Timothy L. Phillips – a new print edition of a travel/memoir

Timothy L. Phillips was previously featured on Reading Recommendations when the eBook version of this book was first published in June, 2016. The print version has just been published. (I’m very proud to have published this book as well as many more through IslandCatEditions. smt)

My Camino Walk: A Way to Healing
by Timothy L. Phillips
Published by IslandCatEditions
Print edition includes photos

Available to purchase here and here

From the back cover:
Timothy Phillips celebrated his sixtieth birthday by hiking Spain’s Camino de Santiago. The almost eight hundred kilometer trek became a month-long test of physical stamina, with weather extremes, a range of fellow pilgrims, and hours of introspection that caused him to question his childhood, his life, and many long-held ideas and beliefs. These challenges shook loose the very foundations of his being. Timothy brings a photographer’s eye to detailed descriptions of the trek that appeal to all the senses and invites the reader to join him on his healing journey.

“The record of a journey through a mythic landscape is a staple of world literature. In My Camino Walk Timothy L. Phillips describes his personal journey across the rugged terrain between France and Spain. Along the trail, he meets an international cast of characters, each drawn with the same precision as his exquisite landscape writing. My Camino Walk is a journey his readers will share and treasure forever.”
~ J. Michael Fay, author of Passion, The Healer and Tenderness

My Camino Walk recently received a favourable review on Kevin Brennan’s blog. (Kevin has been previously featured a number of times on Reading Recommendations.)

For more information about the book and Timothy, or for updates and more photos by the author, please go to his blog, Camino De Tim.


A change is as good as … and all that jazz!

Back in April, 2015, I wrote this post, There’ll Be Some Changes Made …

I find now, 2-1/2-years later, that I must make some further changes as to how I post to this blog and which books and authors I recommend. I’ve been on kind of a hiatus from posting – and not because authors I’ve promoted here previously haven’t been writing and publishing great books! But because I’ve been kind of busy with writing, publishing and reading great books myself, and I actually got out of the habit of posting to this blog and my others on a regular basis. These posts do take a lot of work, too, so I’ve slacked off and redirected my efforts.

Now I’ve just come back to this blog in the past week or so and realized I have many, many posts drafted, and that I’d promised all these authors listed there that I would promote them. So … mea culpa! And I apologize profusely to all who have been waiting to see their recent publications promoted here. I began yesterday with posting for Brian Brennan and I hope to catch up on the rest on my list by year’s end.

Then … I will be changing the format completely as to how I “recommend” books and authors. Either I will make the changes to this blog itself or, more likely, I’ll leave this blog as is (so the authors I’ve already promoted continue to be listed), I’ll also continue to post 3rd-party reviews to reading recommendations reviewed (where I also have a number of posts drafted for publication – I’m really behind in everything!!), and I’ll create a completely new blog altogether, possibly with the title, “What Are You Reading?”. And, as you may have suspected, there’s a post already drafted at my main blog with an explanation as to why I’ve chosen that title. Speaking of the main blog – same situation there … too many post drafts, not enough time to actually write the posts.

So, while it may appear to my readers, and the authors I promote, that I’m not doing much of anything lately, other than scanning through Facebook … which, come to think of it, is partially true … I have done a lot of thinking about what to post and how to develop these blogs of mine so they reflect my true recommendations of books, as well as what I happen to be thinking about verious topics, but I just haven’t got around to actually making it all happen … yet!

“This time for sure, Rocky!”

Brian Brennan – 3 new reprints now available

Brian Brennan has been featured previously on Reading Recommendations five times, and is back now with information on how he’s managing to keep his traditionally published out-of-print books in print.

Don’t Let Your Books Go Out of Print!

By Brian Brennan

That’s the advice I would give to any author who receives a statement from their trade publisher listing their book’s status as “OP.”

I received three such statements from my publisher, Fifth House, in 2014:

One was for Alberta Originals: Stories of Albertans Who Made a Difference, a book of biographical profiles that had sold more than 5,000 copies after it was published in 2001.

The second was for Scoundrels and Scallywags: Characters From Alberta’s Past, which had become the most successful of all my books, with more than 10,000 copies sold after publication in 2002.

The third was for Boondoggles, Bonanzas and Other Alberta Stories, which sold a comparatively modest 3,000 copies after publication in 2003.

I didn’t like the idea of my titles going out of print. I was particularly saddened to see Scoundrels disappear from the catalogues because it had been my favourite. Villains always make for more interesting stories than those who walk the straight and narrow. I decided I would keep all my titles available by self-publishing them as ebooks.

Human Powered Design, an independent Canadian company that specializes in turning manuscripts and print-design files into ebooks, did the EPUB conversions for me. It then sent the titles to Amazon (Kindle), Kobo, Apple (iTunes) and OverDrive, the American company that distributes ebooks to libraries across North America. That put the books back into circulation, at least, but left me feeling it was not enough. As much as I enjoy reading books on my iPad – especially while away on vacation – I still like to hold a print book in my hands and savour the tactile enjoyment of leafing through the paper pages. I believe others feel the same way.

Enter CreateSpace the on-demand publishing company owned by Amazon. I sent CreateSpace the press-ready cover and interior PDFs I had asked Human Powered Design to generate for me after it did the EPUB conversions. And for no charge, CreateSpace uploaded the PDF files onto its platform, making them available as print-on-demand books that could be purchased from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Ingram, indiCo and other retailers.

So how does CreateSpace make money if it doesn’t charge anything upfront for publishing books on its platform? It waits until the paperbacks start selling and then collects a percentage. In most instances, this works out to about 60 per cent of list price for CreateSpace, which leaves 40 per cent for the author. This arrangement suits me just fine. Fifth House used to pay me a royalty of 10 per cent for my paperbacks.

The CreateSpace versions of my three books resemble the Fifth House versions because I have the PDFs of the original designs. Without these, I could still have republished the books because CreateSpace provides do-it-yourself authors with free tools, including a cover creator and interior reviewer. For a fee, I could also have availed of the professional services CreateSpace offers for designing book covers and interiors.

All three of my books focus on the colourful personalities and social history of Alberta. If you’d like to learn more about or purchase any of them, either as paperbacks or ebooks, here are the links:

Alberta Originals
Scoundrels and Scallywags
Boondoggles and Bonanzas

My thanks to Susan for allowing me to take up some of her valuable online space to post this.

Lawrence Schwartzwald – update on a new collection of photographs

Lawrence Schwartzwald is a professional photographer who was previously featured on Reading Recommendations in Nov. 2016 when he released his book, The Art of Reading. He’s back now to tell us about a limited edition Zine he has recently published.

cover of Zine, Reading New York by Lawrence Schwartzwald

Reading New York
by Lawrence Schwartzwald

READING NEW YORK, 2017, a Zine, 32pp. edition of 160, avail at DASHWOOD (store and web), McNally Jackson, Plus 81 Gallery (Chintown), ArtBook Bookstore, PS 1 MoMA, Queens, NY

back cover – Reading New York

Lawrence’s promo links:
Instagram: lawrenceschwartzwald

I was very pleased to receive a copy of this new Zine directly from Lawrence and decided to take my own “reading” photo – with Reading Recommendations-promoted Poet, Frank Beltrano. It was through Frank I originally learned of Lawrence and his photography, so this particular photo is very fitting.

Kevin Brennan – update on a new collection of essays

Kevin Brennan has previously been featured on Reading Recommendations a number of times, as well as being an All-Star Author and on the list of
Reading Recommendations Revisited.

I don’t make any bones about it – Kevin Brennan is one of my very favourite authors writing today! So it’s always a pleasure to promote any new books he happens to publish, like this one right here …

In No Particular Order: A Memoir
by Kevin Brennan

It’s true that life is linear, but the living of it is all over the map. In this memoir-in-vignettes, novelist Kevin Brennan (Parts Unknown, Yesterday Road) examines his life the way memories occur in the wild: in no particular order. Whether it’s recalling high school humiliations, ups and downs in love and romance, or unique interactions with the human race at home and abroad, Brennan both entertains and moves the reader with moments of unexpected poignancy and full-tilt humor. In No Particular Order is a deconstructed memoir, like no other because it looks at life as it really is — a kaleidoscope of individual moments.

For more information about Kevin and his publications, as well as more about this new eBook, check out his blog, What the Hell.

Purchase a copy from:

Mike Robbins – update on a timely essay

Mike Robbins has visited Reading Recommendations a couple of times previously, here and here. He’s back now to tell us about a very timely essay he has just published. (Mike also answered my recent call for book reviewers, for which I am extremely grateful!)

Such Little Accident: British Democracy and its Enemies
by Mike Robbins
Published by Third Rail
Genre: Non-Fiction Essay

“When the people shall have nothing more to eat,” said Rousseau, “they will eat the rich.” But the rich are rather good at getting the poor to eat each other instead. In this provocative novella-length essay, Mike Robbins looks at how the British electoral system, social media, bullying by business, and a growing gap between rich and poor have led to deep fissures in British society. These have been exploited by those with an agenda of their own. As a result, democracy is now fragile. To repair it, we must look hard at the way information cycles through our society, and how our opinions are formed.

Cover picture: J.M.W. Turner (1775-1851), The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons, 16th October, 1834 (Detail)
Philadelphia Museum of Art

Where to purchase copies:
Amazon UK
Amazon US
(also available on the other Amazons)
Google Play
Barnes & Noble

Antony Millen

Antony Millen

What is your latest release and what genre is it? The Chain – Young Adult dystopian

Quick description: The year is 2043. Empowered by the anti-encryption program, ICALL, and the world-wide wireless Blanket, the Global Domain reigns over all colocation centres with its Connectivist ideology, enforcing mandatory online activity for every eartizen and disabling attempts to secure privacy. The Domain’s slogans are: “Secrecy Threatens Security” and “Privacy Prevents Prosperity and Peace.”

From his death-bed in New Zealand, Fenton Ouvert commissions his sons, Topia and Lukan, to locate a flash drive containing the files of Jeremy Winterton, files stolen thirty years earlier from international surveillance agencies. A former investigative journalist, Ouvert hid the flash drive at the end of a chain of clue-bearers around the world. Contacted by the resistance movement known as Arachne, Ouvert believes the drive contains original plans for the ICALL program and thus, hope for a free world.

Travelling the globe, the Ouvert boys locate the links, but what will their journey reveal about their father and the effects of the Global Domain’s dominance? And what will their quest mean for the world when they reach the end of the chain?

Brief biography:
Antony Millen lives and writes in New Zealand, but is originally from Pictou County, Nova Scotia, Canada. Since 2013, he has published three novels and seen short stories featured in literary journals and competitions. He blogs regularly at antonymillen.com.

Links to buy Antony’s book:
Amazon US
Amazon Canada

Antony’s promo links:

What are you working on now?
I’m nearing the end of a draft for my fourth novel. It is also intended for young adults, but will not be as complex as The Chain. A simpler story about friendships, co-dependency, dreams and re-assessing our heroes.

Antony’s reading recommendation:
The North Water by Ian McGuire, longlisted for the 2016 Man Booker prize. A faster-paced Moby Dick in a sort of thrilling historical fiction way.

John W. Howell

john-howell-headshot John W. Howell

What is your latest release and what genre is it? I am re-releasing my first book My GRL due to my desire not to re-new my publisher’s contract. It is Thriller Fiction

Quick description: The first book in the John J. Cannon Trilogy where John J. Cannon, successful San Francisco lawyer, takes a leave of absence from the firm and buys a boat he names My GRL. He is unaware that his newly-purchased boat had already been targeted by a terrorist group. John’s first inkling of a problem is when he wakes up in the hospital where he learns he was found unconscious next to the dead body of the attractive young woman who sold him the boat in the first place. John now stands between the terrorists and the success of their mission.


Brief biography:
John began his writing as a full-time occupation after an extensive business career. His specialty is thriller fiction novels, but John also writes poetry and short stories. His first book, My GRL, introduces the exciting adventures of the book’s central character, John J. Cannon. The second Cannon novel, His Revenge, continues the adventure, while the final book in the trilogy, Our Justice, launched in September 2016. All books are available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions.

John lives in Port Aransas, Texas, with his wife and their spoiled rescue pets.

Links to buy John’s book:
Amazon Author Page
Print edition
Kindle edition

John’s promo links:
Blog: Fiction Favorites
Authors db
Google +

What are you working on now?
I am currently editing my next book titled Circumstances of Childhood and will be launching it in September of 2017. I have begun a yet unnamed thriller which will available in 2018.

John’s reading recommendation:
I have finished reading Letting Go Into Perfect Love by Gwendolyn Plano. The story of Gwen’s personal challenge is very uplifting.

Steve Boseley

steve-face-bw-big Steve Boseley

What is your latest release and what genre is it? A Sinister Six: A collection of six darkly disturbing stories Genre – Horror / Dark fiction

Quick description: A Sinister Six is a collection of darkly disturbing stories, where the ordinary and mundane become extraordinary and fantastic.

Journey to the edges of reality and glimpse what lies just beyond our reach. Discover that nothing is quite what it seems, and explore the horrors that travel with us throughout our lives.

The characters within have been forced beyond the boundary of their reality and have encountered what lies beyond.


Brief biography:
Steve writes horror and disturbing fiction that has appeared in many online horror publications, as well as in several horror anthologies. He has also had work published by Alfie Dog Fiction. His first novella, Die, Blossom, Bloom, was published in 2016, quickly followed by his first collection of short stories, A Sinister Six. Steve wants to connect with readers by writing about the ordinary and mundane, but making it extraordinary and fantastic, giving readers a glimpse of what lies just beyond the edges of their realities.

Links to buy Steve’s book:

Steve’s promo links:

What are you working on now?
My next book! It will be another collection of short stories, similar in style to the ones within A Sinister Six. No title yet. Some of the stories were completed in last year’s NaNoWriMo. They just need editing!

Steve’s reading recommendation:
Keeping with the theme of short stories, I’m currently reading (and enjoying) C.S. Boyack’s 2nd Experimental Notebook. I am also loving the short fiction of Algernon Blackwood.

Rick Bergh – update on Transitional Loss series

Rick Bergh has been a visitor to Reading Recommendations twice previously – once to promote a children’s book he has published with his wife, Erica, and again to promote the first book in his Transitional Loss series. He’s back now to tell us about the next two titles he’s recently published.

sample1-finding-anchors-book-cover Finding Anchors: How to Bring Stability to Your Life Following a Cancer Diagnosis
It’s raw, it’s real and it’s brave! If there is one book to give your family or friends following a cancer diagnosis, this is it. Rick Bergh shares the principles he has studied, taught and lived out for more than 30 years in this practical, inspiring and hopeful guide that will help anyone stabilize their life following a cancer diagnosis. Finding Anchors will teach you how to: • Reduce your anxiety • Tackle daily challenges • Move forward in confidence • Continue to live your life in a meaningful and new way Far beyond a collection of good ideas, this book lays out 17 tried-and-true principles from hundreds of people, including Rick’s own personal journey with his wife and four children. They courageously found ways to face their mom’s cancer diagnosis while inspiring friends and family to join them on this significant journey.

taking_notice Taking Notice: How a Cancer Journey Helps Magnify What’s Important in Life
It’s honest, it’s humble and it’s surprising. Discover the meaningful life you have always wanted. It took a cancer journey with his wife, Pam, to stop author, Rick Bergh, from living out his fast-paced lifestyle and to discover what was most important in his life. Forced to re-evaluate his priorities over a five-year period, Rick began to “Take Notice” of what was happening inside himself. The results changed his life forever. Taking Notice will teach you how to: • Open your eyes up to unexpected possibilities • Discover the simplicity of the present moment • Move yourself forward in a new direction • Find life when it seems the most difficult Different than most self-help or personal development books, Taking Notice invites its readers to wrestle with 17 unique challenges during the most difficult times of their lives. Entering into our “muck” with complete vulnerability and wrestling with deeper truths brings maximum growth opportunities and unexpected results. Rick Bergh is a grief and loss counsellor and ordained Lutheran minister. His life’s passion is to write, speak and provide practical resources that really work when people are forced to transition through loss.

looking-ahead-bookwidgetnew Looking Ahead: How Your Dying Impacts Those Around You
This practical and hopeful book is a distillation of 30 years of work and study in the area of death, dying and bereavement. Author Rick Bergh shares his professional and personal experience as one who has lived through the loss of his first wife along with his four children, and his work with hundreds of people in their last chapter of life.
Looking Ahead will:
• Show you how to invite others into your important remaining days on earth
• Help you identify your new purpose and meaning in unexpected ways
• Give you tools to engage loved ones in meaningful conversation
• Provide a framework that enables family to be key contributors in your unfolding story
Far beyond a book that prepares you and your family for your death, Looking Ahead offers its readers 17 tried-and-true principles to live fully in the present. It will inspire you to author your own story and engage your family and friends in your journey looking forward.

Where to purchase the Transitional Loss Series:
Rick Bergh’s Website

Here’s a link to a video posted of Rick’s “End of Life” seminar.

The Cochrane Eagle recently ran an article about Rick and his books: Rick Bergh reflects on purposeful living in face of dying