The Life of Shiro Miyazaki: An Itinerant Artist of the 1930s Through His Letters

Shu Miyazaki

Trafford, 220 pages, (paperback) $16.26, 9781426979484
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

The Life of Shiro Miyazaki is a collection of letters from the 1930s between obscure artist Shiro Miyazki and various correspondents. Passionate about his work, he struggled mightily on many fronts until his death at age 30.

The prevailing immigration law prevented the youthful Miyazaki, an artist living in the U.S. but born in Japan, […]

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The Pedal on the Right

N. M. Corcoran

Trafford, 76 pages, (paperback) $8.88, 9781426963735
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

N.M. Corcoran describes The Pedal on the Right, a slight collection of essays and poems, as no Chicken Soup for the Soul, but rather “hearty meat and potatoes for every inch of you — physical, emotional, and spiritual.” And, indeed, she covers a great deal of ground, from light-hearted musings on the weather to the […]

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The Peacock of Half-Way Tree: A Caribbean Fable

Carolyn Richardson Durham

Trafford, 40 pages, (paperback) $22, 9781412019125
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

In Carolyn Richardson Durham’s charming picture book, Mr. Peacock is a proud bird who lives on a plantation in Half-Way Tree village on St. Kitts Island. He struts around the plantation coercing the other animals to compliment him. When they agree that he is magnificent, Mr. Peacock responds with comments like, “If I were as […]

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On the Hole

Jeff Bacot

Outskirts Press, 252 pages, (paperback) $12.95, 9781432790837
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

In Jeff Bacot’s engaging novel, Jay and Nick are 40-something golf buddies with wildly different lifestyles. Jay, who carries a few too many pounds, is the hard-partying vice president of SinTex Records. Nick, a physically fit husband and father of two, is a driven junior partner in a Fort Worth law firm. Nick takes every […]

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Kangaroo Court

Johnny Rhondo and David Murray M.D.

Trafford, 276 pages, (paperback) $20.22, 9781553693264
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

Kangaroo Court, presented as fiction based on factual occurrences, is a thinly veiled account of Dr. David Murray’s own difficult experience in the 1980s.

After working for years as a hospital pathologist, Dr. George Hill marries and decides to start a medical practice far from chaotic Los Angeles in a small northern California location called […]

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Why Me?

Stephanie Collins

Trafford, 137 pages, (paperback) $15.95, 9781412089816
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

The teenagers who populate Stephanie Collins’ young adult novel Why Me? are funny and foul-mouthed, obsessed with sex, and at war with their parents. In other words, normal.

But not so fast. They’re also lugging around a bunch of rough-shelled eggs, each the size of a dozen ostrich eggs, which have an unnerving tendency to […]

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Shashi and Maya: A Life of Courage

Wobine Ishwaran

Trafford, 62 pages, (paperback) $12.25, 9781426901843
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

In author Wobine Ishwaran’s children’s chapter book, Shashi and Maya are brother and sister, living in a small cottage with their parents and grandfather in South India. They have a simple life together until a flood washes their house away. The kids are separated from the rest of the family, and Shashi must take care […]

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Transition to a New World Order: What We Leave Behind for the Next Generation

B. Bahramian

AuthorHouse, 280 pages, (paperback) $19.95, 9781477229026
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

This intriguing book explores the softer side of a harsh conspiracy theory. The “New World Order” (or NWO) refers to the state of affairs that would exist if a powerful elite overthrows all the world’s governments and institutes one government for the entire planet. Popular among end-of-the-worlders and the paramilitary right wing, the NWO predicts […]

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The Glass Birds

Lynn Brightman Horn

Xlibris, 220 pages, (paperback) $18.69, 9781413431834
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

In Lynne Brightman Horn’s novel, Diane Kramer is a recently divorced school teacher who looks for a new challenge by becoming a personal assistant to Hollywood star Janit Gold. Diane moves into Janit’s Hollywood mansion, where the two immediately strike up a friendship that goes well beyond a working relationship.

Diane, an aspiring screenplay writer, […]

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The Sandra Sanchez Story

Larry Spiry

Xlibris, 227 pages, (paperback) $19.99, 9781477129685
(Reviewed: September, 2012)

In Larry Spiry’s futuristc novel, Sandra Sanchez is a star soccer player for her college in the year 2032. She develops a devastating illness that sidelines her, making her team struggle to find a way to win without her.

As she worsens and the doctors can find no discernable cause for her strange symptoms, her […]

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