MORE AFTER THE BREAK – A REPORTER RETURNS TO TEN UNFORGETTABLE NEWS STORIES by Jen Maxfield – AUDIOBOOK REVIEW – Can be ordered immediately. This is a must listen, you will not be sorry.

Title: MORE AFTER THE BREAK     

Subtitle: A REPORTER RETURNS TO TEN UNFORGETTABLE NEWS STORIES

Author: JEN MAXFIELD 

Narrator: JEN MAXFIELD

Release Date: JULY 12, 2022

Genre: NON-FICTION, BIOGRAPHIES AND MEMOIRS

Length: 7 Hours and 44 Minutes 

Publisher: GREENLEAF AUDIOBOOKS

Received From: NETGALLEY   ²

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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DESCRIPTION:

In More After the BreakJen Maxfield revisits ten memorable stories from her career as a TV news reporter, describing in heart-pounding detail how the events unfolded and revealing what happened after the cameras went away.

She introduces readers to unforgettable people who will inspire you with their hopefulness, even when confronting life’s greatest heartbreaks: a young man who lost both legs in a ferry crash, an endurance athlete with stage-four lung cancer, a fifth grader on a doomed field trip, an Ivy League undergrad sentenced to 1decades in prison, a young woman who gave her life for an animal, a Wall Street executive on an ill-fated bike ride, a preschooler whose health hinged on an immigration battle, a family who lost everything in a hurricane, a mother who fought back against domestic violence, and a man who stood up for his rights while seated in his wheelchair. 

A reporter uncovers the rest of the story.

Returning to find these people years—even decades—after she featured their stories on the news gives Maxfield an opportunity to ask the burning questions she had always pondered: What happened after the live truck pulled away? What is the rest of the story?

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MY REVIEW:

“An instant Amazon bestseller the day it was announced for preorders, More After the Break takes readers on a dramatic ride-along in the TV news live truck. Based on her two-decade career as a New York City news reporter, Jen Maxfield writes about everything from the moment she gets the call to head to breaking news, to arriving at chaotic scenes, to knocking on doors of families who are grieving the loss of a loved one.”

Somehow Jen Maxfield is able to narrate the book as if she is having a one on one conversation with the listener. This is a skill I have not come across while listening to audiobooks in the past, but one I very much enjoyed.

I had the privilege of receiving an advance copy of the audiobook version of More After The Break from NetGalley and Greenleaf Audiobooks. The fact that it is not only written by Jen Maxfield, but also narrated by her made the experience of listening an intimate one.

The updates to news stories Jen Maxfield covered in the past made for fascinating and absolutely riveting reading/listening.

Jen has single-handedly changed my preconceived notions of what reporters are like. I had thought that reporters were all jaded and were somehow able to block the normal emotional reactions to tragedy, crime, etc. Now I know better. Jen feels every emotion deeply, so much so that even many years later, she is able to authenticly tap into those emotions and to convey them to her readers/listeners.

The fact that she is both author and narrator, means that she knows exactly what phrases and/or words to emphasize. This makes a huge, positive impact on the reader/listener.

I rate the audiobook version of MORE AFTER THE BREAK as a solid 5 out of 5 Stars.

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

I very much hope that she will write a second volume of news story follow up. I am following her on Goodreads so that I will find out immediately if she writes another book.

*** Thank you to #NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this audiobook. ***

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR/NARRATOR:

Jen Maxfield is an Emmy-award winning reporter and anchor for NBC New York. Prior to joining the station in 2013, she worked for Eyewitness News for ten years, also as a reporter and substitute anchor. Starting her broadcast career in Binghamton, New York, Maxfield worked in Syracuse before moving to New York City in 2002.

Maxfield’s first book, More After the Break: A Reporter Returns to Ten Unforgettable News Stories will be published by Greenleaf Book Group in July of 2022.

Maxfield revisits the most memorable stories she has covered during her two-decade career, describing in heart-pounding detail how the events unfolded through the eyewitness perspectives and her own. Returning to the families years–even decades– after their stories were featured on the news gives Maxfield an opportunity to ask the burning question she had always pondered: what happened after the live truck pulled away?

One review called the book, “impossible to put down,” while another veteran journalist said the book “will strengthen your faith in humanity.”

Maxfield is also an adjunct professor at the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University. She teaches courses in broadcast journalism, including Video 1 and On-Air skills. A graduate of the class of 2000, Maxfield enjoys coming back to her Alma Mater to educate the next generation. She finds it truly rewarding to work with young people as they launch their journalism careers.

Maxfield’s experience in academia has also proved useful when she is coaching other professionals who want to convey their message clearly and cohesively in front of a live audience. Her advice has helped clients feel more comfortable and confident in front of the camera.

Because of her live television and lecturing background, Maxfield is an experienced speaker, emcee, and moderator, having hosted dozens of events for various charitable and educational organizations. After thousands of live shots, she is well-prepared her for the unpredictability of a live event.

Maxfield and her husband, Scott Ostfeld, met as undergraduate students at Columbia University. Living in Northern New Jersey with their three children, they enjoy travel, hiking, tennis, and trying out new vegan restaurants and recipes. Maxfield grew up in Tenafly, New Jersey as the oldest of six children. An 8-varsity letter athlete, she held the Tenafly High School high jump record (5’3”) for 26 years. 

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE
http://www.jenmaxfield.com

FACEBOOK  

LINKEDIN

YOUTUBE

TWITTER  

INSTAGRAM  

AMAZON  

UPCOMING SIGNING EVENTS CAN BE FOUND HERE.

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ABOUT THE PUBLISHER:

Greenleaf Book Group is a publisher and distributor that specializes in the development of independent authors and the growth of small presses.

Our publishing model was designed to support the independent author and to make it possible for writers to retain the rights to their work and still compete with the major publishing houses.

In addition to the books we publish, we distribute select titles from independent publishers to major trade outlets, including bookstores, libraries, and airports.

To learn more about this Publisher visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE
https://greenleafbookgroup.com  

FACEBOOK 

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM   

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https://www.nbcnewyork.com/on-air/as-seen-on/new-york-city-begins-converting-school-buses-into-electric/3680892/ 

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#NetGalley #AmiesBookReviews #BookReview #tbr #BookReviewer  #ReadAndReview #bibliophile #bookstagram #bookstagrammers #AuthorsOfInstagram #author #NewBook #MustRead #BookNerd #book #books #reading #arc  #instagramhub  #audiobook  #Narrator #MustListen #Journalist
#News #Journalists #Reporter
#JenMaxfield #Greenleaf  #GreenleafAudiobooks

AMIE’S PARTY – A children’s book that addresses loneliness, change, and other mental health issues and introduces kids to the Mood Bears – Definitely worth reading – Check it out below…

Title: AMIE’S PARTY
https://www.moodbears.co.uk/Mainshop

Series: THE MOOD BEARS
http://www.moodbears.co.uk  

Author: IAIN LAUCHLAN   

Illustrator: NIK AFIA  
http://www.nikafia.com
  

Release Date: AUGUST 4, 2022

Genre: CHILDREN’S FICTION

Number Of Pages: 32

Publisher: CHERISH EDITIONS

Received From: NETGALLEY

Rating: 4 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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DESCRIPTION:

It’s another peaceful day in the village for the Mood Bears – until Happy Bear spots a yellow cloud on the horizon and knows someone needs her help.

The cloud takes Happy Bear to Amie, who feels lonely and sad after moving to a new flat far away from her friends. She has no one to celebrate her birthday with her, either.

So, Happy Bear throws a party for Amie’s big day and invites some very special guests to remind her that she is never alone.

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MY REVIEW:

If you look at my first name and the way it is spelled, you will realize why I chose this children’s book to #ReadAndReview It is exceptionally rare to find a book (or anything else) with my name (Amie) spelled correctly. 

Upon first reading of the book, I was introduced to the Mood Bears. They seem to be a UK updated version of the Care Bears that were popular here in Canada for many years and in fact seem to still be going strong. The major difference seems to be that the Mood Bears books and stuffed animals are sold as a way to make money for children’s charity whereas the Care Bears are strictly for making profit.

Amie’s Party is not just an entertaining story, although it very much is entertaining. The story talks about some very serious issues that children often need to face. One of those issues is the fact that Amie’s parents have split up and because of that, Amie and her mother move from their house into an apartment which is a very big change to Amie’s life. Children who, like Amie, experience the divorce of their parents, and/or a housing change, often suffer in silence. This book validates their experience and helps them to feel less alone.

“According to ONS figures from 2018, 1 in 10 children “often” feel lonely in the UK.”

Because of their move, Amie has moved away from all her friends and because of their financial changes Amie understands that there just isn’t any money for a fancy birthday party. She doesn’t know anyone in her new neighborhood, so who would she invite anyway?

This is when the Mood Bears come in and ensure that Amie has a great birthday party. They even invite a few of the children around her age who live in her apartment building, thus introducing Amie to a bunch of potential new friends. 

This book is beautifully illustrated and written with sensitivity towards children’s mental health. This is a subject that most children’s books avoid.

In addition, the Mood Bears have a website where stuffed Mood Bears are available to buy.

What I love the most about this book and about the plush bears is that a portion of the proceeds go to the mental health charity SHAWMIND

I rate AMIE’S PARTY as 4 out of 5 Stars ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

*** Thank you to #NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

 ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR:

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ABOUT THE MOOD BEARS:

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ABOUT THE PUBLISHER:

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TWITTER
@Shawmind_
@cherisheditions
@MoodBears
@literallypr
@Nik_Afia
@triggerhub_  

INSTAGRAM
@themoodbears
@cherisheditions
@shawmind_
@literallypr
@nik_afia01
@triggerhub_

FACEBOOK
http://www.facebook.com/cherisheditions

http://www.facebook.com/shawmindUK

http://www.facebook.com/moodbears.co.uk

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Literally-PR/342794935782744

https://m.facebook.com/100063590700523

https://www.facebook.com/nikafiaillustration

https://www.facebook.com/triggerhub.org

THE WEHR WOLF – A SHORT STORY by Horror Queen ALMA KATSU is NOW AVAILABLE – This novella will hold you spellbound and is unlike any werewolf tale you have previously read ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

Title: THE WEHRWOLF  –  A SHORT STORY

Author: ALMA KATSU 

Release Date: SEPTEMBER 27, 2022

Genre: FICTION, HORROR, HISTORICAL FICTION

Publisher: AMAZON ORIGINAL STORIES

Received From: NETGALLEY  

ISBN: 978-1-662507656

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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DESCRIPTION:

Alma Katsu, the visionary author of The FervorThe Hunger, and The Deep, brings readers a terrifying short story about monsters among men—and the thin lines that divide them.

Germany, 1945. In the waning days of World War II, the Nazis have been all but defeated. Uwe Fuchs, never a fighter, feels fortunate to have avoided the front lines as he cared for his widowed mother.

But Uwe’s fortune changes when Hans Sauer, the village bully, recruits him to join a guerilla resistance unit preparing for the arrival of Allied soldiers. At first, Uwe is wary. The war is lost, and rumor has it that Hans is a deserter. But Hans entices him with talk of power, brutality, and their village’s ancestral lore: werewolves.

With some reluctance, Uwe joins up with the pack and soon witnesses their startling transformation. But when the men’s violent rampage against enemy soldiers takes a devastatingly personal turn, Uwe must grapple not only with his role in their evil acts but with his own humanity. Can he reclaim what this group of predatory men has stolen from him?

Or has he been a monster all along?

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MY REVIEW

“The Wehrwolf” by Alma Katsu is a definite Must Read for Fall 2022.

Do not let the title dissuade you from reading this novella. I guarantee it is unlike any werewolf tale you have previously read.

Alma Katsu chose to set the story in Germany just as WWII was coming to an end.Choosing this moment in world history as the setting of her tale was nothing less than inspired.

I have rarely encountered books that focus on the lives of ordinary German citizens at that moment in time, most of whom had no say in what the country’s government had chosen to do and wanted no part in the hate and the genocides.

The main character is Uwe Fuchs –  a simple man, a good man. A man who loves his family above all else. The question is not what he will do to keep his family safe, but what won’t he do? I think we can all relate to that.

The Wehrwolf held me rapt. Once begun, this tale is impossible to put down.

The characters are so real that you will find yourself wondering if somehow the author went back in time to observe them firsthand.

Alma Katsu’s previous career working for the CIA and the NSA has given her a perspective that us mortals could never comprehend. She knows evil and she knows people – their motivations, their fears, their very souls. She probably knows people better than they know themselves. It is this intense knowledge that kept me riveted by her story.

The Wehrwolf is very much worthy of 5 out of 5 Stars. ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

*** Thank you to #NetGalley for providing me with a free advance copy of this book. ***

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alma Katsu (born 1959) is an American writer of adult fiction. Her books have been translated into over a dozen languages, and has been published in the United Kingdom, Brazil, Spain and Italy

Katsu was born in Fairbanks, Alaska, the daughter of an American-born father and a Japanese-born mother. She spent the majority of her youth living near Concord, Massachusetts, to which she attributes her interest in the early American history featured in her novels.[9] She attended Brandeis University (BA in literature and writing, 1981) where she studied with novelist John Irving and children’s book author Margaret Rey, and the Johns Hopkins University (MA in Fiction, 2004).

FROM THE OZY INTERVIEW ARTICLE:
https://www.ozy.com/the-new-and-the-next/my-eyes-dont-lie-a-navy-corpsmans-south-of-the-border-adventure/223656/  

Alma Katsu spent more than three decades witnessing horror. It was part of her job: Katsu spent 25 years at the National Security Agency and eight years at the CIA. She still works as a consultant for the government, “but that’s all I can say,” she tells me with a little chuckle, taking a sip of Orangina. I want her to follow that up with “or I’ll have to kill you,” but that’s too Hollywood. Plus, I don’t want to offend a woman who spent decades clandestinely planning missions to protect our country — which left her with bouts of PTSD and a neurological disorder. We’re at a French bistro in suburban D.C. far from where she was born, in Alaska, but close to where she spent her career after growing up “on the wrong side of the tracks” in Massachusetts, near Lexington and Concord.”

“Katsu, 59, knows evil. In the 1990s, she ran “complex contingency operations” to stomp out mass atrocities around the globe. She’s used that knowledge to launch her second career as a popular horror writer.”

“I don’t think the book is super frightening,” says Katsu of her latest, The Hunger, which was named one of the best horror novels of 2018 by NPR, The New York Times and others, and earned front-cover kudos from Stephen King, the American icon of horror and suspense.”

The Horror Writers Association defines horror not as a genre but as a feeling of dread and terror. And The Hunger, historical fiction based on the 1846 expedition known as the Donner Party, is just that. Katsu twists an overlay of the supernatural into the true-story tale of cannibalism. She says her book asks: “Under what circumstances could you be turned into a monster?”

“It’s not the monsters that are scary in this book; it’s the evil in man,” says her editor, Sally Kim of Putnam. “When I first signed up the book … I loved the idea of it and her writing,” says Kim, who is also Katsu’s editor on The Deep, historical horror fiction based on the Titanic out in March 2020.”

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
https://www.almakatsubooks.com 

GOODREADS 

WIKIPEDIA 

FACEBOOK   

TWITTER   

INSTAGRAM 

ALMA KATSU’S DAMNED HISTORY PODCAST

PINTEREST 

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One of Only 500 Special Edition copies of Alma Katsu’s THE HUNGER can now be pre-ordered

Link to special edition of THE HUNGER

SPECIAL EDITION DETAILS:   

* Signed Limited Hardcover Edition:
* Limited to only 500 signed and hand-numbered copies
* Personally signed by Alma Katsu on a specially designed full-colour illustrated signature page
* Larger 6.14” x 9.21” trim size
* Printed on a heavier 100gsm acid-free paper
*Bound in premium cloth with coloured head and tail bands
* Hot foil stamping on the front boards and spine
* Offset printed and bound with full-colour endpapers
* Sewn binding for increased durability
* Stunning dust jacket artwork and interior illustrations by Francois Vaillancourt 

https://sstpublications.co.uk/the-hunger.html

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Watch the video of the event HERE.

https://www.crowdcast.io/e/alma-katsu-in

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Contact Alma Katsu:

Publicity:
Please contact Katie Grinch
Tel: 212-366-2574 | kgrinch@penguinrandomhouse.com

Literary Management:
Please contact Richard Pine
Tel: 212-922-3500 | Inkwell Management

Film Rights
Please contact Angela Cheng Caplan
(Sera)Tel: 310-391-8898 | assistant@chengcaplanco.com

Book Clubs
Alma loves talking to book clubs via Skype!
Email her at almakatsubooks2@gmail.com

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WHEN THE STORKS CAME HOME by ISABELLA TREE is a gorgeously illustrated and beautifully told story based on real life events – Between the beautiful illustrations and the riveting storyline, this book is sure to grab the attention of parents and children alike. I recommend this Children’s Book as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

I absolutely adore this cover.

Title: WHEN THE STORKS CAME HOME

Series: NATURE’S WISDOM

Author: ISABELLA TREE
https://www.isabellatree.com

Illustrator: ALEXANDRA FINKELDEY
https://artbyscatterbee.com

Release Date: SEPTEMBER 6, 2022

Genre: CHILDREN’S FICTION, BASED ON A TRUE STORY, ENVIRONMENT, NATURE, BIRDS, REWILDING

Number Of Pages: 34

Target Age: 4 to 8 year Olds

Publisher: IVY KIDS – A DIVISION OF QUARTO PRESS

Received From: NETGALLEY

ISBN: 978-0711272798

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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DESCRIPTION:

When The Storks Came Home is a charming, fictionalized retelling of the successful reintroduction of the white stork at the Knepp Estate, a UK native bird that has been brought back from extinction.

In this second picture book from best-selling author and globally significant conservationist Isabella Tree, we meet eight-year-old Beanie, who loves birds. When she discovers that huge white storks used to live in her own village but were hunted to extinction in the UK 600 years ago, she is determined to find a way to bring them back.

But reintroducing a vanished species is not so simple! Storks can fly hundreds of miles, so releasing storks into the local countryside won’t be enough to make them return and stay for good. With the help of other villagers, Beanie hatches a plan…

Beautiful illustrations help bring this powerful and important story to life, teaching children about conservation and their environment in an accessible way.

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https://twitter.com/i/status/1530117229873856515

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MY REVIEW:

WHEN THE STORKS CAME HOME written by ISABELLA TREE and illustrated by Canadian artist ALEXANDRA FINKELDEY is a fabulous children’s book that combines great storytelling with lessons about the environment and about the impact of humans on animal/bird habitats.

Aimed at children ages 4 to 8, this book will also interest older children. Parents will also find the story interesting and with photos and details included at the back of the book, are sure to learn new information about the stork project and about the concept of “rewilding.”

When I saw the illustration of the stork with its neck bent backwards I was surprised. Before reading this book I had no idea how storks mated and how they contort their necks. I found that information fascinating. 

For all of the above reasons I am rating WHEN THE STORKS CAME HOME as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

*** Thank you to #NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Isabella Tree is an award-winning nature and travel author, and conservation pioneer.

Her best-selling adult book Wilding: The Return of Nature to a British Farm (200,000 copies sold) tells the story of Knepp, the groundbreaking rewilding project in West Sussex that she started with her husband, the environmentalist Charlie Burrell.

She is also the author of the critically acclaimed children’s book When We Went Wild, which relates the benefits of rewilding to the next generation of conservationists.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
https://www.isabellatree.com

GOODREADS
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/665308.Isabella_Tree

FACEBOOK 
https://m.facebook.com/698763606829945

TWITTER 
https://www.twitter.com/isabella_tree

INSTAGRAM 
http://www.instagram.com/Isabella.tree

AMAZON 
https://www.amazon.com/Isabella-Tree/e/B000APD5O8

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The header for Alexandra Finkeldey’s ETSY Store.

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR

Alexandra Finkeldey is an illustrator based in Ottawa, Canada.

She uses both traditional and digital mediums to capture her favorite subjects, which typically include animals, people, plants, and food.

She has long been inspired by nature, animation, travel, and video games, which has translated into vibrant and often unreal color palettes as they appear in her work.

Read a fantastic interview with Alexandra Finkeldey HERE.

To learn more about this illustrator visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
https://artbyscatterbee.com

ETSY
https://www.etsy.com/shop/scatterbee

GOODREADS
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/20953730.Alexandra_Finkeldey

FACEBOOK 
https://www.facebook.com/artbyscatterbee

TWITTER 
http://www.twitter.com/scatterbee

GOOGLE BOOKS

YOUTUBE
https://m.youtube.com/channel/UCqYRWmbl2cc5mukCZXTpL3A

INSTAGRAM 
https://www.instagram.com/scatterbee

AMAZON 
https://www.amazon.com/s?i=digital-text&rh=p_27%3AAlexandra+Finkeldey&s=relevancerank&text=Alexandra+Finkeldey&ref=dp_byline_sr_ebooks_2

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ABOUT THE PUBLISHER:

Ivy Kids produces beautiful books that will get kids making, creating, thinking, playing and dreaming.

Covering all sorts of areas, including cool, contemporary kids’ crafts, awesome art activities, and fresh nonfiction topics, our books will get kids of all ages imagining, innovating, and above all, having fun!

Ivy Kids brings you beautiful, sustainably printed books to rewild your child, nurture creativity, and foster a deep connection with the living world. 

Winner of the Sustainability Award at the Independent Publishers Guild Awards 2022.

Ivy Kids books are planet-friendlyprinted on 100% post-consumer recycled paperlocally to where they will be sold.

To learn more about this Publisher visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
http://www.quartoknows.com  

GOODREADS
https://www.goodreads.com/TheQuartoGroup

FACEBOOK 
https://www.facebook.com/QuartoKnows

TWITTER 
https://twitter.com/quartoknows

INSTAGRAM 
https://www.instagram.com/quarto.knows

PINTEREST 
https://www.pinterest.com/quartoknows

YOUTUBE
https://www.youtube.com/c/QuartoKnows

TIKTOK
https://www.tiktok.com/@quartobooks

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#AmiesBookReviews #BookReview #tbr #BookReviewer #bookish  #ReadAndReview #bibliophile #UK  #bookstagram #bookstagrammers #AuthorsOfInstagram #author #NewBook #MustRead #BookNerd #book #books #reading #storks  #instagramhub #amreading #tbr  #BookRecommendations #tbrlist
#BookRecs #biology #England #Britain #rewild #rewilding #KidLit #ChildrensBook #illustrated #illustrators #illustrator #NetGalley  #IllustratorsOfInstagram
#WhenTheStorksCameHome

https://www.facebook.com/independentpublishersguild

https://www.linkedin.com/company/independent-publishers-guild

YOU STILL LOOK THE SAME by Multiple Award Winning Canadian Author FARZANA DOCTOR and Narrated by the Incomparable ULKA SIMONE MOHANTY has Finally Been Released – Sample Included With This Post

Title: YOU STILL LOOK THE SAME (Audiobook)

Title: YOU STILL LOOK THE SAME (Audiobook)

Author: FARZANA DOCTOR

Narrators: FARZANA DOCTOR and ULKA SIMONE MOHANTY

Release Date: MAY 1, 2022

Genre: POETRY, DIVERSE BOOKS, MULTICULTURAL INTEREST, CANADIAN

Length: 1 Hour and 21 Minutes

Publisher: ECW PRESS

Received From: THE AUTHOR 

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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DESCRIPTION:

A moving collection of poetry about navigating mid-life, full of humour and wit, from acclaimed novelist Farzana Doctor.

This debut poetry collection from acclaimed novelist Farzana Doctor is both an intimate deep dive and a humorous glance at the tumultuous decade of her forties.

Through crisp and vivid language, Doctor explores mid-life breakups and dating, female genital cutting, imprints of racism and misogyny, and the oddness of sex and love, and urges us to take a second look at the ways in which human relationships are never what we expect them to be.

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MY REVIEW:

FARZANA DOCTOR is a Canadian author and now poet who has won many, many literary awards. Each one was well deserved. 

I admit I am not usually a big fan of poetry. I find much of it to be pretentious, sometimes even condescending to the reader. Thus is 100% NOT the case with “You Still Look The Same.”  In fact I enjoyed listening to Farzana’s debut poetry collection immensely. 

I love the fact that Farzana chose to narrate part of her collection and choosing Ulka Simone Mohantyto narrate the rest of the poems was the perfect choice. Both narrators were easy to understand, as well as speaking clearly and concisely. This allowed the words of the poems to be the listener’s focus … as it should be.

Each haiku and other poems showcased the author’s talent for description. I believe this is because Farzana Doctor wrote fiction books first, before trying her hand at poetry.

In my opinion, one of Farzana’s greatest gifts is her ability to connect with her audience. I found this to be true with her novels, and it is even more evident in her poetry.

It is my belief that audiobook listeners, especially women, will find that Farzana’s experiences will resonate with them.

I was already a fan of Farzana Doctor’s books. With YOU STILL LOOK THE SAME I am now an even bigger fan.

If you have not yet read any of her work, you are doing yourself a disservice. I suggest you run, not walk, to your nearest Indie bookstore to pick up your copy of this collection. While you are there, do yourself a favor and pick up copies of her other books as well. You just might find that you have a new favourite author. 

I rate “You Still Look The Same” as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

*** Thank you to #FarzanaDoctor for choosing me as one of the winners of this audiobook through a #giveaway on her Instagram account. ***

*************************************

To read my review of Farzana’s book ALL INCLUSIVE. Click HERE.

*************************************

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

FARZANA DOCTOR was the WINNER of the NOW Magazine Best Author of 2015.

Farzana Doctor is the author of Stealing Nasreen and Six Metres of Pavement, which won the 2012 Lambda Literary Award and was short-listed for the Toronto Book Award.Farzana is one of CBC BooksTen Canadian Women Writers You Need to Read Now and the recipient of the Writers’ Trust of Canada’s Dayne Ogilvie Grant.

To learn more about this author visit the links below:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

GOODREADS

FACEBOOK 

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM 

LIBRO FM

AUDIBLE CANADA

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https://player.vimeo.com/video/675983527?h=96df725851

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ABOUT THE NARRATOR:

Photographer: Teren Oddo

Ulka Simone Mohanty is an actor, voice actor, dancer, choreographer and occasional professional chef.

This multi-hyphenated artist is known for her voice work on Pixar‘s Oscar and Golden Globe winner Soul, Warner Bros’ Jellystone and NBC Universal‘s Nina’s World; her film and TV work on FOX‘s The Moodys, and a supporting role in the sci-fi movie, Needle in a Timestack; and her choreography work on Disney‘s Rivers of Light,  The Jungle Book: Alive With Magic, and Disney-Pixar collaboration  Up! A Great Bird Adventure.

She has also appeared as a chef on The Food Network‘s Cutthroat Kitchen and has voiced numerous video games and audiobooks.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE
https://ulkamohanty.com

GOODREADS

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM  

IMDb

VIMEO

CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL
ARTICLE AND INTERVIEW

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THE ISLAND by Adrian McKinty – AUDIOBOOK REVIEW

Title: THE ISLAND

Author: ADRIAN McKINTY 
http://adrianmckinty.blogspot.com
 

Narrator: MELA LEE
https://www.melalee.com/

Release Date: MAY 17, 2022

Genre: FICTION, MYSTERIES AND THRILLERS

Length: 8.9 HOURS

Publisher: HACHETTE AUDIO

Received From: NETGALLEY

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

*************************************

DESCRIPTION:

IT WAS JUST SUPPOSED TO BE A FAMILY VACATION.

A TERRIBLE ACCIDENT CHANGED EVERYTHING.

YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE CAPABLE OF UNTIL THEY COME FOR YOUR FAMILY.

After moving from a small country town to Seattle, Heather Baxter marries Tom, a widowed doctor with a young son and teenage daughter. A working vacation overseas seems like the perfect way to bring the new family together, but once they’re deep in the Australian outback, the jet-lagged and exhausted kids are so over their new mom.

When they discover remote Dutch Island, off-limits to outside visitors, the family talks their way onto the ferry, taking a chance on an adventure far from the reach of iPhones and Instagram.

But as soon as they set foot on the island, which is run by a tightly knit clan of locals, everything feels wrong. Then a shocking accident propels the Baxters from an unsettling situation into an absolute nightmare. 

When Heather and the kids are separated from Tom, they are forced to escape alone, seconds ahead of their pursuers.

Now it’s up to Heather to save herself and the kids, even though they don’t trust her, the harsh bushland is filled with danger, and the locals want her dead.
Heather has been underestimated her entire life, but she knows that only she can bring her family home again and become the mother the children desperately need, even if it means doing the unthinkable to keep them all alive.

SOON TO BE A HULU ORIGINAL SERIES

*************************************

MY REVIEW:

Growing up on Goose Island watching the lights of Seattle, Heather knew she wanted more from life. And so, she moved to Seattle.

Working as a massage therapist, she falls in love with one of her clients. Tom, a widower, is everything she has ever dreamed of in a partner and they get married.

Tom has two children from his deceased wife and they want nothing to do with their Dad’s new wife. However, despite their feelings, they decide to accompany their Dad and Heather on a trip to Australia where their Dad is the keynote speaker at a medical conference.

That trip changes the lives of every single one of them.

Heather never really wanted kids, at least not at the age of 24. She is too close to the kids’ ages for them to view her as an authority figure.

But, when an accident happens and the family finds itself in a situation none of them were prepared for, it is Heather who steps up. It is Heather to whom the kids must trust to keep them alive.

This action packed audiobook is freaking fantastic!!! Narrator Mela Lee brings the characters to life with exceptional skill. It is evident that Mela is an experienced and professional voice actress. She makes narration seem easy which it certainly is not. Her pacing is sheer perfection and draws the listener deeper into the story. I rate Mela Lee’s narration as 5 out of 5 Stars. ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

It is hard to believe, but this is my first time reading a book written by Irish Author Adrian McKinty, it will NOT be the last.

The author does a commendable job of creating a believable teenage girl, as well as a snarky, twelve-year-old boy. It makes me wonder if he, like myself, has had first-hand experience of the cutting wit of a boy of this age. If so, I feel for him.

DeliverancemeetsThe Fugitive mixed with Bear Gryls Man vs. Wild.

THE ISLAND is a high octane thrill ride filled with non-stop action.

I rate THE ISLAND audiobook as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ 

***Thank you to #NetGalley and #HachetteAudio for providing me with a free copy of this audiobook ***

*************************************

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Adrian McKinty was born and grew up in Belfast, Northern Ireland. He studied philosophy at Oxford University before moving to Australia and to New York. He is the author of more than a dozen crime novels, including the Dagger and Edgar-award nominated debut Dead I Well May Be, the critically acclaimed Sean Duffy series, and the award-winning standalone thriller The Chain, which was a New York Times and #1 international bestseller.

​McKinty’s books have been translated into over 30 languages and he has won the Edgar Award, the International Thriller Writers Award, the Ned Kelly Award (3 times), the Anthony Award, the Barry Award, the Macavity Award, and the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

OVERDRIVE

TWITTER 

INDIEBOUND  

KOBO

ITUNES

AUDIOBOOKS.COM

AUDIBLE

GOOGLE

HACHETTE AUDIO

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ABOUT THE NARRATOR:
(Description copied from her website)

“I won the lottery when it comes to dream jobs. I get to be a professional voice actor and vocalist for film, television, and games. You might have heard my voice in a favorite commercial, animated or live action series, or game franchise -including Lifeline in Apex Legends, Jade for Mortal Kombat 11, Imperial Pilot – Star Wars Squadrons (Star Freakin’ Wars), Tikki in Miraculous Ladybug and Kikimora in Owl House both for Disney.” 

https://playlist.megaphone.fm/?e=LIT8203153731

I’ve got some super exciting roles with Disney, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Amazon, and Netflix that I’m totally fan girling over, but I can’t say anything because of signed NDA’s/Confidentiality Agreements. But I promise – they will be so worth the wait. I cannot wait to share them with you. 

Mela’s other passions include baking, hiking, camping, math (definitions a nerd), and volunteering for her favorite charities.

To learn more about this Narrator visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
https://www.melalee.com

MELA IS THE LEAD SINGER FOR THE BAND – MAGNOLIA MEMOIR

BEHIND THE VOICE ACTORS

ANIME VOICE OVER WEBSITE

WIKIPEDIA

GOODREADS

OVERDRIVE

FACEBOOK  

ITUNES

YOUTUBE

TWITTER  

INSTAGRAM  

IMDb

CAMEO

SPOTIFY

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#NetGalley #AmiesBookReviews #BookReview #tbr #BookReviewer  #ReadAndReview #bibliophile #bookstagram #bookstagrammers #AuthorsOfInstagram #author #NewBook #MustRead #BookNerd #book #books #reading #arc  #instagramhub  #audiobook  #Narrator #MustListen

THE MOONSTONE GIRLS is destined to be One of the Best Books of 2022 – RELEASES TODAY – Get Your Copy Today – You’ll be glad you did

Title: THE MOONSTONE GIRLS

Author: BROOKE SKIPSTONE

Release Date: FEBRUARY 14, 2022

Genre: YOUNG ADULT FICTION, LGBTQ

Number Of Pages: 397

Publisher: SKIPSTONE PUBLISHING

Received From: NETGALLEY

ISBN: 978-1-73700643-5

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

********************************************

Mount McKinley in Alaska – the name was changed and it is now called Mount Denali – Notice the digging bear on the left side of the photo Photographer Daniel Leifheit

DESCRIPTION:

1968, a seventeen-year-old queer girl traveled to Alaska disguised as a boy.

Tracy should have been a boy. Even her older brother Spencer says so, though he wouldn’t finish the thought with, “And I should have been a girl.”

Though both feel awkward in their own skin, they have to face who they are—queers in the late 60s.

When both are caught with gay partners, their lives and futures are endangered by their homophobic father as their mother struggles to defend them.

While the Vietnam War threatens to take Spencer away, Tracy and her father wage a war of their own, each trying to save the sweet, talented pianist.

At seventeen, Tracy dresses as a boy and leaves her parents in turmoil, with only the slimmest hope of finding peace within herself. She journeys to a girl with a guitar, calling to her from a photo, “Come to Alaska. We’d be great friends.”

Maybe even The MoonStone Girls.

**********************************************

MY REVIEW:

My first thought after reading THE MOONSTONE GIRLS is that it must be somewhat autobiographical. Author Brooke Skipstone has written with such depth of emotion that it is difficult to believe the story is fictional.

Before I get too far into my review I wanted to be sure to mention just how gorgeous the cover of this book is. It is the perfect blend of colors to bring the 1960s to mind. And, the choice to just use silhouettes is 100% inspired. 5 Stars for the cover. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I love that this #book is set in the late #1960s – an era much different than today’s world. So much was different at that time for anyone who was gay, and as hard as it is to fathom, being gay was considered to be against the laws of both God and men. This just highlights how far LBGTQ rights have come (even though society still has a ways to go.)

I cannot fathom the fear and pain experienced by LGBTQ youth at that time in history, especially for men whose arousal is much harder to hide. In the book, both Tracy and her brother Spencer are queer. The good thing is that they have each other to lean on and they have a mother who loves them just the way they are. This is much more than most #queer #youth had in their lives during that period in #history

This book delves into not just LGBTQ history, but also into the #draft and the #VietnamWar #WomensRights #RockAndRoll and the #SexualRevolution

There are some extremely #emotional scenes in The Moonstone Girls and at one point during reading I was literally in tears. It takes a truly talented #writer to be able to evoke so much #empathy and #emotion in their readers. Kudos to Brooke Skipstone for writing such an important and believable book.

Ultimately, this is a tale about hope and about having the courage to fight back in the best way you can against those who would try to stop you from living life on your own terms. It will encourage readers to never settle for second best and to keep trying until they find a place where they belong and where they can live a life of hope and honesty. It also reminds us that there is a person out there for everyone and that everyone has the right to live a happy life on their own terms.

Tracy is a fiery, take-no-prisoners type of young woman. This is the face she shows to the world, but inside, she is suffering and full of shame. This reminds readers that the persona people present to the world is not always accurate and that everyone has an inner world that is invisible. Never judge a book by its cover is a great lesson and one that we often forget.

Although not specifically stated, I get the feeling that the author also wants readers to think about mental health and to realize the depths of despair that people can feel when forced to live a lie just to be “normal.”

All in all I have to say that this book should be on everyone’s Must Read list for 2022 and although it is labeled as Young Adult fiction, this book will appeal to readers of all ages.

I am rating THE MOONSTONE GIRLS by Brooke Skipstone as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ and I highly recommend this book … just make sure you have a box of tissues nearby when you read it.

*** Thank you to #NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***

BELOW IS THE MOONSTONE GIRLS PLAYLIST

https://open.spotify.com/embed?uri=spotify%3Aplaylist%3A3FHQ6I55MRmqkIuFhA2mvD

*************************************

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brooke Skipstone lives in Alaska, where she watches the mountains change colors with the seasons from her balcony.

Where she feels the constant rush toward winter as the sunlight wanes for six months of the year, seven minutes each day, bringing crushing cold that lingers even as the sun climbs again.

Where the burst of life during summer is urgent under twenty-four-hour daylight, lush and decadent. Where fish swim hundreds of miles up rivers past bear claws and nets and wheels and lines of rubber-clad combat fishers, arriving humped and ragged, dying as they spawn.

Where danger from the land and its animals exhilarates the senses, forcing her to appreciate the difference between life and death. Where the edge between is sometimes too alluring.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

GOODREADS

AMAZON  

#NetGalley #AmiesBookReviews #BookReview #tbr #BookReviewer  #ReadAndReview #bibliophile #bookstagram #bookstagrammers #AuthorsOfInstagram #author #NewBook #MustRead #BookNerd #book #books #reading #yalit #ya #instagramhub #YoungAdultFiction
#TheMoonstoneGirls #BrookeSkipstone #LGBTQ #DiverseBooks #1968 #Vietnam #DraftCards #Equity #Equality #LoveIsLove

CATCH THE SPARROW- A Search for a Sister and the Truth of Her Murder by Author, Poet, and Artist RACHEL REAR – RELEASED TODAY – Buy your copy today of this 5 Star Read NOW 📚

Title: CATCH THE SPARROW

Subtitle: A Search for a Sister and the Truth of Her Murder

Author: RACHEL REAR

Release Date: TODAY

Genre: NON-FICTION, TRUE CRIME, BIOGRAPHIES AND MEMOIRS

Number Of Pages: 256

Publisher: BLOOMSBURY USA

Received From: NETGALLEY

ISBN: 978-1635577235

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

DESCRIPTION:

The gripping story of a young woman’s murder, unsolved for over two decades, brilliantly investigated and reconstructed by her stepsister.

The photo of Stephanie that her dad
gave police in 1991.
COURTESY OF RACHEL REAR

Growing up, Rachel Rear knew the story of Stephanie Kupchynsky’s disappearance. The beautiful violinist and teacher had fled an abusive relationship on Martha’s Vineyard and made a new start for herself near Rochester, NY. She was at the height of her life-in a relationship with a man she hoped to marry and close to her students and her family. And then, one morning, she was gone.

Rachel Rear with her step-father in 2008

Around Rochester-a region which has spawned such serial killers as Arthur Shawcross and the “Double Initial” killer-Stephanie’s disappearance was just a familiar sort of news item. But Rachel had more reason than most to be haunted by this particular story of a missing woman: Rachel’s mother had married Stephanie’s father after the crime, and Rachel grew up in the shadow of her stepsister’s legacy.

A photo of Stephanie’s beloved cockatiel, Chubie.

In Catch the Sparrow, Rachel Rear writes a compulsively readable and unerringly poignant reconstruction of the case’s dark and serpentine path across more than two decades. Obsessively cataloging the crime and its costs, drawing intimately closer to the details than any journalist could, she reveals how a dysfunctional justice system laid the groundwork for Stephanie’s murder and stymied the investigation for more than twenty years, and what those hard years meant for the lives of Stephanie’s family and loved ones. Startling, unputdownable, and deeply moving.

*************************************

MY REVIEW:

CATCH THE SPARROW by author, teacher, and artist Rachel Rear is a True Crime book that is truly unique. 
I have read literally hundreds of true crime books and stories. They all follow a prescribed pattern and almost all are written by journalists. The best true crime books contain interviews and photos provided by the victim’s family. However, this book rises above the rest.

In it, Rachel Rear writes the story of the disappearance and ultimately the murder of Stephanie Kupchynsky. So, what makes this book so unique you ask. Well, Rachel Rear happens to be Stephanie Kupchynsky’s stepsister. That in itself is interesting and offers an inside look into the story. To make this book even more compelling is the fact that Rachel and Stephanie did not become stepsisters until after Stephanie had gone missing. 

In no other book have I been so enthralled. It is difficult to believe that this is Rachel Rear’s first book. CATCH THE SPARROW is researched with the meticulousness of a seasoned journalist. This research makes the book a true deep dive into the disappearance and murder. Rachel’s familial connection offers readers a view into what happens to a family who go years, and even decades without answers as to what happened to their loved one.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Whether or not you are a fan of true crime, you need to read this book.

The detail with which Rachel delves into her stepsister’s life cannot help but have readers invested in finding Stephanie’s body and in determining exactly who was responsible for taking this vibrant young woman’s life and in seeing that justice prevails.

The feeling and love that Rachel feels for her deceased stepsister comes through loud and clear in her writing.

I recommend this book with the highest possible rating. I am 100% convinced this book will be on the NY Times Best Seller List for many, many weeks.

I rate CATCH THE SPARROW as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 

*** Thank you to #NetGalley and #Bloomsbury Publishing for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Photo by Elena Mudd

Rachel Rear, a New York City public school teacher and actor, holds an MA from Columbia University and an MFA from the New School.

She has been published in the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and numerous other publications, however, this is her first book.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
http://www.rachelrear.com/

GOODREADS

SHOP LOCAL CANADA

FACEBOOK  

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM 

LINKEDIN

AMAZON  

ABOUT THE PUBLISHER:

Bloomsbury has a tradition of publishing literary fiction from all over the world, and a wide range of distinguished non-fiction from memoir, biography, and history to politics, science, food, and sport.

To learn more about this Publisher visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

FACEBOOK 

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM   

CATCH THE SPARROW – A Search For A Sister and the Truth of Her Murder by RACHEL REAR releases in 8 days – A True Crime Tale Like No Other

Title: CATCH THE SPARROW

Subtitle: A Search for a Sister and the Truth of Her Murder

Author: RACHEL REAR

Release Date: FEBRUARY 1, 2022

Genre: NON-FICTION, TRUE CRIME, BIOGRAPHIES AND MEMOIRS

Number Of Pages: 256

Publisher: BLOOMSBURY USA

Received From: NETGALLEY

ISBN: 978-1635577235

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

DESCRIPTION:

The gripping story of a young woman’s murder, unsolved for over two decades, brilliantly investigated and reconstructed by her stepsister.

The photo of Stephanie that her dad
gave police in 1991.
COURTESY OF RACHEL REAR

Growing up, Rachel Rear knew the story of Stephanie Kupchynsky’s disappearance. The beautiful violinist and teacher had fled an abusive relationship on Martha’s Vineyard and made a new start for herself near Rochester, NY. She was at the height of her life-in a relationship with a man she hoped to marry and close to her students and her family. And then, one morning, she was gone.

Rachel Rear with her step-father in 2008

Around Rochester-a region which has spawned such serial killers as Arthur Shawcross and the “Double Initial” killer-Stephanie’s disappearance was just a familiar sort of news item. But Rachel had more reason than most to be haunted by this particular story of a missing woman: Rachel’s mother had married Stephanie’s father after the crime, and Rachel grew up in the shadow of her stepsister’s legacy.

A photo of Stephanie’s beloved cockatiel, Chubie.

In Catch the Sparrow, Rachel Rear writes a compulsively readable and unerringly poignant reconstruction of the case’s dark and serpentine path across more than two decades. Obsessively cataloging the crime and its costs, drawing intimately closer to the details than any journalist could, she reveals how a dysfunctional justice system laid the groundwork for Stephanie’s murder and stymied the investigation for more than twenty years, and what those hard years meant for the lives of Stephanie’s family and loved ones. Startling, unputdownable, and deeply moving.

*************************************

MY REVIEW:

CATCH THE SPARROW by author, teacher, and artist Rachel Rear is a True Crime book that is truly unique. 
I have read literally hundreds of true crime books and stories. They all follow a prescribed pattern and almost all are written by journalists. The best true crime books contain interviews and photos provided by the victim’s family. However, this book rises above the rest.

In it, Rachel Rear writes the story of the disappearance and ultimately the murder of Stephanie Kupchynsky. So, what makes this book so unique you ask. Well, Rachel Rear happens to be Stephanie Kupchynsky’s stepsister. That in itself is interesting and offers an inside look into the story. To make this book even more compelling is the fact that Rachel and Stephanie did not become stepsisters until after Stephanie had gone missing. 

In no other book have I been so enthralled. It is difficult to believe that this is Rachel Rear’s first book. CATCH THE SPARROW is researched with the meticulousness of a seasoned journalist. This research makes the book a true deep dive into the disappearance and murder. Rachel’s familial connection offers readers a view into what happens to a family who go years, and even decades without answers as to what happened to their loved one.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Whether or not you are a fan of true crime, you need to read this book.

The detail with which Rachel delves into her stepsister’s life cannot help but have readers invested in finding Stephanie’s body and in determining exactly who was responsible for taking this vibrant young woman’s life and in seeing that justice prevails.

The feeling and love that Rachel feels for her deceased stepsister comes through loud and clear in her writing.

I recommend this book with the highest possible rating. I am 100% convinced this book will be on the NY Times Best Seller List for many, many weeks.

I rate CATCH THE SPARROW as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ 

*** Thank you to #NetGalley and #Bloomsbury Publishing for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Photo by Elena Mudd

Rachel Rear, a New York City public school teacher and actor, holds an MA from Columbia University and an MFA from the New School.

She has been published in the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and numerous other publications, however, this is her first book.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 
http://www.rachelrear.com/

GOODREADS

SHOP LOCAL CANADA

FACEBOOK  

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM 

LINKEDIN

AMAZON  

ABOUT THE PUBLISHER:

Bloomsbury has a tradition of publishing literary fiction from all over the world, and a wide range of distinguished non-fiction from memoir, biography, and history to politics, science, food, and sport.

To learn more about this Publisher visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

FACEBOOK 

TWITTER 

INSTAGRAM   

THE MOONSTONE GIRLS is destined to be One of the Best Books of 2022 – Pre-order Now to avoid missing out

Title: THE MOONSTONE GIRLS

Author: BROOKE SKIPSTONE

Release Date: FEBRUARY 14, 2022

Genre: YOUNG ADULT FICTION, LGBTQ

Number Of Pages: 397

Publisher: SKIPSTONE PUBLISHING

Received From: NETGALLEY

ISBN: 978-1-73700643-5

Rating: 5 OUT OF 5 STARS  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

********************************************

Mount McKinley in Alaska – the name was changed and it is now called Mount Denali – Notice the digging bear on the left side of the photo Photographer Daniel Leifheit

DESCRIPTION:

1968, a seventeen-year-old queer girl traveled to Alaska disguised as a boy.

Tracy should have been a boy. Even her older brother Spencer says so, though he wouldn’t finish the thought with, “And I should have been a girl.”

Though both feel awkward in their own skin, they have to face who they are—queers in the late 60s.

When both are caught with gay partners, their lives and futures are endangered by their homophobic father as their mother struggles to defend them.

While the Vietnam War threatens to take Spencer away, Tracy and her father wage a war of their own, each trying to save the sweet, talented pianist.

At seventeen, Tracy dresses as a boy and leaves her parents in turmoil, with only the slimmest hope of finding peace within herself. She journeys to a girl with a guitar, calling to her from a photo, “Come to Alaska. We’d be great friends.”

Maybe even The MoonStone Girls.

**********************************************

MY REVIEW:

My first thought after reading THE MOONSTONE GIRLS is that it must be somewhat autobiographical. Author Brooke Skipstone has written with such depth of emotion that it is difficult to believe the story is fictional.

Before I get too far into my review I wanted to be sure to mention just how gorgeous the cover of this book is. It is the perfect blend of colors to bring the 1960s to mind. And, the choice to just use silhouettes is 100% inspired. 5 Stars for the cover. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I love that this #book is set in the late #1960s – an era much different than today’s world. So much was different at that time for anyone who was gay, and as hard as it is to fathom, being gay was considered to be against the laws of both God and men. This just highlights how far LBGTQ rights have come (even though society still has a ways to go.)

I cannot fathom the fear and pain experienced by LGBTQ youth at that time in history, especially for men whose arousal is much harder to hide. In the book, both Tracy and her brother Spencer are queer. The good thing is that they have each other to lean on and they have a mother who loves them just the way they are. This is much more than most #queer #youth had in their lives during that period in #history

This book delves into not just LGBTQ history, but also into the #draft and the #VietnamWar #WomensRights #RockAndRoll and the #SexualRevolution

There are some extremely #emotional scenes in The Moonstone Girls and at one point during reading I was literally in tears. It takes a truly talented #writer to be able to evoke so much #empathy and #emotion in their readers. Kudos to Brooke Skipstone for writing such an important and believable book.

Ultimately, this is a tale about hope and about having the courage to fight back in the best way you can against those who would try to stop you from living life on your own terms. It will encourage readers to never settle for second best and to keep trying until they find a place where they belong and where they can live a life of hope and honesty. It also reminds us that there is a person out there for everyone and that everyone has the right to live a happy life on their own terms.

Tracy is a fiery, take-no-prisoners type of young woman. This is the face she shows to the world, but inside, she is suffering and full of shame. This reminds readers that the persona people present to the world is not always accurate and that everyone has an inner world that is invisible. Never judge a book by its cover is a great lesson and one that we often forget.

Although not specifically stated, I get the feeling that the author also wants readers to think about mental health and to realize the depths of despair that people can feel when forced to live a lie just to be “normal.”

All in all I have to say that this book should be on everyone’s Must Read list for 2022 and although it is labeled as Young Adult fiction, this book will appeal to readers of all ages.

I am rating THE MOONSTONE GIRLS by Brooke Skipstone as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ and I highly recommend this book … just make sure you have a box of tissues nearby when you read it.

*** Thank you to #NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book. ***

BELOW IS THE MOONSTONE GIRLS PLAYLIST

https://open.spotify.com/embed?uri=spotify%3Aplaylist%3A3FHQ6I55MRmqkIuFhA2mvD

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brooke Skipstone lives in Alaska, where she watches the mountains change colors with the seasons from her balcony.

Where she feels the constant rush toward winter as the sunlight wanes for six months of the year, seven minutes each day, bringing crushing cold that lingers even as the sun climbs again.

Where the burst of life during summer is urgent under twenty-four-hour daylight, lush and decadent. Where fish swim hundreds of miles up rivers past bear claws and nets and wheels and lines of rubber-clad combat fishers, arriving humped and ragged, dying as they spawn.

Where danger from the land and its animals exhilarates the senses, forcing her to appreciate the difference between life and death. Where the edge between is sometimes too alluring.

To learn more about this author visit the following links:

OFFICIAL WEBSITE 

GOODREADS

AMAZON  

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