Showing posts with label Books. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Books. Show all posts

Friday, September 3, 2021

Books: Geography of An Adultery

There are three main characters in Agn├Ęs Riva’s debut Geography of An Adultery (Other Press Paperback Original): Ema, Paul, and the affair they’re having. Both married with children, the two met at work and felt an irresistible attraction to each other. Written in cool, precise prose, this exquisite slip of a novel explores what those who stray hope to find in another person. Riva dissects this affair, and really all affairs, and asks, what happens when what you find isn’t enough? Geography of An Adultery received a Discovery Grant from the Prince Pierre Foundation and was a finalist for the Prix Goncourt and RTL-Lire Grand Prix, and Other Press is now excited to introduce this talented new literary voice to American readers.

Geography of An Adultery cleverly moves around and between Ema and Paul’s clandestine meetings: in a hidden corner of Ema’s kitchen, in Paul’s car, even an out-of-the-way church. Neither seems willing to leave their partner, and their fear of getting caught veers to the paranoid. Yet Ema is in love, and soon the limited spaces in which their relationship exists are not enough. She becomes increasingly determined to cement their affair into something more, but then starts to doubt what she’s willing to risk.

For fans of Noah Baumbach’s film 'Marriage Story', Richard Yates’s Revolutionary Road, or Tom Perrotta’s Little Children, Geography of An Adultery is a vivid and intimate look into the private lives and innermost thoughts of the unfaithful.

Friday, August 27, 2021

Books: Celebrate Fall with Delicious Southern Treats from "Southern Sugar"

You don't have to be from the South to embrace Southern food—especially the sweets. There is just something about Southern desserts that appeal to the hearts, souls, and stomachs of everyone. Just think of decadent, sweet delights filled with lots of sugar, butter, nuts, and fruit, or dripping with chocolate, caramel, whipped cream, and yes, even bourbon! Chef Belinda Smith-Sullivan transports home cooks to the delicious South with her new cookbook, Southern Sugar by reintroducing some favorite recipes that may have been forgotten and putting fresh takes on Southern classics. 

Southern Sugar is all about traditions — the traditions of Southern people, families, and communities,” Chef Belinda explains. “Nowhere is this strong sense of connectedness felt like in the South. Southerners are especially proud of their desserts. I have had the opportunity to travel throughout all the southern states, and I am amazed at the sweet treasures that I have discovered in the smallest corners of communities that I share in my book.”

With 100 satisfying recipes, Southern Sugar is divided up into chapters that focus on cakes, pound cakes, cheesecakes, pies, ice creams, candies, cookies and brownies, and cocktails and mocktails. Some of the recipes found in the book include:

-    Afternoon Tea Cakes 
-    Hummingbird Cake
-    Triple Chocolate Chip Cookies 
-    Chess Pie 
-    Sweet Potato Pecan Pound Cake with Orange Glaze and Candied Peel
-    Mississippi Mud Cake
-    Caramel Bourbon Pecan Pound Cake
-    Fig Pistachio Cheesecake
-    Beignets
-    Kentucky Bourbon Balls
-    Alabama Slammer
-    Sazerac

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Essential Worker Shares Compelling, Candid Account of Life on the Grocery Line

On his first day as a cashier at Dream Grocers, Daniel imagines that the worst
aspects of his new job will involve the occasional grumpy customer and tired feet. Never, in his wildest dreams, does he think the mundane environment of a grocery store will soon become the nexus between the best — and the worst — of humanity.

Life on the Grocery Line: A Frontline Experience in a Global Pandemic takes readers into the eye of the storm, where some of the workforce’s lowest paid employees ride a daily maelstrom of empty shelves, angry customers, uncertainty and paranoia. Author Adam Kaat drew upon his own experiences as a grocery store employee during COVID to inform his compelling narrative.

“Every day was something new, from plexiglass dividers to wearing masks to wiping down the entire register between every customer to the point where my arm hurt,” Kaat said during a recent interview.

He tells his riveting story through the eyes of a character named Daniel, who watches from the frontlines as the frenzied panic caused by COVID surges like a tidal wave across his home state of Colorado. Now, he's suddenly being called a hero just for showing up at his job, and he isn't sure how to feel about that.

Daniel sees fear in the eyes of some customers and hostility in others, as he does his best to hold his head high and just keep making it from one shift to the next. And along the way, he learns more than he ever expected to about humanity's response to fear, observing most prominently the way in which some people look down on the very workers they deem "essential.”

Author Adam Jonathan Kaat worked in a grocery store as a cashier and then as a prepared foods supervisor from January 2020 until May 2021. After college, he bounced around through the corporate world until leaving it all behind in the Fall of 2019 to write his first novel. By January 2020, he had taken a job as a cashier to earn money while preserving mental energy for his creative pursuits. He got much more than he bargained for when COVID hit. He began to blog about his experiences as a frontline worker, and 15,000 Facebook followers later, Life on the Grocery Line was born.

For more information and to read Kaat’s blog, please visit www.lifeonthegroceryline.com; or connect with the author on Instagram (@kaatadam), Facebook (@lifeonthegroceryline) or Twitter (lifeonthegroce1).

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

New Book, Made in California, Takes Readers on a Delightful Journey of the Restaurants and Diners That Became American Icons

A&W Root Beer. Foster’s Freeze. IHOP. Der Wienerschnitzel. See’s Candy. Jack in the Box. You name the American food icon, and chances are its roots are in California. But what are their origin stories? Who started the very first branch? Where were the original buildings? What made them famous? And for the few that are no longer around, or that have a smaller footprint than they had in their glory days, what happened to them?

Food historian and chef George Geary answers these questions and more as he takes readers on a sentimental journey of some of America’s most iconic foods in his new book, Made in California: The Burger Joints, Diners, Fast Food & Restaurants that Changed America.  

Geary tells the remarkable stories of the early 20th-century food startups that captured America’s hearts and stomachs, from Bob’s Big Boy to McDonald’s, Winchell’s Donuts to In-N-Out, Peet's Coffee to Taco Bell. Filled with over 200 historic and contemporary photos, Geary succinctly captures the stories of these essential businesses and structures before they are gone forever.

“In my earlier years as a food writer and professional, I would never have admitted to anyone that I actually eat at these establishments,” Geary says. “But after seeing Julia Child eat McDonald’s French fries in person and say that they were her favorite, and after hearing Anthony Bourdain claim that In-N-Out Burger was the best burger around, I knew that I, too, could come out of my kitchen and into the drive-thru. Now I get to celebrate these places in this book.” 

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Books: Kuma. Complete Works 1988–Today


Kuma.Complete Works 1988–Today now available from TASCHEN. From his Great (Bamboo) Wall house to the Japan National Stadium for the Tokyo Olympic Summer Games, originally planned for 2020, Japanese architect Kengo Kuma pioneered a truly sustainable approach to contemporary architecture, translating local craftsmanship and resources into a new tactile architecture. Discover the scope of his practice-defining oeuvre in this XXL monograph.








Wizard of Pride an LGBTQ Retelling of the Wizard of Oz

The innovative book publisher, Riverdale Avenue Books has just published The Wizard of Pridean LGBTQ retelling of the Wizard of Oz from Lambda awarding-winning author, Ryan Field.

In the year 1939, discretion is a way of life for young men like Darius Krasner. However, when he gets caught making love to one of the young farm hands by the wicked Agnes McCain, and she threatens to expose him and take his dog, he’s forced to run away from the only family and home he’s ever known.

In his rush to leave, Darius stumbles across one of the most wonderful, handsome young men he’s ever met. Unfortunately, there isn’t much time to get to know him because there’s a storm approaching and Darius decides to run back home to make sure his family is safe.

By the time Darius reaches the farm, there’s a twister in the distance and he escapes to the house for shelter. On his way, a piece of flying debris hits him on the head and knocks him out. When he finally regains consciousness, he’s in the most unusual place called The Land of Pride. And according to The Good Fairy, Miss Glitz, his only way back home involves a pair of magical pink stilettos, a silvery gilded road, a place called The Rainbow City, and a man they call the Wonderful Wizard of Pride.

“As a publisher of erotic romance, we love publishing classic stories retold.  I was surprised that no one I knew of had written a gay retelling of The Wizard of Oz, so I approached Ryan Field, a Lambda-Award winning gay author, and he creatively stepped up,” said Publisher Lori Perkins. “I think you’ll find The Wizard of Pride both plays homage, and is just naughty enough for today’s audience.”

 

It’s an LGBTQ+ fairytale filled with references to gay culture and LGBTQ+ Pride that’s long before Darius’s time, but he’s well aware there’s no shame or hate in The Land of Pride. In his quest to find The Wizard of Pride, he meets other people like himself, and one in particular who teaches him with whom he can fall in love and live happily ever after with a man, which is something he never thought possible.

Books and downloads are available on Amazon, Barnes & Nobles Nook, iTunes, and Kobo.

Books: Norman the Interested Cat

Non-Binary Awareness Week was last week, but every week is gender non-conforming when it comes to the new children’s book series and character Norman the Interested Catauthored by Cheryl Cage, a political consultant turned children’s book author. 

 

Within the four books in the series thus far, Norman pushes gender norms with daily activities such as painting his nails. In the third book, Happy Clothes, Norman and his friends pick out their outfits for their friend Flossie’s 2nd birthday. In doing so, they realize that expressing their individuality through clothes makes them feel happier. Bert ends up wearing his yellow sundress, while Murphy wears sparkles galore. 

Books: Pixels of You

A human and an AI become friends—and maybe more—in Pixels of You, a moving YA graphic novel for fans of Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me and Pumpkin Heads.

In a near future, augmentation and AI changed everything and nothing. Indira is a human girl who has been cybernetically augmented after a tragic accident, and Fawn is one of the first human–presenting AI. They have the same internship at a gallery, but neither thinks much of the other’s photography. But after a huge public blowout, their mentor gives them an ultimatum: work together on a project or leave her gallery forever. Grudgingly, the two begin to collaborate, and what comes out of it is astounding and revealing for both of them. Pixels of You is about the slow transformation from rivals to friends to something more as Indira and Fawn navigate each other, the world around them—and what it means to be human. J.R. Doyle's stunning artwork brings their story to stark life.

Ananth Hirsh and Yuko Ota are the Ignus Award winning team behind Lucky Penny, which won a Cybil Award, was a JLG selection, and received a starred review from PW. They live in Brooklyn. J.R. Doyle is an up–and–coming artist, creator of Knights–Errant, a successful web comic and Kickstarter project. They live in Brooklyn.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Gravity is Heartless Imagines a World on the Cusp of Climate Catastrophe

What will the world look like in 30 years — just one generation from now — if
drastic measures are not taken to mitigate the devasting effects of climate change?

 

In the year 2050 imagined by Sarah Lahey in her thought-provoking new book, Gravity is Heartless, automated cities, vehicles and homes are now standard; artificial Intelligence, CRISPR gene editing and quantum computing have become a reality; and climate change is in full swing — sea levels are rising, clouds have disappeared, and the planet is heating up.

 

Quinn Buyers is a brilliant female scientist who developed a climate model two decades too late. By 2050, the population is “over” climate change. Quinn is about to be married, but she would much rather be studying the clouds than planning her wedding day. When an unexpected tragedy causes her to lose everything, including her famous scientist mother, she embarks upon a quest for answers that takes her across the globe ― and she uncovers friends, loss and love in the most unexpected of places along the way. 

 

Lahey’s story is a meticulously researched, futuristic adventure with romance and intrigue that explores the realistic impacts of climate change, the potential technologies of the future, our relationships with robots and AI, and perhaps more importantly, what it means to be human and how the subconscious mind works.

 

Gravity is Heartless is bold, speculative fiction that sheds a hard light on the treatment of our planet even as it offers a breathtaking sense of hope for the future.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Books: Funky Dan and the Pixie Dream Girl

Riverdale Avenue Books publishes Funky Dan and the Pixie Dream Girl by Courtney Lanninga debut fantasy novel that pokes fun at contemporary romance and fantasy tropes with both humor and respect. The first novel in The Boston Magic Mountain fantasy series, Lanning’s Funky Dan explores the rich mythology and lore of the mountains of Arkansas and Oklahoma.

 

Roxie is a sweet trans girl who just wants to spend the rest of her summer vacation playing music with her friends in their band. Living in a southern college town like Fayetteville has its challenges. Dan is a shop wizard who would give anything to escape the store he has been trapped in for a century under the watchful eyes of a witch and a talking fox. 

Their paths converge when Roxie is given the ability to travel into dreams and tasked with fighting off nightmares. 

Unbeknownst to Dan and Roxie, other dream walkers are searching for an enchanted key, and if they find it, they’ll plunge the entire city into a living nightmare. The shop wizard and pixie dream girl will have to team up to stop them, facing their own nightmares along the way.

 

Editor David T. Valentin explained why he took the book on, “At the heart of Lanning’s work is an amazingly fun and creative story that dares us to dream again in our busy adult lives. And although her work doesn’t shy away from the ugly parts of life and growing up, her work always gives us a light at the end of the tunnel, even if it’s not the one we expect. 

 

Books and downloads are available on Amazon, Barnes & Nobles Nook, iTunes, and Kobo.

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

Books: “The Wizard of Pride,” an LGBTQ Retelling of "The Wizard of Oz"

The innovative book publisher, Riverdale Avenue Books has just published The
Wizard of Pride, 
an LGBTQ retelling of the Wizard of Oz from Lambda awarding-winning author, Ryan Field.

In the year 1939, discretion is a way of life for young men like Darius Krasner. However, when he gets caught making love to one of the young farmhands by the wicked Agnes McCain, and she threatens to expose him and take his dog, he’s forced to run away from the only family and home he’s ever known.

In his rush to leave, Darius stumbles across one of the most wonderful, handsome young men he’s ever met. Unfortunately, there isn’t much time to get to know him because there’s a storm approaching and Darius decides to run back home to make sure his family is safe.

By the time Darius reaches the farm, there’s a twister in the distance and he escapes to the house for shelter. On his way, a piece of flying debris hits him on the head and knocks him out. When he finally regains consciousness, he’s in the most unusual place called The Land of Pride. And according to The Good Fairy, Miss Glitz, his only way back home involves a pair of magical pink stilettos, a silvery gilded road, a place called The Rainbow City, and a man they call the Wonderful Wizard of Pride.

“As a publisher of erotic romance, we love publishing classic stories retold.  I was surprised that no one I knew of had written a gay retelling of The Wizard of Oz, so I approached Ryan Field, a Lambda-Award winning gay author, and he creatively stepped up,” said Publisher Lori Perkins. “I think you’ll find The Wizard of Pride both plays homage, and is just naughty enough for today’s audience.”

 

It’s an LGBTQ+ fairytale filled with references to gay culture and LGBTQ+ Pride that’s long before Darius’s time, but he’s well aware there’s no shame or hate in The Land of Pride. In his quest to find The Wizard of Pride, he meets other people like himself, and one in particular who teaches him with whom he can fall in love and live happily ever after with a man, which is something he never thought possible.

Books and downloads are available on Amazon, Barnes & Nobles Nook, iTunes, and Kobo.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

LGBTQ Entrepreneur Pens Debut Dystopian Fantasy Novel, "Percenters and the Amber Pendant"

In this taut, post-apocalyptic thriller, Percenters and the Amber Pendant by P.H. Perrine, America is in ruins. The rich and powerful live in the Sovereign Sky Cities high above the toxic ozone layer on Earth. The rest are forced to live in the remnants of a society and environment they’ve ruined. Jenavive is one of the lucky Percenters and is turning sixteen. She is at the age where she is going to learn her fate, what her powers will be, but she stumbles upon a secret that will threaten her life.

The citizens of the Sovereign City Skies are super powerful humans and their bloodline determines their powers and their fate. On the eve of her sixteenth birthday, Jena learns there are people, a whole society, that don’t get the same life and privilege that she does. Far below the city there are the people of the Barrens who are not superhuman. They are cruelly oppressed and enslaved to the Percenters and forced to live in the toxic, desolate landscape that was once America.

Jena must undo the oppressions where the poor and powerless serve the rich. But there is a secret sect within the Percenters, the Cleansing Coalition, who will keep things the way they are and maintain how their society has lived for centuries. Jenna is determined to fight this injustice but will it cost her and her families’ life in the process?

Echoing the Divergent and Hunger Games series, Percenters and the Amber Pendant is a socially relevant novel dealing with the issues of climate change and the ever-widening gap of wealth between rich and poor in America today. P.H. Perrine is the owner of several LGBTQ matchmaking websites and a skin care line and is an entrepreneur. He has written non-fiction books, but this is his first novel. It's about unlikely heroes, female empowerment and divide between the rich and poor in a future dystopian America. He has known struggle as a young gay man growing up in the midwest and now lives in Austin, Texas.

Friday, June 25, 2021

LGBTQ+ Rights Activist Greg Bourke Announces Upcoming Book

In September, the University of Notre Dame Press will publish Gay, Catholic, and American: My Legal Battle for Marriage Equality and Inclusion by University of Notre Dame alumnus Greg Bourke (ND MA ’82). In this compelling memoir, Bourke tells the inspiring story of how his family struggled to overcome antigay discrimination. He became an outspoken gay rights activist after being dismissed as a troop leader from the Boy Scouts of America in 2012. Bourke and his husband Michael De Leon became named plaintiffs in one of the most pivotal Supreme Court cases in LGBTQ+ history, Obergefell vs. Hodges, which legalized same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015. June 26, marks the sixth anniversary of the landmark Supreme Court decision. Bourke and his husband were named 2015 Persons of the Year by the National Catholic Reporter. His active presence as an outspoken LGBTQ+ rights activist remains strong today. Bourke’s message to the Catholic LGBTQ community is to remain strong in the Catholic faith and stay hopeful for change in the Church.

In Gay, Catholic, and American, Bourke recounts growing up in Louisville, Kentucky, as an out gay man living in the South during the 1980s and ’90s. Bourke is unapologetically Catholic, and his faith provides the framework for this inspiring story of how the Bourke De Leon family struggled to overcome antigay discrimination by both the BSA and the Catholic Church and fought to legalize same-sex marriage across the country. Gay, Catholic, and American is an illuminating account that anyone, no matter their ideological orientation, can read for insight.

Author Joseph Mello writes, “The reader is struck by Bourke’s conciliatory attitude toward his opponents, his unassuming tone, and his humility—despite an impressive list of accomplishments and accolades.” Michael J. O’Loughlin, national correspondent for America, praises Bourke’s story as, “one of perseverance and tenacity, of refusing to settle for less and daring to dream big. LGBTQ Catholics and those who desire more welcoming institutions will be encouraged and inspired by reading this book.” Gay, Catholic, and American was reviewed by Molly Sprayregen in Forward Reviews who writes, “Bourke’s story is directed by perseverance, grit, and faith. Throughout, he refuses to accept that his sexual orientation and his religion cannot coexist. His text is inspirational, humble, and engaging.”

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

From Alia to Ali, "Without" Is Based On The True Story Of An Arab Transgender Man’s Search For Belonging

Without by Younis Alakhzami, is a frank and sensitive account of a man searching for belonging as someone he feels he is not.

Without tells a story of searching for belonging both in the world and within your own skin. Born in Saudi Arabia to a Yemeni family, the novel’s protagonist has been ill-at-ease since childhood, because he never felt like a girl. Alia’s alienation grows as he slowly comes to realise that he is, in fact, a man and begins the transition to live life as Ali.

This is a very important story to tell as it portrays the hardship faced by gender non-conforming people in society. The novel is sensitive and frank in how it approaches an intersex person’s struggles with the realities of love, friendship, and survival against the backdrop of a life lived between Saudi Arabia and Yemen, and then later the UK. Without navigates complex issues in a very human way, painting an honest portrait of how people come to terms with challenges they never expected to face. Told in a deceptively simple style, through tightly woven and skillful narration, Without makes these struggles resonate with us all.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Books: Am I A Unicorn?


June is LGBTQ Pride Month and there’s no better time to teach children the importance of having an open mind.

Children’s picture book “Am I a Unicorn” celebrates pride and has a powerful positive message about embracing difference and overcoming adversity.

Written by award winning author, Stephanie Sorkin, “Am I a Unicorn?” is an adorable story written in rhyme about a unicorn that breaks its horn and learns how to grapple with the feelings of being unique and different. The story touches on self-esteem and diversity, ultimately teaching the important lesson of accepting one's individuality.

Sorkin, a mother of three herself, was inspired to write "Am I a Unicorn?" as a way of opening up a discussion about what it's like to be different, hoping that children will realize that as much as everyone wants to be accepted, it's most important to accept ourselves. Rather than use all Unicorns in the story, she chose to use a diverse array of animals to give children a chance to see that not everyone's the same before even reading a single word of the book. Similar to Sorkin's previous books, she is donating a portion of the proceeds from "Am I a Unicorn?" to a charity supporting children.

Friday, June 4, 2021

Books: Getting Back Up: A Story of Resilience, Self-Acceptance & Success

Many in the LGBTQ community focus on finding communities and workplaces that accept them, but if you are worried you won’t be accepted somewhere, then you need to accept yourself, according to Harma Hartouni, who has been out for about 20 years and just released his new memoir, Getting Back Up: A Story of Resilience, Self-Acceptance & Success.

Hartouni grew up in Iran, where being gay was illegal and can be punishable by up to death. He rose up after abuse, bullying, and a near-death accident that left him unable to walk. As a young adult, he moved to America as an outcast- gay Middle Eastern man who didn’t speak English-and lived off of food stamps while also supporting his mother and siblings who later came. Today, Hartouni—based in Los Angeles—is a successful real estate entrepreneurs. He is happily married and one half of a power-couple, and he and his husband have three children via surrogate and a home filled with pets.

“No matter where you are in life, if you’re dealing with something deeply personal—a secret—and you think the answer is to change your persona and become someone else, I can tell you it is a fool’s errand,” says Hartouni. “It is always better to be who you are and to live in acceptance. Even if the environment you are a part of doesn’t support who you feel you are in your heart, you still have to follow it. Family will express love and concern because they want what’s best for you. That doesn’t mean they are right. Find relationships, environments, and jobs that fit who you are.”

Monday, May 24, 2021

Books: Freeda the Frog and the Two Mommas Next Door

In her fifth book, which is published to coincide with Gay Pride Month, Freeda the Frog and the Two Mommas Next Door (Mascot Books), by award-winning author Nadine Haruni, helps kids understand that families come in all shapes, colors and sizes. But it isn’t a book just for children with same-sex parents or for kids in the LGBTQ+ community. Says Nadine Haruni, who is also an attorney, “The common thread of all the books is to not only be helpful to kids and families who can relate to these specific situations, but to help all kids recognize that no two families look the same, and encourage an environment of awareness, empathy and inclusivity.”

In the book, the tadpoles are surprised and filled with questions when they first meet their new neighbors, Jessica and her parents, Morgan and Irene. Why does Jessica have two mommas? Does not having a mommy and daddy like most kids make her feel weird? But their momma, Freeda, encourages Frannie, Frank and Jack to get to know Jessica’s two mommas. Before long, the tadpoles discover that Morgan and Irene are a lot like other mommas they know. Through spending time with Jessica and her mommas, the tadpoles realize that families can have two mommas or two daddies—because what really makes a family is love.

For toddlers, preschoolers and older kids too, the world of grown-ups is often confusing and sometimes scary. In her Freeda the Frog children’s book series, author Nadine Haruni makes coping with various life challenges easier for little ones with the help of a momma frog, Freeda, and her three little tadpoles, Frannie, Frank and Jack. The first four books deal with common issues: divorce; a parent’s remarriage and becoming part of a blended family; moving to a new city or town and starting a new school; and the loss of a pet or loved one. The Freeda the Frog series also serves as a tool to help parents, educators and school counselors open up conversations about difficult topics with children in an upbeat and non-scary way. Toward that goal, each book offers discussion questions at the end. The entire series has been leveled for schools to align with National Education Standards, and all five books have received Readers’ Favorite 5-star reviews and Gold Mom’s Choice Awards for excellence in the family-friendly picture book category.

“We are happy to award deserving books like Freeda the Frog and the Two Mommas Next Door,” says Dawn Matheson, CEO, Mom’s Choice Awards. “Our panel of judges really felt this book merited a place on our list of the best in family-friendly products that parents and educators can feel confident in using.” Each book reinforces Nadine Haruni’s mission of “helping families of all species, one tadpole at a time.”

Friday, May 21, 2021

Books: The Art of Becoming Unstuck: Your Personalized Journey Through Consciousness in Search of Ultimate Happiness

Imagine life as a hot air balloon ride. You constantly aspire to go to higher altitudes for smooth, happy sailing. Yet each time you try, your sandbags pull you down to bumpy lower altitudes, where you face challenging situations, difficult people, and negative thoughts. You feel stuck, lost, and confused.

As a former finance executive, Arda Ozdemir found himself feeling exactly like that. After years of suffering from chronic health issues, depression, and anxiety, he decided to take matters into his own hands and found relief in unique meditation and self-awareness tools. Based on his journey of awakening, Arda developed his Rise 2 Realize POWER Method, a practical five-step process to guide people out of suffering and emotional pain toward achieving a higher personal and professional potential. From this practice, Arda put all the tools he developed in his new book, The Art of Becoming Unstuck: Your Personalized Journey Through Consciousness in Search of Ultimate Happiness, a guidebook for everyone to create the life they want.

Through the pages of The Art of Becoming Unstuck, Arda adeptly coaches readers through the mired waters of life offering freedom from our triggers and repeated patterns of behavior. As much as “owning your emotions” is popular advice these days, there has been very little information on how to actually do that. As readers explore the book, they will learn how to identify, understand, and release their sandbags in order to rise above destructive habits and thoughts and realize ultimate happiness.

“During my journey towards a happy and fulfilled life I realized that making major changes was scary. I knew I had to leave my comfort zone and challenge the security I’d built over years,” Arda explains. “This book was born from the personal transformation journey I was guided to take, and now I invite you to embark on your own incredibly rewarding self-discovery journey.”

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Books: Testing the Wind

Testing the Wind by Peter Ilgenfritz (Coffeetown Press, April 2021) is a memoir of coming out and coming of age in the 1970’s and 1980’s. It tells the story of Peter’s wrestling with the meaning of sexual identity in the 1970’s and the particular challenges of coming out as a gay man and young pastor in the 1980’s. 


It relates his experience working with community leaders to start one of the first organizations to support people living with HIV/AIDS in north suburban Cook County in the 1980’s-90’s, the search to find a church to serve with his partner in the 1990’s, a call to a church in Seattle and being part of the legal effort to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act in Washington State.


Amidst the particular costs and struggles of that time, Peter seeks to find an elusive grounding beyond the confines of fixed labels and identities. Testing the Wind is a book about the possibilities of love and commitment and living with the consequences of commitments that end and change. It’s a testimony to the pursuit of living into the wonder, call and mystery of who we are and the discovery of the work we are called to do in the world. Testing the Wind tells a particular story that helps open up stories for those who lived through the tumult of these particular decades and provides historical understanding and perspective for those who came of age after this time.


It is encouragement to all to be about the work of becoming a self and the mystery and wonder of offering yourself in vulnerability for encouragement, understanding and healing in the world.


Peter Ilgenfritz, Coach, Spiritual Guide, Author, Interim UCC Pastor Boothbay Harbor, ME. For 33 years Peter Ilgenfritz has served as a pastor in the United Church of Christ. A native of Massachusetts, he served for 25 years as pastor at University Congregational Church in Seattle before following a call to walk with others through times of change and transition. Peter is a member of Chobo-Ji, a Rinzai Zen community in Seattle and a graduate of Colgate University and Yale Divinity School. Peter loves running, biking, conversations and writing. His book of poetry, Setting Sail, is available through Lulu Press. For more information on his ministry of coaching, spiritual accompaniment and retreat leadership contact him at Peter@navigatingthroughchange.com or through his website, NavigatingThroughChange.com.

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Miles Copeland Announces Release Of Memoir "Two Steps Forward, One Step Back - My Life In The Music Business"

Miles A. Copeland III has announced the release of his memoir titled Two Steps Forward, One Step Back – My Life In The Music Business.  Few executives over the past half century have left a larger global footprint on a global basis. Whether as a manager for The Police, Bangles and others, or a label owner with IRS Records, Copeland has been a visionary.  Historically, his impact on the careers of hundreds of artists is indisputable. On a touring basis, he reimagined the possibilities of where artists can tour, being the catalyst for events in regions of the world where few had staged shows in the past. The early introduction of his television property The Cutting Edge captured the emergence of New Wave, Punk, and a time where the landscape constantly fueled the rise of artists across the continents.
 
Belinda Carlisle offers, “Miles was larger than life to our band, The Go-Go’s. We were in awe and a little bit afraid of him, but at the end of the day we considered him a protector, and we knew we could trust him. He helped us navigate the early days of our career. He’s a legend!”  Former management client Jools Holland offers, “This refreshing and provocative book will surprise, shock, and inform both music-business insiders and civilians on the fringes of showbusiness. It is an essential read for anyone considering a career in the music industry.” 
 
Two Steps Forward, One Step Back tells the extraordinary story of a maverick manager, promoter, label owner, and all-round legend of the music industry. It opens in the Middle East, where Miles grew up with his father, a CIA agent who was stationed in Syria, Egypt, and Lebanon. It then shifts to London in the late 60s and the beginnings of a career managing bands like Wishbone Ash and Curved Air—only for Miles’s life and work to be turned upside down by a disastrous European tour. From the ashes of near bankruptcy, Miles entered the world of punk, sharing a building with Malcolm McLaren and Sniffin’ Glue, before shifting gears again as manager of The Police, featuring his brother Stewart on drums. Then, after founding IRS Records, he launched the careers of some of the most potent musical acts of the new wave scene and beyond, from Squeeze and The Go-Go’s to The Bangles and R.E.M. 

Two Steps Forward, One Step Back by Miles A. Copeland III will be released on June 18 in the U.K. by Jawbone Press, and on July 13 in the U.S. by Quarto.  The 336-page softcover release features 16 pages of photographs.  The retail price has been set at $22.95 US, $29.95 CAN and £14.95 in the U.K. (ISBN 978-1-911036-77-7).  An eBook will be available via Kindle and Apple Books.