New mystery from Kari Bovée shines a spotlight on the dangerous golden haze of Broadway in the 1920s


CORRALES, NM – Continuing to champion a bold form of mysteries, author Kari Bovée turns from the wild west to the city that never sleeps, weaving a gripping, unique mystery from the fabric of classic show business history.

When her sister Sophia is murdered, Grace Michelle is ripped out of her dreams of becoming a costume designer and is thrown into the spotlight, taking her sister’s place as the star of Florenz Ziegfeld Jr.’s famed show. Here she meets world-weary Chet Riker, a veteran with more wounds than the eye can see. Chet is hired by Ziegfeld as Grace’s bodyguard, eagerly accepting the position, albeit for mysterious reasons that stretch into the darkness of his past.

As Chet stands by Grace’s side, he quickly finds his hardened theory that love equals pain tested. Grace, meanwhile, is swept up in a life she never wanted as the Follies’ star, and as the pawn in a series of publicity stunts during a transcontinental train trip to California that puts her life at risk. Who would want her and Sophia dead? Together, she and Chet must confront publicity-hungry Florenz Ziegfeld, power-driven Joe Marciano, and their own pasts to find Sophia’s killer—and let themselves love once again.

KARI BOVÉE – Empowered women in history, horses, unconventional characters, and real-life historical events fill the pages of Kari Bovée’s writings. She was recently honored as a finalist in the 2018 Next Generation Indie Awards for Historical Fiction. In 2012 she was honored as a finalist in the Romantic Suspense category of the Rebecca contest, the 2014 NTRWA Great Expectations contest, and the RWA 2016 Daphne du Maurier contest. She was also honored as a finalist in the NHRWA Lone Star Writer’s contest in 2012. Bovée has worked as a writer for a Fortune 500 Company, magazines and newsletters, and has taught literature, reading, and drama. She and her husband, Kevin, split their time between New Mexico and Hawaii.





“Grace in the Wings: A Grace Michelle Mystery”
Kari Bovée| September 19, 2019 | Bosque Publishing
Ebook | 978-1-947905-01-6 | $4.99
Print | 978-1-947905-02-3 | $14.99
Historical Fiction/Historical Mystery/Romantic Suspense/Women’s Fiction








In an interview, Kari Bovée can discuss:
* Her dedication to fostering the growth of other writers
* The power of blending mystery with historical events
* The importance of writing powerful female characters



PressKitAuthorPhoto-BoveeAn Interview with KARI BOVÉE

What inspired you to write about the iconic show Ziegfeld’s Follies in this piece?
I have always loved old movies. As a kid I used to watch a lot of them and one that particularly struck me was the 1946 film, The Ziegfeld Follies with Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Judy Garland, and Lucille Ball. The story wasn’t very inspiring, but the cast was amazing and the sets incredibly opulent–total eye candy. As an adult, I had a horse trainer who once told me her mother was a showgirl with the Ziegfeld Follies and I was fascinated. I started on a quest to find information on this particular woman (without success) but got lost in all of the wonderful stories and photographs. It was then I decided to write a mystery novel with the Follies as a backdrop.

What draws you toward writing mysteries set in specific historical contexts?
I suppose it is an escape of sorts, to travel back in time and to live in the shoes of someone who lived in a different era. To experience a simpler, or perhaps even more complicated time period than we live in today. As far as the mystery aspect is concerned, up until the last several decades, sleuths had to rely more on their instincts to solve a crime or a mystery. They didn’t have modern technology to assist them. I like bringing that human element back into solving the puzzle.

If you could meet any powerful woman from history, who would you meet, and what would you ask them?
Elizabeth I. For the better part of the first two decades of her life, she lived as the “bastard” daughter of Henry VIII. She had to reconcile with the fact that her father executed her mother, and that after Henry’s death, she was seen as a threat to the crown by her half-brother Edward, and then after his death, her half-sister, Mary, who came very close to having her beheaded. When Mary passed away, Elizabeth became Queen, and became one of the most powerful women in history. I would love to understand how she handled each of those aspects of her life.

Is there a time period that interests you that you haven’t written about?
I have an idea for a mystery that would take place on the western coast of Hawaii in the early 1930’s when it was still a U.S. Territory. Tourism was in its infancy on the island and it presented some interesting dynamics between the native peoples and those visiting from the Mainland.

You have a passion for helping other writers “unblock” their potential, and you offer resources that help writers of all sorts to develop their abilities. Why is this close to your heart?
I speak with so many people, women in particular, who have the desire to write a book, or feel that they have “a book in them” but they don’t know where to start, or they are intimidated by the process, and I get that. But I think it’s important for people to follow their dreams. It’s hard work, but it’s better than looking back and thinking, if only I …



Motorcyclist’s memoir embodies love despite previous abuse


“She Rode a Harley” is a woman’s empowering tale of getting up on the seat of a Harley after experiencing decades of emotional mistreatment

AUSTIN, TX – Mary Jane Black’s debut memoir tells her inspiring story of finding love later in life, in the midst of abuse and pain. “She Rode a Harley” details the kick-ass adventures of a woman whose second husband, a biker since he was 13, taught her how to save herself by believing in her own strength, power, and individuality. Mary Jane writes courageously, as though her time spent riding Harleys has transferred to the page, with smooth, gliding transitions and powerful, engine-revving scenes.

In “She Rode a Harley,” a schoolteacher escapes an abusive marriage and finds a new love on a blind date. Mary Jane’s new man, Dwayne, is certain that riding a Harley will restore her confidence and, sure enough, Mary Jane ends up following the white lines with him through 15 years of marriage. Traveling together, they learn to be partners, both on and off the road, until Dwayne is diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Mary Jane writes of caregiving, and the joy and pain inherent in a love meant to last.

“With unsentimental language and unblinking courage, Mary Black recounts her big-life adventure—on Harleys, and off. If you’re looking for a great true-life love story, this one is it.”
— Joyce Maynard, author of The Best of Us

“She Rode a Harley is a vibrant memoir about love, loss, and second chances… There’s warmth and immediacy in Black’s story” — Foreword Clarion Reviews

“A compelling narrative” — Kirkus Reviews

MARY JANE BLACK: studied English and journalism as an undergrad, and went on to pursue a master’s in English with a concentration on creative writing. Teaching writing and literature at the high school level for fourteen years, she nurtured her students’ voices as she hid her own. After long days of teaching, she would spend sleepless nights scribbling stories in tattered notebooks found in her classroom and writing short poems in the margins of her desk calendar. Her first memoir She Rode A Harley will be published by She Writes Press on October 1, 2019. Excerpts from it have been published in Shark Reef Journal and Oxford American Magazine. She now lives in Austin, where she is a literacy specialist for the State of Texas. Visit her at




“She Rode a Harley: A Memoir of Love and Motorcycles”
Mary Jane Black | October 1, 2019 | She Writes Press
ISBN: 978-1-63152-620-6 | Price: $15.95








In an interview, MARY JANE BLACK can discuss:
* How she escaped an abusive marriage, and her advice for other women who are suffering in their marriages
* Remarrying and becoming a step-parent later in life
* Becoming a caretaker after Dwayne’s cancer diagnosis, and her advice for other cancer caretakers
* How she built a Harley Davidson motorcycle
* Being a female motorcyclist and how her experience differs from male motorcyclists on the road



PressKitAuthorPhotomaryblackAn Interview with MARY JANE BLACK

What motivated you to write a memoir?
The story I tell of my marriage to Dwayne was building inside of me from the moment we sat in a doctor’s office and received his cancer diagnosis. We had a remarkable love story. I know everyone probably says that! However, we were both over forty and love had almost wrecked both of us before we got together. I escaped an abusive relationship before I met him. At my first memoir workshop three years after Dwayne’s death, the dam inside me broke, and I wrote the first essay for the memoir. By the time I went home, I had three essays completed.

In the pages of my book, Dwayne lives again. I want my readers to meet this remarkable man, for them to join us on the incredible road trip that was our life together.

How did you get involved in motorcycling?
On our wedding day, Dwayne and I made a vow to love each other until death and to buy a Harley together. Within a year we bought and rebuilt together our first Harley, a 1980 Shovelhead. It’s called that because the top of the motor looks like an upside-down shovel. Eventually, Dwayne brought home my first Harley which was a police Road King. Hesitant at first, I loved the feeling when the large motorcycle rumbled beneath me as we danced down the highway. Even though I don’t own a Harley now, I still see myself as a biker, a Harley rider.

You have escaped from marital abuse. What would you tell a woman who has yet to do that?
I had to stop listening to everyone who told me I’d hurt my children if I left their father. I spent years waiting for that magic moment when they’d be old enough for me to leave. I spent twenty-three years in a state of fear, trying to keep from making him mad. He never broke any bones, but he killed my soul. I would say to any woman living like that she needs to escape to save her life. She only gets one, and it’s too short to spend being terrorized. You are stronger than you can possibly imagine. I found happiness and the love of my life as soon as I walked out the door. Think what may be waiting for you.

Describe your writing process.
I would like to say I wake up at dawn each day and write, but I don’t. I’m one of those writers who spends a lot of time thinking about an idea I have for an essay or a short story or even a scene in a book. I have a notebook and a big white board on my wall by my desk. During all of this thinking and planning, I’m making notes and drawing a narrative arc of scenes for the writing piece I have in mind. Although I have to say, not all of my ideas make it to this planning stage. Some stay scrawled on an index card and never become anything more.

What’s next for Mary Jane Black?
I’m thinking and sketching ideas on another story that will be based on someone’s real story, and while I’m part of the story, it won’t be a memoir. I’ll write in third person limited point of view rather than first person. This will allow me to write in the active voice I prefer, but have a single point of view.




New Publisher Dead Rabbits premieres Emerald City

SANTA BARBARA, CALIFORNIA – With his gritty look at the modern crime syndicate, Brian Birnbaum delves into corporate fraud, drug gangs, and the Deaf community in his literary fiction title, Emerald City (Dead Rabbits, September 15, 2019). Drawing inspiration from his experience as a Child of Deaf Adults (CODA) and the Video Relay Service fraud that ran rampant throughout the early 2000s, Birnbaum dissects the impact of crime, addiction, and psychological trauma through interconnecting storylines.

Set in Seattle, Emerald City follows Benison Behrenreich, the hearing son of deaf royalty. His father, CEO of a multimillion-dollar deaf access agency, has bribed Myriadal College officials for Benison’s spot on their powerhouse basketball team, where he struggles to prove himself and compensate for his father’s sins.

Julia Paolantonio has recently lost her father to a drug relapse. Her mother ships her off to live with her estranged granddad, Johnny Raciti, during the summer before her freshman year at Myriadal. Johnny offers her a deal: bring him Peter Fosch — tormented college dropout and the best drug runner west of the Cascades — and he’ll give Julia’s freshly widowed mother a board seat on his mobbed-up securities firm.

When Benison’s father is arrested for defrauding government subsidies for the deaf, the Behrenreichs are left vulnerable to his company’s ruthless backers — namely Johnny Raciti — forcing Julia and Peter to navigate the minefield left in the aftermath.

Brian worked on Emerald City for six years, querying countless agents, eager to get his book out into the world. After earning a high-powered agent at Writers House — only to watch that agent slip from the industry altogether — Birnbaum teamed up with Katie Rainey and Jonathan Lee Kay to found a press based in cultivating a creative and supportive community: Dead Rabbits. Starting out as a successful reading series, Birnbaum, Rainey, and Kay continue the spirit of innovation and acceptance built within the reading series to the publishing industry where they strive to support authors and their works.

Brian Birnbaum received his MFA in Fiction from Sarah Lawrence College in 2015. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Atticus Review, The Smart Set, Potluck Magazine, LUMINA, 3AM Magazine, The Collagist, Anti-Heroin Chic, and more. His debut novel, Emerald City, is forthcoming in 2019 with Dead Rabbits, whose NYC reading series is spinning off into a literary press funded by a former Amazon dev manager. He also hosts the Dead Rabbits Podcast. Brian is an only Child of Deaf Adults (CODA), and works in development for his father’s deaf access company. Visit him at




Emerald City
Brian Birnbaum | September 15, 2019| Dead Rabbits
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-950122-00-4 | Price: $18.99
Literary Fiction






Praise for Emerald City and Brian Birnbaum

“Some writers excel at plot, always two steps ahead of a reader dying to know what happens next. Others spin mind-jolting sentences that please us whatever their context. Still others create psychologically complex, plausibly damaged characters. Brian Birnbaum does all of this and more; Emerald City is so good a debut that it actually seems unfair.” — David Holland

“Birnbaum is as inventive with language as he is smart with story. He will put you into a world that kind of scares you, a world you don’t fully trust not to hurt you, and you’ll kind of like it.” — David Olimpio, author of This Is Not a Confession and Editor-in-Chief of Atticus Review

“Though this nimble and virtuosic novel tracks everything from the long shadow of addiction to the unique pressures of college athletics, Emerald City is, at its heart, an intensely moving story about family. Birnbaum’s electric, acutely funny storytelling pulls the wool over your eyes and allows the novel’s poignance to sneak up on you, and I finished it beguiled by his trick and thrilled at its execution.” — Gabe Habash, author of Stephen Florida

“In Emerald City, Brian Birnbaum expertly creates a kinetic but pained world. The result is an addictive blend of compelling discovery and desultory recognition. Above all, it’s the authenticity of the work that most controls. Birnbaum has a true gift for creating individuated characters and people like Julia jump off the page as not just magnetic emblems but as perfect repositories for the empathic magic of fiction. Then there’s the prose. It’s subtly sly and inventive throughout but also perfectly pitched to particular story and structural demands — expansive enough to encompass the universal but also honed enough to beautify the granular. This is preternatural assurance. A moving and intelligent work that resonates beyond the final page.” — Sergio De La Pava, author of A Naked Singularity and Lost Empress



In an interview, Brian Birnbaum can discuss:
* Growing up as an only child of Jewish, Deaf parents
* The six year long process of writing Emerald City and what inspired the Dead Rabbits’ team to strike out on their own
* The impact physical injuries have on psychological trauma
* His background in addictions, psychology and psychoanalysis and how those educations and experiences have influenced his writing
* His resilience in failure and advice for those who may find themselves in that position



PressKitAuthorPhoto-BirnbaumAn Interview with Brian Birnbaum

How has your experience as a CODA shaped your life?
I didn’t really acknowledge this until I began psychoanalysis, roughly four years ago. Until then I’d always minimized its impact. Now, I understand that it plays a central role in my perception of communication. For one, having Deaf parents allowed, at a very young age, me to understand how different people can be, and how important it is to make room for these differences – in effect, instilling empathy. On the other hand, my frustration with alternating between American Sign Language and English, which is by far my stronger dialect, instilled a sense of futility that I’m still dealing with to this day, yet which has enriched my experience in ways tantamount to anyone born of a bilingual family.

How has it shaped your writing career?
First and foremost, being a CODA introduced me to struggle. Whether juggling linguistics or witnessing the difficulties my parents endure, I was exposed early and often to what it means to suffer and cope with that suffering. Literature is an art steeped in drama, drama can’t exist without conflict, and conflict imposes choice, which I’ve always struggled to reconcile – even when confronted with a diner menu. The choice of whether to sign or speak, whether to attempt to communicate my struggles to those close to me – et al, these choices of how to confront struggle dominate my drive to write.

What initially drew you to writing? After the dead ends that you faced in querying Emerald City, what kept you going?
It was my passion, and I thought I was good at it. I didn’t realize how bad I was until I discovered a semblance of decency in my writing. Erstwhile, books like Cloud Atlas, A Naked Singularity, and The Flamethrowers revealed to me the limitlessness of this craft, and nothing draws me more than that which knows no bounds.

It’s impossible to say exactly what kept me going because there were so many times that I committed to quitting – only to relapse on perseverance. It’s a paradox: finding an agent kept me going until that agent left the industry and welched on his promise to pass me along to another agent; completing the revisions I’d discussed with said agent kept me going until a hundred queries with an improved novel paradoxically failed to deliver me another agent; and now, of course, Dead Rabbits has kept me going, which is far more sustainable because of its promise to publish my novel, along with a hitherto unforeseen opportunity to publish other deserving novels that paradoxically can’t find a home.

Has your background in psychology played a role in your writing?
The better question might be, how hasn’t it played a role in my writing? We are our psychology, and understanding psychology is the espousal of empathy and self-awareness, without which it would be impossible to write anything aside from an instruction manual. I owe a great deal to my time in psychoanalysis, despite its flaws, and to my innate drive to inexorably dig deeper into myself, paired with the humility to understand that we will only know so little.

How has the failure and physical trauma of your sports career in highschool and college impacted your writing?
This harkens back to my early exposure to struggle and suffering. Injuries might’ve marked the beginning of the end of my sports career, but its psychological sequela – the anxiety that metastasized into a complicated web of performance pathologies – marked the end of the end. This experience also marked the transition from my pensive yet contented childhood to what would become my depressive and anxiogenic adulthood. There’s never a day when I don’t regret what happened to my relationship with sports, and yet there’s never a day that I don’t have gratitude for where it’s brought me. And being that existential paradoxes are one of the pillars of literature, I’d say that physical trauma and its psychological sequelae were absolutely crucial to the formative years of my writing.

What is Video Relay Service fraud? How did it influence your perspective or your novel?
Video Relay Service (VRS) is a videoconferencing interpretation service for the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing. Deaf/HH folks videophone a VRS interpreter, who then dials the number that the D/HH individual is trying to reach. Each minute of every call is remunerated by the Federal Communications Commission.

Back in the early aughts, VRS companies would ‘run minutes’ – i.e. hire Deaf individuals to make calls through their VRS service. Such calls were speciously unnecessary, made only to accumulate income for the VRS agencies.

I’ve always been as interested in organized crime as I am immersed in Deaf culture. Since stories need plots, I saw in the unlikely link between these two phenomena of which I’m deeply familiar a novel (so to speak) synthesis.

Emerald City touches on so many issues, from high collar crime, to drug addiction, to sexual abuse, that are prevelant in our culture. What are you hoping readers take away from the story?
For the sake of answering the question, I’ll defer my Death of the Author take on this. My epigraph, pulled from William Gaddis’s The Recognitions, is essentially a referendum on American culture’s lack of deep, critical thought, particularly our pervasive inability to understand that belief in something shouldn’t come at the cost of belief in other things. Religion is a good example: the idea that only one God exists turns the world’s numerous monotheisms into pure folly, for how can we know whose God is real? In reality, God is a metaphor for many things, behaves in many different ways across many different lives, and the vehement rejection of one God over another’s has caused countless, senseless wars.

This idea can be suffused across much any subject. The take-home message is akin to Fitzgerald’s definition of genius: the ability to hold two contradicting truths in one’s head. The world lacks this ability because we don’t teach this ability – we don’t teach dialectics, we don’t teach critical thinking, instead, we teach people ‘facts’ and ‘figures’ rather than how to think. There’s the old adage about giving a man a fish for dinner or teaching him to fish – that applies here.

Other than that, I just hope people come away fulfilled. That they enjoy the story and feel nourished by the language, ideas, and experience.

What can we look out for next, from you and Dead Rabbits?
In a few words, our next books. After Emerald City, we’re printing David Hollander’s long-awaited follow-up to his debut novel. I’ve had the pleasure of reading and editing Anthropica, and it’s safe to say that it’s a masterpiece-in-the-making. He’s one of the most talented prose-writers I’ve had the pleasure of reading, and his forthcoming novel will not disappoint.

After that we’ve got DR co-founder Katie Rainey’s novel, Sunny, which I’ve also had the pleasure of editing. Though in earlier stages than David’s, it’s already evident how great this book is going to be. As we hope for all our titles, Sunny captures an era (early aughts) and a region (Little Rock, AR) in a way never seen before, and her prose is just as fresh. With an unrelenting parataxis akin to Cormac McCarthy, yet infused with the ethereal style of John Hawkes, Katie reframes entirely what it means to write a Southern novel.

Last but not least, we’re working on a collection of essays by the wunderkind Annie Krabbenschmidt. Her collection will cover her experience with coming to discover her sexuality, and all the tragicomedy that proceeds. I met Annie at a Dead Rabbits reading – a fairytale story as it pertains to our vision of building a community – and after she read, I was impelled to invite her onto the podcast, which was a subterfuge toward convincing her to write a book for us.



Memoirist Embodies Resistance in Nazi-era Title


A nail-biting tale of female strength, spiritual resilience and resistance to evil that is relevant today. You won’t forget this beautifully written story ––Dr. Betsy Cohen, psychoanalyst

SANTA BARBARA, CALIFORNIA – In her memoir When a Toy Dog Become a Wolf and the Moon Broke Curfew (She Writes Press, August 27, 2019), Hendrika de Vries focuses on the importance of female empowerment. A story of survival and the power of love, courage, and imagination in a time of violent oppression, Hendrika de Vries shows how the bond between mother-daughter is made stronger amidst subversive activities and acts of moral courage.

Born when girls were to be housewives and mothers, a Dutch “daddy’s girl” in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam learns about female empowerment when her father is deported to a POW camp in Germany and her mother joins the Resistance. Freedoms taken for granted are eroded with escalating brutality by men with swastika armbands who aim to exterminate those they deem “inferior” and those who do not obey.

Following de Vries’ journey from child- to woman-hood, When A Toy Dog Became a Wolf and the Moon Broke Curfew bears witness to the strength that flourishes despite oppression, the power of women existing beyond cultural gender roles of the time, and shows that memories hold the keys to the betterment of our future. A therapist for over thirty years, de Vries has used her experience healing the trauma of others’ to tap into her childhood memories of Nazi-occupation to empower others to stand up in the face of injustice.





Author of When a Toy Dog Became a Wolf and the Moon Broke Curfew, Hendrika de Vries’ life experiences, from the dark days of Nazi-occupied Amsterdam as a child, through her years as a swimming champion, young wife and mother in Australia, and a move to America in the sixties, have infused her work as a therapist, teacher, and writer. Hendrika holds a BA (with Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Colorado, an MTS (cum laude) in theological studies from Virginia Theological Seminary, and an MA in counseling psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute. Read more on

When a Toy Dog Became a Wolf and the Moon Broke Curfew
Hendrika de Vries | August 27, 2019 | She Writes Press
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-63152-658-9 | Price: $16.95


This beautifully crafted memoir reminds us that we are never far from oppression by those who wish to silence us.”
—Maureen Murdock, author of The Heroine’s Journey: Woman’s Quest for Wholeness

She is a master storyteller.  —Dennis Patrick Slattery, Ph.D.


In an interview, Hendrika de Vries can discuss:

● The significance behind her memoir’s title and what it represents
● Her experience as a child in Nazi occupied Amsterdam
● How male presence shaped her understanding of gender and the absence of her father in her early years influenced her relationship with her mother
● The xenophobia and violence in today’s political climate, and how looking at our past can help guide our future
● What led her to becoming a therapist
● How she uses dreams and intuitive imagination to facilitate recovery in her patients
● Her experience as a mother and what being a woman means to her––the mother-daughter relationship



AuthorPhotoVriesAn Interview with Joan Cohen

You experienced a lot of uprooting from what a “normal” childhood might look like. How did that effect you and what did you learn most from your childhood in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam?
As a therapist for over thirty years I have learned that a “normal” childhood is more of an illusion than we imagine.  Around the world we see children suffering violence, hunger and prejudice, and, as therapists and social workers we know that even behind the façade of our safe suburban homes, many children silently endure the trauma of incest, of physical or verbal abuse, and domestic violence.

I grew up at a time when people who were deemed “inferior” were dragged off the streets to be slaughtered, and when discovered listening to the radio could get you shot.  I will always carry the vigilant awareness that freedoms we take for granted can be taken away at lightning speed and that hatred is easily fanned by leaders who attain power through stoking fear and prejudice, but I was fortunate to have had parents who taught me the spiritual and emotional power of integrity, moral conscience and courage.  Their strength of character lives inside of me and has enabled me to guide others in my work as a therapist, teacher, and writer.

How did your mother’s choice to join the Resistance and hide a Jewish girl in your home impact you as a young girl?
At the time that my father was deported to Germany, I was an only child surrounded by friends and cousins who all had siblings, so that when my mother told me we were going to hide a Jewish girl I was thrilled that I too would have an adopted older sibling. But as she and I formed a sisterly closeness and often slept in the same bed, I could never figure out at six-years-old why the Nazis wanted to kill her.  I believe this set me on my lifelong path to try to understand human behavior and an eventual spiritual quest for the divine.  By joining the Resistance and breaking Nazi-imposed laws, my mother sowed the seeds for my adult feminism.  She modeled female strength, showed me the limitations of culturally imposed gender roles that expected women to be passive, and taught me that active disobedience could be an empowering act of moral courage and love.

Right alongside surviving Nazi-occupation, you survived the Hunger Winter of 1944-45 in which 20,000 Dutch people died of starvation. Can you tell us a little bit about that experience?
The Hunger Winter of WWII Amsterdam was not written or talked about much during the early postwar years, when the discovery of the death camps and slaughter of millions of Jews sent shock waves through the Western World.  Our family emigrated to Australia and I sometimes felt that my mother and I alone experienced the trauma of the Hunger Winter.  This created an intense mother-daughter trauma bond that would require many years of personal therapy to untangle.  When I returned to Amsterdam in 1993 for analysis with a Dutch Rabbi/Jungian analyst, I was surprised to find a book with photos that had been taken by Underground workers, of the malnourished and starving children of which I had been one.  Suddenly, I did not feel so alone with my memories anymore.  I could acknowledge the origins of my intense need for physical security, for warmth and food, and my fear of empty kitchen cupboards, and began to heal the trauma.

What is the meaning of your title?
The title of my memoir refers to two actual events, described in detail in the book, that gave me a lifelong  belief in the power of our imagination to change the world.  Born and raised at a time when women were expected to be obedient as toy dogs and passive as the reflective moon, I see a similarity between the enforcement of culturally prescribed gender roles that take away women’s rights and gun-toting Nazis threatening those they deem “inferior” or those that dare to disobey.  The women and men who resisted the dark evils of prejudice and hatred drew on their wolf nature to resist and drew down the moon from behind the clouds to illuminate their path when the powers of darkness tried to permanently extinguish all the Light in the world.

In light of war, violence, separation, betrayal, hunger, poverty and emigration, how did your mother’s choices empower you to become a successful woman?
My mother was a bit of a “tiger mom” who taught me not to let fear or feelings of helplessness turn me into a victim.  A woman of deep faith, intuitive wisdom, courage and practicality, she believed every problem was simply a challenge and taught me that survival and success both depend on a disciplined mind and a focus on the tasks over which we have power––even if it is only to make your bed or brush your teeth. Connect with the higher power in your life, whether it is God or your own conscience, trust your dreams, and give thanks for what you have.  Her rituals of survival, determination not to let fear turn us into victims, and daily practice of gratitude, have guided and empowered me at every turn of my life.

How has your experience with male presence influenced your perspective of gender?
The little girl who experienced the Nazi presence and cruelty did not identify the Nazis, whether Dutch or German, as evil because they were men, but because they were “bad people” filled with hatred and prejudice instead of love and kindness.  Raised on Grimm’s fairy tales with evil kings and monstrous witches, I believed that evil transcended gender.  On a more personal level, I saw my father respect women, and male resistance workers treat my mother as an equal warrior in the fight against tyranny,  but I also witnessed other men (Nazi and non-Nazi) dismiss and reprimand my mother as if she were an ignorant child, simply because she was a woman.  These early experiences gave me a glimpse into the connection between the abuse of power, based on ideologies of supremacy, and cultural gender bias that shaped my future feminist views about the need for a gender equality that is based on mutual respect and an acknowledgment of our shared humanity.

What drove you to write your memoir now?
Over the years, as I shared stories of my childhood in Nazi-occupied Amsterdam with friends, students and colleagues, I was often told that I should write my memoir.  I always hesitated, because it felt self-indulgent to write about my childhood experiences, since I have lived a long successful life while so many others were brutally tortured and died horrible deaths.  But after seeing torch-bearing Neo-Nazis carrying swastikas in Charlottsville, Virginia,  on my television screen last year and witnessing the current resurgence of hatred, prejudice, and attacks on women’s rights,  I realize that those of us who have experienced the swift erosion of freedoms and the brutality of Nazi tyranny have an obligation to future generations to share our stories.

What ways have you overcome your own trauma? Has that helped in your role as a therapist?
Trauma is a complex issue, since traumatic events are often encapsulated within the psyche and not dealt with until a current event triggers the memories. For many years, I locked mine away, while I enjoyed being a swimming champion, young wife and mother in Australia.  The full impact of my childhood trauma only resurfaced after a series of events––a permanent move to Denver, Colorado, for my husband’s career, the unexpected death of my father, and the break up of my marriage––shattered my defenses.  I entered Jungian analysis, embarked on an intense spiritual quest, and eventually made a pilgrimage to Amsterdam to work with a Rabbi/Jungian analyst who had me visit the sites where the trauma had taken place and encouraged me to tell him my story in Dutch, the mother-tongue familiar to the little girl who had experienced the trauma. Without my own healing I doubt that I could have been a successful therapist to others.

What advice would you give someone who may be facing trauma in their lives currently?
Do not go it alone!  Seek support, surround yourself with people who understand trauma and are able to hear your needs and concerns, and find a therapist.  Know that you can survive and thrive.  Take action.  We are all much stronger than we think we are, and with the current increasing awareness about the impact of trauma, help is available if you look for it.



Resisting stereotypes, illuminating new novel personalizes challenges of career women


She Writes Press publishing “Land of Last Chances” on Aug. 13

STOCKBRIDGE, Massachusetts – When an unmarried 48-year-old executive discovers she’s pregnant and doesn’t know which of the two men in her life is the father, she realizes her professional risk management skills don’t extend to her personal life. Worse yet, she may carry a rare hereditary gene for early-onset Alzheimer’s. Whose needs should prevail – hers or the next generation’s?

In her new novel, “Land of Last Chances” (She Writes Press, Aug. 13, 2019), author Joan Cohen shines light on the silent but sizable struggles faced by real-life career women. And those challenges become even more complicated when a woman facing a possible at-risk pregnancy learns about the pervasive, incurable disease that could change the trajectory of her life.

Though the story is fictional, Cohen draws from her decades as a sales and marketing professional––a career she balanced with raising her family in Massachusetts. And because of her experience both with her own family and as a member of the advisory board for Boston University’s Alzheimer’s Disease Center, Cohen also sought to illuminate the challenges of another misunderstood group: those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease––the only top-ten cause of death that cannot be prevented, cured or slowed

“Ten years ago, I heard philosopher/writer Alain de Botton speak on the need for more workplace fiction, yet a literary agent told me soon after that business fiction doesn’t sell,” Cohen says. “Since women buy more books than men, one would expect most business fiction to feature women, yet it seems that women are instead the target audience for nonfiction self-help books on how to succeed. Give us some credit for already knowing how to ‘lean in.’ Many of us want to read about women dealing with career struggles we recognize.”

JOAN COHEN is the author of “Land of Last Chances” (She Writes Press, Aug. 13, 2019.) Originally from Mount Vernon, New York, Cohen received her BA from Cornell University and her MBA from New York University. She pursued a career in sales and marketing at computer hardware and software companies until she retired to return to school for an MFA in writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, with her husband and golden retriever.





When Jeanne Bridgeton, an unmarried executive in her 40s, discovers that her expected menopause is an unexpected pregnancy, she realizes her risk-management skills don’t extend to her private life. She’s not sure who the father is, and worse yet, a family secret uncovered reveals she may carry a rare gene for early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. With no time left for genetic tests, she must cope with her intense fear of risk and wrestle with a daunting question: Should her own needs prevail or her child’s?


Land of Last Chances
Joan Cohen | Aug. 13, 2019 | She Writes Press
ISBN: 978-1-63152-600-8 (paperback) | $16.95 (paperback)
ISBN: 978-1-63152-601-5 (ebook) | $9.95 (ebook)
Women’s Fiction



Early Praise for “Land of Last Chances”

“An artfully crafted portrayal of a woman who learns about herself as she weighs an unexpected choice.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Middle-aged corporate women have it rough in fiction. We’re bitter, uncompromising, lonely, regretful—and always barren. Which is why it was so refreshing to read Land of Last Chances by Joan Cohen. By introducing a real-life woman facing real-world choices, Cohen subverts these familiar stereotypes and offers a brand new narrative. Finally! A thinking, feeling woman we can all root for.” — Jillian Medoff, bestselling author of “This Could Hurt”

“Joan Cohen’s remarkable first novel is impossible to put down. Land of Last Chances is fiction, but the heroic actions of a business woman in her forties seem very real. While pregnant, she discovers a potential genetic predisposition to early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. The book takes you through the difficult decisions she has to make and educates you on our latest understanding of early-onset and late-onset Alzheimer’s disease. A must-read genetic thriller intertwined with high-level business decisions at her workplace, all happening in the Boston area, the world center of advanced medicine and biotechnology.” — Carmela R. Abraham, Ph.D. Professor of Biochemistry, Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Boston University School of Medicine

“In this deeply moving and astutely observed novel, one woman’s harrowing confrontation with her family’s genetic history offers a wise and bracingly modern contemplation of an ancient question: does our history determine our future? A vital new entry into the burgeoning literature of Alzheimer’s fiction, Land of Last Chances is a wise, hopeful, and enormously gripping debut.” — Stefan Merrill Block, bestselling author of “The Story of Forgetting,” “The Storm at the Door” and “Oliver Loving”


In an interview, Joan Cohen can discuss:

● The rarity of portraying career women positively in fiction, while at the same time tackling the sometimes conflicting personal and professional concerns of these women
● Her relationship to Alzheimer’s and common misunderstandings about the disease
● Her executive-level business career and navigating politics in a corporate setting
● Her motivation for writing the book, and how it reflects the concerns of many career women



AuthorPhotoJoanCohenAn Interview with Joan Cohen

Tell us about your novel’s title, “Land of Last Chances.”
My protagonist, Jeanne Bridgeton, never wanted children, or so she thought, but children were always an option. The years when a woman can conceive a child are finite, and Jeanne’s doctor reminded her she faced a hard stop, menopause. Her unexpected pregnancy could be ended, but she’d be ending her last chance at motherhood. Jeanne surprised herself by having a hard time with that finality.

What can you tell us about your main character, Jeanne Bridgeton?
Jeanne is cautious in her professional life. When she takes risks, her decisions are supported by all the data she can marshal. Life surprises her, though, and forces her to struggle with overlapping personal and professional problems that require examining her own feelings, exercising judgement, and coping with change.

Discovering secrets from her family’s past helps Jeanne understand more about herself. Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease may be in her future, and in making the difficult decisions she faces, she learns to tap into an undeveloped side of herself.

Why did you decide to have your novel focus on corporate women? Why is this important?
Jeanne has been able to focus on her career the way men traditionally have. We live in a country that espouses family values, but business practices and our laws haven’t caught up to those in other countries, e.g., Denmark. Although today’s young men shoulder a fairer share of the burden of caring for children and running a household than past generations have, for many women the vaunted work-life balance is not just a matter of logistics or even money. It’s about emotions, guilt for example, at not being able to be in two places at once. It’s about what’s going on in their heads.

Alzheimer’s plays an important role in your book. What is your relationship to this disease?
My mother and grandmother had Alzheimer’s disease. I didn’t have to worry much about grieving when they died. I had been in mourning for years. It’s horrifying to watch Alzheimer’s take over the mind and eventually the body of someone you love. I gradually learned a great deal about the disease, more than most people would like to know. I became a board member of an advisory board at the Boston University School of Medicine’s Alzheimer’s Disease Center. I volunteered for a study that included people who were currently free of the disease as well as those who were already symptomatic. I keep hoping research will make it possible for my children to have no worries about Alzheimer’s.

What are some common misconceptions about Alzheimer’s disease? What are the most misunderstood aspects of the disease and who it impacts?
Because there is no definitive way to determine if a person has Alzheimer’s disease, most people refer to their loved ones as having dementia. The word “dementia” may sound better and be less painful to utter, but dementia only means a symptom or set of symptoms. It’s not the name of an illness. Seventy to 80 percent of the time, dementia is caused by Alzheimer’s disease. Some people think “dementia” is just the new word for the old-fashioned “senility.” Senility was thought to be an inevitability of aging, but we know now that’s wrong. “Senility,” “dementia,” or just “getting a little dotty” are symptoms of disease.

While early-onset Alzheimer’s is a serious problem, the majority of cases are late-onset, which makes it easy to put off thinking about it. Age is a predisposing factor for Alzheimer’s (as it is for many diseases, such as cancer), but we shouldn’t think of it as only affecting old people. Family members, who are often the caregivers, bear the emotional pain of watching a loved one decline, as well as a huge financial burden.

How does your book address later-in-life motherhood?
When I was growing up, young women worried about accidentally becoming pregnant. Now that women are marrying and having children later, many seem to worry about not being able to become pregnant. Their doctors give them hormones to help fertility, and for those women who still can’t conceive and who have money, IVF is an option. Whatever the woman’s age, becoming pregnant or trying to conceive arouses many emotions, some unexpected. In “Land of Last Chances,” Jeanne experiences a host of emotions ranging from despair to joy.

While the book isn’t autobiographical, how did your personal experiences inspire parts of this book?
Writers were once advised to write about what they know. Now, not so much. I didn’t need to be encouraged to write about the technology businesses I worked in. I had a lot to say about that world. What I did need to learn, though, was that readers are willing to be immersed in any setting you choose, providing you can give them characters they care about and a story that interests them.

You had a long career in the business world – how long have you wanted to write a book?
I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was in high school. I went off to college as a cracker-jack English student and promptly became intimidated by the brilliance of one particular classmate. I convinced myself that I possessed merely skill, and he possessed talent. I totally psyched myself out. Though I remained an English major and worked for one year after college as an editor, I was bored and ended up working in the technology world. My career was very satisfying, but that yen to write remained.

Can you tell us more about the character of Bricklin, the golden retriever? Why did you choose to include him? Did your real-life pup inspire this character?
Over the last 48 years, I’ve had seven dogs, usually two at a time. All but one have been golden retrievers, and only one is still with me. His name is Rookie, and he’s 10. I have loved every one of those dogs, and lost all of them to cancer. I have learned life lessons from living with dogs, and some of them are in my book. On a practical note, I advise all dog owners to buy the best vacuum cleaner they can afford.


D.A. Bartley’s Abish Taylor cozy mystery series continues with danger, uncovered secrets in ‘Death in the Covenant’


NEW YORK, NY – When Detective Abish “Abbie” Taylor is called to the scene of a car crash late one night, she couldn’t begin to imagine the chaos it will cause in her life. The driver turns out to be a leader in the Mormon church that Abbie was raised in, and she soon becomes convinced that the crash was not an accident.

In “Death in the Covenant” (Aug. 13, 2019, Crooked Lane Books), Abbie’s investigation into the death of an apostle leads her to a commune of women living together, arousing her suspicions about the church’s possible return to polygamy.

As she pushes further into the church community that she used to consider her home, she begins to uncover startling truths that will threaten her father’s place in the church and her very life.

D. A. Bartley is a member of Daughters of Utah Pioneers. She traces her family history back to the earliest days of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She spent much of her childhood in Utah, but her parents were incurable travelers. She was born in Scotland and lived in Germany, France and Russia. After studying international relations, politics and law, D. A. worked both as an attorney and an academic in Manhattan. In the end, though, she could not escape her life-long love of mysteries. She lives in New York City with her family. Keep up with her at





The growth of the Mormon Church has slowed. Young men are abandoning the Church, leaving their female counterparts unmarried and childless. Now, the Church is about to lose one more member … and it may be due to murder.

Detective Abish “Abbie” Taylor returned to the mountain town of Pleasant View, Utah, hoping for a quiet life. But that hope dissipates like a dream when she wakes to an unsettling phone call. Arriving at the scene of a fatal car accident, she discovers that the victim was one of the most beloved leaders of the Church — and an old family friend.

Abbie is skeptical when her father insists the death was not an accident, but in an attempt to patch up their relationship, she takes a few days off from her job as the sole detective in the police department, and heads to Colonia Juárez, a former LDS colony in Mexico. There, she uncovers a plan hearkening back to the Church’s history of polygamy. But Abbie knows too well that bringing secrets to light can be deadly. Is that why her father’s friend died?

Abbie realizes with a jolt that her investigation could cost her father his job and possibly get him excommunicated. Who is the murderous mastermind of this secret plot? Time is running out for Abbie to save her father’s position—and her own life—as dark forces close in, and the outlook for Pleasant View turns decidedly unpleasant.

“Death in the Covenant”
D.A. Bartley | Aug. 13, 2019 | Publisher
978-1-64385-119-8 | hardcover | $26.99
978-1-64385-120-4 | ePub | $17.99
Cozy mystery



AuthorPhotoBartleyAn Interview with D.A. Bartley

What are some of the challenges presented by writing a series as opposed to a standalone novel?
I love writing a series because it lets me leave the story messy. I’m a fan of the classic murder mystery: you start off with a body (or bodies) and end up discovering the killer. With a series, you have to solve that murder puzzle, but you can leave some things unresolved. Relationships evolve, romance develops, and rivalries wax and wane. I like that little muddle and disorder.

When you plot out your books, do you already know all of the twists and turns and the whodunit?
Not even remotely! The week I finished the first draft of Death in the Covenant, I knew I was at the end of the story, and I knew there were only a few people who could’ve done it, but until I sat down to write, I wasn’t sure which of those people would be ultimately responsible. Once I started writing, and the characters started talking and doing things, it became clear what had to happen.

You handle issues dealing with faith very sensitively. How do you tread that line?
I know what it’s like to live in a world dominated by religion and what it’s like to live in a world that’s distinctly a-religious. Growing up, I spent three hours every Sunday at church. On top of that, I served as president of the various young women’s organizations, played church volleyball and basketball, sang in the choir, and performed in theatrical/musical shows. Church was a big part of my everyday life. Even though I’m not a member now, I still go to church with my dad when I’m in Utah. Having said that, I believe in openness and doubt. I believe it’s critical to question your belief system and to engage in open and respectful conversation. If we don’t know our past–and own up to it–it’s difficult to move forward into a better and more compassionate world.

How accurate is the history and doctrine brought up in the book?
Everything factual–history, scripture, doctrine–is accurate, or at least as accurate as possible. Everything else is completely made up. That’s really the fun part of writing Mormon murder mysteries; I get to play around with some very macabre and strange bits of LDS history and doctrine. In Blessed Be the Wicked, it’s blood atonement; in Death in the Covenant, it’s polygamy and the recent uptick in young men leaving the Church. For number three, the jumping-off point is the Book of Mormon founding story. There’s a long list of curious and dark aspects of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that make for delightful murder motifs.

How familiar with the Mormon church do you need to be to read this series?
Not at all familiar. The underlying themes–family, personal beliefs, our relationships with our communities and our history–are universal. Granted, Mormonism has its quirks. It’s sometimes challenging to write about the unique aspects of LDS culture without being either boring, because I give too much information, or baffling, because I provide too little. Undoubtedly, I’ve made mistakes along the way. Overall, though, I’m thrilled with the feedback: my non-Mormon friends loved learning about the truly odd history of the Church, and my Mormon friends loved reading a novel that accurately reflects living in Utah without being either saccharine or bitter.



New Publisher Global City Press premieres The Escapist

New York City – When escape becomes a first line of defense, is it possible to ever face life’s harsh realities? In his debut novel, The Escapist (Global City Press, September 2019), David Puretz details one young man’s seemingly never-ending quest for his missing father. Weaving topics like mental health, family conflict and abuse, drug addiction, and sexuality throughout a metanarrative structure, Puretz delves into the internal and external calamities that shape the human life and mind.

The only thing protagonist Billy Chute excels in is escaping. After finding that his father has escaped his own life and disappeared, Billy quits his job and sets out to find him. But what he may really be searching for is a path to free him from his past and give him a purpose and future.

More than a story of self-discovery, The Escapist takes an intimate look into the psyche of an unlikely protagonist. Billy turns to writing as he travels the country, and fiction merges with reality as he makes sense of his inner thoughts and past through a lens of make-believe. Within the metanarrative, he explores the adversity of family and self, desperate to create his own identity, but is held back by drug addiction and the lasting effects of past abuse.





The Escapist
David Puretz | September, 2019 | Global City Press
Format ISBN:  | Price:
Literary Fiction








In an interview, David Puretz can discuss:

● What metafiction is, and why he was drawn to this style for his debut novel
● His experience writing short stories that evolved into this debut novel
● Personal experience that inspired him to write this novel
● How teaching writing has influenced his own writing
● The value and the dangers he sees in using escapism as a coping mechanism



David Puretz is the author of The Escapist, a debut literary fiction novel exploring themes of mental health and self-discovery. He is the creator and founder of the quarterly burly bird zine, which is sponsored by Fortroyal Foundation, a non-profit for the conservation and preservation of the arts. Puretz received an MFA in Creative Writing from The City College of New York and was a trailblazer for Ithaca College’s BA in Writing. Currently, Puretz resides in New York City where he teaches writing at Yeshiva University and is the Managing Editor of Global City Press. For more information, visit










BookCoverJusticeNew York, NY, February 2019 – For decades, Ed Rucker was one of our most prominent criminal defense lawyers, until his retirement. During his career, he represented numerous high profile clients, including John Orr, the greatest serial arsonist in American history, a trial memorialized in Fire Lover, by Joseph Wambaugh; Laurianne Sconce, the matriarch of the Lamb Funeral Home, whose trial that was the subject of the book Ashes, by James Joseph; Eddie Nash, a prominent nightclub owner, who was portrayed in the film, Boogie Nights; and William Harris, a member of the Symbionese Liberation Army, who kidnapped Patty Hearst. His Bobby Earl novels have been praised for their authenticity, as well as gripping suspense. Now Chickadee Prince Books is proud to announce that it will publish Rucker’s latest Bobby Earl novel, JUSTICE MAKES A KILLING, in July 2019.

A heart-stopping thriller, Justice finds Rucker’s fictional defense lawyer facing his most daunting murder case yet, one that involves a beautiful lawyer accused of a passion killing, as well as a conspiracy that might implicate the multi-billion-dollar private prison industry.

Justice has already picked up significant pre-publication acclaim. Kirkus Reviews calls Justice “A thoroughly enjoyable page-turner….. The classic courtroom drama at the heart of this story is perfectly orchestrated, and the seemingly impossible odds make Earl’s masterful handling of evidence, witnesses, opposing counsel, the jury, and the judge wonderfully satisfying to read.”

Says fellow CPB author Alon Preiss, “While Ed always tells a great story, his thrillers excel because of their politics and social substance — they are thrilling, but they also have something to say about America.” Adds Rucker, “It’s more interesting for the reader when I weave into the story an issue that impacts our legal system. In my first book, I touched on the prosecution’s use of professional informants. In Justice Makes a Killing, I explore the world of the for-profit private prisons our State and federal governments use to house prison inmates, a system that warps justice.”

About the Publisher: Chickadee Prince Books is a young Brooklyn small press, which publishes only acclaimed fiction and non-fiction, of all genres. CPB is the publisher of the acclaimed new space opera, Probability Shadow by Mark Laporta, and The Last At-Bat of Shoeless Joe, the new sports novel by Emmy-nominated, Amazon bestselling author, Granville Wyche Burgess, among many others.











93-year old veteran turned philanthropist pens first novel


Author and war hero Carl F. Haupt helps refugees at border from his wheelchair

WHITE PLAINS, NY – Carl F. Haupt, a 93-year old retired military veteran on a government pension, has become a philanthropist who feeds the starving refugees at the U.S. border in Arizona. From a wheelchair, he works to make life tolerable for those in limbo. Just as he helped to liberate Europe during WWII and fought in the Asian Theater on the other side of the world, today, he and his wife continue, after more than 17 years, to personally help those fleeing poverty and internal strife within their home countries.

At age 15, along with a reported 1 million other boys across the country, Haupt left home during The Great Depression. He was homeless, hitching rides on freight trains, sleeping on the ground and going hungry for days at a time. Eventually, he landed in Los Angeles. In 1944, he joined the United States Navy and served his country for 22 years, including more than a decade in the United States Air Force. He retired in 1966 as a Master Sergeant.

Haupt is a first time author at 93 years old. His novel, “Gary Gatlin: Reluctant Hero” (Dudley Court Press), was inspired by a strange situation in 1987 when he woke up one morning compelled to write for 13 straight hours the story that had come to him through a dream. Now, decades later, Dudley Court Press has acquired his story for release in 2019. All author royalties from “Gary Gatlin” will be consigned to the non-profit organization Angels on the Border.





Gary Gatlin: Reluctant Hero
Carl F. Haupt | Dudley Court Press | October 2019
Paperback: 978-1-940013-57-2
Historical Fiction / Military Fiction








In an interview, Carl Haupt can discuss:

● Where the idea for his book “Gary Gatlin” came from
● How his time in military service has led him to continue serving others
● What the non-profit Angels on the Border is all about
● How anyone, regardless of age or circumstance, can use their resources to give back to those in need




Carl F. Haput was born in Tucson, Arizona on April 21, 1926. He lived as a hobo during the Great Depression when he was 15 years old. Carl entered the U.S. Navy in January 1944 and was honorably discharged with ARM3C rank. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in June 1950 and retired 16 years later with the rank of Master Sergeant. Carl and his wife Sarah started helping locals in Mexico in 1992. They worked in Agua Prieta, a city across from Douglas, Arizona. They helped build over 100 homes and moved 25 donated mobile homes to families in Agua Prieta. They delivered food and other necessities to struggling families. “And above all that we have achieved,” Carl said, “we have met some of the best people that we have ever known.” Carl published his first novel at 93 years old; Gary Gatlin: Reluctant Hero is available now. Profits from the book will be used to help the non-profit organization Angels on the Border.


New memoir explores the brutal tenderness of family, and what is gained when we leave behind what we know


WHITE PLAINS, NY – What does it mean to love someone in the face of mental illness? What does it mean for a young woman to grow into herself while finding her way through an unfamiliar culture? What does home mean to a person on the move? Author Marlena Baraf explores these themes in At The Narrow Waist of the World (Aug. 6, She Writes Press), her layered, savagely tender memoir of her younger years.

Raised by a colorful family of Spanish Jews in tropical, Catholic Panama of the 1950s and 1960s, Marlena depends on her many tios and tias for refuge from the difficulties of life, including the frequent absences of her troubled mother. As a teenager, Marlena pulls away from this centered world, leaving for the United States and a life very different from the one she knows.

At the Narrow Waist of the World examines the intense bond between mothers and daughters, the importance of a supportive community, and beauty of a large Latin American family. For those who’ve left one home for another, it explores the tension and riches of living a life in between cultures.

Marlena Maduro Baraf was born and raised in Panama, but chose to leave her native country for the United States in her late teens, gaining citizenship years later. She worked as a book editor at Harper & Row Publishers and McGraw-Hill Book Company, is a devoted alumna of the Sarah Lawrence Writing Institute, and has established her own design studio. Over the last ten years, Baraf has dedicated herself to the compelling art and craft of writing.




“At the Narrow Waist of the World”
Marlena Maduro Baraf | Aug. 6, 2019 | She Writes Press
Paperback | 978-1-63152-588-9 | $16.95
E-book | 978-1-63152-589-6 | $9.95

“Lively and visual, the text’s descriptions of the sights, smells, and flavors of Panama impart a strong sense of its culture.” —Foreword Clarion Reviews





In an interview, Marlena Maduro Baraf can discuss:

● Her experience growing up as a “Jewish Latina” cultural insider/outsider in Panama.
● What she considers “home.”
● Surviving her mother’s mental illness.
● Finding her voice in this memoir, which is lyrical and a dance between English and Spanish.


BarafAuthorPhotoTwoAn Interview with Marlena Maduro Baraf:

Could you tell us a little bit about your experience as a woman of many cultures?
I feel very lucky to have been born into a Jewish community and also a Hispanic community. I went to a Catholic nuns’ school as well as a Jewish school on Saturday mornings and was able to experience Catholic traditions close up and feel respectful. I am a hybrid, a citizen of the world, and also deeply American now. Difference makes life interesting and pushes us to grow. I am becoming more and more fascinated by multilingual writing, as in Jumpha Lahiri’s experiment with Italian, poetry written in two or more languages, and Spanglish works. I believe “home” resides in language.

What drew you to the United States, and why did you decide to stay here?
As Jews in a Catholic society–while deeply integrated in Panama’s culture–my family and community felt that they could rely on the protection of the United States, champion of liberty and religious freedom, should they ever need it. So traveling to the United States for higher education was considered attractive and a way of broadening one’s exposure to the world. Once I came up to school it was hard for me to return. My memoir’s themes are about the difficulties of coping with a mentally ill mother and having to push away from her in order to thrive. Pushing away from the narrow lives available to women in Latin America was another reason why I chose the United States in the end.

Are there writers from the Hispanic canon who have influenced your writing?
Oh yes. I’ve found sisters late in my life (in addition to the sister I have in Panama). Women caught in the bridge between two countries. Women straddling the disparate demands of culture, also celebrating the riches. Among these are, of course, Sandra Cisneros, Julia Alvarez, Margarita Engle, Marie Arana, Daisy Hernandez, Ruth Behar. I am currently reading Melissa Rivero’s novel, The Affairs of the Falcons.

You have a blog called “Soy/Somos” that focuses on the lives and stories of Hispanic people. What do you hope to share through this?
I have interviewed Hispanics from all walks of life, carpet layers, chiropractors, musicians, gardeners: hard-working, fascinating people that other Americans may not understand because of language or cultural differences. These are conversations often in Spanish, or Spanglish, written in English, that satisfied my own curiosity but also reveal the humanity that we all share. I believe these stories are especially important today because of the polarization in our society.

What surprised you in the writing of this story?
I took a class at Sarah Lawrence, “Finding Your Voice.” The instructor asked us to write a scene from the past–something we’d held on to–and this memory spilled out about my mother and me when she was in the throes of mental illness, and the gates opened up. The memoir became a path to discovery of who she was and who I was. Totally unplanned.