Sticks and Stones by Chelsea DeVries (Oct.-Nov. 2022)

Please join us for our Fall 2022 blog tour for Sticks and Stones by Chelsea DeVries, published by One Girl Revolution in Dec. 2021.

SticksandStonesIn Sticks and Stones, DeVries paints a poetic picture of rising above toxicity, love found and love lost, and delves into what it means to find strength in the human spirit. Through poetry, the reader finds a voice of strength and the rebuilding of one’s heart a home with all the sticks and stones thrown upon it. Newly expanded with more full color photos, 41 new poems, and a rewrite of Drowning in An Ocean of No Tomorrows, DeVries shows a full poetic picture of turning pain into poetry in order so you can rise above whatever is pulling you under.

Advance Praise:

“This collection of poetry and innovative thinking by Chelsea DeVries is a remarkable work of words. Sticks and Stones: Full Story Edition is a definite read, and please, read the dedication at the beginning of the book, and then you know the set stage for this book. It is personal. The words almost float across the pages, bringing different situations and emotions to light, in a very toxic world. After reading this, I realized what the title actually alludes to, and how it just fit this unputdownable collection. Such a wonderful read. My favorite was Perks of Being a Wallflower which starts with ‘I’m just a girl, Really strong, like petals on a flower, I wilt.’ I liked this so much, I read many of the poems twice. I look forward to reading more by this poet. Sticks and Stones is a definite recommendation.” –Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews.

This book highlights that you are not alone in the emotions, thoughts, and situations that challenge you. It’s a reminder too that you can make it through those things and come out on the other side. I love the idea of building something beautiful and strong out of the sticks and stones that others throw at you.” – Amazon reviewer Sara Hovel

About the Author:

Chelsea DeVries Chelsea DeVries wanted to be a writer at the age of 7. Her first publishing credit came at the age of 14 with a poem in a student anthology. She then wrote nonstop while doing IB classes in high school. She published two YA novels while still in high school which after over 10 years she rewrote as a NA romance that she looks to put out as her next publication.She is a seeker of justice and uses her words to free this world’s outcasted, peculiar, and underdogs from the chains that bind them. When not writing she runs and does PR for authors and musicians with her bookish brand The Smart Cookie Philes. Though she’s Florida born and raised, she has New Jersey in her veins. She currently lives in Port Richey, FL with her squad of two dogs.You can follow her on Instagram and Facebook at @chelsealynnpoetry, and her squad at @dasquad26. In October 2020, DeVries was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome which is a
form of Autism.

Add to GoodReads:

sticks and stones

Available at Amazon.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Oct. 11: Armed with a Book (guest post)

Oct. 14: Anthony Avina’s blog (review)

Oct. 19: Soapy Violinist (review)

Oct. 25: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (interview)

Oct. 30: Anthony Avina’s blog (guest post)

Nov. 2: the bookworm (guest post)

Nov. 16: Book Lovers Boudoir (review)

Follow the online tour with hashtag #sticksandstonespoetry

Love the Dark Days by Ira Mathur (Sept. – Nov. 2022)

Please join us for our Fall 2022 blog tour for Love the Dark Days by Ira Mathur, published by Peepal Tree Press Ltd. in Sept. 2022.

LoveDarkDays_FINAL_v3 (2)This frank, fearless and multi-layered debut centres on a privileged but dysfunctional Indian family, with themes of empire, migration, race, and gender. The Victorian India elephant in the room in Ira Mathur’s silk-swathed memoir Love The Dark Days is in chains. By the time calypso replaces the Raj in post-colonial Trinidad, the chains are off three generations of daughters and mothers in a family in their New World exile. But they are still stuck in place and enduring insecurity and threats, seen and unseen.

Set in India, England, Trinidad and a weekend in St Lucia, with Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott Love the Dark Days (Peepal Tree Press) follows the story of a girl, Poppet, of mixed middle-class Hindu and Elite Muslim parentage from post-independent India to her family’s migration to post-colonial Trinidad. Profoundly raw, unflinching, layered, but not without threads of humour and perceived absurdity, Love the Dark Days reassembles the story of a disintegrating Empire.

Advance Praise:

“One of the best books I’ve read in a long time. A beautiful beautiful book.” –Michael Portillo, Times Radio

Love The Dark Days is a troubled and troubling book, a heady brew that stays with you.” – The Observer

“A transcendent memoir about extremes of love and hate, princely wealth, and the rebellious, righteous poor. I loved it.” – Maggie Gee

“This brave and inspiring feminist critique of patriarchy and gender oppression set in Trinidad– framed by the delusional greed and grandeur of colonial India and a weekend in St. Lucia spent with Nobel laureate Derek Walcott — has terrific promise as a biting movie adaptation for the #MeToo era” – Etan Vlessing, Hollywood Reporter

About the Author:

20220406_Ira_Mathur_477 (2)Ira Mathur is an Indian born Caribbean freelance journalist/writer working in radio, television and print in Trinidad, West Indies. She also is currently a Sunday Guardian columnist and feature writer.

Follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

Add to GoodReads:

love the dark days

Available at Amazon.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Sept. 13: BooksParlour (Instagram review)

Oct. 5: The Reading Bud (review)

Oct. 12: The Book Lover’s Boudoir (review)

Oct. 18: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (interview)

Nov. 18: Anthony Avina’s blog (guest post)

Nov. 24: Anthony Avina’s blog (review)

Follow the online campaign with #lovedarkdays

Rooted and Winged by Luanne Castle (Sept.-Oct. 2022)

rootedwingedPlease join us for our Fall 2022 blog tour for Rooted and Winged by Luanne Castle, published by Finishing Line Press in September 2022.

The poems of Rooted and Winged explore the emotional and physical movement of flight and falling. They are of the earth, the place of fertile origins, and of the dream world we observe and imagine when we look upward. Golems and ghosts that emerge from the ground, as well as the birds and angels that live above us, inhabit the collection. We will always be striving for flight, even as we feel most comfortable closest to the earth.

Advance Praise:

“The poems of Luanne Castle’s Rooted and Winged are embedded in land and weather. ‘Bluegills snap up larvae in slivers of illusory light,’ she writes early in the collection, hinting at the sensibilities of the companionable speaker who will usher us through the book. She sees. She is open to the world out there. She calls herself ‘unknown but solid,’ a teller of ‘tiny limitless tales.’ She is engaged in the retrieval of generational memory: ‘one hairbrush, a plastic ball / a swaying branch, leaves decaying / the insides of my grandmothers’ fridges / bubble and pop into shards of memory / dangerous to the touch,’ she writes, enacting the progression from concrete detail to concrete memory to the kind of numinous memory that can be combustible. How rare it is, to discover a writer who notices that ‘Grandma used to stand under the bulb over the sink that haloed her and pearlized the onions she chopped,’ who can bring language to this: ‘When the last star falls to the others, / it darkens like the hush in a theatre, / a twinkling or two from silence.’ There is no arrogance in this book, but there is power.” –Diane Seuss, Pulitzer Prize winning author, author of frank: sonnets, Four-Legged Girl, and Still Life with Two Dead Peacocks and a Girl

Luanne Castle’s Rooted and Winged is an intimate journey through a topography where home encounters wilderness, and where the speaker must determine what she owes to her children, to aging loved ones, to the land and its wild inhabitants, and to herself.  In poetry that reveals the connection between what we inherit and what we leave behind, between what changes and what remains constant, Castle explores the mystery of what happens after a person ‘survives [her] own birth.’ The resulting work is undeniably graceful, compelling, and heartrending. ‘The way the sun came between me and the water will always seem like an introduction,’ Castle writes, as she deftly creates, from the seemingly mundane, ‘something splendid.'” –Chera Hammons, author of Maps of Injury

“Rooted and Winged is a fitting title for this collection of poems that plant themselves in reality but often hint at the surreal. Throughout, Luanne Castle has mastered sound and image: ‘I’ve done my best with feet and fists, my small / lungs blossoming like paper flowers in water…’ The poem that lingers most for me is ‘A Year in Bed, with Windows’ in which stark details create a palpable intimacy.” –Karen Paul Holmes, author of No Such Thing as Distance.

12756924About the Poet:

Luanne Castle’s new poetry collection is Rooted and Winged (Finishing Line Press). Kin Types (Finishing Line Press), a chapbook of poetry and flash nonfiction, was a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Award. Her first collection of poetry, Doll God (Aldrich), won the New Mexico-Arizona Book Award for Poetry. Luanne’s Pushcart and Best of the Net-nominated poetry and prose have appeared in Copper Nickel, American Journal of Poetry, Pleiades, Tipton Poetry Review, River Teeth, TAB, Verse Daily, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Saranac Review, Grist, and other
journals.

Available at Finishing Line Press and from Luanne Castle’s Bookstore.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Sept. 15: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (interview)

Sept. 22: The Bookish Elf (interview)

Sept. 28: the bookworm (guest post)

Oct. 4: Author Anthony Avina’s Blog (interview)

Oct. 11: The Book Connection (interview)

Oct. 19: CelticLady’s Reviews (guest post)

Oct. 25: The Soapy Violinist (guest post)

Follow the blog tour with the hashtag #rootedandwinged @writersitetweet #LuanneCastle

the dust of hope: rune poems by Judy Croome (Jan.-March 2022)

Please join us for our Winter 2022 blog tour for the dust of hope: rune poems by Judy Croome, published by Aztar Press in September 2021.

Judy Croome’s latest collection of poetry returns to the ancient ways of the Nordic runes, shining a light of hope and healing as we navigate through the wilderness of anxiety permeating these early years of the twenty-first century.

The simple verses console the reader with a calm acceptance that, even during a global pandemic, everyday life ebbs and flows with the natural rhythms of the timeless oceans.

Here are poems that invite us to stop, to breathe, and to see the world around us from a new perspective birthed within the centre of our souls.

About the Author:

Judy Croome lives and writes in Johannesburg, South Africa. Shortlisted in the African Writing Flash Fiction 2011 competition, Judy’s short stories, poems and articles have appeared in various magazines, anthologies and newspapers, such as The Sunday Times, The Huffington Post (USA) and the University of the Witwatersrand’s Itch Magazine. In 2021 and 2016, Judy was the poetry judge for Writers2000’s Annual Writing Competition. In 2021, Judy presented an hour long workshop to Writers 2000 called “The Gift of Poetry”

Judy loves her family, cats, exploring the meaning of life, chocolate, cats, rainy days, ancient churches with their ancient graveyards, cats, meditation and solitude. Oh, and cats. Judy loves cats (who already appear to have discovered the meaning of life.)

Her fiction and poetry books ‘the dust of hope: rune poems” (2021); “Drop by Drop: poems of loss” (2020); “a stranger in a strange land” (2015),”The Weight of a Feather & Other Stories” (2013), “a Lamp at Midday” (2012) and “Dancing in the Shadows of Love” (2011) are available from Aztar Press.

“Street Smart Taxpayers: A practical guide to your rights in South Africa” (Juta Law, 2017) was co-authored with her late husband Dr. Beric Croome (1960 – 2019). Follow her on GoodReads, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Add to GoodReads:

dust of hope

Available on Amazon.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Jan. 27: The Book Lover’s Boudoir (review)

Feb. 3: Anthony Avina Blog (review)

Feb. 9: Little Miss Star (review)

Feb. 11: Wall-to-Wall Books (review)

Feb. 17: Necromancy Never Pays (review)

Feb. 22: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (review)

March 2: Anthony Avina Blog (Interview)

March 11: True Book Addict (review)

March 22: the bookworm (review)

April 6: Pages for Sanity (review)

Follow the blog tour with the hashtag #dustofhope and @judy_croome

Out of No Way by Rojé Augustin (Jan. – April 2022)

Join us for our Winter/Spring tour for Rojé Augustin’s Out of No Way: Madam C.J. Walker & A’Lelia Walker, a poetic drama published in May 2020.

Author, producer and emerging poet Rojé Augustin has written a groundbreaking debut collection of dramatic poems about hair care entrepreneur Madam C.J. Walker and her daughter A’Lelia Walker. Out of No Way: Madam C.J. Walker & A’Lelia Walker, A Poetic Dramatracks Walker’s phenomenal rise from penniless orphan to America’s first self-made female millionaire in dramatic verse.

Born Sarah Breedlove to former Louisiana slaves in 1867, Madam C.J. Walker was orphaned at seven, married at 14, became a mother at 17, and was widowed at 20. After the death of her first husband, Sarah moved to St. Louis with her daughter where she earned $1.50 a day as a washerwoman. When her hair starting falling out she developed a remedy and sold her formula across the country. In the process she became the wealthiest Negro woman in America. Rojé’s highly original and accomplished poetry is written through the lens of the mother/daughter relationship via different poetic forms — from lyric poems to haikus, blackout poetry to narrative (one poem takes its inspiration from Edgar Allan Poe’s ‘The Raven’) — with each chapter addressing issues relevant to their lives at the time.

Written against the backdrop of the Jim Crow era, Out of No Way is ultimately an examination of what W.E.B Du Bois called “conflicting identities.” Sarah was a proud African American on the one hand and a woman seeking America’s acceptance on the other. She was a pauper who achieved the American Dream while denied the rights and protections of the American Constitution. She was a wife, mother, and businesswoman who juggled the demands of family with the demands of career. And she was an orphan who had to transcend a brutal childhood in order to be a loving mother to her child. As Du Bois stated at the time, “One ever feels a two-ness. An American, A Negro…Two warring ideals in one dark body.” Indeed Madam C.J. Walker/Sarah Breedlove was an American and a Negro, as was her daughter, A’Lelia Walker, both of whom likely viewed herself through their own conflicting identities. What did they see?

Out of No Way tells Walker’s remarkable rags-to-riches story by exploring thoughtful questions — What impact did Sarah’s busy work life have on A’Lelia? What was the bond between a mother orphaned so young and the daughter who might wait days or weeks for her return? Could the death of her parents when she was a child have compromised Sarah’s nurturing instincts? How did A’Lelia feel about their newfound wealth? What, if any, were the drawbacks of that wealth?

Check out this video reading of “Why Our Hair Is Not Straight” from the book:

Check out this video reading of “Elegy for my Mother”:

Video Reading of “The Lost Letters”:

“Graves & Thrones” video reading:

3 PSX Red Trench cropped patissier xtra surreal plus 002 film hi resAbout the Author:

Rojé Augustin is a native New Yorker who grew up on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Her first novel, The Unraveling of Bebe Jones, won the 2013 National Indie Excellence Award in African American fiction. She wrote the novel while living in London and Sydney as a stay-at-home-mom. She established Breaknight Films shortly after her move to Sydney in 2009 to develop and produce television projects across a range of formats, including television, web, and audio. Her first Sydney based project was a podcast and visual web series called The Right Space, which explores the relationship between creatives and their workspace. Rojé continues to work as a television producer while also writing in her spare time. She is an Australian citizen who currently lives in Sydney with her Aussie husband and two daughters.

Add to GoodReads:

Out of No Way

Available on Amazon.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Follow the blog tour with the hashtag #OutofNoWay #MadamC.J.Walker #RojeAugustin

Winter at a Summer House by Mary Beth Hines (Dec. 2021-March 2022)

hines_front(1)Please join us for our Winter 2022 blog tour for Winter at a Summer House by Mary Beth Hines, published by Kelsay Books in November 2021.

In Winter at a Summer House, Mary Beth Hines’s poems speak to the sublime and risks in every middle-class home, small city neighborhood, seaside retreat, or suburban backyard. Vivid, tactile imagery suffuses the collection, which follows the arc of a life from birth/first words to death/last words. Together, these poems create a sometimes heartbreaking, but often humorous and joyous, narrative that speaks to all readers.

Advance Praise:

“The poems in Mary Beth Hines’s first collection, Winter at a Summer House, strike a wonderful balance between narratives of everyday experience and a pristine, pure poetic imagination. Always rhythmically diverse, most of the time mellifluous, and often intense, Hines’s poetry vividly paints the life of a modern self-made woman, with her worries and obligations, her family, and her dreams. In response to the heroine’s world, this poetry, never static, vibrates with all sorts of emotions: love, friendship, youthful
infatuations, amorousness, jealousy, altruism. As a result, the book gives its reader all the pleasures of a novel – and of lyric novelty.”  – Katia Kapovich, the author of Gogol in Rome and Cossacks and Bandits

“Mary Beth Hines sings to us out of the staircases, back yards, and swimming pools of a life sumptuously lived, a world rife with joys and enticements, with girlhood wish and adulthood tryst. Each song lifts on the updrafts of a language passionately breathed, The poems are arrayed with such stunning craft that the art dissolves into the narrative. One forgets that one is reading and imagines that one is reliving this life. Winter at a Summer House is, in the words of one of the poems, a “gift to spark remembrance,” as if the memories had become our own.” -Tom Daley, the author of House You Cannot Reach

“Hines grew up in Massachusetts, adjacent to the Atlantic Ocean, and the poems in this debut collection are filled with richly detailed imagery evoking the sea—of characters swimming, bathing, diving, as if time were an unpredictable element and living, a process of navigating unexpected currents.  … A dynamic and colorful set of poems inspired by water and ocean imagery. ” – Kirkus Reviews

Hines, Winter at a Summer House, Author photo(1)

Photo Credit: David Mullen

About the Author:

Mary Beth Hines grew up in Massachusetts where she spent Saturday afternoons ditching ballet to pursue stories and poems deep in the stacks of the Waltham Public Library. She earned bachelor of arts in English from The College of the Holy Cross, and studied for a year at Durham University in England. She began a regular creative writing practice following a career in public service (Volpe Center, Cambridge, Massachusetts), leading award-winning national outreach, communications, and workforce programs. Her poetry, short fiction, and non-fiction appear in dozens of literary journals and anthologies both nationally and abroad. Winter at a Summer House is her first poetry collection. When not reading or writing, she swims, walks in the woods, plays with friends, travels with her husband, and enjoys life with their family, including their two beloved grandchildren. Visit her online.

Add to GoodReads:

winter at summer house

Available at Kelsay Books and Amazon.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Dec. 7: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (Guest Post)

Dec. 14: The Book Lover’s Boudoir (Review)

Dec. 15: Wall-to-Wall Books (Review)

Jan. 4: Author Anthony Avina (Guest Post)

Jan. 13: Author Anthony Avina (Review)

Jan. 26: The Book Connection (Review)

March 25: True Book Addict (Review)

March 30: Necromancy Never Pays (Review)

Follow the blog tour with hashtags #winteratsummerhouse and @MaryBethHinesXO

Your Words Your World by Louise Bélanger (Dec. 2021-Feb. 2022)

Join us for our Winter 2021-22 (Dec. 2021 through Feb. 2022) blog tour for Your Words Your World by Louise Bélanger, independently published in July 2021.

Poetry For Your Soul – Stunning Photographs
Zoom to Heaven
The most beautiful love poem
Where God is not there
Promises…
A handful of cloud
Clowns…
During the night

These are some of the titles of the poetry you will read in this beautiful, inspiring collection complemented by captivating nature photographs.

Read poems about God and having a relationship with Him. Poems about trust, missing a loved one, childhood memories, Christmas, Heaven, Easter…

Other poems are lovely stories, the length of a page.
The poetry is easy to understand. It is for everyone whether poetry is your genre or not, you will enjoy it.

Advance Praise:

There are a number of 5-star reviews on Amazon, including this one: “Your Words, Your World is a beautiful collection of poetry, photographs, and story poems about God and the world He created, and the second book of poems by Louise Bélanger. It helps the reader look at the world in a new way. Among my favorite poems is Ordinary, about how God can take something ordinary, like a star or a body of water, and make it do extraordinary things. I also loved Dust, which reminds us that God created us all from something we don’t really like–dust. A War Erupted paints a beautiful and tumultuous picture of a thunderstorm. The Contest is a thought-provoking story poem about a conversation between flowers. Zoom to Heaven is probably my favorite of all, as it talks about what it would be like to have a Zoom conversation with a loved one in Heaven. Your Words, Your World takes a unique look at God and the world He created, and it makes me appreciate Him and this world all the more.” – BonnieD

 
unnamed(1)About the Poet:
 
Louise Bélanger is a Canadian poet and the author of Your Words Your World and Your Words. Both books are beautiful, inspiring, and spiritual poems complemented by nature photographs. She started writing poetry in the spring of 2020. She poured her emotions onto paper, describing beautiful scenery and stories that came to life. With encouragement and help from friends, her dream came true. She loves photography and music, is an avid reader, and loves movies. Visit her website.
 

Add to GoodReads:

your words your world

Available at Amazon.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Dec. 3: the bookworm (Review)

Dec. 6: The Book Connection (Review)

Dec. 15: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (Guest Post)

Dec. 16: The Mary Reader (Review)

Jan. 5: Wall-to-Wall Books (Review)

Jan. 14: Just A Bookish Blog (Review)

Jan. 18: Christian Bookaholic (Review)

Jan. 19: Author Anthony Avina Blog (Guest Post)

Jan. 25: Author Anthony Avina Blog (Review)

Feb. 8: The Mary Reader (Instagram Review)

Feb. 15: Savvy Verse & Wit (Review)

Follow the blog tour with the hashtags #yourwordsyourworld #LouiseBélanger #poetrycommunity

the moon won’t be dared by Anne Leigh Parrish (Oct.-Dec. 2021)

Join us for our Fall 2021 blog tour for the moon won’t be dared by Anne Leigh Parrish, published by Unsolicited Press in October.

Unsolicited Press announces the release of the moon won’t be dared a poetry collection by award-winning author Anne Leigh Parrish that features artwork by Lydia Selk. In this momentous debut collection, the poet harnesses language to give readers a new vision of nature, the impossible plight of womanhood, love, aging, and beauty. Being a woman in a male-dominated society affords Anne Leigh Parrish the space to witness the world on an uneven keel. Parrish pays tribute to the splendor of seasonal renewal, but also weaves the harsh truths of betrayal and brutality into the laments holding the collection together.

Advance Praise:

Anne Leigh Parrish’s poems in the moon won’t be dared are an extended meditation that weaves through time and humanity, injustices and struggles, but with an eye towards love and beauty. These captivating poems carry an underlining ache of loss—past and future—but they are grounded in the present, in beetle and spider, in river and forest, in the windows that look into the yard. Parrish writes “we can only burn slowly over time,” and we see this book is full of light—fire, streetlight, smokelight, garden light, twilight, starlight, and in fact, “darkness/becomes light when the world bears us/along.” This is a voice willing to convey what isn’t working in the world, but also to always acknowledge what is—”a child of the night/who lived on moonlight and cold sparkle stars.” Parrish’s poems feed us, and they will “hold us long enough/to tinge the dawn with hope.”

—Kelli Russell Agodon, author of Dialogues with Rising Tides (Copper Canyon Press).

Sample poem:

pulled back around
circle or line?
round or straight?
what did einstein say?
the universe bends in on itself, or
relates only to itself
i don’t know
but even a lizard remembers and is pulled
back around
and the memory held in my larger, more
deeply folded brain
cries to visit its hinterland, its former place
as easily as the world circles from
one day to the next

About the Author:

Anne Leigh Parrish is the author of nine previously published books: A Winter Night (Unsolicited Press 2021); What Nell Dreams, a novella & stories (Unsolicited Press, 2020); Maggie’s Ruse, a novel, (Unsolicited Press, 2017); The Amendment, a novel (Unsolicited Press, 2017); Women Within, a novel (Black Rose Writing, 2017); By the Wayside, stories (Unsolicited Press, 2017); What Is Found, What Is Lost, a novel (She Writes Press, 2014); Our Love Could Light The World, stories (She Writes Press, 2013); and All The Roads That Lead From Home, stories (Press 53, 2011). Visit her website.

Add to GoodReads:

moon won't be dared

Available at Unsolicited Press and Amazon for pre-order.

Blog Tour Schedule:

Oct. 8: Necromancy Never Pays (Review)

Oct. 13: The Book Lover’s Boudoir (Review)

Oct. 21: The Book Connection (Review)

Oct. 26: Anthony Avina Blog (Guest Post)

Nov. 4: Anthony Avina Blog (Review)

Nov. 16: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (Guest Post)

Nov. 19: True Book Addict (Review)

Dec. 14: Littlemissstar55 (Review on Instagram)

Dec. 14: Savvy Verse & Wit (Interview)

Dec. 15: Savvy Verse & Wit (Review)

Follow the blog tour with the hashtag #moonwontbedared #AnneLeighParrish

Any Dumb Animal by A.E. Hines (June-Nov. 2021)

CvrAnyDumbAnimal_bookstore-200x300Join us for our Summer/Fall 2021 blog tour for AE Hines’ Any Dumb Animal, published by Main Street Rag in November 2021.

Any Dumb Animal (Main Street Rag, 2021), the debut poetry collection by AE Hines, presents a memoir-in-verse as told by a gay man raised in the rural South who comes of age during the AIDS crisis. Flashing back and forth in time, a cast of recurring characters and circumstances are woven into a rich tale of survival and redemption, exploring one man’s life as a queer son, father, and husband, over a span of more than thirty years.

Advance Praise:

“This compellingly candid work speaks the language of courage, of breath-taking transcendence. Finely crafted, it is a remarkable debut collection. Take note, world: a powerful lyric poet has emerged. Take note and rejoice!” ~ Paulann Petersen, Oregon Poet Laureate Emerita

“I was amazed over and over at the bravery of these poems, never shying from the difficult moments in life, and all the while staying true to the clear-eyed, fearless vision of their author.”  ~ James Crews, Editor of How to Love the World: Poems of Gratitude and Hope

“With a strong gift for storytelling and an eye attuned to detail, Hines ultimately shows us the beauty and knowledge made of experience.”  ~Richie Hofmann, Author of Second Empire

AEHines_Px_bookstoreAbout the Author:

AE Hines (he/him) grew up in rural North Carolina and currently resides in Portland, Oregon. His poetry has been widely published in anthologies and literary journals including I-70 Review, Sycamore Review, Tar River Poetry, Potomac Review, Atlanta Review, Crosswinds Poetry Journal and Crab Creek Review. He is winner of the Red Wheelbarrow Prize and has been a finalist for the Montreal International Poetry Prize. He is currently pursuing his MFA in Writing at Pacific University. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram.

Add to GoodReads:

Any Dumb Animal

Available at Main Street Rag for pre-order. Now available on Amazon.

#presale(1)Pre-order the collection and each dollar raised between June and November will be matched dollar-for-dollar and donated to The Trevor Project.

Blog Tour Schedule:

June 15: Diary of an Eccentric (Spotlight)

June 21: the bookworm (Spotlight)

June 24: The Book Lover’s Boudoir (Review)

June 30: The Book Connection (Spotlight)

July 7: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (Spotlight)

July 28: Lit and Life (Spotlight)

Aug. 4: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (Interview)

Aug. 18: The Book Connection (Review)

Sept. 2: Anthony Avina’s Blog (Spotlight)

Sept. 22: Anthony Avina’s Blog (Review)

Oct. 7: Lit and Life (Review)

Nov. 10: Diary of an Eccentric (Guest Post)

Nov. 16: Littlemissstar55 (Review on Instagram)

Nov. 17: Pages.for.Sanity (Review on Instagram)

Follow the blog tour with the hashtag #AnyDumbAnimal #AEHines @PoetAEHines

Septuagenarian by Sherry Quan Lee (May-July 2021)

Join us for our Spring/Summer 2021 blog tour for Septuagenarian by Sherry Quan Lee, published by Modern History Press in March 2021.

Septuagenarian: love is what happens when I die is a memoir in poetic form. It is the author’s journey from being a mixed-race girl who passed for white to being a woman in her seventies who understands and accepts her complex intersectional identity; and no longer has to imagine love. It is a follow-up to the author’s previous memoir (prose), Love Imagined: a mixed-race memoir, A Minnesota Book Award finalist.

Advance Praise:

In Septuagenarian, Sherry Quan Lee accepts her own invitation to look at life in retrospect, but with a new lens. Pulling from and expanding upon her previous body of work, she examines the version of herself that was writing at that time. The dignity and fire of her seventy-three-year-old gaze taking in snapshots of those selves…straightens my spine and gives me a vision for myself traveling today into my future septuagenarian. –Lola Osunkoya, MA, LPCC

Sherry Quan Lee writes courageously to understand herself and the world. She uses rich language and her skills as a storyteller to focus her sharp lens on what it means to have a complex, sometimes complicated identity: becoming invisible as she ages, a history of passing unseen, love and sex, grieving and celebration. She ruminates on history, which repeats itself in the current moment and widens her lens to look at the bigger, global picture to tell truths in poems that tenderly hold memory, time, rituals, trauma, mothering, fear of death and love in many forms. Her poems offer deeply personal, intimate and perceptive insights and opportunities to reflect on what it means to truly live. It feels like I’ve taken the journey with her, and I’m wiser for it. –Shay Youngblood, author of Soul Kiss and Black Girl in Paris

I’ve been reading Sherry Quan Lee’s work for almost thirty years and her voice keeps getting stronger, more urgent, deeper. In Septuagenarian, she continues to write out of her past, “the Black/Chinese/girl passing for white,” but the range of her voice is wider now, both inward and outward and it’s anchored by a wisdom that can only be achieved through struggle and time. This is a significant, heartfelt work, one that will help readers to understand not only the author and her life, but also America itself–what we have been, what we are and, hopefully, what we might become. -David Mura, author of A Stranger’s Journey: Race, Identity & Narrative Craft in Writing

Sherry Quan Lee writes with a purity of intention. She has no interest in certain kinds of poetics that conceal, or only honor, adornment. She has her gaze on the long sweep of her personal history. She reflects on old wounds, key mistakes and certain joys. She pushes against clichéd thinking or feeling. She is hard on herself, in these poems, in ways few poets are. She honors the complicated narratives of race, of being female, of living a long life and works to discern the point of it all. I’ve read and taught Sherry Quan Lee’s work for a very long time now and am grateful for this new collection. -Deborah Keenan, author of ten collections of poetry and a book of writing ideas, from tiger to prayer

About the Author:

Sherry Quan Lee, MFA, University of Minnesota; and Distinguished Alumna, North Hennepin Community College, is the editor of How Dare We! Write: a multicultural creative writing discourse. Her most recent book, Love Imagined: a mixed race memoir, was a 2015 Minnesota Book Award Finalist. Previous books include: Chinese Blackbird, a memoir in verse; How to Write a Suicide Note: serial essays that saved a woman’s life; and a chapbook, A Little Mixed Up.

Quan Lee was a selected participant for the Loft Literary Center Asian Inroads Program, and later was the Loft mentor for the same program. Previously, she was the Writer-to-Writer mentor for SASE: The Write Place, at Intermedia Arts. Also, she was the 2015-2016 Loft Literary Center’s Mentor Series poetry mentor. Visit her blog.

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Septuagenarian

Available on Modern History Press, Amazon, Bookshop.

Blog Tour Schedule:

May 12: The Book Lover’s Boudoir (Review)

May 18: Review Tales by Jeyran Main (Interview)

May 26: CelticLady’s Reviews (Spotlight)

June 2: Diary of an Eccentric (Guest Post)

June 8: The Book Connection (Review)

June 21: Luanne Castle’s Writer’s Site (Review)

July 4: Book Dilettante (Guest Post)

July 5: True Book Addict (Review)

July 7: Pages.for.Sanity (Review on Instagram)

July 8: Impressions in Ink (Review)

Follow the blog tour with the hashtag #Septuagenarian #SherryQuanLee @mhistorypress