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R.P. BenDedek

What's in the Book Basket this Week? Mixed Salad
By R.P. BenDedek
Mar 23, 2014 - 12:15:53 AM

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"What's in the book basket this week?" brings to the attention of readers via publication of publicity material, one or two (OK there are 14) book titles worthy of attention but which may or may not currently be in the process of being reviewed by our reviewers and whose authors probably (but not always) have not provided us with any other material to publish.

We can't do book reviews for every book, but we do assist authors to promote their books via a "No Charge - No Pay" service in which we invite authors to give us something to publish in which their promotional details can be included. We are extremely grateful to those authors for providing our readership with material that may in fact be exclusive to us or who may simply be giving us the first chance to publish said material.

Articles published this week at Magic City written by various book authors include:
(Sun March 17 to Sat March 22)
There was no Book Basket March 2nd

  1. A Different Story: Russian and English Novels by Ekaterina Yuvasheva author of "I am Angelo"
  2. So You've Decided You Want to Change Your Life by By Laureen LeNoir author of "A Soul's Journey"
  3. Cosmic Consciousness: A New Age Deception By Dr. Carroll M. Helm author of "God's Mysteries and Paradoxes"
  4. Storytelling's inspirational fluidity by Constance Coloon-Jones author of "Storytelling"

Book Reviews Published This Week

We only had one but there will be a few this coming week

M. Stevens-David Review: "An Angel Without a Name" by Mary E. Sims Heidi Harmon
March 21, 2014

Having been born in the northern part of Maine myself, I was very interested in reading how the author had been born and raised in a poor Black family in the south. I would have liked reading more about that part of her life.

R.P. BenDedek

Special Announcement:
The Magic City Morning Star Book Basket is about to be presented under two different titles on two separate days of the week.
As of Wednesday 26th. March, the "Wednesday Christian Book Basket" will kick off with Issue One

No 1

"T-Bull and the Lost Men"

by Paul Moser

"T-Bull and the Lost Men" by Paul Moser
T-Bull and The Lost Men" puts an unexpected twist into classic story of Peter Pan to take on a variety of societal ills including unbridled capitalism and dogmatic religion. He was brought up as a gonzo Catholic, including eight years of Catholic grammar school where he served as an altar boy, and four years at a Jesuit high school.


Have you heard the one about the lesbian pixie called Tinker Bull, who takes on a shipload of Roman Catholic pirates without the help of her old friend Peter Plan, who has become an investment banker? Or the one about the Crocodazzi, an insatiable investigative journalist who happens to be a crocodile?

The punch lines are in the story called T-Bull and the Lost Men, a funhouse mirror masquerading as a book. Of course it's more than just punch lines: there's its educational slant, too! Like discovering how certain pirates can be natural capitalists, or even how organic pixie dust is made.

It is satire that cuts close to the skull and crossbones of organized religion, capitalism, academia, and the media.

T-Bull and the Lost Men
by Paul Moser
ISBN-13: 9780984794126
Publisher: Venial Press
Publication date: 12/10/2013
Pages: 138

No. 2.

"The Last Scroll"

by James Fricton

"The Last Scroll" by James Fricton
A chance meeting with an old classmate leads Ryan Laughlin, a dedicated young physician, to an ancient Roman spa in a medieval village of Italy where researchers are studying two remarkable events that could change the course of history--a new technology that claims to measure the essence of life itself, the human spirit, and the final Dead Sea Scroll which was recently discovered in the West Bank.

To the surprise of all, the Last Scroll reveals universal truths about the nature of life through seven Blessings but warns of seven Plagues of the Beast that are emerging this century causing alarm and protests around the world.James Fricton is an author, researcher, and professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota. He is the author of the novel The Last Scroll, an intelligent romantic thriller set in Italy. He will also teach a free online massive open online course (MOOC) in May 2014 through featuring the concepts in The Last Scroll to enhance positive energy and prevent chronic pain. The author lives in Minnesota with his family. For more information, visit The Last Scroll

James Fricton is an author, researcher, and professor emeritus at the University of Minnesota. He is the author of the novel The Last Scroll, an intelligent romantic thriller set in Italy. He will also teach a free online massive open online course (MOOC) in May 2014 through featuring the concepts in The Last Scroll to enhance positive energy and prevent chronic pain. The author lives in Minnesota with his family.

"The Last Scroll"
by James Fricton
Hardcover: 460 pages
Publisher: (February 14, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1475975163
ISBN-13: 978-1475975161

No. 3.

"Chopping the Onion"

by Dusana Michaels

"Chopping the Onion" by Dusana Michaels
My life has been a journey that I have faced as consciously as I can with the hope that healing from incest can be better understood by other survivors and the people who have the heartbreaking task of witnessing our path. My hope is that others can find themselves in my repeated struggles through the years. They can see how faith brings about peace. There is always a deeper level of unconditional love for yourself and others to discover after the latest dark night of the soul has passed.

I thought healing from incest was a one time event, like a mountain to be climbed. With time I have realized it is a process of recovery that gets triggered through daily living. Some triggers are painful and other fill my heart so full that tears can’t help but spill out as my heart bursts with love and gratitude. I would never have been able to find the moments of beautiful perfection without seeing the horrors the deepest sorrows brought. Gut wrenching pain does end with the balance of contentment from grace. (Read More)

Dusana Michaels has spent over 20 years in the process of recovering from childhood incest. In addition to her personal experience, she has an M.A. in counseling and has interwoven her professional knowledge throughout her journey. She draws upon her sense of humor and spiritual connections to discover the next step on her path. Her book, Chopping the Onion, is available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Balboa Press online bookstores. Connect with her on Twitter and Facebook or read her blog at

"Chopping the Onion"
By Dusana Michaels
Published: 11/22/2013
E-Book (ePub, Mobi, and PDF files)
ISBN: 978-1-45258-486-7
Print Type: B/W
$4 - $23 - $40

No. 4.

"A Path Through"

by Janna Spratt

"A Path Through" by Janna Spratt
A Path Through is an autobiography that gives tribute to God for bringing the author through her time of troubles.

When a tragedy strikes, it can hit a person like a ton of bricks. What does it take to escape the rubble? For Janna Olsen Spratt, it was God who made a path through.

Spratt shares her experiences in overcoming childhood poverty, early marriage, divorce and finding love a second time around in her new book, "A Path Through."

Although none of these seasons of life were easy for the author, her memoir credits God's grace as her guiding force every step of the way. In her book, she uses scripture to set the stage for each of her life's struggles as they unfold. (Read More)

Janna Spratt is the author of a collection of poetry, "Quiet Reflections", and a children's book, "Billy Goat and the Red Neckerchief." Her autobiography, "A Path Through" is a tribute to the faithfulness of God. She blogs at

She is a mother, stepmom, grandmother and great-grandma. Recently she has moved to Langley, BC to assume Guardianship of her brother who has suffered a debilitating stroke.

by Janna Olsen Spratt
Hardcover: 104 pages
Publisher: Xlibris Corporation (April 18, 2012)
ISBN-10: 1469198479
ISBN-13: 978-1469198477
Kidle $13
Paperback $14
Hardcover $22

No 5.

"Rainbow Angel"

by M. Michaelides

"Rainbow Angel" by M. Michaelides
The Author believes she overcame troubled times after a visit by angels filled her with happiness and compelled her to write a children's fantasy novel.

"Rainbow Angel" is a fictional children's book about angels adventuring in an imaginary land. The book is intended to build the self-esteem of children and help them through periods of stress. (Read More)

M. Michaelides was born in Mozambique and later moved to South Africa. She has a degree in psychology, speaks 6 languages and has experienced what she believes are angelic encounters. "Rainbow Angel" is her first published book


In a far off land of Fos, an enchanting king and queen rule the land. Queen Sofia and King Savitar have many children; they love their children very, very much, so they decide to send them on an exciting adventure. Their daughter, Anthea, leaves on her journey and lands in a garden called Talia, where she is quick to make friends with a sunflower named Zoe.

Rainbow Angel
by M. Michaelides
Hardcover: 120 pages
Publisher: (December 4, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1475962495
ISBN-13: 978-1475962499
$4 - $10 - $17 at Amazon

No. 6

"Life is Not Complicated- You Are"

by Carlos Wallace

"Life is Not Complicated-You Are" by Carlos Wallace
In his book, "Life is Not Complicated- You Are," Carlos Wallace offers readers a self- empowerment book to strengthen and simplify their everyday life. Wallace draws from the principles he was taught by his grandparents and parents to encourage others to persevere.

"I hope all who read this book consider it a source of encouragement that goes beyond just learning how to 'deal' with life," Wallace said. "I want the book to become a resource you can turn to when you think your challenges only serve to hold you back."

Readers follow Wallace on his personal journey as he turns his circumstances into opportunities for growth, revealing keen insight about deliverance, fearlessness and the importance of family. "Never underestimate the value that your family adds to you life," Wallace said.

Wallace, an accomplished philanthropist and dedicated family man, hopes that his book inspires readers to pursue their own dreams.

Carlos Wallace was born and raised in Jacksonville, Texas. A fifth generation railroader, military veteran and international union organizer, Wallace now serves as CEO and President of Sol-Caritas, a Houston-based entertainment company. Wallace has made generous contributions to charities and consistently donates the profits from his comedy shows to worthy causes. He currently resides in Houston, Texas.

"Life is Not Complicated- You Are"
By Carlos Wallace
ISBN: 1491715642
Available in softcover, hardcover, e-book
Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and iUniverse online bookstores

No. 7.

"The Dawn"

by Yoram Hazony

"The Dawn: Political Teachings of the Book of Esther" by Yoram Hazony
The Dawn removes the book of Esther from the realm of fairy tale, translating the biblical narrative's political thought into teachings of the utmost relevance today. It reveals Esther's ideas of the good state, how effective leadership makes decisions for the welfare of its people, and what modern-day Jews can learn about how to stand up to their enemies and maintain Jewish faith and nationhood even as God's face remains hidden from His people.

Yoram Hazony is the founder and former president of the Shalem Center, where he is currently a senior fellow. He is the author of The Dawn: Political Teachings of the Book of Esther (Shalem Press, 1995) and The Jewish State: The Struggle for Israel's Soul (New Republic/Basic Books, 2000), and has written for newspapers and magazines including The New Republic and The New York Times. Hazony received his B.A. from Princeton University and his Ph.D from Rutgers University, and served as a member of the Israeli delegation to the Madrid Peace Conference. He lives in Jerusalem with his wife and children.

A Review

  • Hazony makes Megillat Esther come alive in a manner that is realistic and fascinating. Details which I had read again and again for the past sixty years, and which made no particular impression upon me, suddenly came alive with a significance that never occurred to me.Norman Lamm, President, Yeshiva University

The Dawn: Political Teachings of the Book of Esther
by Yoram Hazony
ISBN-13: 9789657052068
Publisher: Shalem Press
Publication date: 1/1/2000
Pages: 312

No. 8.

"Circle the Date"

by Susie Beaty Green

"Circle the Date" by Susie Beaty Green
Beautiful weddings, all-conquering girl power and troublesome boys -- these thoughts fill the minds of young girls and linger with them into womanhood. As they mature so do their thoughts. Weddings and boys turn into love and romance and girl power turns into lasting companionship.

In her latest novel, "Circle the Date," Susie Beaty Green delivers these themes in the perfect package of drama, humor and love. Green's story follows two women and their adventures as friends running a wedding planning company. As they cater to the needs of the most elite in Scottsdale, Ariz., they find that love and friendship are two things that are difficult to perfect.

When a couple of old college flames enter their situation, the women become captivated by secrets and the desire to know what could have been. The women begin to question the existence of soul mates and true love, and ultimately the power of any relationship.

"Circle the Date" has been developed into a screenplay for a motion picture and is being considered for a feature film. Despite the book's popularity and success, Green continues to donate all proceeds from the book to the American Red Cross.

Loosely based on her own experiences with her college roommate, the adventures Green describes are hysterical yet compassionate. She leads readers on a page-turning adventure through romance, friendship and the intricacies of both.

Growing up in Laguna Beach, Susie Beaty Green developed her passion for art, theatre and architecture at an early age. After earning her Bachelors in English and Political Science from the University of Dan Diego, she married her college sweetheart. While in college and after college Green worked as a docent in museums and galleries. She is currently a stay at home mom, involved in many associations in San Diego and enjoying her time writing in her pajamas.

"Circle the Date"
By: Susie Beaty Green
ISBN: 978-1-4918-2517-4
234 Pages
Published 2012
Cost $10

No. 9

"Little Old Woman With A Wart On Her Nose"

by Dolly Woodell

"Little Old Woman With A Wart On Her Nose" By Dolly Woodell
Bullying is an epidemic that is present in schools, churches, sports teams and even at home.

In her book, "Little Old Woman With A Wart On Her Nose," author Dolly Woodell offers readers an insightful fiction book that teaches the importance of acceptance. Readers follow the Little Old Woman as she struggles to fit in, and will soon realize the negative consequences that occur as a result of bullying and harassment.

"Bullying and making fun of any individual, child or adult, brings about negativity and the loss of one's self-worth," Woodell said.

The Little Old Woman's Story offers insight about bullying, judgment, gossip, disrespect and forgiveness.

Woodell, an accomplished writer and Sunday school teacher for more than 35 years, draws from her own childhood experience to teach readers to believe in themselves.

"You are just as special as any other living soul in God's eyes," Woodell said.

Dolly Woodell was born in a log cabin on the waters of Stony Creek, W.V. She married at age 17 and traveled around the United States and Japan with her active-duty husband. She received her high school diploma at 45 and went on to acquire a bachelor's degree in English and art. She is an avid reader, photographer and former Sunday school teacher who is passionate about writing books for children. She currently resides in Chocowinity, N.C.

"Little Old Woman With A Wart On Her Nose"
By Dolly Woodell
ISBN: 978-1-4908-1015-7
Retail price: $7.95
Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and WestBow Press online bookstores

No. 10

"Saving Skunk"

by Richard Roach

"Saving Skunk" by Richard Roach
According to PBS, there are approximately 150,000 people in the United States who identify themselves as Ojibwa Indian.

In his historical fiction novel, "Saving Skunk," Richard Roach explores the oral tradition of the Ojibwa people. Readers follow main character, Heidi, from the time of her father's death through her journey to becoming a medicine woman and, eventually, a western doctor.

After meeting a fourth level Midewiwin, Roach gained insight into the struggle for survival and the community values treasured by the Ojibwa people. He not only shares insight into the anthropology and history of the American Indians, but also tells an inspiring story of redemption, forgiveness and humility.

"I want my readers to know the importance of redemptive love for those who mistreat us," Roach said. "Heidi's story reveals that forgiveness produces healing and humility provokes wisdom."

Roach not only touches on the values and morals of the American Indian tribe, but also educates readers about the dietary plants and medicinal herbs that grew on their land.

Roach, a professor of medicine and an experienced outdoors guide, hopes that this unforgettable tale will reveal to readers the importance of healing and the power of forgiveness.

See the Video Trailer

Richard Roach was born and raised in northern Minnesota. After guiding canoe trips in college, he entered medical school and became a physician. He has also taught tropical medicine in Madagascar for more than 10 years. Roach currently resides in Kalamazoo, Mich. with his wife and children where he is an assistant professor of medicine at Western Michigan University School of Medicine.

"Saving Skunk"
By Richard Roach
ISBN: 978-1-4759-8650
$4 - $10
Available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and iUniverse online book stores.

No. 11

"To North Vietnam and Back Again"

by Ed Engle

"To North Vietnam and Back Again" by Ed Engle
Although a ferocious attack airplane, the A-6 Intruder suffered a lackluster reputation throughout the Vietnam War. Despite its advanced technology, it was thought to lack the capability of dropping bombs accurately on its target. In his new book, Ed Engle argues that the Navy completely failed to recognize the unique target planning requirements of the A-6 and did not provide the crew with the resources for planning bombing missions. "To North Vietnam and Back Again" is a memoir that chronicles his experiences as a bombardier/navigator for the A-6 during wartime operations.

"In the vast majority of cases, we only had the opportunity to make one pass when bombing a target," Engle said. "The North Vietnamese had air defenses which were usually very heavy around vital targets. Each additional second we spent in the area provided a greater chance of being shot down." Getting shot down might result in the crew's imprisonment and being subjected to treatment under the worst conditions, such as what happened to Senator John McCain in 1967. Engle argues that the threat posed to these crews was amplified and exacerbated by the Navy's negligence in providing the navigational targeting information that the crews needed in order to successfully strike targets.

"The A-6 had an extremely sensitive weapons system that required precise information," Engle said. "The charts the Navy gave us were printed from French surveys from the 1930's. Even the Defense Mapping Agency that made our charts said they couldn't be used for target planning." These navigators showed incredible ingenuity in solving these problems over the course of the war, turning the A-6 from a black sheep into a rock-star. Engle's background as an engineer adds a technical depth to the analysis of wartime operations that puts readers in the cockpit with the airmen as they experience danger, frustration and, ultimately, catharsis.

Ed Engle is a retired naval flight officer with engineering degrees from The Johns Hopkins University and The Naval Postgraduate School. Throughout his career, Engle provided several solutions for Navy challenges. Engle was responsible for introducing alternative methods for targeting and later introduced commercial wideband satellite communications to Navy ships so they could do much more precise targeting and photogrammetric planning.

"To North Vietnam and Back Again"
By Ed Engle
ISBN: 978-1-4931-1825-0
Available in softcover, hardcover, e-book
$4, $20, $30
Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Xlibris

N0. 12.

"God's Best is Me"

by Dr. Jeanne Sheffield

"God's Best is Me" by Dr. Jeanne Sheffield
When Dr. Jeanne Sheffield began teaching music to children living in the inner city in Memphis, Tenn., she knew it was going to be difficult. It was, but it also gave her an idea.

That idea developed into her new book, "God's Best is Me," an etiquette workbook that contains lessons on manners, role playing ideas and exercises to improve children's social skills. "These were not bad kids, they were just unruly, undisciplined and unaware," Dr. Sheffield said. "I wanted to show them how to communicate, articulate and develop better characters for themselves"

After working with her students on etiquette, their behavior turned around completely. "My kids and I were having a ball," Dr. Sheffield said. "They were changing and transforming. Instead of a disruptive chaotic atomosphere, a new more disciplined one began taking its place."

Written through her perspective as a Christian minister, she adds new dimension to these life-lessons not found in other etiquette guides. Dr. Sheffield began tweaking the book with homeschooling families in mind. She wanted to be able to use her specialty in formal ettiquite to help parents. Written for children from age 6 to 17, Dr. Jeanne's book is a helpful resource for parents teaching their children about manners. It even includes tips about relatively new social phenomena like cell phone manners.

"Instead of having to send their kids off to expensive one-dimensional charm schools, I hoped I could inspire moms all across the world to teach their kids themselves," Dr. Sheffield said. Accompanying "God's Best is Me" is "God's Best is Your Child," a guide for parents that can accompany the workbook. This resource offers moms creative ideas about how to approach and design their classes and how to keep class time exciting and engaging.

Dr. Jeanne Sheffield is a Christian minister and composer with a background in television in singing, acting and dancing. She currently lives with her family in Washington, D.C.

"God's Best is Me"
By Dr. Jeanne Sheffield
ISBN: 978-1-4817-0754-151695
$4 - $15
Available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and AuthorHouse

No. 13.

"A Soldier's Odyssey"

by Frank W. Maresca

"A Soldier's Odyssey" by Frank W. Maresca
Friendships formed under the harshest of conditions are often the ones that last a lifetime. In his recently published memoir, "A Soldier's Odyssey", Purple Heart recipient, Frank Maresca recalls the unique comradely shared by the members of the 75th infantry division in World War II. The book chronicles everyday hijinks between men in the 75th infantry, gripping Battle of the Bulge firefight details and plights and emotions Maresca endured during his grueling 5-month recovery from life threatening battle wounds.

"My journey from a baby-faced recruit to a seasoned rifleman in the United States armed forces would not have been possible if not for the outstanding moral character of the men surrounding me," Maresca said. "They were a family that physically and emotionally helped me to survive unimaginable conditions." The book is an extensive historical memoir of WWII. It provides insights into everyday hijinks between men in the 75th infantry, gripping Battle of the Bulge firefight details and plights and emotions Maresca faced during his grueling 5-month recovery from life threatening battle wounds.

Frank W. Maresca spent 3 years in service during WWII before being honorably discharged following a life threating war injury. Maresca is very active in his local Allentown, PA veteran's chapter and enjoys speaking to high school students about the war He was awarded a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star by the United States government.

"A Soldier's Odyssey"
To Remember Our Past As It Was
By Frank W. Maresca
Published: 10/8/2012
Pages: 998
ISBN: 978-1-46691-705-7
Soft Cover $38
E-book $5

No. 14.

"Half a Bucket at a Time"

by Lorenz E. Travis

"Half a Bucket at a Time" by Lorenz E. Travis
PEORIA, Ill. -- How much more could you accomplish if you were willing to take twice as many trips?

"Half a Bucket at a Time" highlights the important lessons of persistence and hard work. Through the life story of a young girl's growth through sickness, goals, change and family, the book encourages others to approach life with strength, patience and love.

Author Lorenz E. Travis shares the wisdom and philosophy carried out and inspired by his late wife Gena. When Gena was a young girl, her father encouraged her to divide the chores into manageable steps -- a sentiment that she carried on in her life through her personal projects and battle with cancer.

"It is my wish that Gena's true story can inspire others as they face their own burdens and challenges," Travis said. "There is nothing you cannot do if you are willing to put in the effort and take the time."

"Half a Bucket at a Time" helps children and adults understand the value of a strong work ethic and commitment.

Lorenz E. Travis was married to Gena for more than 25 years and continues to share her inspirational message. Travis currently lives in Hopedale, Illinois.

For more information, please visit

"Half a Bucket at a Time"
By: Lorenz E. Travis
Paperback: $20.99
E-Book: $3.99
45 pages
ISBN: 9781477276112
Available at, and

Special Note:

If you made it this far please note that as from Wednesday March 26th we will commence publishing the "Christian Book Basket," allowing us to promote more books than we do at present.


© Copyright 2002-2014 by Magic City Morning Star

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