Tuesday, May 31, 2016

AN AMAZING SURPRISE

Title: Chancers: Addiction, Prison, Recovery, Love: One Couple's Memoir
Author: Susan Stellin and Graham MacIndoe
Publisher:  Ballantine Books (June 7, 2016)
Pages: 448

I have more books in my pile of books to be read then I want to admit to. Yet when I ran across, CHANCERS: ADDICTION, PRISON, RECOVERY, LOVE: ONE COUPLE’S MEMOIR by SUSAN STELLIN AND GRAHAM MACINDOE, I ordered it. That it is a memoir and had the word prison is what drew me in.

When Susan Stellin asked Graham MacIndoe to shoot her author photo for an upcoming travel book, she couldn’t have imagined in her wildest dreams the journey it would lead her on. 

I’m not sure what I expected when I ordered CHANCERS: ADDICTION, PRISON, RECOVERY, LOVE: ONE COUPLE’S MEMOIR by SUSAN STELLIN AND GRAHAM MACINDOE. What I didn’t expect was a beautifully written, honest account of two people’s lives.

CHANCERS flips between SUSAN STELLIN AND GRAHAM MACINDOE’S story of their life as they travel through their relationship. SUSAN and GRAHAM have distinct voices, yet maintain coherency in writing style.

CHANCERS is a fascinating read, one you won’t be able to put down. SUSAN gives an honest look into the experience of having someone you love addicted to drugs. GRAHAM gives a harsh account of the reality of what drugs can do to one’s life. A fascinating walk through addition to drugs, experiencing withdrawals, prison, and the system we count on to be just.

I have been volunteering in prison ministry since 2004. In all I have witness and been informed of by inmates, GRAHAM brought the experience from the view of one going through it to life, not hiding the ugly and brutal truth. 

CHANCERS is written like a great novel. Suspense, hope, love, uncertainty, and intrigue makes it hard to put down. I highly recommend CHANCERS: ADDICTION, PRISON, RECOVERY, LOVE: ONE COUPLE’S MEMOIR, and would gladly purchase other books written by SUSAN STELLIN AND GRAHAM MACINDOE.


*Please see my profile for more information on this review.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

STORY IDEAS

What sparked a story idea in you? 
I will never be able to think 
of a laundromat the same. 


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Monday, May 9, 2016

CHILDHOOD REGAINED

I am so excited to announce the release of 
CHILDHOOD REGAINED
CHILDHOOD REGAINED – Stories of Hope for Asian Child Workers is a collection of 20 short stories and a poem, all written specifically for this anthology to raise awareness of the plight of millions of young children working long hours in factories, mines, quarries, on city streets, and on commercial farms in Asia.
The editor and writers have all donated their time and skills, and all net proceeds from this anthology will go to SOS Children’s Villages, http://www.soschildrensvillages.ca.
The moving but hopeful stories in this anthology focus on life in South Asia — India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Bangladesh — where still today, in 2016, children as young as five are forced to work up to 16 hours a day under very difficult conditions, often with meager food and very poor sleeping accommodations.
At the back of the book, you’ll find brief factual information on children working in various sectors in South Asia, as well as study questions for each story, with answers.
Target readership is age twelve through adult.
All 20 stories and one poem were written specifically for this anthology by writers in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Sweden, Malta, and India, and have not been published anywhere else.
Governments and charitable organizations are working to reduce the exploitation of disadvantaged children and improve the working conditions for young workers, but reforms cost money. Our aim is to try to help the situation by raising awareness and by contributing the proceeds from this anthology to a highly respected, trustworthy charity that works to improve the lives of young children exploited for profit.
All net proceeds from sales of this anthology will go to:
                                                
                                          Released in both trade paperback and ebook.  

TABLE OF CONTENTS
FOREWORD by Timothy Hallinan
INTRODUCTION by Jodie Renner
SANJAY’S MOUNTAIN by Steve Hooley
WHEN THE RAINS COME by Caroline Sciriha
SEEDS OF SLAVERY by Eileen Hopkins
THE GHOST BAZAAR by Barbara Hawley
MY NAME IS RAJ by Lori Duffy Foster
INTAHARI – Confessions of a Suicide Bomber by Peter Eichstaedt
DREAMS ARE FOR SLEEP by Tom Combs
SOME NIGHTS, I WAKE UP CRYING by Patricia Anne Elford
TREASURE OF THE MIND by D. Ansing
THE TORN CARPET by Caroline Sciriha
LIFE STUDY IN CHARCOAL by E.M. Eastick
RAJESH’S GARDEN by Della Barrett and Jodie Renner
RIVER OF LIFE by Steve Hooley
NAMASTE (poem) by Fern G.Z. Carr
FUNNY DANCE by Sanjay Deshmukh
FLOWERS by Hazel Bennett
BRICK BY BRICK by Kym McNabney
DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK by Rayne Kaa Hedberg
DREAMS OF ARSENAL by Edward Branley
INVISIBLE by Sarah Hausman
FROZEN TEARS by Steve Hooley
GUIDELINES FOR TEACHERS & LIBRARIANS
STUDY QUESTIONS FOR THE STORIES
BRIEF FACTUAL INFORMATION
KEY TO STUDY QUESTIONS
GLOSSARY

BRICK BY BRICK 
by Kym McNabney
Anika, a twelve-year-old girl from India, is devastated when her alcoholic father pawns her off to a broker like some type of animal. If her mother had survived Anika’s birth, perhaps her father would not hand her over to a man she never met. Mr. Kumar, the broker, takes her to his brick-making yard, where she is forced to live in a cramped dormitory with others. Anika befriends Prisha, a worker in Mr. Kumar’s brick company. Anika works from sunup to sundown, never forgetting her brother’s vow to one day rescue her.
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Review for CHILDHOOD REGAINED
~ Susan Miura, author, reviewer for The Book Report, public relations coordinator for a Chicago suburban library, presenter of “Modern Day Slavery,” and Vice President of the ACFW Chicago Chapter. www.susanmiura.com