December 13, 2022

Cartouches: Field Guide and Identification Key

John R. Sharp’s casual, chatty style and contagious appreciation for hieroglyphs —“perfectly proportioned, highly detailed miniature works of art” — makes his field guide enticing to read cover to cover, rather than consulted only occasionally, as with most guides.

Cartouches, Sharp explains, are the names of ancient Egyptian royalty “inscribed in oval frames on… stone.” […]


August 12, 2019

New Jump Swing Healthy Aging and Athletic Nutrition program

Donald “Spiderman” Thomas’ New Jump Swing Healthy Aging and Athletic Nutrition Program aims to convince readers to embrace a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle.

Although the book title references an athletic and nutrition program, only one section is dedicated to exercise using a type of jump-rope, an inclusion that explains the program’s name. The nutrition “program” […]


June 4, 2018

A Shot of Malaria

A Shot of Malaria is Charles Souby’s fictional story of a tumultuous year in the life of 30-something addict/alcoholic Daniel “Danny” Martin as he tries to kick heroin by entering a methadone maintenance program.

As the story begins, Danny struggles to incorporate the treatment and counseling into his regimen of scoring dope, playing folk songs […]


March 19, 2018

Fire at the Bottom of the Sea

With Fire at the Bottom of the Sea, Alain Gunn delivers a rarity among naval thrillers: a story whose villain is the reality of physics rather than a foreign entity.

Commander Daniel Farriott takes his crew on a training run in the billion-dollar nuclear submarine John P. Craven (JPC) in the Pacific Ocean […]


October 30, 2017


Reminiscent of James Michener’s Hawaii, Hawaii native Malia Mattoch McManus’s Dragonfruit delivers an exquisite tale of love, heartbreak and indomitability of spirit that, like a lush native vine, winds around and through Hawaii’s turbulent history between 1891-1900.

On the island of Oahu in 1891, 18-year-old Eliza’s carefree existence is about to take a […]


May 1, 2017

Bindi and the Bodhi Tree

A cat named Bindi introduces concepts of Buddhism to youngsters in the picture book Bindi and the Bodhi Tree.

Bindi has lived at an ashram in Hawai’i since being adopted by the book’s author, Ramakrishna. Here, Bindi narrates a tour through the ashram, and in casual tones touches on many of the central tenets of […]


August 8, 2016

Growing Old With Grace: A Spiritual Journey of Healing and Transformation

The lifecycle of the lotus flower serves as a metaphor for Ramakrishna Michaels’ compelling memoir about rising from the depths of debauchery to the heights of spiritual mastery. The book contains five sections: The Seed, Germination, The Sprout, The Bud, The Blossom.

Born in 1944 and raised in a well-to-do family, Michaels displays […]


January 4, 2016

Shadow Ballet

Dan Ragon’s debut, Shadow Ballet: A Novel of Mystery and Intrigue, is a suspenseful cat-and-mouse story that details what happens when a corpse washes up on a Northern California beach and local police struggle to keep up with the unfolding revelations of a secret NSA operation.

Paul McAfee, a 40-year-old widower, arrives at a scenic […]


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