Articles for the Month of July 2014

Blue Hydrangeas: an Alzheimer’s love story by Marianne Sciucco

Product Details

Having spent a lifetime together, Sara and Jack, who run a successful bed-and-breakfast called Blue Hydrangeas refuse to acknowledge there may be a problem with Sara, until the time comes when they are forced to face the truth. When she is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, they are in denial, shocked, yet resolute, they have faced life together united for so long, that they are determined to continue to do so for as long as they can.

However, time takes its toll and after nine years, Jack, is not a well man himself and is finding himself under pressure from family and the medical staff to put Sara in a home, but can he?

This is a poignant love story, beautifully written. If you have ever nursed or known anyone with Alzheimer’s or Dementia this story will bring the memories flooding back. The effects on the loved ones, and family of caring for the sufferers is hard, both physically, and mentally, as they watch their loved ones memories go.

This is not a soppy romance, but rather, a true celebration of the love between two people. I have no doubt that it will make you smile, it will undoubtedly make you cry, but, this is an absolutely amazing story and I highly recommend it.

Author’s Website: http://mariannesciucco.blogspot.fr/

About the Author: I’m not a nurse who writes but a writer who happens to be a nurse. A lover of words and books, I studied the craft of writing as an English major at the University of Massachusetts at Boston and briefly worked as a newspaper reporter in New England. To avoid poverty, I later became a nurse. In 2002, I began writing about the intricate lives of people struggling with health and family issues. I’m a native Bostonian who loves Cape Cod but I make my home in upstate New York. When I’m not writing, I work as a campus nurse at a community college. To see what I’m up to visit MarianneSciucco.blogspot.com or find me on facebook, Twitter, and goodreads. You may also drop me a line at mariannesciucco@gmail.com.

Blue Hydrangeas is available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle and Audiobook formats http://www.amazon.com/Blue-Hydrangeas-Alzheimers-love-story-ebook/dp/B00CHU571S/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1406554022&sr=8-1&keywords=blue+hydrangeas

 

Daimones: Daimones Trilogy, Vol.1 by Massimo Marino

Product Details

This was a very interesting story which I thoroughly enjoyed listening to. It is well thought out and a refreshing change from the usual post-apocalyptic zombie novel.

If you woke up and discovered everyone outside your house was dead, what would YOU do?

Well Dan and his wife Mary have to not only decide what to do, but also how to shield and protect their daughter Annah from the realities which now face them.

Thoughtfully written and logical, the decisions, and how they react to each experience make this a really enjoyable story.
What happens to the rules when there’s no-one there to enforce them? How long will the internet survive? Are there other human’s out there, isolated and afraid too, and if so, how can you contact them?

So many questions, not forgetting the obvious one, what happened?

An exciting story, with interesting twists and turns and great characters, and the icing on the cake was the ending which explained a lot, and yet kept you wanting to know more.

 

About the Author:         

Biography

Massimo Marino comes from a scientist background: He spent years at CERN and The Lawrence Berkeley Lab followed by lead positions with Apple, Inc. and the World Economic Forum. He is also co-founder of “Squares on Blue”, a Big Data Analytics service company.
Massimo currently lives in France and crosses the border with Switzerland multiple times daily, although he is no smuggler.

“Daimones” is the first volume of the homonymous “Daimones Trilogy” and is based on personal experience and facts with an added “what if” to provide an explanation to current and past events. It is his first novel. Watch the book trailer at: http://youtu.be/gqqn0YtPrrw

“Daimones” is the recipient of the 2012 PRG Award Reviewers’ Choice in Science Fiction, and the Seal of Excellence in Quality Writing from both the Awesome Indies (awesomeindies.net) and the indiePENdents.org association.
In September 2013 “Daimones” won the Hall of Fame – Best in Science Fiction Award, shortlisted by the Quality Reads UK Book Club. http://www.orangeberrybooktours.com/expo/2013/08/best-science-fiction/

With the second volume, “Once Humans”, the series is the 2013 Winner of the PRG Reviewer’s Choice Award Best in Science Fiction Series. In May 2014, the Jury of the National Indie Excellence Awards in LA, selected “Daimones” as FINALIST in Science Fiction. http://www.wireservice.ca/index.php?module=News&func=display&sid=11921

Author’s website: http://massimomarinoauthor.com/about-me/

Available at Amazon in Paperback, Kindle and Audiobook formats http://www.amazon.com/Daimones-Trilogy-Vol-1-Massimo-Marino-ebook/dp/B0083IHV5I/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1406555358&sr=1-1&keywords=daimones

Desolation Row (Austin Starr Mysteries Book 1) by Kay Kendall

This story is set at the 1960’s during the Vietnam War, at the time when Richard Nixon became president and the hippy, ‘peace and love’ scene was in full swing.

Newly married Austin Starr, and her husband David, have fled Texas. David is a draft resistor and they are living, with others who are like minded in Canada.

Settling down in a strange country, so different from her home is hard enough for Austin, however she is determined to be a good wife and supportive of her husband. Then, suddenly her life is turned upside down when she makes a discovery which leads to her husband being accused of murder.

Frustrated, she is determined to discover the truth, in what the police feel is an open and shut case. With a flair for investigating that even the CIA have noticed, Austin decides that she must uncover the truth herself about who murdered fellow draft resistor, Reginald a Senator’s son.

This is a heart-warming tale of one woman’s determination to clear her husband’s name. Passionately determined, the resolutely unflinching Austin delves into dark corners and discovers deeply buried secrets, which open cans of worms, and put her very life in danger.

I found this an engaging story and a brilliant mystery with plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing, set in a very controversial period of modern history. 

Author’s website: http://kaykendallauthor.com/

This book is available from Amazon in Paperback, Kindle and Audiobook formats http://www.amazon.com/Desolation-Austin-Starr-Mysteries-Book-ebook/dp/B00BFHHRB2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1406547442&sr=8-1&keywords=desolation+row

Chateau de Chenonceau: Simple Guide by Miroslav Kucera

coverThe Chateau de Chenonceau in the Loire Valley, is truly beautiful. I have visited it on various occasions and live within driving distance of it, so I was interested to read this guide.

I found this book very useful, packed with information, vivid descriptions of the magnificent rooms and practical advice about visiting this wonderful chateau. Once there, as it says in the book there are excellent audio guides in many languages, however I feel this book would work well too, if desired.

An added bonus, for me, is the excellent attention to the history of this amazing place, the realisation that it had been owned by the ‘common people’ as well as royalty was news to me. The only thing which spoilt this book for me was the lack of photo’s, a book about a chateau like this, with such beautifully constructed buildings and gardens deserves, in my opinion, photos.

If you are considering giving this beautiful chateau a visit I highly recommend this book.

 

Available from Amazon in Kindle format http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007JEWUGW/ref=cm_cr_ryp_prd_ttl_sol_0

 

 

 

Lafitte’s Treasure by Joe Corso

6585687_origThis book begins way back in the past, and Governor Claiborne of Louisiana’s refusal to meet with the pirate Jean Lafitte, denouncing him as a “Hellish Banditti,” a decision which was to affect the lives of future generations of both families, and others.

For in 1813, the British had approached Jean Lafitte, asking them to join them in fighting the Americans, they had no idea of what sort of a man he was. He was a pirate, yes, but he was also a mason and lived his life by their codes of honour. Luckily, General Jackson recognised those codes and virtues also, and the rest as they say is history…

The decisions we make in life not only affect us, and the lives of those around us, but their repercussions can be felt, as ripples, far into the future. Eventually though these ripples do start to settle, and so it is, that through chance events and discoveries, the lives of two people, who had previously never met, converge.

The legacies, left to Eddie, and Julianna, bond them as they embark on their exciting and dangerous adventure. Following clues left in the past, they travel to New Orleans on their quest to discover the lost treasure, however, they are not the only ones who know about it, other’s want it too, and will do anything to procure it.

This story, for me, it has all the vital ingredients, action, adventure, murder, mystery, and romance. This author’s attention to detail has meant that he has also added a lot of fascinating history about New Orleans and the famous pirate Jean Lafitte.

Available from Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Lafittes-Treasure-Award-Winning-Author-Corso-ebook/dp/B00LP49BLE/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1405929254&sr=8-1&keywords=lafittes+treasure

About the Author: I grew up in Queens, New York and I started writing late in life with the intention of helping my grandchildren pay for their college education. I found to my surprise that I could tell a good story which resulted in my completing 15 books and 9 short stories including my popular ‘ENGINE 24 FIRE STORIES’ trilogy. LAFITTE’S TREASURE has just been published and it is receiving great reviews.

‘THE STARLIGHT CLUB 5: REVENGE is completed and is presently being edited. When that book is finished I’m thinking of either writing a sequel to my western ‘THE ADVENTURES OF THE LONE JACK KID” or writing The STARLIGHT CLUB 6.

AWARDS

THE STARLIGHT CLUB won the silver in the 2012 eLit contest in the ‘TRUE CRIME’ category’. In 2013 it won HONORABLE MENTION in the Reader’s Favorite ‘HISTORICAL FICTION’ category’. In 2014 it was an IPPY award FINALIST and it was awarded the Gold Seal as a Eric Hoffer MONTAINGE MEDAL FINALIST. It also won the 2014 (NIEA) National Indie Excellence Awards FINALIST in the CRIME-FICTION CATEGORY.

THE LONE JACK KID won ‘FINALIST’ in the 2013 Readers Favorite in the ‘WESTERN’ category.

My short story ‘FIRE: BOX 598’ won the BRONZE in the 2013 Readers Favorite contest in the ‘HISTORICAL NON FICTION category’.

Go figure. If I would have known that I could write a good story. I would have started writing a half century ago.

Author’s website: http://www.corsobooks.com

 

Swallows & Robins – The Guests In My Garden

An new entertaining and hilarious new book by one of my favourite authors

Product Details

http://www.amazon.com/Swallows-Robins-The-Guests-Garden/dp/1481076442/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1354712821&sr=8-1&keywords=swallows+and+robins+by+Susie+Kelly

Available in paperback and Kindle format.

When the chance to transform two old barns into holiday cottages presents itself, Susie grasps the opportunity, all she has to do is find the right builders for the job and make sure the works completed before the first guests arrive.

 

In this entertaining, funny and sometimes sad book, we have the opportunity to meets a wide variety of her friends, acquaintances and guests who arrive from around the world and come from all walks of life.  From Tristram the blond Apollo to Ivy, her cleaner, every characters description and antics add to the readers’ enjoyment of this entertaining book.

 

Through her guests’ travels, we are able to explore some of the beautiful French countryside, its heritage and traditions whilst also being treated to a glimpse of what life really is like in rural France.

 

Cornered by Alan Brenham

corneredNew Release – A gripping crime thriller written by award winning Author Alan Brenham.

About the Book:  He’s haunted by the memory of a kidnapping case gone wrong… Not wanting history to repeat itself, Detective Matt Brady struggles to solve the disappearances of seven young women, but he quickly finds himself pitted against a criminal organization that knows as much about police procedure as he does—an organization that will do whatever it takes to stay one step ahead of him. His troubles are compounded when a young veterinarian injects herself into the investigation and is targeted to become victim number eight. When he tries to protect her, he finds himself in the crosshairs of a professional cop killer. Can Brady solve the case in time to save his new love, or will this investigation be the death of both of them?

About the Author: Alan Brenham is the pen name of Alan Behr, a Texas criminal law attorney and former law enforcement officer.
He was born in upstate New York, in the small Catskill Mountains town of Delhi. He worked as a Texas law enforcement officer for over fourteen years and as a criminal prosecutor and later criminal defense attorney for over twenty-four years. His travels took him from Alaska to Russia, from Norway and Sweden down to Lebanon and Iran plus stops at almost every island in the Caribbean. Today he lives in the Austin, Texas, area with his wife, Lillian.
His first crime novel, Price of Justice, won several awards including best in police/crime fiction. A second novel, Cornered, was released by Black Opal Books on Amazon on July 13, 2014 in print format. He’s in the process of writing his third novel, Rampage, a sequel to Price of Justice, with more to come.

Author Website: http://www.alanbrenham.com/

***

In Temple, Texas, Police Detective Matt Brady, assisted by FBI Special Agent Steve Casani, is investigating the disappearances of five beautiful women. Desperate, with no leads and the number of missing women growing at an alarming pace, Matt is desperate for answers.

Everyone knows that the person we become in life can be affected in a moment, by a word, or circumstance. The paths we take as a result and their consequences are sometimes, only discovered after the passing of time. These life-changing moments or words, for some people are stamped in their mind forever, silently festering and waiting to emerge, bringing back memories, which cloud the present.

This book is even more enjoyable because, whilst writing it, the author has been able to draw from his wealth and variety of personal experience in police and law, among which is his time as a Temple patrol officer and, Assistant General Counsel for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

A brilliantly written compelling thriller, action packed, clever and with twists and turns which are guaranteed to keep the reader guessing until the very end.

Available from Amazon in Paperback: http://www.amazon.com/Cornered-Alan-Breham/dp/1626941386/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1405422096&sr=8-1-fkmr1&keywords=Cornered+by+Alan+Brenham

 

 

 
 

 

Another Spring by John Needham

Capture_Another_Spring_blue_palerAbout the Book: An un-named black girl finds awakening of love in her barren life. A young girl samples a first kiss with a young man after having a fright at the seaside in 1924. Two couples go through the hopes and anxieties of child adoption, finding they have something in common. The angst of being an ugly duckling teenage boy in the 1950s comes good, with a surprise twist in the tail. A writer reminisces about the recent years of his past in recollections bitter-sweet.

These are stories that will tug the heart strings and sometimes make you smile. And sometimes too, perhaps, they might provoke another sort of smile: a wry one of remembrance.

 

 

A lovely collection of short stories.

This book is a collection of short stories, each possessing different themes, but all written in the style of writing that lovers of John Needham’s other books will recognise. 

John writes from experience, hindsight and observation. These stories are poignant, reflective, heartrending and celebratory, they will make you laugh, smile, think and reflect.

If you are a fan of fly on the wall stories or memoirs, you will love the way that his pen dips into the past as he captures the essence of life then, and the innocence of bygone days, in the first two of his short stories which are called Awakening and Skeggy Day Out.

Tantalisingly, Baby Blues is a taster for his next novel The One of Us. As two couples explore their thoughts and feelings whilst deciding whether they are going to adopt.

Of course everyone has fallen in love. Dream, Dream, Dream, takes its title from the famous song as one man reflects on life and love in the 50’s.

Whilst in the final story a writer shares a little of himself in Another Spring…

Even though two of the stories are modified extracts from the author’s novels Convergence and Forebears, the others are new, and I am confident in saying that fans of John’s writing will not be disappointed in this new book.

 Available in Kindle format from:

Amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Another-Spring-heart-warming-seasonal-tales-ebook/dp/B00LN6AQJA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1405089596&sr=8-1&keywords=Another+spring+by+john+needham

Amazon.co.uk http://www.amazon.co.uk/Another-Spring-heart-warming-seasonal-tales-ebook/dp/B00LN6AQJA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1405090739&sr=8-1&keywords=another+spring+by+john+needham

Autharium http://www.autharium.com/Ebook/wordsfrom%20john/another-spring-story

 

 

 

 

 

Aunt Phil’s Trunk (Volumes 1 & 2 by Laurel Downing Bill

NRCFAUNTPHILSTRUNKSERIESLC book tour

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Enter the giveaway at the bottom of this blog for a chance to win your very own copy of Aunt Phil’s Trunk by Laurel Downing Bill.Vol 1 & 2.

 

Aunt Phil’s Trunk: Volume One by Laurel Downing Bill

ThVol_1_Cover_Aunt_Phil book touris talented author’s love of Alaska shines through as she tells the world of its past.

In this, the first book in the series, the author takes her readers right back in time, to when the first Alaska Natives arrived, there after crossing the Bering Sea Land Bridge,  thousands of years ago, and through history until the famous Klondike Gold Rush in the nineteenth century.

She does this wonderfully, bringing the history of this amazing place to life, through short stories, which vary tremendously. Through her brilliant penmanship, she brings alive the lives of these people who made this made this land their own under incredibly harsh conditions’

For me, though, I have to say the wonderful collection of hundreds of pictures were the icing on this most enjoyable cake. Being able to actually SEE the people who were alive in those times past is a joy I will never tire of, and it enhanced even more (if possible) my enjoyment of these wonderful tales.

I have never been to Alaska, however I would love to do so, especially having read this book.

Reviewed by Susan Keefe

 

 

Aunt Phil’s Trunk: Volume Two by Laurel Downing Bill

As this talented autVol_2_Cover_Aunt_Phil book tourhor digs yet again into Aunt Phil’s Trunk, we discover, in this volume, the continuing history of Alaska, in a far shorter period from the end of the nineteenth century to 1912.

True grit, and determination are the words which come to after having read this book. Its short stories tell of the true frontier spirit of these brave souls who came to Alaska from all over to try their fortune in the glorious gold-rush days. From the prospectors, to the vaudeville actors who came to entertain them, from the criminals and the lawmen to a volcanic eruption, the reader cannot fail to be entertained.

Through this very talented author, the true adventures in this harsh landscape is brought vividly to life, not only by the wonderful collection of stories but also by the incredible collection of hundreds of photographs which help to make this book so amazing.

Reviewed by Susan Keefe

 

Contact: Laurel Downing Bill

Email: auntphilstrunk@gmail.com

Website: http://www.AuntPhilsTrunk.com

Facebook: http://www.Facebook.com/LaurelBillAuthor

Twitter: http://www.Twitter.com/LaurelBill

Google +: http://www.plus.Google.com/LaurelBill

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmh0wCifvbXYsVg5IkawkyQ

 Alaska History Decoded!

 Aunt Phil’s Trunk, volumes 1 and 2, feature Alaska history stories written by Laurel Downing Bill and her late Alaska historian aunt, Phyllis Downing Carlson. The photo-laden books are a delightful journey through Alaska’s rich past.

Released in April 2006, Volume 1 includes stories from early Alaska up to about 1900. Tales include nuns mingling with rough-and-tumble adventurers on the banks of Nome, the last shot of the Civil War booming in the Bering Sea and the scoundrel Soapy Smith serving as an angel of mercy before he became the undisputed king of crime in Skagway. 

From grizzled old prospectors to poke-stealing highwaymen to the magic of Alaska Native shamans, this book is a treasure trove of nonfiction short stories about Alaska’s colorful past and is filled with more than 300 rare historical photographs. This volume ends with the famous Klondike Gold Rush. 

Volume 2, released May 2007, picks up where Volume 1 ends – right around the Klondike Gold Rush – and ends in 1912. It includes stories about Alaska’s early lawmen, and the criminals they pursued, along with pioneering postmen and rugged adventurers who challenged the Great Land’s highest peaks. 

The second collection of stories also shares how towns like Fairbanks, Valdez, Cordova and Seward were born, the Iditarod Trail was blazed and the largest volcanic eruption of the 20th century.  This volume contains close to 350 historical photographs to complement the lively storytelling. 

This series of books, suitable for ages 9 to 99, is a labor of love from a niece who wanted to keep the legacy of her aunt alive. When Carlson, a well-known Alaska reference librarian at the ZJ Loussac Library in Anchorage, passed away in 1993, Bill inherited her aunt’s research, award-winning historical articles and rare Alaska books. Bill has spent the past several years organizing and editing the historian’s work and writing her own pieces to dovetail with Carlson’s. 

Aunt Phil’s Trunk volumes 1 through 4 are available through http://www.AuntPhilsTrunk.com and Amazon.com.

Volume 1: http://j.mp/SSiIKX

Volume 2: http://j.mp/SSiOT1

Volume 3: http://j.mp/SSjEz2

Volume 4: http://j.mp/SSjR5q

The print versions retail for $19.95. Ebooks sell for $14.95.

 

Biography Laurel Downing Bill 

Born in Fairbanks, Alaska, in 1951, Laurel Downing Bill moved to Juneau in 1959 after her father, Richard Downing,  

became the state’s first commissioner of public works. Eight years later, she began traveling when her father took a job with a company building roads and bridges around the world.

Laurel returned to Alaska in 1970, where she eventually met her husband, Don, in Fairbanks. In 1974, the couple moved to King Salmon, a small village about 360 air miles southwest of Anchorage, where they raised their two children, Kim and Ryan. Don worked as area biologist for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game Commercial Fisheries Division and Laurel worked her way up to assistant general manager for the Bristol Bay Telephone Cooperative Inc.

After 24 years, they retired into Anchorage, which is when Laurel received her late historian aunt’s body of work. Phyllis Downing Carlson, who passed in 1993, worked as the Alaska reference librarian for Anchorage’s public library and wrote award-winning stories about the state she loved.

 

Laurel decided to turn her aunt’s work, as well as her own research into Alaska’s colorful past, into articles for new generations. However, she knew she needed to know about researching, writing and publishing to do the job right, so she returned to college to learn everything she could to make her project successful.

At 52, Laurel graduated from the University of Alaska Anchorage in 2003 with a degree in journalism and a minor in history.

She became one of the main reporters for a weekly newspaper, The Anchorage Chronicle, during her junior year and birthed an Alaska history column titled Aunt Phil’s Trunk. The column continues to be printed today in the monthly newspaper, The Senior Voice.

 After receiving an enthusiastic response to her column of tales from Alaska’s days gone by, she turned her attention to developing the state’s history from thousands of years ago – when the Native people first arrived in the country – up to the present.

Volumes 1, 2, 3 and 4 – released in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 – are flying off shelves of both major and independent bookstores, as well as Amazon.com and gift shops and chain stores across Alaska. She’s currently working on Volume 5.

Her award-winning stories have appeared in newspapers across Alaska, as well as the Alaska Magazine, Mushing magazine and First Alaskans magazine.

Sample of reader comments:1. Laurel, I don’t think you realize how many people enjoy this series. Anyone interested in Alaskan history must have these books (I have all four). Every time I’d go into a store (Fred Meyers, Carrs etc,), I go to the book section to see if Volume 5 was out yet. The subjects are short enough to prevent being boring but informative. I can’t wait till No. 5 comes out! – Larry Anderson, BP Exploration Alaska.     2. Hi Laurel! I am still re-reading your books – I met you at a market, maybe Anchorage, a couple of years ago whilst on my dream trip to Alaska. The gold mining days must have been a great adventure, although dangerous. You weave a great story – thank you!  – Rosey Sandford, Townsville, Australia.3. Got your books and can’t get anything done. I sampled one before going back to critical activities, but it’s like sampling a new flavor of a gallon of ice cream. “Even a gallon is a sufficient sample,” you grumble as you try to get your face into the carton to lick the bottom. – Larry Winebrenner, Miami Gardens, Florida.4. These are the first books I’ve read in years and couldn’t put one down once I started! Cindy Yates, Anchorage, Alaska. 5. Hello Laurel, I received the books today!  Thank you and I am enjoying reading the first book, which I took home with me, and it is so interesting, keeps me spellbound!!  Thanks again! – Donna Morgan, Nome, Alaska. 6. I have enjoyed all three immensely — but then I love adventure.  Congrats on such wonderful, mind stimulating reading — just the right mix of pics and words — in short stories. The stories are as big and satisfying as Alaska itself. – Steve Wharton, Indiana

 

Link to sign up https://docs.google.com/forms/d/18qTSCsotDeIDgKdkArp-Pe3YC2mG9pfT8S06glAsZwI/viewform

Review 1 – Aunt Phil s Trunk: Volume One – Review from Fairbanks Daily News-Miner David James, Reviewer – June 17, 2007

Aunt Phil’s Trunk: Volume One, published last year, was an unexpected gem. The book was a compilation of historical essays about early Alaska, ranging from Native life in the pre-contact period through the era of Russian possession, and onward to the purchase of the territory by the United States and the gold rushes that ensued a few decades later.

Most of the book’s stories were compiled by the late Phyllis Downing Carlson, a near-lifelong resident of the state who published many of these tales in numerous publications. When she passed away in 1993 at the age of 84, her countless files fell into the hands of her niece, Laurel Downing Bill.

As luck would have it, Downing Bill also has a flair for writing and a passion for Alaskan history. As a memorial to her aunt and a gift to the rest of us, Downing Bill has been organizing these stories, adding her own details, exhaustively illustrating them with period photos, and publishing them in books which deserve to be snatched up by anyone with an interest in our state’s rich past.

 

Review 2

 

The Anchorage Times – Anchorage Daily News/Voice of the Times – William J. Tobin, senior editor – June 18, 2006

While handing out compliments, let’s give a big pat on the back to Laurel Downing Bill, who has just published what she calls an Alaska historian’s collection of treasured tales. It’s a beautifully printed 344- page soft-cover book, Aunt Phil’s Trunk, illustrated with a hundred or more great old photos that dramatically show what life was all about in Alaska’s early pioneer days. The illustrations alone are worth the $19.95 price, but the narratives from front to back are equally praiseworthy.

 

This book contains a collection of Alaska history stories written by Phyllis Downing Carlson, as well as stories written by Laurel Downing Bill that came from tidbits found among the notes and rare books Bill inherited when Carlson died in 1993. For those who love Alaska history, this easy-to-read collection is highly recommended.

 

Review 3

Amazon.com – Lorrie Farrelly, Reviewer – March 2014

AUNT PHIL’S TRUNK, VOL. 1, by Phyllis Downing Carlson and Laurel Downing Bill, is a wonderfully written, eminently readable, and richly illustrated narrative of Alaska’s history up to 1900. Ensuing volumes – including one expected to be released within the coming year – continue the story through the 20th century.

I especially loved the wealth of vintage photographs in these pages that made frontier Alaska spring to life. So many cultures and so many characters populate this book: native tribes, Russian and American explorers and fortune hunters, trappers, prospectors, merchants, heroes, shamans, and scalawags. They are all here in their wild and woolly glory, pitting themselves against one of the most beautiful and forbidding landscapes in the world. In pre-1900 Alaska, fortune and disaster are never more than a hair’s breadth apart.

AUNT PHIL’S TRUNK is full of well-researched tales both wonderful and tragic. Written in a clear, coherent, and evocative voice, it is a fascinating window to Alaska’s wild past. Highly recommended!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway