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Small Press Bookwatch

Volume 20, Number 7 July 2021 Home | SPBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Social Issues Shelf World History Shelf
Science Shelf Psychology Shelf Cookbook Shelf
Biography Shelf General Fiction Shelf Literary Fiction Shelf
Mystery/Suspense Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Reviewer's Choice

The Entrepreneurial Parent
Chandra Clarke and Terence Johnson
Tiger Maple Publishing
9781777217426 $13.99 pbk / $6.99 Kindle

Synopsis: Running a business is hard. Running one while also raising a family is harder. In fact, it can be exhausting. You're out there trying to get it done and do right by your family.

It is possible to do both well and still maintain your sanity. We want to show you how. This is the book we wish we'd had 20 years ago. Join us as we:

Bust through the myths surrounding entrepreneurship and work/life balance
Walk you through the five phases of business life, teaching you how to cope with the phase you're in now, and set yourself up well for the next phase.
Teach you strategies to help you deal with your biggest issues: guilt, stress, and lack of time

Critique: The Entrepreneurial Parent: Run Your Business, Raise Your Family, Keep Your Sanity! is a practical-minded guide to balancing the work-life responsibilities of caring for a family and running one's own business, written by serial entrepreneurs who have done both. Chapters address principles of time management, keeping stress under control, tips and tricks for conserving both business and home life expenses, and long-term exit strategies (such as considerations to keep in mind if selling the business or passing it on to one's children). The Entrepreneurial Parent is a "must-read" especially for mothers and fathers who seek to create their own business, and is also packed with valuable advice for any career professional with family responsibilities! It should be noted for personal reading lists that The Entrepreneurial Parent is also available in a Kindle edition ($6.99).

Editor's Note: Chandra Clarke and Terence Johnson are award-winning entrepreneurs who built their basement start-up into a multi-million dollar company while raising four kids. After selling their original company, they've become serial entrepreneurs who want to share their hard-earned knowledge so that others can achieve their dreams.

The Social Issues Shelf

I'll Get Back To You
Sam George
Post Hill Press
9781642937190 $18.00 pbk / $9.99 Kindle

Synopsis: Digital communication disrupts our relationships with our partners, families, and friends. Uncertainty, anxiety, and misunderstandings are all caused by emails and texts.
We've only scratched the surface of the deeper impact of digital communication. I'll Get Back to You explains what's causing the connectivity problems and offers concrete remedies for emails and texts.

The issue isn't technology. The actual communication revolution is the end of an immediate feedback loop. Humans have used direct feedback to communicate for millennia. It is necessary for comprehension and understanding others. It provides a solid foundation for communication critical to relationships.

The broken feedback loop is the Dyscommunication Crisis. Anxiety, uncertainty, and misunderstanding replace the reassuring backbone of the past. We are never sure if our message is read, fully understood, and whether it will be returned.

You're waiting for a response from your boyfriend. Your supervisor is taking a long time to respond. You've texted your son all day and received no response. You revert to a worst-case scenario for them. But why would these decent people have harmful intent?

The psychological impact is severe. According to polls, two-thirds of people regularly experience anxiety, agitation, worst-case scenarios, and negative loops of thinking because of an unreturned email or text. The book shows how to end this negative cycle.

Critique: Communication expert Sam George presents I'll Get Back To You The Dyscommunication Crisis: Why Unreturned Messages Drive Us Crazy and What to Do About It is an insightful and invaluable guide for the modern era of social media, digital communication, and remote work. Why are text, email, or voice messages to friends, love interests, family, and co-workers so frequently unreturned? Chapters discuss why "dyscommunication" and the breaking of feedback loops happens so often, how to mitigate its impact on one's mental health, and tips, tricks, and techniques for getting one's messages returned more frequently - or rationally adjusting if one's messages are never returned. I'll Get Back To You is a "must-read" for everyone, especially in the modern era shaped by social distancing and remote work as countermeasures to the COVID-19 pandemic. Highly recommended! It should be noted for personal reading lists that I'll Get Back To You is also available in a Kindle edition ($9.99).

The World History Shelf

Thinking Big
Jim Blanchard
Great Plains Publications
9781773370583 $20.95 pbk / $8.99 Kindle

Synopsis: From pre-contact Indigenous trading through 1939, Thinking Big examines the history of businesses, business leaders, and organizations in Winnipeg. Discover how the Winnipeg business community dealt with challenges such as the Great Depression and the post-World War I depression, and organized itself to take advantage of periods of growth and prosperity.

Critique: Retired academic librarian Jim Blanchard presents Thinking Big: A History of the Winnipeg Business Community to the Second World War, a scholarly, in-depth history of business development in Winnipeg, Canada from early fur trading among indigenous peoples, to the business boom of the late 1800's, and the growth of the industrial economy in the 1920's and 1930's. Written with meticulous attention to detail, yet thoroughly accessible to readers of all backgrounds, Thinking Big is a welcome addition to public and college library Canadian History collections, highly recommended. It should be noted for personal reading lists that Thinking Big is also available in a Kindle edition ($8.99).

The Science Shelf

Beyond Extinction
Wolfgang Grulke
At One Communications
9781916039407, $65.00, HC, 224pp

Synopsis: The ocean is the womb of all life on earth. It is beautiful and bizarre, violent and mysterious. Inhabited by a cast of characters stolen from fantasy, it's a dystopian world where dragons are real, and monsters are commonplace.

Today's spectacular marine life has an ancient history preserved in stone in the form of fossil strata that reads like dramatic pages from the longest story ever told: tales of evolution, extinction, and surprising continuity. Having thrived a tumultuous 500 million years, this marine kingdom is now challenged by a new, arrogant and domineering life form.

"Beyond Extinction: The Eternal Ocean. Climate Change & the Continuity of Life"" by Wolfgang Grulke looks beyond the media focus on climate change and extinction to celebrate the continuity of ocean life.

Critique: Beautifully, profusely illustrated throughout, and unreservedly recommended for personal, professional, community, college, and university library climatology, natural history, and ecosystems collections, "Beyond Extinction: The Eternal Ocean. Climate Change & the Continuity of Life" is an impressively informative and thoroughly 'reader friendly' exploration of the origins and destinies of marine life from primordial soup to today's threatened oceans -- and towards a future that we as humans can and will influence for good or for ill.

Editorial Note: In the past two decades Wolfgang Grulke has devoted his time to understanding the millions of years of life that stretch behind us. His life-long passion for the natural world has included marine biology, palaeontology, scuba diving, travel writing and underwater photography.

The Psychology Shelf

Psychological First Aid
Louise B. Miller, Ph.D
Independently Published
9781674814384, $19.95, PB, 262pp

Synopsis: Providing a framework for psychological health treatment similar to that of a physical injury or illness, "Psychological First Aid" by Louise B. Miller seeks to categorize signs and symptoms of psychological illness into three levels (Mild, Moderate, and Severe) the same way we do with physical injuries when seeking medical first aid. Using the concept of the mind-body connection, "Psychological First Aid" also lists integrative treatments that are effective in the reduction of signs and symptoms of psychological illness.

Critique: Exceptionally well written, organized and presented, "Psychological First Aid" is an ideal and instructive study that is especially and unreservedly recommended for community, college and university library Psychology collections. It is also well serve for the personal reading lists of psychology students, non-specialist general readers with an interest in the subject and as a textbook for supplemental curriculum studies lists.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Gentleman's Guide to Cooking
Randy Motilall
Xlibris Corporation
1663 South Liberty Drive, Bloomington, IN 47403-5161
9781664159044, $30.99, PB, 158pp

Synopsis: "The Gentleman's Guide to Cooking" by Randy Motilall is a beautifully illustrated compendium of recipes for dishes guaranteed to impress a date, significant other, friends, or family with palate pleasing, appetite satisfying, kitchen cook friendly dishes for those special dining events and occasions.

"The Gentleman's Guide to Cooking" showcases a wide range of recipes drawn from Asia, Latin America, Europe, Middle East, and North America. Most of these dishes can be tailored for all dietary restrictions, with directions to make the dishes vegetarian-friendly as well.

Critique: Thoroughly 'user friendly', step-by-step recipes for dishes ranging from Beef & Lamb Kaboobs; Quinoa Salad; and Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes; to Rustic Spaghetti and Meatballs; Champagne-Infused Chocolate Strawberries; and Poached Bose Pears, "The Gentleman's Guide to Cooking" is an ideal reference for memorable menu planning. Of special note is an entire section devoted to beverages. While very highly recommended for personal and community library cookbook collections, it should be noted that "The Gentleman's Guide to Cooking" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.99).

The Biography Shelf

A Cage Full of Monkeys: A Memoir
Richard Souza
Saudade Publications
9781736759707, $14.95, PB, 244pp

Synopsis: Within a context rarely imagined, Richard Souza writes of sex and love through a constellation of memories, from his first sexual experience at age five to his mother's last years. He reveals how, in his youth, he choreographed life experiences -- the ones that made up the journey into his own heart, who he was, and who he became in spite of environment, circumstance, and fear. On display is a raw, sensitive examination of sexual abuse that was embraced as an awakening, making "A Cage Full of Monkeys" a coming-of-age story like no other.

Critique: Written with remarkable candor and an eye for emotional detail, "A Cage Full of Monkeys: A Memoir" is the memorably extraordinary story of an exceptionally extraordinary life. While highly recommended for community, college, and university library Contemporary American Biography collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "A Cage Full of Monkeys: A Memoir" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $7.99).

Weak Start Unapologetic Present
Lester Patrick
New Harbor Press
9781633572348, $22.95, HC, 460pp

Synopsis: "Weak Start Unapologetic Present" is a combination of memoir and autobiography that covers the life and experiences of Lester Patrick, an African American born and raised in North Carolina during the Jim Crow and segregation periods of our country's history. It covers some events that took place following Reconstruction that led up to the Jim Crow period and Black and White Americans' attitudes that evolved because of these events.

"Weak Start Unapologetic Present" is written and intended for audiences of all ages and races for this extraordinary time in our country's history. It contains both serious and humorous experiences

Critique: Inspired and inspiring, "Weak Start Unapologetic Present" is an extraordinary account of an extraordinary life lived out in extraordinary times. While very highly recommended, especially for community, college, and university library African American biography collections, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Weak Start Unapologetic Present" is also readily available in a paperback edition (9781633573789, $16.95) and in a digital book format (Kindle, $8.99).

Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied
Brock Evans with George Venn
Wake Robin Press
c/o Redbat Books
9781946970022, $85.00, HC, 492pp

Synopsis: An autobiography, "Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied" highlights and documents Brock Evans' 50-year career as a leader in the environmental movement. This unique 80-year autobiographical collage is pieced together from three main sources:

A Forest of Stories: Brock's unknown and unpublished personal writing from boyhood diaries, letters, journals, stories from Ohio to Princeton to Bombay, from the Marines to Michigan Law School, from Ann Arbor to Montana. Later personal writing include his poem "Elegy," Israel diaries, "Seventeenth Summer," Cancer-Time diaries, and "Music to Play at my Funeral." Most texts were transcribed and quoted verbatim or excerpted.

A Mountain of Documents: These were selected from thousands of Brock's extensive professional published environmental writing, including testimony, speeches, letters, articles, memoranda, histories, essays, complete chapters. Most texts were scanned and/or excerpted. Chapters tell of winning or influencing battle after battle: North Cascades, Alpine Lakes, Horseshoe Basin, French Pete, Hells Canyon, John Day River, Sparta Mountain, Congaree.

A River of Photos: These 124 photographs (both color and black-white, both published and unpublished, personal and professional) introduce, enrich, and vary the multiple texts. Scanned and featured at the opening of all fifty chapters, they include Evans family photos, landscapes, arrests, mentors, marches, nurses, friends, mountains, wives and lovers, shots from the freighter Capto, and professional photos: Hells Canyon, Boundary Waters Wilderness, Alaska.

In "Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied", these sources come together to create a rich and complex understanding and appreciation of Brock Evans' life and work. An attorney by profession and a writer by instinct, he has previously published two books: Alpine Lakes (1971) and the award-winning Fight and Win (2015).

Critique: An impressively detailed and informative combination of personal memoir and exhaustive biography, "Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied: The Autobiography of an Eco-Warrior" is a coffee-table style and detailed personal history that is an inherently fascinating read throughout. Nicely illustrated by some 100 b/w and color photos, "Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied" is especially and unreservedly recommended addition to community, college, and university library Contemporary American Biography & Memoir collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied" is also readily available in a paperback edition (9781946970039, $75.00).

The General Fiction Shelf

The Hive
Melissa Scholes Young
Keylight Books
9781684426430 $29.99 hc / $11.99 Kindle

Synopsis: The Fehler sisters wanted to be more than bug girls but growing up in a fourth-generation family pest-control business in rural Missouri, their path was fixed. The family talked about Fehler Family Exterminating at every meal, even when their mom said to separate the business from the family, an impossible task. They tried to escape work with trips to their trailer camp on the Mississippi River, but the sisters did more fighting than fishing. If only there was a son to lead rural Missouri insect control and guide the way through a crumbling patriarchy.

After Robbie Fehler's sudden death, the surprising details of succession in his will are revealed. He's left the company to a distant cousin, assuming the women of the family aren't capable. As the mother's long-term affair surfaces and her apocalypse prepper training intensifies, she wants to trade responsibility for romance.

Facing an economic recession amidst the backdrop of growing Midwestern fear and resentment, the Fehler sisters unite in their struggle to save the company's finances and the family's future. To survive, they must overcome a political chasm that threatens a new civil war as the values that once united them now divide the very foundation they've built. Through alternating point-of-views, grief and regret gracefully give way to the enduring strength of the hive.

Critique: The Hive is a novel drawn from author Melissa Scholes Young's Midwestern roots. A rural family makes ends meet with their multigenerational pest-control business, but when the patriarch passes away, his will cedes control of the company to a distant cousin rather than to the surviving women. The repercussions of an economic recession further buffet the quarrelsome family, and the matriarch's involvement with an "apocalypse prepper" group draws her away from family connections. The Hive is a memorable saga of sisterhood, life-testing challenges, and ties that bind, highly recommended. It should be noted for personal reading lists that The Hive is available in a Kindle edition ($11.99).

William Michael Ried
CK Books Publishing
9781949085372, $14.99, PB, 328pp

Synopsis: Ansel Tone has been named "The Golden Boy of Popular History". He teaches propaganda at Columbia University and writes Redux Revisionist History best-sellers. His looks and family wealth help him to hawk his books on late night talk shows. He speaks to packed auditoriums. Undergraduates are said to swoon over his lectures. The public sees a professor who drives fast cars and runs with glamorous women. But his personal life is poised between an overbearing father and a son he hardly knows.

Ansel spent his junior year at Trinity College in Dublin, on a campus cloaked in four centuries of student pranks and mayhem. Twelve years later a classmate comes to New York and organizes a reunion. Ansel attends mostly to see how time has treated the beautiful Tess, his girlfriend that year who married their classmate, Charlie. Charlie and Tess live in "Mountain House" in the Hudson Valley. She's a big-firm lawyer. He's trying to replicate the success of his first novel and overcome the train-wreck of his second.

At the reunion Charlie announces he will fictionalize the story of how he won Tess away from Ansel. He'll change the facts to improve the story, but he first wants help remembering what really happened. Ansel panics. Digging into the past could reveal secrets that could overturn his life, and so he sets out to manipulate the story. Complications ripple from Charlie digging into his college days, Ansel struggling to rewrite his own past and Tess wondering if she wound up with the right guy, while their classmates come to terms with themselves and each other and share the repercussions of rewriting history.

Critique: A deftly written and fully engaging novel that showcases the author's genuine flair for originality, as well as the kind of entertaining and narrative driven storytelling that fully holds the readers attention from first page to last, "Backstory" by William Michael Ried is an unreservedly recommended addition to community library Contemporary General Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Backstory" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $4.99).

Janet Howle
Sistership Press
9780648985600, $16.99, PB, 336pp

Synopsis: Carter McDowell is a broken man. Guilt and grief haunt him as he struggles to keep the only thing he has left, his sailboat Wind Chaser.

Kat Deano, a feisty investigative reporter, is in the Bahamas to probe the mysterious disappearance of her twin brother.

Thrown together when Carter fishes Kat from the sea at night far from land, their lives become increasingly entangled as they face the forces of nature and threats from unexpected sources. Their uncharted voyage propels them from the office of the Bahamian Prime Minister to the remote island of Andros as they stumble onto a horrific plot that threatens both the U.S. and the Bahamas.

Critique: "Uncharted" by Janet Howle sets a turbulent period in the Bahamas' history as the backdrop for a present-day catastrophe. Drawn on the author's extensive experience cruising this region, this riveting suspense will captivate both seasoned and armchair sailors. Exceptionally well written and showcasing her genuine flair as a novelist for narrative driven storytelling, Janet Howle's "Uncharted" is especially and unreservedly recommended for community library general fiction collections. With its elements of a sea adventure, combined with political and crime thriller action, it should be noted for personal reading lists that "Uncharted" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $2.63).

Hungry Hill
Eileen Patricia Curran
Kinsale Press
9781736075203 $26.99 hc
9781736075227 $17.99 pbk
9781736075210 $12.99 Kindle

Synopsis: Grace Cavanaugh is intelligent, kind-and a bit of a wise ass. Lately, though, she's also something else: completely lost and just a little crazy. Her entire world has collapsed since Valentine's Day, when her husband, Michael, died unexpectedly after a romantic dinner celebrating their devotion. With her world turned upside down, she abandons the couple's gorgeous Victorian mansion and retreats to a cramped apartment with their three dogs in tow. Living in misery, barely finding energy to walk the dogs, Grace succumbs to her sorrow.

Just as she hits bottom, a relative she hasn't seen in years calls out of the blue. Maggie Reilly, her eighty-six-year-old great aunt who still lives in the house she was born in, has troubles of her own. She desperately needs a family member to take care of her, so she reaches out to Grace hoping the bond they shared decades ago remains strong enough to bring her great niece back home.

Hungry Hill is a story navigating the complexities of love in its many forms and how it endures. It explores our desire to belong to each other and to live a life of connectedness. It also reminds us to keep our sense of humor no matter what life brings, and to never underestimate the power of a great pair of shoes.

Critique: Hungry Hill is a novel about recovering from loss, and rediscovering bonds. When Grace Cavanaugh unexpectedly becomes a widow, she can barely muster the emotional energy to take care of her dogs. When Grace's elderly great aunt reaches out to Grace for help, the two women find that they can help one another. Hungry Hill is cathartic, witty, heartwarming, and highly recommended. It should be noted for personal reading lists that Hungry Hill is also available in a Kindle edition ($12.99).

The Crossing
Ashby Jones
Addison & Highsmith
9781592110896, $29.99, HC, 286pp

Synopsis: "The Crossing" by novelist Ashby Jones is a powerful and haunting love story of surprising discovery set in Manhattan's Hell's Kitchen during Prohibition. Its mission seeks to reconcile love and guilt, grief and promise. Set apart from other stories, it combines history, fact, surrealism, and reality into an ever-recycling boost of the human spirit.

Irish-born Johnny Flynn, a former British soldier, is banished from his homeland and sent to America on a ship so riddled with disease that he realizes the voyage was meant to murder him. When he survives the trip, the captain forces him to walk the plank into the Hudson River. Miraculously, Johnny is rescued by a rum-running Irish gang, the Swamp Angels, and given a job running whisky in Hell's Kitchen just as Prohibition makes liquor a hugely profitable, dangerous business.

Fighting for his life and livelihood amid the denizens of the Manhattan piers, Johnny is plagued by the memory of his lost lover, Nora, whose father, the famed Irish revolutionary, James Connolly, met his death through a firing squad that included a reluctant gunman named Johnny Flynn. Nora's last words to him, when she learned of his betrayal and left him, "I love you, Johnny Flynn", echo in his heart, leaving him pulsing with guilt, yearning, and the hope that she might yet forgive him.

Johnny drinks hard. One night, drunk on the floor of Hailey's speakeasy, he encounters a seeming apparition on stage, the ghostly Esme, an Irish singer who suffered unspeakable horrors at the hands of the British Black and Tans. Johnny is dazzled by her. She is not only a singer but a healer, teaching poor and afflicted children to sing and gather hope at an old theater called The Woebegone. From Esme Johnny learns how to overcome the desire for revenge, only to discover that she, too, clings to her own dark dream of retribution.

Hell's Kitchen, Johnny discovers, is thronged with people whose damaged hearts ache for revenge, repentance and love. As he grapples with taking responsibility to help others resolve this overwhelming dilemma, he learns that Nora is coming to New York to advocate for Irish independence. As he confronts her and soon thereafter receives a piercing love letter from Esme, the story comes to a turbulent climax.

Critique: A compelling, page turner of a read by an author withy a genuine flair for originality and narrative storytelling, "The Crossing" by Ashby Jones is especially and unreservedly recommended for personal reading lists and community library General Fiction collections.

Mona At Sea
Elizabeth Gonsalez James
Santa Fe Writer's Project
Dreamscape Media
9781951631017, $15.95, PB, 270pp

Synopsis: Mona Mireles is a quintessential overachiever: a former spelling bee champion and valedictorian of her college class, she has a sterling resume and a wall of plaques and medals in her bedroom that stretches floor to ceiling. She's also broke, unemployed, back at home with her parents, and completely adrift in life and love.

Mona is seven months out of college and desperately trying to reassemble the pieces of her life after the Wall Street job she had waiting for her post-graduation dissolves in the wake of the Great Recession. When her reaction to losing her job goes viral and she is publicly branded the "Sad Millennial," Mona begins a downward spiral into self-pity, bitterness, and late-night drunken binges on cat videos. Mona's the sort who says exactly the right thing at absolutely the wrong moments, seeing the world through a cynic's eyes.

Set in suburban Tucson amid the financial and social malaise of the early 2000s, 23-year-old Mona must not only find a job, but quickly learn to navigate the complexities of adult relationships within the black hole of her parents' shattering marriage.

At her mother's urging, Mona grudgingly joins a support group for job seekers, and slowly begins to see that all is not lost, and that perhaps losing the job on Wall Street was a blessing in disguise. She might even learn what it is she finds meaningful in life.

The question is: Will she be brave enough to go after it?

Critique: A fully entertaining 'coming of age' novel by an author with a definitive flair for reader engage narrative storytelling, "Mona At Sea" by Elizabeth Gonzales James is an extraordinary and unreservedly recommended addition to community library Contemporary General Fiction collections. It should be noted for personal reading lists that "Mona At Sea" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $1.99) and as a complete and unabridged audio book (Dreamscape Media, 9781666501063, $22.99, CD).

The Literary Fiction Shelf

Ten Seconds In-Between
Doug Hoekstra
Lulu Publishing
3101 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, NC 27607-5436
9781716059681, $20.00, PB, 112pp

Synopsis: "Ten Seconds In-Between" By Doug Hoekstra is a memorable, thought provocking and original collection about connection. There's something elusive yet immediate about the characters in these tales; as a line in "Performance Art," goes, "You remember reading somewhere that psychologists say when people meet, they decide within 7 and 17 seconds whether or not they will like each other. You wonder about the 10 seconds in between."

The pieces herein range from flash to extended, mirroring ephemeral transactions and relationships; as with life, the hope is that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. "Ten Seconds In-Between" is dedicated to everyone living in and for those ten seconds, the journey we share.

Critique: Deftly written and a thoroughly absorbing read, this contemporary short story collection is especially and unreservedly recommended for personal reading lists, as well as community, college, and university library Contemporary Literary Fiction collections.

Editorial Note: Doug Hoekstra is a Chicago-bred, Nashville-based writer and musician, educated at DePaul University in the Windy City (B.A.) and Belmont University in the Music City (M.Ed.), whose prose, poetry, and non-fiction have appeared in numerous print and online literary journals. His first set of stories, Bothering the Coffee Drinkers, was published in April 2006 and earned an Independent Publisher Award (IPPY) for Best Short Fiction (Bronze Medal). Ten Seconds In-Between is his fourth book. He maintains an informative website at

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

The Cleaner
Mark Dawson
Welbeck Publishing Group
9781787395121 $24.95 hc / $0.99 Kindle

Synopsis: John Milton is the man the government call when they want a problem to vanish. But what happens when he's the one that needs to disappear?

After a botched job leaves a bloody trail, government assassin John Milton does the one thing he's never done before: he hides.

Disappearing into London's bustling East End and holing up in a vacant flat, Milton becomes involved with single mother Sharon and her troubled son Elijah, who are caught in an increasingly bloody turf war between two rival gangs.

Unable to ignore the threat, Milton sets about protecting mother and son, meeting violence with violence. But his involvement puts him in the sight of the government's next best killer, and before long Milton is not just fighting to save a family and a home - he's fighting to stay alive...

Critique: The first novel in the John Milton series, and a UK Sundy Times bestseller now available as a print hardcover for the first time in the US, The Cleaner is a dark tale about a former government hitman on the run. After a job gone wrong, John Milton hides in London rather than become the next target to be "cleaned"; he becomes involved with a single mother, and strives to protect her and her son from a murderous clash between rival gangs. But when the government discovers his location, another skilled and trained assassin is sent to "clean" him! The Cleaner is sure to prove a popular lending library pick, and is highly recommended for connoisseurs of the genre. It should be noted for personal reading lists that The Cleaner is also available in a very affordable Kindle edition ($0.99).

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Gateway To The Gods
Cross Paul Stevens
Independently Published
9781916377912, $20.99, PB, 356pp

Synopsis: Stefan Duboir a loner and misfit who finds his life is turned upside down when he is transported into a strange new world. He is thrown into the middle of a battle for an ancient kingdom and his journey takes him through the pain and suffering of war, mixed with the emotions of love and loss. Is he alone in this world or has history repeated itself?

Critique: Showcasing the author's genuine flair for originality and the kind of narrative storytelling style that fully entertains his readers from first page to last, "Gateway To The Gods" by Cross Paul Stevens is especially and unreservedly recommended for community library Action/Adventure Fantasy Fiction collections. It should be noted for the personal reading lists of all dedicated fantasy fans that "Gateway To The Gods" is also readily available in a digital book format (Kindle, $4.99).

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Feed Your Moon
Crystal B.
Crystal B. Astrology
9781736597200 $24.99

Synopsis: Feed Your Moon delivers new astrology tools to help discover more about who you really are and why your needs are always changing. After a life time of working with real people, their stories, struggles and triumphs, second generation astrologer and "Astro Therapist" Crystal B. brings to light the laws of the universe in connection to our moon signs, relationships and evolving phases. There is MORE to your story and this modern, easy to understand and ground breaking astrology book explains WHY.

No matter what your sun sign or other planetary constants, all of us get a chance to experience each zodiac sign once, twice, or even possibly three times throughout our lives. Feed Your Moon reinvents the zodiac's wheel while revealing tools to help us tune into the "skin you're in" and changing astrological influences in your life. Crystal B. delivers new truths about how to decode your personal astrology along with new information about the not commonly discussed Progressed Moon.

Feed Your Moon includes both mindful and predictive astrology. It helps you honor and embrace your today while prepping for tomorrow. Gain access to a unique recipe of self-discovery that helps you understand hidden truths about your personal astrology, using both mindful and predictive techniques. Tools are weaved throughout every page to help you stay mindful in your present, while preparing you for what the universe has in store next.

Written in an easy-to-read format for both beginners and astrology junkies alike, Feed Your Moon helps you embrace and honor your authentic self, understand your evolving relationship needs, gain perspective on the mystifying events in your life, and learn to use planetary influences to your advantage.

Critique: Feed Your Moon: Predictive and Mindful Astrology One Phase at a Time is an self-help guide to making the most of astrological and zodiac sign influences in one's life. Written to be thoroughly accessible to beginners and experienced astrology practitioners alike, Feed Your Moon discusses how to interpret progressions of the moon, how to use astrology houses in conjunction with moon cycles, the interplay between relationships, attraction factors, and the progressed moon, and much more. Highly recommended, especially for astrology buffs interested in taking their understanding beyond the level of reading commercial horoscopes!

James A. Cox
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

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