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... Everyone has a story to tell.​

Tuesday - April 14, 2020

This Is Happiness

Happiness is finding a novel that is so exquisite, that you can sink into it, and forget about everything for a few chapters. Set in the fictional village of Faha, Niall Williams writes of the rhythm and rhyme of Irish village life in the 1950s through the eyes of seventeen-year-old Noe. A stranger, sixty-something-year-old Christy, comes to town and the two bond and explore the limits and illumination of what it means to love and be part of a tightly knit rural community. The village is about to receive electricity, and the rain has stopped for a season. Here are just two sentences that took my breath away: 

Beneath the pinholed heaven, the night was God-dimensioned and monumental before electric light. In Breen’s pub, there was no sign of the Archangel that evening, but there was a piper in the corner, pipers then rare as hens’ teeth, and he played a plaintive music that was like the salt wind singing, utterly strange and familiar, unlike any other music really, an absolute music uncompromising as a blackthorn, ancient and elemental, and in the air he played a whole history of the troubled heart, and when I looked at Christy I saw the sorrow in his happiness made shine his eyes.

The second sentence is 87 words long – try writing a sentence that long (commas help). It’s a challenge.

Niall Williams, author of Four Letters of Love, John, and History of the Rain as well as much more.
Authors’ Megaphone

Cliff Simon, author of Paris Nights: My Year at the Moulin Rouge, with Loren Stephens is on the road again. He is the star and narrator of Uncharted Mysteries, a six-episode series released abroad by the History Channel. Later this year it will air in the United States.

Here you can view the teasers for Uncharted Mysteries
Paris Nights is available here on Amazon.

Effy Pfeffermann is the author of Never Give Up, a memoir about growing up in Romania during World War II, leaving for Palestine/Israel and serving seven years in the army, and eventually finding his way to the United States. He recently contacted the Association of Holocaust Organizations. Fifteen of their members have requested a free signed copy from the author and a number have asked Effy to speak to their organization (when travel allows, of course).

Effy’s memoir is available here on Amazon.
George Kolber and Charles Kolber, authors of Thrown Upon the World, published by Archway, a division of Simon & Schuster, have allowed the LA Museum of the Holocaust to include a number of family archival documents for inclusion in their exhibition on the Jews of Shanghai (which was scheduled to open on April 5). Check out LAMOTH’s website for updated information on the exhibition and events around it, which has been rescheduled for December 2020.

You can visit LAMOTH’s Website here. Thrown Upon the World
 is available here on Amazon or on their website,
Judge Herbert Dodell, author of From the Trench to the Bench is our very own “Judge Judy,” with a series of dynamic interviews with celebrities including Ann Coulter, Senator Ben Cardin, Roger Stone, Dr. Walter Jacobson and Alan Dershowitz.

There is an index of shows at this link. You can also find his book here on Amazon.
What’s the Team Up To?
Betsy Rosenthal’s middle grade novel, When Lightnin' Struck, has been sold to Kar-Ben Publishing.

It's not every day that a boy's father is killed by lightning and his mother gets thrown in jail for drunken behavior, but that's James's lot in life. It's 1928 in the small Texas town of Odessa and James is treated as a pariah at school where he's taunted as being cursed because of his family's bad luck. He finds a friend in fellow outcast Paul, a Russian immigrant boy. As their unlikely friendship deepens, family secrets are revealed, and James discovers what just might be his true purpose in life. Publication is set for spring 2022; Karen Grencik at Red Fox Literary did the deal.
Josh Stephens visited India for the first time last year and published his observations about Old Delhi in Common Edge Collaborative. Closer to home, he visited the ersatz Danish town of Solvang, California, and wrote about it in the California Planning & Development Report. His book The Urban Mystique, a collection of essays about urban planning, is due out this month from Solimar Books.

You can view the Old Delhi essay here and the Solvang blog here.
Ken Davis’ memoir, In Bed with Broadcasting, has surpassed the 12,000 books sold mark. Congratulations to Ken! He’s busy working on some reality television scripts right now. Stay tuned. Ken was also recently honored by the California State Assembly.

You can find Ken’s book here on Amazon.
Loren Stephens and other Write Wisdom team members are working on four author memoirs: one is in the Hollywood celebrity space; another is by an attorney specializing in employment law. The third contains reminiscences by an eighty-something grandmother growing up in Los Angeles when it still had orange groves and chicken farms. Won't her grandchildren be surprised? And the fourth memoir takes us to the Australian outback and to the Silk Road via motorcycle. Quite a ride!
Artist’s Corner
Lois Gold, a well-known New York based artist is designing one-of-a-kind decorative boxes to hold your treasures and wishes. You can inquire about availability and prices at this link.
Final Thoughts
Stay safe everyone and read a good book. Books transport you to another time and place, and allow you to enter the minds and hearts of people you may never have met. Share your favorites with friends, and set up online meetings to discuss those books that moved you. It’s a diversion from too much news.
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