Friday, April 20, 2018

Book Feature: Intrusion by Lanayre Liggera

As the judge in a complicated case involving an oil-bunkering gang, Sir Carter Braxton finds himself totally under the security provided by a mysterious figure, Sidi el-Hassam, a wealthy Arab who commands a volunteer group that specializes in preventing crude oil theft. The isolation under which he now lives causes him to miss his best friend’s funeral in 1993 for reasons that must remain inexplicable to his friends, the Falconer family, who live in the Forest of Dean, where they grow restoration oak. Finding herself in London, the widow, Valerie Falconer, an American from Texas, slips into one of Carter’s trials as a spectator, after which she discovers the conditions under which her old friend has been living for over three years. However, a third element also mixes into the situation in that both Carter and the Sidi, separately, have volunteered to participate in the refining of the GSP satellite system now being tested by NASA. This tracking system allows Carter to move temporarily to Texas to draw one of his assassins out. Not only is this the story of a man under physical stress and emotional stress; it is also a record of his spiritual journey led by his friend and later wife, Valerie, as well as the spiritual journey of the Sidi, which has been generated by an apparition of Mary in Zeitoun, Egypt.

Lanayre Liggera holds an MA from Tufts University and another from Cambridge-Goddard Graduate School, where she became interested in the history of woman as portrayed by music, which led to the formation of the New Harmony Sisterhood Band, with Lanayre on banjo. The students’ research produced the book All Our Lives, which was used on college campuses until radicals blew up the publisher, Diana Press. Sometime later, she began to pursue a long-held interest in early aviation. Inevitably, this led studying World War I, spending several tours of the Western Front sponsored by our parent organization, the Western Front Association, US branch. Lanayre was named chairman of the New England–New York chapter, a post which she held for fourteen years, which held a yearly conference at a different location in our region. She and her husband were involved as volunteers in prison ministry for eighteen years as well as in nursing homes, soup kitchens, and the VA. They live in Hudson Valley, where they try to keep up with the comings and goings of their global grandchildren. She is the author of The Life of Robert Loraine: The Stage, the Sky, and George Bernard Shaw.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Book Blast: The Possum in the Pool by Joy Liebl

Title: The Possum in the Pool
Author: Joy Liebl
Publisher: XLibrisUS
Genre: Children's Book
Format: Ebook

A fun and educational book with attention grabbing illustrations for younger children and easy to read text for older ones.  The book's focus is on listening to parents and the consequences of not doing so.  It also deals with a parent's love and concern for their children. It received great reviews from "Pacific Book Review" and "US Review of Books (w/Eric Hoffer)". 

Joy Liebl was born and raised in Milwaukee, WI.  She spent 5 years living in Elmhurst, IL before settling in Winter Park and then Safety Harbor, FL.  Joy loves to crochet, do needlepoint & embroidery, sketch and work with dollhouse miniatures which she sells in her Etsy Shop “JoysHandmades” along with her crocheted pieces and varied vintage items.  She is an avid reader but enjoys “Fantasy” the most.  This is her first published book.  The story line is based on a true life experience of finding a small baby possum in her pool one morning and expanding her mind to create what she felt happened before and after the poor possum fell into the pool.  Joy designed every bit of the book herself as to how each page must be set up to maximize the story.  She was thrilled with D’Lynn Roll’s vision of how Robby would look and with each picture subsequently done.  Joy was equally thrilled with the wonderful reviews she received from “Pacific Book Reviews” and “US Book Reviews”  



Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins March 19 and ends on March 30.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on March 31.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone! 


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Monday, March 19, 2018

Guest Post from Jordan Fersel, M.D., author of When Bad Backs Happen to Good People

Title: When Bad Backs Happen to Good People
Author: Jordan S. Fersel, MD
Publisher: iUniverse
Genre: Medical
Format: Ebook

Chronic back and neck pain is a thorny issue that plagues millions living in today’s modern world and has the power to take over a person’s life—not just physically, but also psychologically, emotionally, and physiologically. The good news is that there are effective ways of dealing with chronic pain that allows patients to return to a productive life without undergoing unnecessary surgery. Dr. Jordan Fersel is a board-certified pain specialist who relies on his diverse professional experience to distinguish the differences between acute and chronic pain, scrutinize the accuracy of an MRI scan to diagnose pain, examine the architecture of the spine, explain nerve injuries, differentiate between the various types of arthritis, and offer potential treatment options. Through included case studies and illustrations, pain sufferers will learn there is hope for managing pain through proper diagnosis and a treatment plan tailored to treat individual needs. It’s Not All in Your Head shares guidance from a trusted physician that explores chronic back and neck pain, its sources, and the many treatment options available.


In her passionate and compassionate article of 11/15/17, "The Death of Pain Management" ,Janice Reynolds, a retired pain management nurse, places her finger with precision on the pulse of what ails the field of pain management. It does not seem at this point that the opioid crisis is the direct resultof doctors over-prescribing narcotics, most doctors I know are afraid to prescribe pain killers for the fear of being sanctioned, fined, or having
their medical license revoked.

When a patient comes to a doctor, it is common that acute pain is the primary complaint. We are used to trying to identify and treat the cause of pain, which in many cases is an indicator of something more serious, but not always. There is a triage system in each physician's mind as to the seriousness of the message of pain. While sometimes we may over-react, but in my mind, the best physicians ask themselves, "what is the worst thing 
that this pain can indicate" and act accordingly. We all know the old adage, prepare for the worst, but hope for the best, and with regard to acute pain that is a 'best practice' in medicine.
But what about the patient that has sustained a work or motor vehicle related injury, has arthritis or any autoimmune disease or chronic infection who complains of long-standing pain that does not go away and that has not responded to conventional medical treatments and interventions?

I can tell you that traditionally, it has been difficult to find a physician willing to treat these chronic pain patients. The reason for this is that these patients do not fit into traditional Western medical models of cause and effect, stimulus and response. There may still be pain despite reducing a fracture, and there might still be severe
back pain following an injury with normal MRI results. And there may even be patients will horrible looking spines on MRI who complain of no pain. And patients have the right to complain when there is severe pain. And physicians or government officials or politicians, or DEA agents are not able to feel this type of pain unless they are unfortunate enough to become chronic pain sufferers themselves. And there is no reliable way for the physician to differentiate between those who have real chronic pain and those who fake it in order to gain access to narcotics, except possibly by examining their behavior. 

So let's say the doctor refuses to believe that the patient has chronic pain. Two options exist for the patient. Find another physician, perhaps more sympathetic than the first. 
But the new doctor may not really understand what is causing the pain either, it's just that he believes the patient when he says it hurts and it doesn't go away. And if you can't find a doctor to prescribe you pain medicine, you may come to believe that it is all in your head, or more likely, attempt to purchase painkillers on the street, because they are out there...

What happens to chronic pain patients that self-medicate? Well, they may just feel better, but more likely they will use too much of the narcotics, and this will result in all types of complications from constipation to physical and psychological dependence, to respiratory depression and death. This group is taking dangerous medications with no medical oversight.  And that group of self-medicators is growing larger by the day because physicians are simply not willing to lose their hard earned licenses to help a chronic pain patient in need of relief. At least not when there is a tsunami of law enforcement, government officials and even other doctors waiting outside the office door so that they can free society of the 'offensive' pain medication prescriber. And more and more patients then seek relief on the streets, where dangerous and potent impurities such as Fentanyl may be mixed in to the narcotics causing overdose and death.

The reason this article by Janice Reynolds is so powerful is because she recognizes that the challenge here is not only the over-prescribing of opioids. No, patients overdosing is the result of the real crisis not it's cause. If you don't define a problem properly, you will never solve it. What is the real problem we should seek to resolve? What is the war that needs to be waged if  the War on Drugs is not the right war? Simply put, what we have all been missing, but what Janice Reynolds understands, is that it is the War on Chronic Pain that needs to be waged. And how is this war to be waged?
  • Better understandings of the mechanisms of chronic pain. What are the patterns and concepts that will support the often contradictory facts that the physician is confronted with? Can we develop simple models of why chronic pain is occurring based on our knowledge of physiology, anatomy, radiology and pharmacology and in the future, molecular medicine? Can clinical research deliver the answers or will basic research or some combination of the two? How can we deal with placebo effects and lack of randomization in our search for answers? Will we ever be able to objectively measure pain as 'outsiders' relative to the pain sufferer? How much of suffering from pain is related to the psychological state, and what is the relationship between the two?
  • Once we have some answers, (and they can even come by trial and error or observation and become 'best practices') some understanding of mechanisms that fit with our understanding of neuroscience and medicine, we can try evidence-based therapies. It is clear that narcotics produce some effect in terms of pain processing in the brain, because otherwise they would not be in such great demand by pain sufferers. Can marijuana produce similar benefits without the side effects? The jury is still out on that one, but I suspect the benefits will be limited. Can we find other treatments that will effectively treat chronic pain by decreasing inflammation in the body and enhancing the body's ability to heal itself. I think the field of Regenerative Medicine may hold some crucial answers.
  • Once we have some useful solutions that provide real relief, then education becomes the key. Every physician needs to have a working knowledge of how chronic pain works. Who will teach this to medical students and doctors and how much time will be spent on becoming proficient in the understanding of chronic pain?
  • There will always be an element of society that is attracted to the psychological effects of medications that alter the central nervous system. These individuals are not the same as chronic pain patients! Hopefully, with better measurements and models of chronic pain these two groups will become differentiated. Right now they both seek the same medications, but for different reasons, and that is fuel that is powering the opioid crisis. It is not only the province of law enforcement or government to distinguish between the two, but hopefully for all our benefits, law enforcement will work together with physicians to identify the individuals that help fuel this crisis.
In my book, When Bad Backs Happen to Good People, I have started to open the discussion of some of the mechanisms of chronic pain so that we will begin to find useful solutions in the near future.

J. Fersel, M.D.

Jordan Fersel, MD, is a board-certified, pain-management fellowship-trained physician who earned a BA in biology from Queens College and an MD degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He has been director of Pain Management Services at Trinitas Medical Center Oncology Unit for several years. Dr. Fersel and his wife, Esty, divide their time between Philadelphia and West Orange, New Jersey. 

Monday, March 19
Guest blogging at Inkslinger's Opus

Wednesday, March 21
Interviewed at Review From Here

Thursday, March 22
Guest blogging at The Literary Nook

Monday, March 26
Book reviewed at The Dark Phantom

Tuesday, March 27
Guest blogging at Bent Over Bookwords

Wednesday, March 28
 Book reviewed at A Title Wave

Thursday, March 29
Guest blogging at As the Page Turns

Monday, April 2
Book reviewed at I'm Shelf-ish

Wednesday, April 4
Book reviewed at Splashes of Joy

Thursday, April 5
Interviewed at The Writer's Life

Friday, April 6
Guest blogging at All Inclusive Retort

Monday, April 9
Book reviewed at Voodoo Princess

Tuesday, April 10
Guest blogging at Queen of All She Reads

Thursday, April 12
Book reviewed at A Book Lover

Friday, April 13
Book reviewed at Room With Books Reviews

Friday, March 2, 2018

Book Blast: Arising by Sarah Kennedy - Win a $25 Gift Card

Title: Arising
Author: Sarah Kennedy
Publisher: XlibrisUS
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Ebook

Darkness comes. A world hangs in the balances. The Time of the Prophecy has begun.
A cursed soul, wracked by guilt, plays a dangerous game with the Dark
Hiding and hunted, the Guardian of the Stone of Existence is the last of his kind remaining in the world.
He is the ancient evil relentlessly seeking the eternal object of his forbidden desire and the means to dominion.
And a Disruptionó
A Human whose face shines like the Sun.
Four lives bound in Prophecy.
One choice for all: Surrender or Die
An epic, dark fantasy saga continues . . .

I have always loved to write stories and was blessed with wonderful parents who still encourage me to follow my dreams. To hone my craft, I have taken courses through the Institute of Childrenís Literature and Long Ridge Writerís Group. In 2005, I was published in Angels on Earth, and in 2011, I published my debut novel, Sgarrwrath, Prequel to the Prophecy of Hope, which recently received an Honorary Mention in the Halloween Book Festival Competition of October 2013. Today, I live quietly in a small town with my three rambunctious cats.   



Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one $25 Gift Certificate to the e-retailer of your choice
  • This giveaway begins February 26 and ends on March 9.
  • Winners will be contacted via email on March 10.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone! 


a Rafflecopter giveaway