Archive for September, 2008|Monthly archive page

Courage in Patience by Beth Fehlbaum

In book review on September 19, 2008 at 7:07 am

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Kunati Inc. (September 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601641567
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601641564
  • To purchase, click here.
  • Book synopsis:

    Desperate to escape from her stepfather, fifteen-year old Ashley Asher finally finds the courage to confront her mother with painful details of six years of emotional, physical, and sexual abuse.  To her horror, Ashley’s mother turns her back on her.  Only a teacher at her school offers any support.  A touching story focused on the themes of abuse, social injustice, racism, peer pressure, bullying, parental responsibility, fear, forgiveness, love, acceptance and hope, which will inspire the millions of abuse victims in America, young and old alike.  Suitable for the classroom study.  No graphic content.

    Conceived on prom night, Ashley’s parents foolishly believe that they are capable of raising a child.  Three months after Ashley is born the relationship ends, and Ashley’s mother Cheryl decides to do her best.  But, like many women she feels she needs a man to make her feel complete, and in walks Charlie Baker.  In the beginning, Charlie treats Ashley just like a dad should, and makes her feel special.  Unfortunately, years later he is hoping that she will make him feel special – in a truly horrifying way. 

    Ashley retreats in her mind when these instances happen, and when she finally has the courage to tell her mother, she is dismissed as having “dreamt it all”.  And when she confides in a teacher, and a rape kit confirms their worst fears, her mother still comes to Charlie’s defense.  Life is about to change drastically for Ashley, but for the better…at least for the most part.  Her father David, and step-mother Bev have opened their home to her, and David is thrilled at the chance to be part of his little girls life.  The town of Patience is small, and fully of religious zealots, bigots (including a “secret” Klu Klux Klan), and people willing to turn a blind eye rather than stand up for what is right.  But, deep in the heart of this town are the kind of people we all want to know – people willing to fight for everything they believe in.

    Although stories like this have been told in the past, Beth Fehlbaum has a wonderful writing style that can tackle such strong subject matters without making you feel distraught while reading.  This is an excellent book and one I highly recommend!

    About the author:

    Beth Fehlbaum drew on her experience working with abused children as an English teacher in writing Courage in Patience.  She wrote Courage in Patience to give hope to survivors of abuse.  She is an English teacher with an M.Ed. and lives in East Texas.

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    Moving blog to Blogger

    In Uncategorized on September 16, 2008 at 9:02 am

    Hi Everyone,

    I just wanted to shoot off a quick post to tell you that this blog will be moved to blogger.  To visit – go to The Book Czar.  Hope to see you there!

    The Sitting Swing by Irene Watson

    In book review, Pump up Your Book Promotion, virtual book tour on September 10, 2008 at 4:00 am


    Paperback: 248 pages
    Publisher: Loving Healing Press (July 16, 2008)
    Language: English
    ISBN-10: 1932690670
    ISBN-13: 978-1932690675
    Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches

    Book Synopsis:

    Irene Watson’s pretentious life could go no further until she faced her past. Her moving and inspiring memoir begins at the end, in a recovery center, whe she has gone to understand a childhood fraught with abuse, guilt, and uncertainty.

    Two distinct parts of the book look at abusive child rearing and the process of recovery years later. This story shows change, growth, and forgiveness are possible. It gives hope and freedom to those accepting the past and re-writing life scripts that have been passed down for generations. It’s never too late to change your life, never too late to heal.

    This book was truly an eye opener. Upon hearing of Irene’s upbringing, I got tears in my eyes. My mother is not a whole lot older than Irene, and yet she had clothing bought for her and plumbing and electricity her entire life! She was the oldest of 6 children, but never felt neglected (maybe the first born syndrome was in play…even then). My heart broke for young Irene, constantly living in the shadow of a brother she never knew, and was never spoken of. She could do nothing right, yet had no freedom as both of her parents were afraid of what might happen to their daughter. Their fear may have led to their inability to show her the love she so desparately craved, and led to her seeking to find any way out of a miserable exsistence.

    This books starts out with Irene enrolling in Avalon, a treatment facility recommended by her friends. She is leary from the very beginning as she looks up at the corner of the room and sees a video camera. There is no way she is going to consent to being videotaped, who do these people think they are? After dealing with Gilles for the first two weeks, she is ready to throw in the towel. She is not sure she believes anything that he is “preaching”, it is the same old, same old and he is harsh and demeaning in his delivery. After the first two weeks his wife Liliane takes over the sessions and it is a different world. Gone is the harsh and demeaning lessons, and the love and support that Irene felt so lacking in the beginning of her stay comes shining through…that is until she has to do a scripted session about a conversation she envisions with her husband. Liliane has words with Irene, words that shock Irene but in the end lead her to the breakthrough she needed all along.

    There were so many parts of this book that I could relate to. I have some people in my family that struggle with alcohol, and it is heartbreaking to watch. It also is the reason that I don’t drink, something that Irene and I share. Don’t get me wrong, I will have an occasional glass of wine, but do not enjoy being around people that have had too much to drink. I also can relate to the overprotective aspect of mothering…but I am the culprit. I don’t seclude my daughters, but I do have a daughter with heart defects and there isn’t a day that passes that I don’t try to protect her just a little bit more than you might a “regular” child. I think the part that I could relate to the most was the Needs section from her stay at Avalon. After reading that I knew that this was my type of woman – it was exactly the way I thought of things.

    This was an excellent book, and one I would recommend highly. Great job Irene, and I look forward to more from you in the future!

    About the author:

    Irene Watson holds a Masters Degree in Psychology, with honors, from Regis University in Denver, CO. Her life has taken her on many paths, with breakthrough results and exemplar growth, to find her authentic and true self. She lives with her husband in Austin, Texas. You can visit her website at

    THE SITTING SWING VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR ’08 will officially begin on September 2, ’08 and end on September 26, ’08. You can visit Irene’s tour stops at in September to find out more about her and her new book!

    As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author with a recent release or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors’ blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available. The winner will be announced on our main blog at on September 26!

    Irene’s virtual book tour is being brought to you by Pump Up Your Book Promotion and choreographed by Dorothy Thompson.

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    The Lost Diary of Don Juan by Douglas Carlton Abrams

    In Uncategorized on September 2, 2008 at 4:36 am


    Paperback: 336 pages
    Publisher: Washington Square Press; Reprint edition (July 1, 2008)
    Language: English
    ISBN-10: 1416532528
    ISBN-13: 978-1416532521

    Book Synopsis:

    In a time of discovery and decadence, when the gold that poured endlessly into the port of Sevilla devalued money, marriage, and love itself, young Juan Tenorio was abandoned and raised by nuns. He grew up loving and worshipping all women, but a clandestine affair with one of the sisters forces him to leave the Church-and his plans for the priesthood-forever. Juan becomes a spy, as well as the world’s greatest libertine. But far from the heartless seducer that legend recounts, he seeks liberation and redemption as much as personal pleasure and gratification. He begins to keep a diary of his greatest adventures and the Arts of Passion he has mastered. The most perilous adventure of all-the irresistible fall into the madness of love with the only woman who could ever make him forget all others-finally compels him to confess everything.

    Douglas Carlton Abrams’s magical debut novel captures the heart of the Spanish Golden Age and the secret life of the world’s greatest lover-Don Juan-who came to embody the spirit that would inflame the modern age.

    This year has really been a great one for me, and let me tell you why. In the past, if someone would have suggested a historical fiction book to me I would have told them that it wasn’t my kind of book. All of these years I have steered clear of books of this nature because while in school history was the subject that I liked the least. It is amazing what books like this can do, as now I jump at the chance to read books about history, fiction or not.

    I admit going in that I didn’t know a whole lot about the legendary Don Juan. Just the same information that most of the general public knows…a true ladies man but not one to stay with one woman for any period of time. This book certainly gives the readers a new look into this man – he truly loved women and his goal was to bring them pleasure by getting them to feel confident about themselves and their bodies. I loved the way this book was written, it sheds a new light on this story and really makes me want to dig into the history of Don Juan and find out more about him.

    Although this book is about Don Juan, Douglas does an excellent job of depicting 16th century Spain. One of my favorite part in the book is when Fray Ignacio comes to the convent to speak to the nuns about there being a heretic among them. After he questions the nuns, he decides to take one of them-Hermana Jeronima back to the headquarters of the Holy Office in Sevilla where she would be questioned further. She was being taken to the Inquisition…how horrifying!

    This book was an excellent read, and with its fast pace made for a delightful weekend read. I would highly recommend it.

    About the author:

    Douglas Carlton Abrams is a former editor at the University of California Press and HarperSanFrancisco. He is the co-author of a number of books on love, sexuality, and spirituality, including books written with Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Yogacharya B.K.S. Iyengar, and Taoist Master Mantak Chia. He lives in Santa Cruz, California, with his wife and three children. In his life and work, he is interested in cultivating all aspects of our humanity —body, emotions, mind, and spirit. His goal in writing fiction is to create stories that not only entertain, but also attempt to question, enchant, and transform.

    Doug’s desire in writing the book was not only to resurrect this greatest of historical lovers and to give voice to his true motives; he was also moved to write a book that would explore the tension between lust and love and that would confront the human question of how any man or woman can find lifelong satisfaction in one committed relationship. To find out more about the origins of The Lost Diary and the myth of Don Juan, and to learn about forthcoming novels, please visit or

    THE LOST DIARY OF DON JUAN VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR ’08 will officially begin on September 2, ’08 and end on September 26, ’08. You can visit the Douglas’ tour stops at in September to find out more about him and his new book!

    As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author with a recent release or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors’ blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available. The winner will be announced on our main blog at on September 26!

    This virtual book tour is being brought to you by Pump Up Your Book Promotion and choreographed by Dorothy Thompson.

    And the winner is…

    In book giveaways, contests on September 1, 2008 at 7:19 pm

    Ramya!  Congratulations, your name was drawn for my copy of Bleachers by John Grisham!  I will be contacting you by email to get your info.

    Thanks to everyone who commented, it means so much to have readers who care.  Please make sure to check back as I will have another contest up in the VERY near future:)

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