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DRESSING A TIGER: A memoir ~Maggie San Miguel

Monday, October 10th, 2016

dressing-a-tigerDRESSING A TIGER is not a plain Ol’ memoir with a bit of spicing up, this is about a very interesting and sometimes disturbing life story mixed with a heavy dose of humor and a very spunky child who remembers so much.  Maggie is the youngest child in her family – much younger; her brother is 18 and her sister 16 when she arrives onto the scene.  Mom is fairly unstable and inconsistent and has almost no time for her youngest and Dad is a very busy man as the top negotiator for the Teamsters Union.  Maggie is not allowed to play in the front yard of their Connecticut home but the huge backyard with lake and below ground tree fort commands her attention.  Maggie loves to row her boat out to her private island and seize the day.

“Maggie San Miguel is a Past Life Regression Therapist, a Mediation Instructor and a Psychic Medium, appearing on the paranormal television show, STRANGE TOWN.  She has assisted law enforcement with a murder investigation in Texas.  She also makes pottery, paints and can cook a mean meatball.” (Cover)

Maggie San Miguel Facebook
Maggie San Miguel Web

The book is quite interesting and includes geishas’ in Maggie’s rowboat, and mob hit men taking a 4 year old to the dentist.  Because of their reclusive lifestyle, Maggie dotes on the “friends” of her father who come to the house to plot, drink and eat.  Jack Dahlstrom, her father, though of a Scandinavian heritage, learns to speak Italian and interact with the Italian families involved in controlling the East Coast.  His friends are folks he connected with during his time serving in World War II.  His wife a great redheaded beauty grew up in poverty and led a very tough life. When the stress levels were too high, she disappeared into alcohol and bed, including strange behaviors especially trying to kill squirrels.

“A father serving the Mob, hit men moonlighting as babysitters, an uncle in the Secret Service, famous politicians amongst family friends, a mother in need of shock therapy, and a kid who eavesdrops and remember it all. “  What a unique childhood!

“Her father’s prior knowledge of the Kennedy assassination and his unique friendships with Jack Ruby, John Connally, Henry Wade and infamous Mafia bosses Carlo Bambino, Sam Giancana and Paul Castellano is a story untold until now.” “…Dahlstrom collected an impressive array of friends and Mafia secrets that were never meant to see the light of day.  Maggie San Miguel has just opened the blinds.” (Cover)

I enjoyed this book from beginning to end and think it will make a wonderful book to share.  I highly recommend it and am grateful that Meryl Zegarek Public Relations, Inc.  sent me an advanced copy for review.

This book will be published October 26, 2016

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A SHORT PATH TO CHANGE: 30 Ways to Transform Your Life ~Jenny Mannion

Monday, April 4th, 2016

“The purpose of this book is to help you discover your own inner power for healing aspects of your own life.  Remember, we are all self-healing creatures.”

I have been reading and following Jenny Mannion’s blog posts for many years now.  I was very excited to hear that her book was to be published.  When you purchase her new book, you will receive a free 30-minute consultation.  I received a free consultation with Jenny years ago, when my knee became inflamed and she did a healing treatment over the phone which fixed the problem and reduced the swelling dramatically.  Pain relief and I subscribed to her blog.

When SHORT PATH, was published, I offered to review the book on my blog and Jenny sent me an e-galley copy.  I was doing a Detox Diet at the time and just incorporated the 30 exercises in SHORT PATH into my new routine and it became quite a wonder-full experience and healing for me.

The exercises were easy to follow and I enjoyed the additional suggestion to add the results into my journal writing.  I challenged myself to add getting my walk back to 2 miles everyday along with the detox diet and doing Mannion’s exercises.  It became 40 days of change and release for me.  I found the “let go”, forgiveness, and releasing the past to be the hardest part for me; the gratitude and visualization work were the most rewarding.  My focus was to clear up several muscle spasms I was having in my body and in my eye.  I also wanted to get off all 21 medications I was taking post surgery.   We achieved that and no more sugar also.  The muscle spasm in my eye truly is gone and I lost 8 pounds.  I think I will use SHORT PATH for several more healing focus experiences, right away to keep the momentum going forward and achieve more healing.

Jenny Mannion is quite the healer, beginning with being told she was so ill that she would need to be in a wheel chair and by changing her focus she was able within 15 days to walk and heal her own dis-ease.   She has been able to return to her love of dance and she has an active practice of intuitive healing.  We are still clear across the country from each other and I am still reading her blog. The book helped me empower my own healing with the book giving solid guidance.  Mannion is also a regular contributor to the Huffington Post.  It has been marvelous to follow her bookstore tours and read all the wonderful comments about the book and her work on Face Book .

The book is so positive at the minimum it will lift spirits introducing one to the other healing modalities available to our self-healing bodies.  I highly recommend SHORT PATH TO CHANGE.

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ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE: A Novel ~Randy Susan Meyers

Friday, October 3rd, 2014

“There are two things a person should never be angry at, what they can help and what they cannot.”   (Plato)
“I think you have at least. Twenty-two things.  You shouldn’t be angry about. Everyday.”  (Page 296)


Randy Susan Meyers is a writer and a person who works with folks with domestic violence issues. ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE takes her excellent writing skills into this realm and tells us a story about a family which is developing serious violence issues and problems and how it is affecting the marriage and the children – the future.   The characters are quite well depicted and their responses to the situations and scenes are tremendously portrayed.   I read into the wee hours of the morning, because I could just not put the book down; I have thought about this story often since I finished the read and it just stays with me.

ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE is about a life changing year for the Illica family who live in Boston, MA area.  Maddy is the spirited social worker who is messy and forgetful (I think I might say stressed to the max trying to balance work and family) and vacillates between standing up to Ben’s growing rages and to placating him – always protecting the three children: Emma (14), Gracie (9), and Caleb (7).  The marriage bond did not begin with such anger issues, but as Ben became a more powerful public defender and a recognized warrior in the courtroom, he becomes increasingly belittling and critical of his wife and children; they are becoming truly afraid.  The two styles on a wet and rainy, frantic, fast drive crash into each other and Maddy ends up nearly dead with brain injuries and in a coma.

The characters are just so believable and Emma realistically portrays how a teen and her siblings would increase their anger reactions by acting out and by being scared nearly out of their minds.   ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE is about all the ways that individuals cope with major problems and violence.   The story is a good portrayal of what love is not.

TLC Book Tours   sent me a copy of this book for review and I am planning on sharing this book with several of my counselor friends.  ACCIDENTS OF MARRIAGE was an intense and provocative read.   Good teaching tool, excellent storytelling, excellent read for nearly every reader.

From the book jacket:

“Randy Susan Meyers is the author of THE COMFORT OF LIES and THE MURDER’S DAUGHTERS and a finalist for the Massachusetts Book Award.  Her writing is informed by her work with batterers and victims of domestic violence, as well as her experience with youth impacted by street violence.  She lives with her husband in Boston, where she teaches writing seminars at the Grub Street Writers’ Center.”

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A MATTER OF MERCY: a NOVEL ~Lynne Hugo

Monday, September 8th, 2014

“A moon tide rising was the worst time for bad weather, but moon tides are the best for working because the stronger gravitational pull makes the water recede farther.  Yet even a storm that clouts during the front of the moon tide can be capricious enough to leave one grant almost untouched while those adjacent might be fouled or wiped out.” (page 15 of uncorrected copy)

Forgiveness is a difficult story to write and to write it well, and yet Lynne Hugo does just that in A MATTER OF MERCY.  The author applies a mature voice to the process of redemption as she wraps an interesting fictional tale around an actual lawsuit.  The story gives us lots of details about the oyster farming business in Cape Cod Bay, lots of environmental information, great moments of confused decision making when one has not forgiven themselves, and what can happen when vacationing millionaires believe they own someone else’s land – life.

Laurie Buchanan on FB reminded me of this Brene’ Brown wisdom while I was reading this book and it helped me understand the point:

“You either walk inside your story and own it or You stand outside your story and hustle for your worthiness.”

Caroline has reluctantly come home to Massachusetts from Chicago, where she has been hiding since she was in prison for a DUI resulting in a death, lost her teaching certificate, and her husband.  Her mother, a potter, is dying of Ovarian Cancer and with the help of Hospice and Caroline she can be in her last days close to her view of the bay and the oyster grants.  Her daughter is afraid to be in town because it is the scene of the crime and she believes everyone judges her still.   She is in the place where making decisions is very hard a kind of limbo and she loves the days her mother can talk with her.

Ridley Neal is a young man who also spent time in prison because of youthful drug issues.   He is the owner of one of the oyster grants in the bay; left to him by his father.  He has discovered he likes the hard work and that being an aquaculturist is in his blood and definitely part of his future.  Oyster farming involves driving trucks onto the beach at low tide and moving the vehicle as the tide moves back into the shore; the workers use lights for harvesting and maintenance work when the tides are low at night.  The wealthy folks in the vacation homes on the bluff have concluded that the trucks, oysters, workers and lights ruin their view and interfere with their rights.  They may just win because being an oysterman does not produce enough funds for expensive lawsuits.   The lawsuit is a good study for any coastal village or community to be aware of in this day and age.  I could relate.

Lynne Hugo did a great deal of research on the tasks of the oyster farmer and she gives a good credit to the aquaculturist community for providing her with needed information and resources on her quest for this novel.  Ms. Hugo sent me a gracious thank you note, bookmarks and postcards for agreeing to review her book here.

Lynne Hugo Online

There are quite a few pictures of the area of the oyster farmers on Cape Cod on the blog and more information sharing.

“Lynne Hugo is a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship recipient who has also received grants from the Ohio Arts Council and the Kentucky Foundation for Women.  She has published five previous novels, one of which became a Lifetime Original Movie of the Month, two books of poetry, and a children’s book.  Her memoir, WHERE THE TRAIL GOES FAINT, won the Riverteeth Literary Nonfiction Book Prize.  Born and educated in New England, she and her husband currently live in Ohio with a yellow Lab feared by squirrels in a three state area. “(from book cover)

tlc logo TLC online book tours  and the author sent me an uncorrected copy  of  A MATTER OF MERCY and I can highly recommend  A MATTER OF MERCY to my readers ,  a great gift read,  get it  on your list.

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