Congratulations to Carolsue who won the copy of The Restaurant Critic’s Wife.
The winner’s information has been forwarded to the publicist, who will be sending the book when the entire blog tour is over.
Check back often for more giveaways.
“What’s the scariest book you’ve ever read?”
I love horror novels as much or more than I love horror movies, but most of them only affect me in the moment. Like many people of my generation, I grew up reading Stephen King novels as they came out. I was a teenager when I read IT for the first time, on a visit to my grandparents’ house in New Jersey.
While their neighborhood was nothing like small-town Derry, Maine, it did have the same kind of old-style gutters depicted in the novel, and I spent most of that summer crossing the street to avoid the possibility that a killer-clown might be peering up at me from within one.
I’ve often said that Stephen King and Garrison Keillor have the same folksy style, but that the difference is that Keillor isn’t going to have a monster show up to dismember you on page twenty six. I believe one of the reasons King’s work sticks with us isn’t the films, which, let’s face it, are never as scary as the books, but the fact that he sounds like every hometown storyteller, sucking you into small-town life.
With the publication of Therese Walsh’s new novel, The Moon Sisters, the lovely folks over at The Muffin are celebrating sisterhood, and when I heard about it, I had to participate, but here’s the thing: I don’t have any biological sisters. I have a step-sister (sort of) and a few sisters-in-law, but I was an only child until I was twelve, and then I inherited a slightly-older step-brother, so the people I consider sisters are my chosen family, more often than not.
One of them, Cathy, is actually my cousin, but she was my “big sister” for most of my life. It was Cathy who spent hours with me, making home movies that we wrote and performed in, baking and cooking and playing with dolls. It was even Cathy who gave me my first bra. Her mother, my own mother’s cousin, shared her birthday with me, and used to call me her birthday girl, so we had a sister-like bond from the time I was born, really, and while our interests have diverged and our politics don’t always align, she’s family, and she is my sister in every way that counts.
Then there’s my friend Alisa. We don’t really talk much these days, interacting mainly via Facebook (she’s incredible at Scramble with Friends), but when we were kids, my mother sliced our hands (nicked, really) open so we could be blood sisters. We didn’t have headdresses like the girls in The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, but we did have matching t-shirts when we were seven.
More recently, my spiritual sisters have expanded to include my friend Kathy, who was there for me when I had a miscarriage several years ago while my husband was traveling for work, who knows my dogs as well as I do, and who lets me borrow her children and use them as guinea pigs when I do experimental baking. She’s a visual artist, while I play with words, but we have in common the creative spirit.
Does it matter that none of these women are technically related to me? No. In fact, I think the case could be made that all women are sisters at some level, though some of us are closer than others. This is why it drives me crazy when women don’t support each other. No, we all don’t think alike, dress alike, behave alike, but there is far more that unites us than divides us, and I think we should embrace that.
Which brings me to this awesome new novel by Therese Walsh – The Moon Sisters. Here’s a bit about the book:
In The Moon Sisters, her second novel, Therese Walsh wanted to write about one sister’s quest to find will-o’-the-wisp light, which was her mother’s unfulfilled dream. Also called “foolish fires”, these lights are sometimes seen over wetlands and are thought to lead those who follow them to treasure. Despite the promise, they are never captured and sometimes lead to injury or even death for adventurers who follow them. The metaphor of that fire – that some dreams and goals are impossible to reach, and that hope itself may not be innately good – eventually rooted its way into deeper meaning as the Moon sisters tried to come to terms with real-world dreams and hopes, and with each other, in their strange new world.
Olivia and Jazz Moon are polar opposites: one a dreamy synesthete, able to see sounds and smell sights and the other controlling and reality driven. What will happen when they are plunged into 24/7 togetherness and control is not an option? Will they ever be able to see the world through the other’s eyes and confront the things they fear the most? Death. Suicide. The loss of faith and hope. Will they ultimately believe that life is worth living, despite the lack of promise?
The writing of The Moon Sisters was a five year journey and at times author Therese Walsh felt like it was her own “foolish fire”. But remember, some fires are worth the chase!
I haven’t read it yet – though I have it sitting on my to-be-read pile (look for my review on March 20th), but it sounds like a truly fantastic story for anyone who has a little bit of magic left in her soul, or who has shared a secret with a sister, even if she is a sister of the soul, and not one of blood.
If you want to be among the first to read The Moon Sisters, you can buy it from Amazon.com, on Kindle or as a physical copy. (I love my Kindle, but I miss trading books with my friends when I only read ebooks.)
You can also find out more about the author, herself, by visiting her website: ThereseWalsh.com where you can find book club information, a personality quiz based on characters in the novel, and much, much more.
Also, don’t forget to stop by The Muffin and enter to win a copy of The Moon Sisters for yourself. Read it, then pass it along to your own sister. It’s nice to share.
Tami Goldstein’s book Coming Through the Fog may be about her daughter’s journey through autism, but it’s she who wrote the story. She was kind enough to write a guest post for me:
The Story Behind the Story
I have no training as a writer and the story Coming Through the Fog was an emotional, all consuming, financially training account that played out over a 13 year process from diagnosis to Functioning Recovery and independent living. I have 3 storage containers with information, medical, psychological, educational and the training that I took to understand the disability and how my daughter presented. Heather’s Occupational Therapist, Sue Kratz, continued for years to encourage me to write Heather’s story and I had many failed attempts.
In the spring of 2012 a good friend of mine, Cheryl “Smitty” Smith a 30 year retired school teacher familiar with Heather’s story and my inability to get it on paper, gave me a cassette tape recorder with a bunch of tapes and said, “Tell me Heather’s story. Nine months later, Coming Through the Fog was published.
Though it is Heather’s story, we walked this journey together. She understands how difficult the journey was and feels as strongly as I do about the need to reach out and help other families.
Reading Coming Through the Fog will make it easier for others to navigate the world of autism spectrum disorders and provide tools inspiration and hope for their journey.
A mother tells the journey of her daughter’s recovery from Autism and Sensory Processing Disorder to Functioning Recovery and independent living, giving tips to parents on how to navigate the medical and educational domain. This story is an example of the unique obstacles facing a parent raising a child with Autism. The challenges they face getting supports. What is Sensory Processing Disorder, CranioSacral Therapy and Bio-Medical Therapy, and what roles they play on the road to Functioning Recovery and independent living? See actual projective trials pertaining to sensory supports. Is educational discrimination the reason there is difficulty getting help in school? As this story unfolds it provides useful tips to other parents to help them on their journey with their child. This story is notable because this mother’s daughter was successful overcoming numerous obstacles while providing useful tools, inspiration and hope to others.
This journey begins with a mother’s love for her daughter. After learning her daughter was on the Autism Spectrum Tami began to tirelessly educate herself in the sciences of: Behavioral Health, Child Psychology, Human Anatomy, Occupational Health, Pharmacology and Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and has been a parent advocate for her daughter since 1997.
In 2002, as her knowledge and passion grew, Tami began reaching out to other families in need of help. In 2005, Tami founded the Rock County Autism Support Group and she is the community resource liaison for the SPD (Sensory Processing Disorders) Parent Connections Support Group of Rock County and the surrounding areas. Since 2005, Tami has been State and National Certified in Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork and in 2013 she certified in CranioSacral Therapy with the Upledger Institute in Florida.
Tami currently has two offices where she facilitates CranioSacral Therapy. Approximately 38% of her clientele are children, teenagers and young adults on the Autism Spectrum or with other neuro-developmental delays. When asked to lecture, Tami uses her personal experience, extensive knowledge, and dedication to help others learn about and understand the medical and educational aspects of Autism, Autism Spectrum Disorders and SPD.
You can view her website at http://www.comingthroughthefog.com.
Tami’s latest book is the autism awareness book, Coming Through the Fog.
Connect with Tami:
Every year, I try to log every book I’ve read, even if I don’t actually review them all. This year, I’ve logged 96 books here at Bibliotica, and I’m sure I’ve missed a few, but I’ll leave the count there, because it seems a reasonable number. I’m always reading something, but sometimes fanfic will be my obsession, or magazines, or…well…not books.
In any case, here’s my list:
September 24-October 1st is Banned Books Week, the week when bookstores, libraries and teachers encourage people to explore a “frequently challenged” or banned book. Some of my favorite books – everything from the Little House series, to Huckleberry Finn and the Harry Potter books to The Color Purple and The Catcher in the Rye have been banned or challenged by people who believe that protecting their kids from free thought and different ideas is somehow good.
I’m fortunate. I was born into a family of avid readers and free thinkers, and taught to make my own decisions. Books – banned and not – taught me much about life, love, and the inherent goodness of people.
So, go read a banned book this week. Even better, if you’re a parent or caregiver, read one with your child, and discuss the themes that caused it to be challenged by censors.
Celebrate your freedom to read.
…but I haven’t been posting any reviews lately. I’ve needed a break from it.
I’ve been blogging about general stuff over at MelissaBartell.com.
I plan to resume regular posting here on Monday, April 4th.