

by Desiree Holt

"Forward Pass" by Desiree Holt
Sex and sports? An alluring combo, sure, but usually one associated with the mind of a teenage boy, not a 79 year old grandmother from Texas Hill Country. But Desiree Holt is far from the norm. Check out the award-winning erotic romance author on CBS Sunday Morning and in New York City's Village Voice. She even got Bill Geist to famously don a muscle tank.

Now Holt is back with Forward Pass, which reunites a former star quarterback with his best friend's little sister, all grown up. Unlike Holt's BDSM stories, the author didn't have to conduct a ton of research to do the topic justice. Holt is a lifelong football fan and a proud supporter of the Houston Texans and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. ("Good years and bad," she asked me to relay.) The book is due out in early July.

"Sports and romance are both about passion. The best stories inspire readers and fans to root against all odds. I don't care how old you are or what gender you happen to be, everyone loves a good underdog story," Holt says. "Sometimes football is even better than sex!"

Shay Beckham grew up idolizing her brother's best friend, star quarterback Joe Reilly. There was no one in their Texas town who had the moves to match Joe on or off the field. Years later, he's still a player who has what it takes to drive any hot-blooded woman wild. But Shay isn't a kid with a bad case of hero-worship anymore. She’s grown-up and independent, with her feet on the ground and a serious head on her shoulders. If she could just say the same for Joe. (Read More on the Author's Website)

Desiree Holt is of referred to as the Nora Roberts of erotic romance by USA Today. She is the award-winning writer of more than 130 stories of varying length. She's based in the Texas Hill Country, and has been featured on CBS Sunday Morning and in the Village Voice, The Daily Beast, USA Today, The (London) Daily Mail, and countless other national and international publications. Follow her at www.desireeholt.com.


© Copyright 2002-2014 by Magic City Morning Star

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