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R.P. BenDedek

Magic City Book Basket 2015 No 31
By R.P. BenDedek
Nov 1, 2015 - 4:10:09 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 has varied and while we still have book reviewers at Magic City we unfortunately can't do book reviews for every book. (List of Book Reviews 2015) 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 all of those authors who have already taken advantage of this offer both in 2014 and again this year. A list of those authors and their articles for 2015 may be found here.

Magic City Morning Star is looking for more writers and reviewers and additionally we invite all book authors to avail themselves of our 'self-promotion' offer.

If you would like to join our team just send an email to me at the address below.

NOTE: Magic City Morning Star has received scant advice regarding new book releases since the end of June. We have therefore not been able to produce weekly Book Baskets and of necessity, have not been able to produce book reviews. Book Baskets will only be published if and when there are a sufficient number of entries to justify the publication.

Author Articles Since Basket No. 30

  1. Trick or Treat by Patrick J Fornari author of "Commoner Sense"
  2. Learning a New Language doesn't have to be Intimidating by D.S. Donahoe Author of "The Valentine Children's Summer Adventures"
  3. Healing Thyself by David Burger Author of "Accidental Lives"
  4. Science Fiction has become Reality By Dr. David Altman Author of "Six Years Later"
  5. Fantasy or Reality by Patrick J Fornari Author of "Commoner Sense"

Author Interview

Laure McCourt Lopez Interview with Gene Ferraro, author of "Ordinary Evil"
Oct 28, 2015

Book Reviews Published Since Basket No. 30

Martha Stevens-David Review: "The Life and Legend of a Polio Victim" by Dr. Cliff Edward Williams
Oct 28, 2015

Though his book is short with only seventy-eight pages, one can readily see from all Dr. Williams' awards, diplomas and credentials that this is a man who, when he sets his mind on achieving something, never gives up. Dr. Williams not only had to overcome the fact of being born a child of African descent but of being born in a "southern" state and all the "race and discrimination" that were so prevalent in that time and place. And he also had to deal with being a victim of Polio in that time and place.

Milt Gross Book Review: "Wonderland by Ace Atkins"
Oct 25, 2015

The plot is a typical Parker plot, started by him before his death, with lots of action and some humor. I won't go into it because the plots aren't Parker's strong points. Its all about following the action, as usual, wondering how our hero this time will win over the villains. He does, of course, and ends up in the last scene with long-time girlfriend Susan. "'Together again,' Susan said." That's how the late Parker's books are supposed to end, Spencer, Susan, and Pearl, the dog.

Milt Gross Book Review: "Motor Mouth" by Janet Evanovich
Oct 18, 2015

If you appreciate Evanovich's style, humor and mystery combined in a breath taking tale, grab a copy, sit down in a well-lit room, and enjoy the tale. I won't tell you the story. For that, you'll have to find your own copy, at Amazon.com for $7.99 for the paperback I read and $4.99 for the Kindle version. Or you can buy it in a book store. You can't borrow mine, because I have no idea where I put it after I read it. Somewhere, I'll bet.

Martha Stevens-David Review: "Calico Jam" by Joanne Greene
Oct 14, 2015

This story is not a "feel good" book but it does illustrate how families react to different challenges be they divorce, illegitimate children or human beings just trying to make it in a difficult society and world. This story keeps the reader guessing and I was sincerely impressed with the writer's command of the English language.

Milt Gross Book Review: "Blaze" by Stephen King and his pen name, Richard Bachman
Oct 11, 2015

I learned a lot about Stephen King and his pen name, Richard Bachman, "King dedicated Bachman's early books -- Rage (1977), The Long Walk(1979), Roadwalk (1981), and The Running Man (1982) -- to people close to him. The link between King and his shadow writer was exposed after a Washington, D.C. bookstore clerk, Steve Brown, noted similarities between the writing styles of King and Bachman.


Email
: rpbendedek@hotmail.com
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No. 1

"Just Say It!"

by Dr. Cheryl Bauman

"Just Say It!" by Dr. Cheryl Bauman
OTTAWA, Ontario -- With most modern communication across the personal and professional realms happening over email and social media, are people losing the power of face-to-face, spoken conversations?

Educator and businesswoman Dr. Cheryl Bauman believes that effective communication is personal, positive and purposeful. Inspired by the change in her own relationships, Bauman seeks to share with others the need for a change in people's communications.

"People are created to be connected with each other," Bauman said. "Unfortunately, I've noticed that as a society we are not often nurturing our relationships in a personal way, and instead, we are relying heavily on social media to develop and maintain connections with others."

To help counteract the negative effects of social media and distance, Bauman encourages people to use face-to-face communication whenever possible, in particular with business and important personal matters, due to the allowance for conflict resolution and non-verbal cues.

Bauman explores the power of the spoken word and shares four simple, yet powerful, phrases for better communication in her new book, "Just Say It!". Focusing on the importance of self worth, positivity, forgiveness, spirituality and purpose, "Just Say It" gives readers the tools they need to create meaningful, honest relationships.

"By speaking positive messages to the people around me, it changed the way that I not only thought about myself, but also the way that they thought about me and about our relationship," Bauman said. "By committing to adjust our communications in these ways, we can all change our interactions with others for the better."

Dr. Cheryl Bauman earned her doctorate in education from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia, and received the ACEL Queensland Research in Educational Leadership and Management Award. She teaches for the faculty of education departments at several Canadian universities, works on research projects for an international university and owns a communications consulting business. Bauman currently resides in Ottawa, Ontario, with her husband Pino and their daughter Sara. For more information, visit www.justsayit.today.

"Just Say It!"
By Dr. Cheryl Bauman
Westbow Press
Published 7/21/2015
ISBN: 9781490884622
112 pages
Softcover $12
Hardcover $29
E-book $4

No. 2

"Raine's Rainbow Socks Book 1: Raine's Birthday, Red Socks, Orange Socks"

By Richard Ditchburn

"Raine's Rainbow Socks Book 1: Raine's Birthday, Red Socks, Orange Socks" By Richard Ditchburn
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, England -- Teaching children to do the right thing can be a complicated job, especially when parents and children are faced with dealing with difficult issues.

Book one of a new children's series, "Raine's Rainbow Socks," focuses on the importance of speaking up and taking action when there is a problem. With Raine, the adventure-loving protagonist, the book takes young readers along as she uses her magic socks to solve mysteries and lend a hand to her family, all while demonstrating the real power of helpfulness.

Author Richard Ditchburn is familiar with the need for kindness and has always strived to be of assistance in his various jobs growing up in England. In an effort to give parents a way to discuss these important topics in a fun and engaging manner, Ditchburn created this series, incorporating components of time-travel, mysteries, comic books and adventure.

"It's my hope that this book series can help show children the good in life and how helpful everyone can be," Ditchburn said. "I want to teach children how to be brave and do the right thing."

Educational and exciting, "Raine's Rainbow Socks" explores kindness, helpfulness and bravery in an unexpected way.

Richard Ditchburn was born in the village of Ryton in northeast England, and he still lives there today. Ditchburn is the manager of a local betting shop, where part of his duties focus on protecting others from the dangers of gambling. For more information, visit www.rainesrainbowsocks.com.  

"Raine's Rainbow Socks Book 1: Raine's Birthday, Red Socks, Orange Socks"
By Richard Ditchburn
AuthorHouse Pub.
Published 5/14/2015
ISBN: 978-1-50493-963-8
24 pages
Softcover $20
E-book $5

No. 3

"Adventure, Day One"

By PJ Jackson

"Adventure, Day One" By PJ Jackson
WASHINGTON D.C. -- After learning about her husband's acute myeloid leukemia diagnosis, PJ Jackson knew two things: there was a reason this was happening and she and her husband would have the strength to get through it.

In the midst of the challenge, Jackson noticed a pattern to dealing with the diagnosis. This pattern turned into a series of strategies Jackson explains in her new book, "Adventure, Day One."

"After recognizing our coping pattern we knew it could help others," Jackson said. "We've decided to share our journey to help others live fully in the midst of crisis."

"Adventure, Day One" outlines seven secrets to coping with life's challenges, while at the same time telling PJ and her husband's story.

PJ believes people have a choice to live positively and encourages others to see life's problems not as tragedies, but as adventures.

"Being positive can change your life and accelerate you to the next level, no matter what challenges you face," Jackson said. "Choose to be positive, make a conscious choice to change your attitude and the world will change with you."

PJ Jackson works as an applied scientist in knowledge management and is the founder and president of Positive Knowledge LLC. Jackson has 20 years of experience in aerospace and defense program management from serving in the U.S. Navy for 14 years and working with Lockheed Martin. PJ and her husband Rickey currently live in Edinburg, Va., but enjoy traveling the world together.  For more information, visit www.adventuredayone.net

"Adventure, Day One"
By PJ Jackson
Balboa Press
Published 7/11/2014
ISBN: 978-1-4525-1486-4
172 pages
Softcover $14
E-book $4

No. 4

"Accidental Lives"

By David Burger

"Accidental Lives" By David Burger
SPRINGDALE, Ark. -- How often in your dreams are you aware that what you're experiencing is actually a dream? What if you felt that way during times you thought you were awake?

In David Burger's debut novel Accidental Lives, the main character suffers a grave injury that leaves him with amnesia. He alternates back and forth between a lucid dream and reality; the problem is that he is not sure which is which.

"Time is a perceived quantitative," Burger said. "Through Brian's experiences in the story, the reader is able to explore reality versus perception."

Accidental Lives is the story of a man who is in a car accident which leaves him awake in the hospital with no memory of the past six months. Partially paralyzed, he struggles with not having the life he had planned. Tomorrow finds him in a strange apartment in New York City with no memory of the past six months. He cannot remember graduating college or his best friend. Every other day he finds himself waking in the previous world convinced that the day before and its world were merely a dream. (More Overview at Balboa Press)

With dreaming such a significant element of the story, it is fitting that Accidental Lives stemmed from a dream of the author's. Burger in fact relates quite well to his main character, a man who faces unsettling trauma in his life. The author has known trauma of his own, specifically his divorce, which separated him from his two daughters. The pain of that separation led him on a spiritual journey, where he gained peace thanks to the words of Wayne Dyer and other authors. "From the worst parts of my life, came the best parts." Burger said. "Without my divorce, I wouldn't have had to search and come across the writers and other people who have influenced my life."

David Burger served in the US Air Force and earned both his pilot's license and mechanic's license in aviation. He has an entrepreneurial spirit and has started multiple businesses, including a financial services business in northwest Arkansas. After his divorce, David struggled through depression but found peace through a spiritual quest, discovering authors like Wayne Dyer who spoke to his heart. He is the father of two girls and currently lives in Springdale, Ark. For more information, visit http://www.authordburger.com/

"Accidental Lives"
By David Burger
Balboa Press
Published 7/23/2015
ISBN: 9781504333795
172 Pages
Softcover $14
Hardcover $31
E-book 4

No. 5

"Brightfire: A Tale of Sutton Hoo"

By P.M. Sabin Moore

"Brightfire: A Tale of Sutton Hoo" By P.M. Sabin Moore
WOODBRIDGE, England - Though fierce battles and mindless drinking may at first appear to be the central theme of the Middle Ages, there is much more than meets the eye to this fascinating time period.

Honoring history and remembering Anglo-Saxon ancestors for their valiancy, courage and compelling human nature is a concept Pauline Sabin Moore hopes to share in her historical novel, "Brightfire: A Tale of Sutton Hoo."

"I want to show in my book that Anglo-Saxons were humans, just as we are, with the same feelings," Moore said. "Where and how they lived may have seemed dangerous, but they had a love of beauty that is simply admirable."

A sequel to her first published novel, "Storm Frost," Moore tells the story of the cruel and merciless King Eorpwald, son of King Raedwald of Sutton Hoo, whose hostility towards Christianity and innate jealousy puts his entire kingdom in danger after his father dies.

By covering actual historical events and people during and after the reign of King Raedwald, "Brightfire: A Tale of Sutton Hoo" offers insight into the colorful daily life of Anglo-Saxon culture and reminds readers that there is always something to be learned from the past.

"It is possible to be accepting of another faith and achieve what is good, right and beautiful," Moore said.

Pauline Sabin Moore is a retired English and drama teacher currently residing in Woodbridge, England. She has a bachelor's degree in English from the University of London. Moore dedicates herself to writing and sharing her passion for Anglo-Saxon history and volunteers as a guide at Sutton Hoo, a historical site of 6th and early 7th Century cemeteries. She has also published "Storm Frost," a fiction novel based on the earliest Anglo-Saxon love poems written in English. For more information, visit https://pmsabinmoore.wordpress.com

"Brightfire: A Tale of Sutton Hoo"
By P.M. Sabin Moore
Author House Publishing
Published 1/29/2012
ISBN: 978145205056098
238 pages
Softcover $13
E-book $3

No. 6

"Six Years Later"

by David Altman

"Six Years Later" by David Altman
Oxford professor Joseph Giant doesn't believe in being politically correct when something is wrong. In Giant's opinion, the outspoken Muslim community is threatening to take over every facet of British life.

Regardless of political correctness, Giant sees it as a threat that church bells are no longer allowed on Sunday and that the day of rest has been moved to Friday-all to keep a small but powerful minority happy.

Beth Rimmer is an attractive student activist who opposes Giant's unpopular opinions-that is, until they meet face-to-face. Giant makes a good point for his Muslim cultural concerns, and soon Rimmer is not only Giant's advocate but his outspoken supporter. Her surprising change of heart soon gets her murdered, and so begins a conspiracy to discredit Giant and his fight for British freedom.

As Great Britain is slowly transformed into what resembles a Muslim nation, the mystery of Rimmer's death goes unsolved. Who is stacking the deck against Professor Giant and the British people? The directive appears to come from a power much greater than the Oxford activists are ready to fight. But will the country realize the accuracy of Giant's claims in time to regain their rights and save Britain from cultural anarchy?

Dr. David Altman is Senior Vice President at Netanya Academic College, Israel and Vice-Chair of its Strategic Dialogue Center. He is author of the book "Six Years Later", a work of "fiction" which describes the process of radical forces taking over Great Britain. Dr Altman is a regular contributor to the online English paper "Times of Israel" and various newspapers in Hebrew.

"Six Years Later"
by David Altman
iUniverse Publishing
August 23, 2011
ISBN-10: 1462039790
ISBN-13: 978-1462039791
244 Pages
Hardcover $26.95
Paperback $16.95
Kindle $9.99

No. 7

Crossing Caine's Road

by Maggie Hinton

7. Crossing Caine's Road by Maggie Hinton
Author Maggie Hinton's daughter was in a devastating car accident several years ago while riding with her boyfriend, who after the collision was in a coma for more than a year. In her book, "Crossing Caine's Road," Hinton drew from the experience of helping to care for the young man, while being more exposed to issues that she felt the general public was not aware of.

"The questions of 'living wills' and obligations to comatose patients is much more complex than most people realize and can be very frightening," Hinton said. "You may have parties who are literally fighting to pull the plug on people who can't defend themselves."

Michael Greyson, former college football legend and subsequent head coach for the Arizona Marauders pro-football team, has lain in a coma for six years as a result of a plane crash. Michael's wife, Melanie, decides to start a new life for herself by making use of her teaching degree for the first time. She packs up her three children and moves to the small northern Arizona village of Buena Suerte, (better known to the younger generation as "B.S.,") where she will teach high school English. Melanie's seventeen year-old daughter, K.C., an award winning trumpet player, is distraught when she learns that the high school band program may be abandoned. But then leather-jacketed, ponytailed Jesse Cockran comes riding into town on his old HarleyDavidson motorcycle. A professional trumpet player from New York City, Jesse will also be teaching for the first time, and, like Melanie, is seeking a new beginning. He moves into a teacherage trailer across the street from Melanie on Caine's Road and she and her children soon become emotionally drawn to him. Jesse has to prove himself to the community in spite of the school board president's determination to find a reason to dismiss him. K.C. commences a feud with Cooke Nasby, an Apache boy from the nearby reservation. And despite Melanie's objections, her father-in-law is firm in his attempts to remove Michael from life support. In addition to this clash of wills, Mel finds herself being sexually harassed by an anonymous stalker. The year is filled with romance, conflict, and tragedy. Mel, Jesse, and K.C. all face crisis which will change their lives and the lives of those they love. Crossing Caine's Road is a story of commitment and second chances, oflove and loss. (Overview at Booksamillion.com)

"Crossing Caine's Road"
by Maggie Hinton
Trafford Publishing
Published January 2007
ISBN-13: 9781412098410
ISBN-10: 1412098416
438 pages
Paperback $15-$28


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