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Book Reviewers Program

Book Reviewers Program

The Book Reviewers Program delivers free eBooks to book reviewers in exchange for honest reviews published on the reviewer’s book blog. With the permission of the reviewer, we will also publish the review here on Book Glow. Only a select number of copies are available per title. Book batches change often, so please bookmark this page to keep up to date with the latest offered titles. The current batch includes:

FICTION SELECTIONS

Beneath the Same Heaven: A Novel by Anne Marie Ruff

2018 Nautilus Award Silver Winner.

A story of love and terrorism.

Kathryn, an American woman, and Rashid, a Pakistani-born Muslim man, seem to have bridged the divide between Western and Islamic world views with their marriage and two American-born children. But everything changes when Rashid’s father is suddenly killed by a US drone attack near the Afghan border, and their cross-cultural family descends into conflicting ideas of loyalty, justice, identity, revenge, and terrorism.

“A thought-provoking love story. This novel masterfully blends the dangers of geopolitics superimposed on romantic and unconditional familial love… Ruff bravely circumnavigates the violence at the heart of the story to lay bare the intricate drama of before and after. Revenge versus justice. Clanship versus kinship. Passionate love versus filial obligation. All are explored with intimate humanity in this compelling, tender, and timely novel.”—Kim Fay, author of The Map of Lost Memories, Edgar Award Finalist for Best First Novel

Consider the Feast: A Novel by Carmit Delman

New York City is obsessed with food. Especially in the streets of The Quarter, every imaginable delicacy is made and devoured, every unspeakable hunger is fulfilled.

Talia, a recent divorcee, comes to The Quarter to be reborn. She discovers fresh purpose in the sensual pleasures there, and a possible new love. But eventually she finds herself face to face with the darkness under its surface—in both the privileged patrons who feast there, and the third-world laborers who feed them.

Now Talia must separate the truth from the madness because in The Quarter, the haves and have-nots are about to face a reckoning.

Copper Sky by Milana Marsenich

Western Writers of America Spur award finalist.

The feminine spirit of the West comes alive in early twentieth century Montana.

Set in the Copper Camp of Butte, Montana in 1917, Copper Sky tells the story of two women with opposite lives. Kaly Shane, mired in prostitution, struggles to find a safe home for her unborn child, while Marika Lailich, a Slavic immigrant, dodges a pre-arranged marriage to become a doctor. As their paths cross, and they become unlikely friends, neither knows the family secret that ties them together.

Heaven and Other Zip Codes: A Novel by Mathieu Cailler

Heaven and Other Zip Codes follows the complicated relationships between lonely, thirty-something-year-old mother Searcy, her awkward preadolescent son Theo, cheating husband and disingenuous stepfather Hoit, and young, attractive, painter-turned-after-school-tutor Emerson.

When anonymous letters accusing Hoit of infidelity start to arrive on the doorstep, Searcy takes her flirtation with her son’s tutor to the next level, and the family begins to fracture in the sunny Southern California suburb they call home.

Will Searcy and Emerson act upon their feelings? Will Hoit’s adulterous exploits come back to haunt him? Will the boys at school stop bullying Theo? Who is writing the mysterious letters? And where exactly is the location of Heaven and Other Zip Codes?

This contemporary novel explores family, guilt, manipulation, betrayal, and love.

In An Empty Room: A Novel by Stephen Spotte

When a Marine fireteam searches an isolated Vietnamese village believed to be a supply depot for the Viet Cong an IED explodes, leaving only one survivor of the five-man unit. But who is he: Bunny, Hillbilly, Poke, Injun, or “the LT”? Because he is horribly burned, disfigured, and unable to speak, the military doctors don’t know, but the people back home in a coal mining camp in southern West Virginia think they know. Most unsettling of all the survivor himself isn’t certain who he is.

Spanning the landscape from Vietnam’s war-torn jungles to hardscrabble Appalachia, In An Empty Room is a gripping examination of time, memory, consciousness, and selfhood and suggests unanticipated conclusions about the nature of human identity.

Mind Fields by Thomas Garlinghouse

A mystery novelist. A tormented physicist. A metaphysical adventure.

In the early 1950s, the People’s Republic of China invaded and annexed Tibet, forever altering the country’s political and social landscape. For mystery writer Taylor Hamilton and his wife, Kate, these events seem part of a remote, forgotten past. Having fled San Francisco for the quiet of a small, coastal town, all Taylor wants to do is surf and write mysteries.

But for Taylor’s neighbor, an old man named Havelock Rowland, the invasion of Tibet—and its bloody aftermath—are forever emblazoned on his psyche. Reclusive and secretive, Havelock is a retired physicist who lives alone with an immense black dog and harbors a complicated and painful personal history.

Gradually but inexorably, Taylor is drawn into Havelock’s world of Tibetan metaphysics, and soon the past clashes with the present as strange events emerge to overtake the picturesque coastal town. A dangerous animal and a mysterious young man begin to threaten the area’s inhabitants.

From the Chinese takeover of Tibet in the early 1950s to present-day San Francisco, Big Sur, and Northern California, Mind Fields is a story of adventure, loss, mysticism, and ultimately, the importance of friendship and connection.

Mr. Wizard by Jeff Wallach

Two brothers. One mother. One big question.

Two days before her death, Jenny Elliot suggests to her fifty-year-old son Phillip that, being half Irish, he should be more careful about his drinking. Phillip, along with his brother Spencer, has grown up believing they were the fully Jewish-American offspring of Jenny and her late husband who died in the Vietnam War. Was his mother uttering some dementia-inspired fantasy, or was her true character shining through in her last moments to leave the brothers a clue to their real heritage? After her death, Phillip decides to take a DNA test.

The brothers set off on a genetic treasure hunt in search of who they really are—and what that might mean. Are they purely products of their genetics; or were they formed more completely by their social interactions and upbringing? Are they merely victims of randomness; or are they some combination of those factors? And who, exactly, is Mr. Wizard?

Nevergreen by Andrew Pessin

A smart, fast, funny, and incisive portrait of today’s liberal arts college scene, cancel culture, and more.

A chance encounter—if it is by chance—gives J. the opportunity of a lifetime. A physician in a midlife funk, he is invited to speak at a small college. But when he arrives at the secluded island campus of Nevergreen College he gets a lot more than he bargained for. No one actually shows up for his talk, but that doesn’t stop it from becoming the center of a firestorm of controversy—with potentially fatal consequences.

Only Billionaires Can Play by Fred Leavitt

When a group of extremely wealthy and very bored individuals develops a game in which they compete to secretly manipulate selected real life targets to perform crazy and demeaning behaviors, both the hero and heroine must conquer potentially life-threatening obstacles as they try to figure out whether they can trust each other, their friends, or the meanings of everyday events in their lives. Only Billionaires Can Play is frighteningly plausible, and readers will find both its premise and its conclusion highly unsettling as they come to realize that they can never again be certain of anything.

Pot Luck: A James Emerson Harris Mystery by David L. Gersh

Things always seem to go wrong for Jimmy Harris. The small coastal town of San Buenasara is gripped in a recession. Jimmy’s law practice is in the tank.

Wee Willy’s is the hot pot company in town. And perhaps a way to stay afloat. Willy wants him to be president. To think, him a president.

Alas, things are not what they seem. Mysterious shell companies own the stock. The company is broke, even though boxes of cash keep arriving. Jimmy finds himself up to his eyebrows in a struggle between the law and shadowy people who will do anything to get their way. Is it the drug cartel? The Mafia? Or is it the FBI? He stumbles.

He bumbles. He’s arrested for murder. He needs to find a way through this maze. The alternatives are unthinkable.

With the help of his once and future wife, Karen, and the resourcefulness of his law partner Clyde, maybe he can find a way out. And of course, Bruno, Karen and Jimmy’s long-haired dachshund, wants to help. He has a nose for mysteries.

Pretty Chrysanthemum and Other Stories by Nancy Lane

These sixteen stories remind readers how family is at the core of human experience and how relationships, especially those between parent and child, rely on the power of love to overcome challenges.

Five stories feature historical content from 1897 through 1971. Eleven contemporary stories pose challenging situations.

Throughout these tales, the pull of family, the power of love, and unshakeable human decency prevail.

Pursuing Fedhisss: An Outer Space Odyssey by William A. Glasser

Join two aliens, Urr and Fedhisss, traveling in separate space vessels, on a joint mission to seek out and explore new regions and new life forms in the universe. During their second planetary stop, however, Fedhisss decides that he also wants to improve the overall quality of life in the universe, and he intends to do so by eradicating any concentrations of consciousness they may come upon that Fedhisss deems unworthy of existence. With that in mind, Fedhisss then wreaks total havoc on the planet they are visiting by destroying all of the life forms existing there. And when he sees that Urr is now strongly determined to stop him from making any further judgments, Fedhisss departs in his own ship, trying to leave Urr behind. Using the guidance system on his ship, Urr then manages to track Fedhisss to his next landing, the planet Earth, where the book opens with Urr’s ship entering Earth’s atmosphere.

Rosemary in Bloom by Khristy Reibel

Inspired by a true story, Rosemary in Bloom explores faith, forgiveness, enduring love against all odds, and the difficult decisions that strong, smart women on the home front had to make during World War II.

When Rosemary meets Albert it is instant chemistry. But it is also the summer of 1942, and scores of young men—Albert included—feel compelled to enlist to fight the war against Hitler. Albert wants to marry Rosemary before he leaves for Europe, but she just can’t commit. Like so many young women of her time, Rosemary finds herself left behind to work and worry, desperate for love but frightened of abandonment.

Three years later, and with Albert’s fate still unknown, Rosemary meets Harry, a charming and handsome man. Rosemary feels guilty for spending so much time with Harry, but she has all but lost faith that Albert will make it safely back home, especially when she receives news of her brother’s serious combat injury. Should she wait for Albert, or settle for second best?

Swift Dam by Sid Gustafson

An evocative exploration of memory and landscape, culture, history and generational relationships.

Montana veterinarian Alphonse Vallerone goes back 50 years to the day after the Flood of ’64, when he assisted the surviving Indians who hadn’t drowned after the dam failed to hold the Birch Creek flow. Riding from one devastated ranch to another, he tends to the surviving animals and tries to mend the grief wrought by the Flood.

Underpinned by the lingering and harsh reminders of their heroic, tragic, and vibrant past, Gustafson’s third novel chronicles the heartrending drama of the Blackfeet people.

Swift Dam celebrates the Native people who survive as they have survived throughout time; perilously. It is the story of a veterinarian who attempts to sustain and nurture life on the land, his empathy with the living, and his sympathy for those gone before.

The Autobiography of Satan (Authorized Edition) by William A. Glasser

This is the story of Satan’s many struggles, across the history of Human existence, to unshackle the Human mind, and open the gates to forbidden knowledge.

From the moment of his first emergence as a single spark in the dimness of prehistory, to the more enlightening force into which he evolves across the full span of human existence, Satan, as he now clearly illustrates, has been urging human beings to open their eyes to the world around them, and to continue seeking, with unfettered minds, for ultimate answers, yet to be found. To do so he must struggle against the persistent attempts to stifle that urge by the “spoon feeders,” as he calls them, individuals who have insisted, within every age, and often with a bloody fist, that they, and they alone, are the possessors of the only beliefs that every human being should accept and live by, without question. As Satan traces the history of their many attempts to stop human beings from thinking for themselves, he also takes his readers on a search for the ultimate source of all evil in this world. Readers will obviously enter the book with the standard concept of Satan as a supernatural figure of evil. They will leave the book, however, with a better understanding of how such mind-twisting concepts have been used to keep people away from the “forbidden” knowledge that lies beyond the borders of entrenched beliefs.

The Chameleon Shuffle by Jere Krakoff

Is he Liberal? Or is he Conservative? The highest judge in the land can’t make up his mind.

After languishing in The Depository for Foundlings and other Discarded Children, Leonard Zweig is adopted by staunch Conservative lawyer Milton and pious Liberal lawyer Miriam Zweig.

When the Zweigs launch a secret program to indoctrinate Leonard in the dogma of their respective sects, his impressionable adolescent’s mind bifurcates, causing him to involuntarily oscillate between Liberalism and Conservatism every few days—an affliction he can’t shake even through law school and eventually municipal judgeship.

Meanwhile, the Republic is mired in a judicial crisis. To stave off a leftward shift, Benito Ionesco, Leader of the Conservative-controlled legislature, searches for a viable way to end the crisis. Fortuitously, his secretary has recently read about Leonard’s ideological switching in a tawdry tabloid.

Will the Liberal Chancellor be willing to nominate a part-time Conservative to the highest Bench in the land? And if Leonard is confirmed, will he be treated as a pariah by his colleagues? Or will an aversion conditioning program leave him with a single ideological bias? This satirical novel hilariously exposes our current political climate, judicial system, and leaders.

The Courage of Others by James Hitt

Sixteen-year-old Davy Stoneman accompanies his Aunt Esther to the train station to greet his Uncle Marsh, returning home to Twin Forks, Texas from World War I in 1919. When Davy’s uncle steps off the train, Davy realizes that the army has sent him home to die.

Aunt Easter seeks the help of Sister Rose, a black woman known for her herbal cures. As Sister Rose restores Uncle Marsh’s health, a friendship develops between Sister Rose’s teenage son Daniel and Davy. Through his new friend, Davy meets Rachel, a black girl his own age, and he finds himself attracted to her.

The three young people are soon working together to repair an old house that will be used to teach black children to read and write. As a result, Davy and his uncle and aunt find themselves caught up in events that lead to death and tragedy.

In the face of tragedy, Davy learns that the true nature of each person is deeper than one’s skin, that depravity can reshape a soul into something ugly and mean and destructive, and that the courage to confront such depravity, no what matter the cost, is often learned through the courage of others.

The Ice Palace Waltz by Barbara L. Baer

In the autumn of 1895, citizens of Leadville, Colorado construct the Ice Palace: a last sign of hope for the fading silver mining town. There, on New Year’s Eve beneath the magic lights and frozen ramparts of this fantastic ice marvel, June Selig and Nathan Grensky dance and fall in love.

Across the country in New York City, the waning years of the Gilded Age and a failed stock market gamble crushes the dreams of the Greenbaums. Only vivacious, copper-haired Tillie can save her family from ruin by entering into a marriage of convenience.

Two decades later, Tillie, resigned to a passionless marriage, encourages her daughter Margie to live the romance she was denied and take a chance on the dashing, hard-drinking newsman Tommy Grensky, the Leadville Ice Palace lovers’ son. But when the young couple travels to London in 1937, they encounter a changing Europe under the rise of Nazism.

In The Ice Palace Waltz, two Jewish immigrant families—the rough and ready Western pioneers and the smooth, “our crowd” New Yorkers—come together in a riveting family saga amid the financial and social tumult of early twentieth century America. Baer’s moving multigenerational novel traces the American Jewish experience and the enduring power of family and love.

The Irrationalist by Andrew Pessin

An historical murder mystery based on real events.

Who would want to murder the world’s most famous philosopher?

Turns out: nearly everyone.

In 1649, Descartes was invited by the Queen of Sweden to become her Court Philosopher. Though he was the world’s leading philosopher, his life had by this point fallen apart. He was 53, penniless, living in exile in the United Provinces, alone. With much trepidation but not much choice, he arrived in Stockholm in mid-October.

Shortly thereafter he was dead.

Enter Adrien Baillet. A likeable misfit with a mysterious backstory, he arrives just as the French Ambassador desperately needs an impartial Frenchman to prove that Descartes died of natural causes.

But solving the mystery of Descartes’s death (Baillet soon learns) requires first solving the mystery of Descartes’s life, with all its dangerous secrets … None of it is easy, as nearly everyone is a suspect and no one can be trusted.

But Baillet somehow perseveres, surprising everyone as he figures it all out—all the way to the explosive end.

The Swan Keeper by Milana Marsenich

WILLA Literary Award Finalist.

A daughter seeks justice for her father’s murder in 1920s Montana.

On her eleventh birthday, Lilly’s family visits the Cattail Marsh to see the newly hatched cygnets. The family outing turns tragic when Dean Drake shows up with his shotgun. Lilly sees him kill her father, injure her mother, and slaughter the bevy of trumpeter swans. The sheriff, her mother, sister, and best friend all think Lilly is trying to make sense of a senseless accident by blaming Drake. But Lilly knows the truth. Left alone she must bring him to justice.

The Whisper of a Distant God by David L. Gersh

The untold story of the Angel of Santa Fe and the Gettysburg of the West.

This is the story, based on historical events, of the little known War of New Mexico, of Henry Sibley, who commanded the Texas Mounted Volunteers, Edward R. S. Canby, the Union commander, and his wife Louisa, the Angel of Santa Fe. It explores the desperate struggle at the Battle of Glorieta Pass, called the Gettysburg of the West, and the men who fought on both sides. It examines the tragedies of war and the passion and compassion of those men and women who played a part.

Through letters, diaries, newspaper articles and both first and third person exposition and dialogue, this deeply-researched historical fiction tells of those who heard The Whisper of a Distant God.

The Year of the Return by Nathaniel Popkin

Set against the backdrop of 1976 Philadelphia, The Year of the Return follows the path of two families, the Jewish Silks and African American Johnsons, as they are first united by marriage and then by grief, turmoil, and the difficult task of trying to live in an America failing to live up to its ideals.

Paul Silk and Charlene Johnson are journalists whose love for each other and commitment to social justice were formed in the peace movements of the 1960s. But the idealism of that era leads to the urban deterioration of the 1970s. Mayor Frank Rizzo’s Philadelphia is a place of crime, white flight, and class resentment that is inhospitable to their interracial marriage, forcing them to move away. But when Charlene dies of cancer, Paul returns.

Unmoored and unable to let go of Charlene, he wades back into the lives of the two families, with the hope of helping Charlene’s younger brother Monte, once a prodigy and now a troubled veteran of the Vietnam War. Their explosive reunion leads to the baring of personal revelations and dangerous secrets.

The Year of the Return is a vivid story of families trying to reconnect with and support each other through trauma and loss, and a meditation on the possibility of moving on to a better future.

Wings of a Flying Tiger by Iris Yang

World War Two. Japanese occupied China. One cousin’s courage, another’s determination to help a wounded American pilot.

In the summer of 1942, Danny Hardy bails out of his fighter plane into a remote region of western China. With multiple injuries, malaria, and Japanese troops searching for him, the American pilot’s odds of survival are slim.

Jasmine Bai, an art student who has been saved by Americans during the notorious Nanking Massacre, seems an unlikely heroine to rescue the wounded Flying Tiger. Daisy Bai, Jasmine’s younger cousin, also falls in love with the courageous American.

With the help of Daisy’s brother, an entire village opens its arms to heal a Flying Tiger with injured wings, but as a result of their charity the serenity of their community is forever shattered.

Love, sacrifice, kindness, and bravery all play a part in this heroic tale that takes place during one of the darkest hours of Chinese history.

Will of a Tiger by Iris Yang

Sworn brothers—one American, one Chinese—captured, imprisoned, tortured. Survival is just the beginning of the battle…

In 1942, Birch Bai, a Chinese pilot, and Danny Hardy, a downed American pilot, become sworn brothers and best friends. In the summer of 1945, both airmen’s planes go down in Yunnan Province of China during one of many daring missions. They are captured, imprisoned, and tortured by the Japanese for information about the atomic bomb. Just days before the end of WWII, Danny makes an irrevocable decision to save Birch’s life.

For Birch, surviving the war is only the beginning of the battle. He must deal with the dreadful reality in China—the civil war, the separation of the country, the death of one friend in the Communist-controlled Mainland and another under the Nationalist government, and his wrongful imprisonment in Taiwan.

From Chungking to Yunnan, and from Taiwan to San Francisco, the sequel to Wings of a Flying Tiger takes readers along on an epic journey.

Legacy of the Tigers by Iris Yang

In China’s political chaos, a woman’s desperate search for her family and the American pilot she loves.

In the winter of 1942, Jasmine Bai survives the freezing wilderness and decides to keep her baby, even though he is the product of a gang-rape by Japanese soldiers.

In 1947, her quiet life in a remote cabin is disrupted by the news of her loved one’s death. In the following four decades, Jasmine desperately searches for her family and for Danny Hardy, the American pilot she loves. She is robbed by thugs, thrown in jail by the Nationalist Secret Police, and wrongfully accused by the Communists. In war and political chaos, Jasmine loses her loved ones, but she never loses her sense of decency, nor does she break her promise to the Flying Tiger.

Over thousands of miles between Yunnan and Chungking, the third book of the Tiger Saga trilogy takes readers along another incredible journey.

NONFICTION SELECTIONS

Africa Memoir: 50 Years, 54 Countries, One American Life (Algeria – Liberia) by Mark G. Wentling

Visit all 54 African countries with an adventurous American guide who has spent over half a century on the continent. Volume I covers Algeria – Liberia.

Africa Memoir tells the incredible lifetime story of Mark G. Wentling, a boy from Kansas who grew up to travel, work, and visit all 54 African countries. Derived from over a half century spent working and living on the African continent, Wentling devotes a chapter to each country describing his firsthand experiences, eye-opening impressions, and views on future prospects.

Original and authoritative, this one-of-a-kind, three-volume work deserves a special place on the bookshelves of anyone interested in Africa.

Africa Memoir: 50 Years, 54 Countries, One American Life (Libya – Senegal) by Mark G. Wentling

Visit all 54 African countries with an adventurous American guide who has spent over half a century on the continent. Volume II covers Libya – Senegal.

Africa Memoir tells the incredible lifetime story of Mark G. Wentling, a boy from Kansas who grew up to travel, work, and visit all 54 African countries. Derived from over a half century spent working and living on the African continent, Wentling devotes a chapter to each country describing his firsthand experiences, eye-opening impressions, and views on future prospects.

Original and authoritative, this one-of-a-kind, three-volume work deserves a special place on the bookshelves of anyone interested in Africa.

Africa Memoir: 50 Years, 54 Countries, One American Life (Seychelles – Zimbabwe) by Mark G. Wentling

Visit all 54 African countries with an adventurous American guide who has spent over half a century on the continent. Volume III covers Seychelles – Zimbabwe.

Africa Memoir tells the incredible lifetime story of Mark G. Wentling, a boy from Kansas who grew up to travel, work, and visit all 54 African countries. Derived from over a half century spent working and living on the African continent, Wentling devotes a chapter to each country describing his firsthand experiences, eye-opening impressions, and views on future prospects.

Original and authoritative, this one-of-a-kind, three-volume work deserves a special place on the bookshelves of anyone interested in Africa.

Chechnya: The Inside Story by Mairbek Vatchagaev

From Independence to war.

Mairbek Vatchagaev, the former press secretary and first adviser to Chechen President Maskhadov, chronicles the dramatic events that took place in Chechnya during the 1990s following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Chechen war for independence. Engaged on one side of the Russian-Chechen conflict, he presents what he witnessed, how he became involved, how the struggle with Russia and the internal Chechen rivalries evolved, and how it impacted his family, his friends, his acquaintances, and the Chechen people.

Eat the Evidence (Book One of the Bar Jonah Trilogy) by John E. Espy, Ph.D.

Considered an expert in the area of psychopathic behavior, Dr. Espy has interviewed more than 30 serial murderers throughout the world including Jeffrey Dahmer, Ted Bundy, and Eddie Gein.

But when he was assigned to be the lead evaluator for Montana State Prison inmate Nathaneal Bar Jonah, an already once convicted serial child molester and attempted murderer in Massachusetts, Espy encountered a parasitic personality beyond imagination: a modern-day Cronos, the Greek mythological figure who devoured his children.

Weighing over 375 pounds, Bar Jonah worked as a short order cook at Hardy’s, carried a stun gun, impersonated police officers, told masterful lies, wrote unbreakable codes, cooked and shared with friends strange-tasting chili and spaghetti sauces, and was thought by Montana State detectives to have murdered and cannibalized at least one victim, 10-year-old Zach Ramsay.

Culled from hundreds of hours of exclusive interviews with Bar Jonah, dozens of others who either knew or were involved with him, Montana State investigators and prosecutors, and Zach Ramsay’s mother, Espy retells Bar Jonah’s entire life—from the time before he was conceived to after his death—and those who were harmed by him in unparalleled detail and scope.

A Parasite in the Mind (Book Two of the Bar Jonah Trilogy) by John E. Espy, Ph.D.

The story continues in Book Two of the Bar Jonah Trilogy.

Considered an expert in the area of psychopathic behavior, Dr. Espy has interviewed more than 30 serial murderers throughout the world including Jeffrey Dahmer, Ted Bundy, and Eddie Gein.

But when he was assigned to be the lead evaluator for Montana State Prison inmate Nathaneal Bar Jonah, an already once convicted serial child molester and attempted murderer in Massachusetts, Espy encountered a parasitic personality beyond imagination: a modern-day Cronos, the Greek mythological figure who devoured his children.

Weighing over 375 pounds, Bar Jonah worked as a short order cook at Hardy’s, carried a stun gun, impersonated police officers, told masterful lies, wrote unbreakable codes, cooked and shared with friends strange-tasting chili and spaghetti sauces, and was thought by Montana State detectives to have murdered and cannibalized at least one victim, 10-year-old Zach Ramsay.

Culled from hundreds of hours of exclusive interviews with Bar Jonah, dozens of others who either knew or were involved with him, Montana State investigators and prosecutors, and Zach Ramsay’s mother, Espy retells Bar Jonah’s entire life—from the time before he was conceived to after his death—and those who were harmed by him in unparalleled detail and scope.

There is No Body (Book Three of the Bar Jonah Trilogy) by John E. Espy, Ph.D.

The story concludes in Book Three of the Bar Jonah Trilogy.

Considered an expert in the area of psychopathic behavior, Dr. Espy has interviewed more than 30 serial murderers throughout the world including Jeffrey Dahmer, Ted Bundy, and Eddie Gein.

But when he was assigned to be the lead evaluator for Montana State Prison inmate Nathaneal Bar Jonah, an already once convicted serial child molester and attempted murderer in Massachusetts, Espy encountered a parasitic personality beyond imagination: a modern-day Cronos, the Greek mythological figure who devoured his children.

Weighing over 375 pounds, Bar Jonah worked as a short order cook at Hardy’s, carried a stun gun, impersonated police officers, told masterful lies, wrote unbreakable codes, cooked and shared with friends strange-tasting chili and spaghetti sauces, and was thought by Montana State detectives to have murdered and cannibalized at least one victim, 10-year-old Zach Ramsay.

Culled from hundreds of hours of exclusive interviews with Bar Jonah, dozens of others who either knew or were involved with him, Montana State investigators and prosecutors, and Zach Ramsay’s mother, Espy retells Bar Jonah’s entire life—from the time before he was conceived to after his death—and those who were harmed by him in unparalleled detail and scope.

From Tea to Coffee: The Journey of an Educated Youth by Cheng Wang

Following Mao’s call to the young during the Cultural Revolution, Cheng Wang, a so-called “Educated Youth,” boarded a train destined for a secluded village in Inner Mongolia for the compulsory period of re-education. For the next three grueling years in rural exile, he pondered how his once privileged family had been caught in a political undertow, and how his own future might unfold.

From Tea to Coffee is a story of struggle and triumph during China’s modern-day cultural and political drama, and is a rare and personal account that showcases the Chinese national psyche. Like all political movements of the past, the Cultural Revolution was not the first of its kind, nor quite possibly the last, yet Cheng Wang, now at home in both America and in China, maintains an optimism in confronting today’s social polarization between the East and the West.

From Timbuktu to Duck and Cover: Improbable Tales from a Career in Foreign Service by Lewis Lucke

While spending thirty years overseas in the US Foreign Service, and living in eleven countries and working in many more, Ambassador Lucke accumulated many stories that would never have happened “at home.” His work took him to Timbuktu (twice), to places in West Africa where kids ran away in fear at their first glimpse of a person with white skin, to the scary run up to Gulf War I in North Africa, to the jungles of Bolivia and Lake Titicaca in the Andes, the fall of Communism in the old Czechoslovakia, biblical sites of Jerusalem, the passing of King Hussein in Jordan, to interaction with a few US Presidents and many members of Congress. He was thrust into the aftermath of the Haiti earthquake, deployed into the war zone of Iraq, and finally served as US Ambassador to the last absolute monarchy in Africa. His take on a thirty-year career abroad: “It was never boring.”

How to Collect Great Art on a Shoestring by David L. Gersh

A how-to guide for new and experienced collectors, How to Collect Great Art on a Shoestring explores the unique opportunity to acquire one-of-a-kind works for $2000 or $3000 by hundreds of mostly forgotten yet startlingly good artists who are in the permanent collection of MoMA, the Guggenheim, the Whitney, the Met, among many other museums.

A veteran and avid collector, Gersh offers pro tips on how, what, and which artists to look for while providing unique insights, an invaluable perspective, and a dash of humor into the world of collecting great art.

If Ignorance Is Bliss, We Should All Be Ecstatic by Fred Leavitt

Nothing we think we know – NOTHING – is likely to be correct.

If Ignorance is Bliss, We Should All Be Ecstatic explores the limitations of knowledge and argues that neither reasoning nor direct observation can be trusted. Not only are they unreliable sources, but they do not even justify assigning probabilities to claims about what we can know. This position, called radical skepticism, has intrigued philosophers since before the birth of Christ, yet nobody has been able to refute it.

Fred Leavitt uses two unique methods of presentation. First, he supports abstract arguments with summaries of real-life examples from many and varied fields, which make the arguments much more convincing and compelling. He cites more than 200 studies from psychology, mathematics, chaos theory, quantum mechanics, evolutionary theory, history, the corporate world, politics, the military, and current news reporting. Second, Leavitt’s writing is user-friendly, even when dealing with complex issues.

Whether answering the telephone, turning on the TV, talking with friends, or munching on an apple, we expect things to happen predictably. These expectations, paired with radical skepticism, exemplify cognitive dissonance at the highest level.

Natasha’s Not My Name: A Memoir by Isabella Grosso with ML Bordner

Natasha’s Not My Name introduces readers to the complex underground of the strip club industry from the perspective of a sixteen-year-old. Groomed by her cousin, supported by older dancers, and paid by strangers, this memoir follows Isabella Grosso’s adolescence and young adult years as she questions, struggles, and ultimately survives as a child-turned-adult with a double life.

Natasha’s Not My Name dives deep into the dark pockets of sexual abuse, suicide, drug use, and exploitation. It uncovers the inner strength it takes for a wounded child to blossom into the empowered woman she was born to be, and explores how she found refuge in a love for dance and the arts.

Introspective, unapologetic, and brave, Natasha’s Not My Name is rooted in a desire to share in heartache and success with other girls on a journey of self-discovery. It is inspirational reading for all women.

Pilgrimage to Paris: The Cheapo Snob’s Guide to the City and the Americans Who Lived There by Jayne R. Boisvert

An easy-to-use guide devoted to Paris, Pilgrimage to Paris: The Cheapo Snob’s Guide to the City and the Americans Who Lived There includes travel tips, main attractions, free (and nearly free) things to do, shopping, museums, churches, cafes, and restaurants. The book also provides short biographies and addresses associated with famous Americans—writers, journalists, politicians, musicians and performers, artists and architects, and several other interesting people who don’t fit neatly into typical categories—who spent time living la belle vie in the French capital.

Paris and Parisians: The Cheapo Snob Explores the City and Its Famous French Residents

By the author of Pilgrimage to Paris.

There’s more to see and experience in Paris than just the Eiffel Tower, Notre-Dame, and the Louvre. In the second book of the Cheapo Snob series, Paris and Parisians guides visitors to remarkable must-see sites in the City of Light including the Opéra Garnier, the Panthéon, the homes of Balzac and Victor Hugo, plus l’Église Saint-Sulpice, which figures prominently in Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code, the longtime royal residence at Fontainebleau southeast of the city, and several unique museums.

In addition, this guidebook uncovers authentic French culture by revealing short biographies and addresses of scores of diverse and extraordinary one-time French residents from actors including Sarah Bernhardt and Brigitte Bardot to authors Sartre, Camus, Colette, Flaubert, and Zola, to name just a few, plus artists like Monet and Renoir, fashion designers such as Chanel, Givenchy, and Saint-Laurent, not to mention architects, chefs, directors, sculptors, and many more.

Postcards from the Borderlands by David H. Mould

What are borders? Are they simply political and geographical, marked by posts, walls and fences, or should we think of them more broadly? In his third book on travel, history and culture, college professor, historian and journalist David Mould rambles through a dozen countries in Asia and southern Africa by car, bus, train, shared taxi and ferry, exploring what borders mean to their peoples.

Many countries are the artificial creations of colonial powers. Their borders, set by surveys and treaties, took no account of topography or the ethnic groups that were cobbled together. There are also borders within countries, defined by race, ethnicity, or caste. Borders may be physical and economic, even perceptual—the borders of our minds.

On his travels, David faces shakedowns by border guards, finds old-time religion in Malawi, revisits the legacy of apartheid in Johannesburg, traverses the rivers of Bangladesh, wanders through the ancient kingdoms of Nepal, explores Malaysia’s troubled colonial past, sets off security alarms in Karachi, counts yaks and discovers dinosaurs on the Mongolian steppe, savors the cuisine of Georgia and fulfills a Dr. Zhivago fantasy on the Trans-Siberian Railway.

The Four Trials of Henry Ford by Gregory R. Piché

Henry Ford: oracular genius, people’s hero, or narcissistic, autocratic bully?

In Gregory R. Piche’s new book, The Four Trials of Henry Ford, four landmark court cases reveal the dark side of Ford’s legal clashes and the quirks of his character and personality that ushered his image in the public’s imagination from mechanical savant and populist sage to isolated, imperious bigot.

In recounting the Ford litigation, Piché examines Ford’s parallel manipulation of public media to advance his own political and narcissistic agenda to become a public sage and an American President. It follows the initial rise of his reputation as a Progressive capitalist to its ultimate erosion as a mean-spirited bigot and contributor to the propaganda that fueled the Holocaust.

The Soulful Leader: Success with Authenticity, Integrity and Empathy by Arthur P. Ciaramicoli, Ed.D., Ph.D. with Jim Crystal

“Read this book, study this book and practice the AIE formula for a better life and for creating a better world.”—from the foreword of The Soulful Leader by Brian Kelly, Dick Corbett Head Football Coach at the University of Notre Dame

As our society struggles with fear and doubt about those in powerful positions, many are asking the question: What’s wrong with our leaders? The Soulful Leader by psychologist Arthur Ciaramicoli champions a new type of leadership platform based on authenticity, integrity and empathy (AIE).

Intended for leaders in all industries as well as coaches, parents, teachers, and others in leadership positions, Arthur Ciaramicoli explains and provides poignant and practical examples how AIE leadership produces an environment where everyone—leaders and team members—grow to respect each other while producing on the highest possible level.

Dr. Ciaramicoli has developed this approach during 35 years of consulting with and counseling leaders in business, education, politics, and on athletic teams. His communication and leadership groups have been ongoing for over 30 years, which has allowed him to study the personal characteristics that lead to excellent leadership skills. 

The Triumph of Diversity: Rejoice in and Benefit from the Interconnectedness of Humankind by Arthur P. Ciaramicoli, Ed.D., Ph.D.

“Dr. Ciaramicoli takes diversity down a new path by focusing on its relationship with empathy and its ability to transform communities.”—Abbie Rosenberg, RN, NP Psychotherapist and Founder/Executive Director Mental Health Collaborative, Hopkinton, MA

Have we come to a time where differences in color, religion, sexuality, or nationality are seen as threats to our way of life? Has exclusion and lack of interest in those suffering in other parts of the world become a way to protect us from our fears? When we close the door to those who seem dissimilar, we limit our potential for growth. Diversity expands the mind and enriches the soul; it is the antidote to groupthink.

In The Triumph of Diversity, Dr. Ciaramicoli analyzes prejudice by tracing it to personal origins and relates true stories of courageous individuals who have overcome hatred, cruelty and sadism to become open-minded, loving resilient people. He re-emphasizes that we are in desperate need of those who unite rather than those who ostracize.

Dr. Ciaramicoli shares his observations as a psychologist in clinical practice, his interviews with laymen, clinicians and clergy, and data from current research to conclude, as Thomas Paine said, “My Country is the World; my Religion is to do Good,” and that learned prejudices can be laid bare and redirected to give way to genuine empathy and inclusion over exclusion.

America Reunited: A Relational Solution to Bridging the Political, Social and Personal Chasm Dividing Our Nation by Arthur P. Ciaramicoli, Ed.D., Ph.D.

A book to bridge the divide of a nation living in two realities.

“Please read this book slowly, share it with as many people as possible.”—Robert Cherney, Ph.D. Former Harvard Medical School Faculty, Chief Psychologist, Advocates Community Counseling Services, Framingham, Massachusetts

America Reunited uncovers the diverse factors leading to the hateful speech and behavior that has overtaken our country. We are experiencing the greatest divide among our people in many years. Dr. Ciaramicoli provides insight into the origin of hatred through poignant case histories, showing how unresolved hurts of the past can turn in projected aggression onto others in adulthood.

America Reunited answers the question of how stress in individuals can translate into distress for an entire nation.

America Reunited takes a comprehensive approach to addressing the multifaced complexities America is facing. The roots of profound dissatisfaction—poverty, racism, sexism—are dealt with and interpersonal and policy resolutions are provided.

America Reunited provides the solutions to the challenges America must deal with in order to maintain the democracy we have all cherished for so many years. It is a book of hope and a call to all citizens to join in a most important effort to preserve our humanity and to take an active part in creating a more cohesive nation.

Undaunted Optimist: Essays on Life, Laughter and Cheerful Perseverance by Chris Rodell

“Rodell writes about America the way Sinatra sings about New York, unflinching about the gritty realities, but with abiding affection and relentless positivity about the future.”—Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge

Ever wonder how old you’ll be in heaven? Why couples always sleep on the same side of the bed? How to respond when a stranger mistakes you for an old friend? What happens when you get tick bit in a “sensitive” place? Or how you will feel when your daughter tells you she doesn’t want to dress up for Halloween anymore? And, gee, if marriage is so great then how come there’s no Mrs. God?

Chris Rodell wonders about stuff like that all the time.

He wonders about holidays, occupations, traffic, marriage and if refrigerating your deodorant adds zing to your morning.

Yes, it’s a wonder-full life.

It’s a complicated world out there and it takes a nimble mind to sort it all out. Rodell does it with style, warmth, an engaging euphoria and undaunted optimism that lets every reader know he enjoys being human and enjoys human beings.

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