New Books

30 August, 2021

WHY IS MY CHILD IN CHARGE? A Roadmap to End Power Struggles, Increase Cooperation, and Find Joy in Parenting Young Children, Claire Lerner

Solve typical toddler challenges with eight key mindshifts that will help you parent with clarity, calmness and self-control.

Through stories from her practice, Claire Lerner shows parents how making critical mindshifts—seeing their children’s behaviors through a new lens —empowers parents to solve their most vexing childrearing challenges. This process puts parents back in the driver’s seat, where they belong and where their children need them to be. These real life stories provide a roadmap for how to tune into the root causes of children’s behavior and how to create and implement strategies that are tailored to the unique needs of each child and family. Through these stories, Claire provides a treasure trove of practical solutions that are based in science and which work in real life.

Why Is My Child In Charge? (Rowman & Littlefield, September 2021) picks up where other books have left parents hanging. Most parenting books offer solutions that sound good on paper but don’t work in practice. They are aspirational rather than achievable, or they offer one-size-fits-all approaches that don’t meet the needs of an individual child. They can compound parents’ feelings of frustration and thus, can be counterproductive. Case by case, Claire unpacks the individualized process she guides parents through to solve the most common challenges such as throwing tantrums in public; delaying bedtime for hours; refusing to participate in family mealtimes; and resisting potty-training. Employing a relatable story-telling approach, Claire elucidates:

  • The faulty mindsets that pose obstacles to parents seeing the situation more objectively
  • The essential mindshifts that enable parents to quickly identify the root causes of the problem
  • The development of an action plan tailored to each unique child and family

Why is My Child in Charge? is like having a child development specialist in your home. It shows how you can develop “win-win” strategies that translate into adaptable, happy kids and calm, connected and in-control parents. It will help you be the parent you want to be.

Social worker and child development specialist Lerner was the director of parenting resources at the national organization Zero to Three for nearly two decades, during which she met with many parents who expressed feelings of helplessness or loss of control when in conflict with their toddlers. In this book, Lerner argues that eight “faulty mindsets” can prevent parents from objectively approaching conflict. She addresses ways parents can shift their mindset when facing common concerns of toddler years (tantrums, cooperation, aggression, sleep, potty training, feeding, dealing with children with highly sensitive temperaments). These are accompanied by case studies of parents struggling with a variety of situations. This helpful resource posits that shifting one’s mindset can help parents see conflicts objectively and identify causes; its tactics should equip parents to center their needs and their child’s.

― Library Journal

Child development–specialist Lerner turns her decades of experience into an easy-to-implement guide for navigating common sticking points of early childhood. Her goal is to shift parents’ perspectives so as to accept “that you can’t control your children but you can control the situation,” as that mindset “enables you to focus on changing your reactions in a way that reduces power struggles.” After identifying eight “faulty mindsets” (such as “my child is misbehaving on purpose” and “experiencing failure is harmful for my child”), Lerner tackles thorny issues such as tantrums (parents should view them as a form of “temporary distress” that ultimately leads to resilience), aggression (creating a “cooldown space” can help), and potty training (reframe it as “potty learning,” to start). Lerner bolsters her advice with case studies and real-world anecdotes: to end mealtime battles, for example, Lerner writes of a child who was provided two plates, one for preferred foods and the other a “learning plate,” which encouraged her to try new things. Recap strategy lists round out chapters, providing straightforward steps that will help readers put her advice into practice. Parents of young children in particular will welcome Lerner’s perspective and actionable advice.

― Publishers Weekly

Lerner shares her 30-plus years of experience of working with families and the eight faulty mindsets she believes “prevent parents from setting loving limits.” First she explains how these flawed mindsets, from “my child is misbehaving on purpose” to “experiencing difficult emotions is harmful to my child,” negatively affect behaviors in early childhood. Lerner next walks readers through several real-life examples of parents struggling with their young children. Lerner advises that rather than expecting their toddlers to control their emotions, readers should, with empathy, know that their children are driven by emotions and need help to follow rules and cope with frustration. Lerner describes how to shift these faulty mindsets and addresses the most common areas of challenge during the toddler years: cooperation, tantrums, aggression, sleep, potty learning, and feeding. The final chapter, on discipline, encourages responsive instead of reactive parenting. Solid guidance for rediscovering the joy of parenting and creating more positive connections with children.

― Booklist

The roadmap that Ms. Lerner provides to meet the challenges of parenting littles ones is filled with practical examples that will resonate for so many parents. This book is compelling to read, as parents will find their own struggles mirrored in the examples that Ms. Lerner provides, along with clear and practical solutions. From my own perspective as a primary care pediatrician, this book meets the needs of families like so many I’ve seen throughout my years in practice who despaired in gaining control at home with their toddlers. Based on sound principles of child development and years of experience, this volume guides parents by providing clear strategies to finding or regaining the joy in parenting. — Ellie Hamburger, MD, Medical Director, Children’s National Pediatricians and Associates

Claire Lerner’s new book Why is My Child in Charge? is a truly amazing book. Lerner brings her vast clinical experience working with families together with her deep knowledge about child development and brain development to write a book that will help every parent with young children. The brilliance of Lerner’s book lies in its core message: young children communicate with us through their behaviors; if we can understand what their behaviors are telling us, we will be able to give children what they need. Lerner shows parents how to shift their perspective to see their child’s behaviors in the context of their child’s development, temperament, and in the context of their unique family and culture. And she teaches parents how they can use this understanding to develop a new approach that has a plan of action and a plan for assessing whether this new approach is working. With Lerner’s wisdom and advice, parents have the insights and tools to “experience less stress and more joy,” as a family—something that every family with young children needs! — Helen Egger, MD, cofounder and chief medical and scientific officer at Little Otter, former chair of department of child and adolescent psychiatry at NYU Langone Health, and division director of child and adolescent psychiatry at Duke University Health Center

As both a mother and school counselor, I wish I had this book years ago! Claire Lerner draws on her many years of experience with young children to help parents navigate some of the most common and frustrating challenges, from sleep and mealtime issues to managing transitions and disappointment. Through relatable stories and practical tips, she reframes “discipline” as simply teaching and setting loving limits, and helps parents shed any other faulty mindsets that might be getting in their way. If you want to know what to do when a child melts down because they can’t have a cookie for dinner, makes a million demands to delay bedtime or fears the potty, Why is My Child in Charge is your book! It’s the reassuring roadmap that will help you battle your child less and enjoy parenting them more. — Phyllis L. Fagell, LCPC, school counselor, Sheridan School, Washington, DC, and author of “Middle School Matters”

CLAIRE LERNER, MSW, is a licensed clinical social worker and child development specialist. She served as the Director of Parenting Resources at ZERO TO THREE for more than eighteen years. Lerner has been a practicing clinician for over thirty years, partnering with parents to decode their children’s behavior and solve their most vexing childrearing challenges. She also provides training to local preschools and pediatric residents. Lerner is the author of hundreds of parenting resources, including books, blogs, podcasts, and videos. She writes a column for PBS Kids, and her work has been published by several parenting publications. She has also served as a content expert for numerous national daily newspapers. Lerner is the mother of two very spirited children of her own, and two stepchildren. She lives in Bethesda, Maryland, with her husband and two dogs.


24 August, 2021

How to Have a Kid and a Life: A Survival Guide by Ericka Sóuter

Continue to have and grow your life, Mom―for your sake and your kids’.

“A brilliant book for any woman out there who is feeling alone, isolated, or overwhelmed with too much to do. It is a must-read guide that will help you understand how we got here, how to take back control of your life, and, most importantly, that you are not alone.” ―Eve Rodsky, New York Times bestselling author of Fair Play: A Game-Changing Solution for When You Have Too Much to Do (and More Life to Live)

“Parenting is arguably the most high-stakes, high-pressure, high-reward endeavor one human being can embark upon. Now, Ericka Sóuter has tapped into the often difficult-to-navigate world of being a parent and a person at the same time, and she does it in a frank, relatable, no-nonsense way. There is something for everyone in here: I laughed, I cried, and I learned. Thank you, Ericka!” ―Jennifer Ashton, MD, mom and ABC News chief medical correspondent

“Everything you need to know about Ericka Sóuter’s tenacity, compassion, and humor as a working mom can be summed up this way: she wrote this amazing book during the pandemic . . . and while potty training. Her empathetic voice, no-BS advice, and guilt-relieving research are an arm around your shoulder. Take comfort.” ―Lauren Smith Brody, author and founder of The Fifth Trimester

When did being a good mom come to mean giving up everything that used to make you … you? That’s the question millions of 21st-century mothers grapple with every single day as they parent in our madly kid-centric culture. Contrary to the incessant messaging from everywhere, committing to yourself and your own needs is what makes for a good mother and happy kids.

With How to Have a Kid and a Life, popular journalist and Good Morning America parenting expert Ericka Sóuter shares her tips for being a happy, whole person while still being a great, and sometimes just good enough (which is plenty fine), parent. Sóuter blends her own stories of surviving the seismic challenges of parenthood with testimonials from stay-at-home and working moms; interviews with therapists and researchers; and findings from the latest studies on happiness, self-care, and parenthood. What she delivers is a wonderfully irreverent survival guide to motherhood, featuring:

• Advice on keeping your career on track while parenting
• Tips for handling clueless and unhelpful partners
• Taking back ownership of your body
• Creating a reliable village of support (even with moms you didn’t think you’d like)
• Staying connected with child-free friends
• What to do if you feel like you’re missing the “mom gene”


9 August, 2021

WE SHARE THE SAME SKY: A Memoir of Memory and Migration, Rachael Cerrotti

A granddaughter’s decade-long journey to retrace her grandmother’s wartime escape and weave together the thin threads of family history.

In 2009, Rachael Cerrotti, a college student pursuing a career in photojournalism, asked her grandmother, Hana, if she could record her story. Rachael knew that her grandmother was a Holocaust survivor and the only one in her family alive at the end of the war. Rachael also knew that she survived because of the kindness of strangers. It wasn’t a secret. Hana spoke about her history publicly and regularly. But, Rachael wanted to document it as only a granddaughter could. So, that’s what they did: Hana talked and Rachael wrote.

Upon Hana’s passing in 2010, Rachael discovered an incredible archive of her life. There were preserved albums and hundreds of photographs dating back to the 1920s. There were letters waiting to be translated, journals, diaries, deportation and immigration papers as well as creative writings from various stages of Hana’s life.

Rachael digitized and organized it all, plucking it from the past and placing it into her present. Then, she began retracing her grandmother’s story, following her through Central Europe, Scandinavia, and across the United States. She tracked down the descendants of those who helped save her grandmother’s life during the war. Rachael went in pursuit of her grandmother’s memory to explore how the retelling of family stories becomes the history itself.

We Share the Same Sky (Blackstone Publishing, August 2021) weaves together the stories of these two young women — Hana as a refugee who remains one step ahead of the Nazis at every turn, and Rachael, whose insatiable curiosity to touch the past guides her into the lives of countless strangers, bringing her love and tragic loss. Throughout the course of her twenties, Hana’s history becomes a guidebook for Rachael in how to live a life empowered by grief.  The story was originally launched as a podcast series by the same name by Cerrotti, winning awards.

Review

”Rachael Cerrotti’s We Share the Same Sky proves the Talmudic adage that to ‘save a life, is to save the world entire.’ The story chronicles Rachael’s impassioned and persistent search for the people and details of her beloved Jewish grandmother’s tale of escape, wandering, and survival and reveals to Rachael and to the reader, a world entire. It is a testament that the best stories are true stories and that not only is the personal political, but that history is personal” —Roberta Grossman, documentary filmmaker

”A story in which the individual seizes her right to history and her faith by tirelessly shedding light on them and in the process making her family and the world whole.” —Julie Lindahl, author of The Pendulum: A Granddaughter’s Search for Her Family’s Forbidden Nazi Past

”A heartbreaking journey to retrace one’s family history, resulting in a universal story of profound inspiration … It is not only a personal revelation of immense and poetic magnitude, but also a clarion call to each of us to speak of man’s humanity to man.” —Mona Golabek, author of The Children of Willesden Lane

”The Holocaust is soon to be two generations removed from direct experience, which makes it imperative for a new generation to pick up the burden of moral memory and carry it forward. Rachael Cerrotti’s powerfully felt — and deeply researched — account is a moving and compelling instance of this urgent effort. History’s pain — crushingly — becomes her own. But time, as she says, turns pain into responsibility — a transformation nobly enshrined in this book.” —James Carroll, author of The Truth at the Heart of the Lie

”Wow. Wow. Wow. Obviously ‘Wow. Wow. Wow’ does not make for a good book cover quote, but it’s just hard to find the words to express all of the emotion that I feel after reading this. In this incredible journey, we walk in step with Rachael and Hana. This story is a precious gift that teaches us how we all share a common thread.” —Nancy Spielberg, producer

”This is so much more than a book about the Holocaust. We Share the Same Sky takes us on an inspiring and heart-wrenching journey through time. Cerrotti is a magician. She masterfully interweaves threads of remembrance, sorrow, loss, and resilience, creating a beautiful tapestry of love and light.” —Ariana Neumann, author of When Time Stopped

”A memoir that is so visual in its writing that it comes as no surprise that the author is also a photographer. With every turn, I could envision where Hana and Rachael each traveled as they journeyed from country to country navigating love and loss.” —Michelle McLoughlin, photojournalist

”A lyrical, captivating, and essential read. Cerrotti turns her grandmother’s remarkable story of escaping the Holocaust into an epic story of love, loss, and redemption that reminds us that the past is never lost, it’s just waiting for us to reconnect. Cerrotti’s obsessive quest to follow her grandmother’s footsteps is both a tender portrait of a young woman’s fight to survive, and a personal meditation on how history can inspire us today.” —Jack Fairweather, author of The Volunteer

”At a time when memory of the Holocaust is endangered, We Share the Same Sky offers an important, heartbreaking, and hopeful bridge between the past and our present. The author, an honest and beautifully vulnerable guide, reconstructs her grandmother’s experience of displacement, survival, and defiant optimism. That survivor, Hana Dubová, described the Holocaust in her diary as ‘an incomprehensible black page of history.’ Through her retracing of her grandmother’s life, as well as her own story of loss and resilience, Rachael Cerrotti helps us decode that black page. In doing so she gives us two gifts: greater knowledge of the past, and a vivid example who can inspire us to choose life.” —Ariel Burger, author of Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel’s Classroom

”First in her mesmerizing podcast and now with this stunning book, Rachael Cerrotti has redefined the art of bearing witness. Balancing meticulous devotion to the inherited past with luminous attention to the unfolding present, We Share the Same Sky maps an astonishing journey of tenacity and transformation. Among myriad narratives in the post-Holocaust landscape, this work is a dazzling beacon.” —Elizabeth Rosner, author of Survivor Café

”Readers should be grateful that Cerotti crossed those bridges and takes us along on this journey. She shows us how individuals can make big differences in the lives of others and how important it is to know our histories. Bearing witness has never been more important. Cerotti and her grandmother are powerful guides as to why these Holocaust stories matter.” —New York Journal of Books

About the Author

Rachael Cerrotti is an award-winning photographer, writer, educator, and audio producer. In 2019, she released her critically-acclaimed podcast (also titled We Share the Same Sky) about her grandmother’s war story. The show was the first-ever narrative podcast based on a Holocaust survivor’s testimony and was listed as one of the best podcasts of the year by Huffington Post. Rachael’s work has been featured by outlets around the world including NPR, PRI’s The World, WBUR, GBH, and in 2021 she became the Inaugural Storyteller In Residence for USC Shoah Foundation. Rachael’s story is taught in classrooms worldwide and is a transmedia resource for educators interested in telling stories of past generations through a contemporary lens. Rachael is originally from Boston and is now based in Portland, Maine. Learn more at rachaelcerrotti.com and sharethesamesky.com


2 August, 2021

MODERN MOM PROBS: Tara Clark

The definitive survival guide for modern moms.

Modern Mom Probs: A Survival Guide for 21st Century Mothers (Post Hill Press/April 2021) is a guide for modern mothers trying to navigate the daily joys and worries they face. It sheds light on the experiences modern moms eat, sleep, and breathe…and obsess about. Using checklists, graphs, and smart, funny advice, this must-have book revels in the messiness and beauty of modern motherhood.

Tara Clark, creator of the popular Instagram account “Modern Mom Probs,” started the conversation for moms looking for an online village. In this book, she continues the conversation with funny, easy-to-digest information, including advice from medical professionals.

Inside, she’ll tackle how to:

• Manage screen time without a meltdown
• Navigate playground geopolitics
• Overcome information overload
• Teach your children about inclusivity
• Find mom friends and keep them

Review

“Tara is incredibly relatable, funny and supportive. She’s who I want to be when I grow up…and I’m 34 years old!”    — Amanda P., Instagram’s @momof1anddone

“Scrolling through Tara’s account is one of the highlights of my day! She can go from making me laugh endlessly to crying happy tears because I feel less alone on this journey of motherhood.”  — Becky Viera, Instagram’s @wittyotter

“Tara at ModernMomProbs is a relatable, authentic, hilarious mother who brings a sign of relief to today’s mom. Visiting her page makes any mother feel like she’s not alone in this wonderfully chaotic adventure of parenthood. Like a virtual hug, ModernMomProbs lifts you up in moments of mom despair whether it be through inspirational, funny, or heartwarming posts. Tara is a true delight; one I may not have met if it weren’t for this amazing community she’s built, and I’m so lucky I can call her a friend. Quite simply, the powerful message Tara brilliantly conveys through ModernMomProbs is, ‘You got this, Mama.'”   — Deb Biondolillo, Instagram’s @stamfordmommy

About the Author

Tara Clark, creator of Instagram’s @ModernMomProbs, is the voice of a generation of modern mothers. Tara creates content for several parenting pages and is a frequent guest on parenting podcasts. She worked at Nickelodeon before devoting herself to the significant work of creating a platform for 21st century moms. Finder her on Instagram, where she has more than 689,000 followers: https://www.instagram.com/modernmomprobs/

Mary McConville is a freelance illustrator who collaborated on this book to encourage and support motherhood. She recently illustrated the children’s book, What a Wonderful Adventure. Her creations can be found on her Instagram page @growupbrite.


15 June, 2021

THE BRAIN ON YOUTH SPORTS: The Science, The Myths, and the Future, Julie M. Stamm PhD

Dispels the myths surrounding head impacts in youth sports and empowers parents to make informed decisions about sports participation.

“They’re just little kids, they don’t hit that hard or that much.” “Girls soccer is the most dangerous sport.” “Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy only happens to former NFL players.” “Youth sports are safer than ever.” These are all myths propagated with the goal of maintaining the status quo in youth sports, which can subject young, rapidly maturing brains to hundreds of impacts each season. In THE BRAIN ON YOUTH SPORTS (Rowman & Littlefield, July 2021), Julie M. Stamm  PhD dissects the issue of repetitive brain trauma in youth sports and their health consequences, explaining the science behind concussions, CTE, and subconcussive impacts written in an easy-to-understand approach, so you can be a well-informed consumer and decision maker. It’s not all about concussions. Those repetitive impacts that happen on every play in football or with every header in soccer can damage the brain, too. The consequences can be even worse for a child’s developing brain. Stamm counters the myths, bad arguments, and propaganda surrounding the youth sports industry. This book also provides guidance for those deciding whether or not their child should play sports with a high risk of repetitive brain trauma as well as for those hoping to make youth sports truly as safe as possible for young athletes.

Stamm, a former three-sport athlete herself, understands the many wonderful benefits that come from playing youth sports and believes all children should have the opportunity to play sports without the risk of long-term consequences. No athlete has to sustain hundreds of impacts and repetitive brain trauma in order to gain the benefits of sports. This work is a must-read before you suit up your child for another practice or send your team out for another game.

Reviews:

Nearly 900,000 children ages 6 to 12 play tackle football. Is it so horrible for them to whack their noggins? Yes. “Common sense tells us that hitting our heads is bad for the brain,” says Stamm, a former high school athlete with a PhD in anatomy and neurobiology who studies chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or brain degeneration. She nixes the notion that helmets can be “concussion proof.” Even with a covering, a head can move rapidly after a blow. More than a third of athletes don’t report symptoms, sometimes because they’re afraid they’ll be labeled “soft,” lose their scholarships, or end their career. How about getting kids to stick to flag football? Tom Brady played it until ninth grade, while Walter Peyton and Jerry Rice didn’t play full contact until tenth grade. Stamm celebrates sports, which help prevent obesity while teaching discipline, dedication, perseverance, and teamwork. But she worries about blows during games of football, soccer, rugby, and ice hockey that can cause blurred vision, headache, dizziness, fatigue, anxiety, and nausea. There are lifesaving lessons here for young athletes, parents, and policymakers. ― Booklist

Stamm’s book is a must read for all parents contemplating allowing their young child to play a collision sport as it will allow for an informed, highly-educated decision. — Robert C. Cantu, MD, author of “Concussion and Our Kids”

Clearheaded and productive conversation on brain injury from football is rare. Dr. Stamm has been an athlete, an athletic trainer, and a researcher. Her comprehensive experience provides an invaluable perspective. The Brain on Youth Sports is a gift to anyone aiming to gain an objective understanding of brain injury from football and other contact sports. — Chris Borland, former NFL player and sport safety advocate

About the Author:  Julie M. Stamm has spent a decade studying concussions and the long-term consequences of repetitive brain trauma in sports, with a focus on how that trauma impacts brain development.  She earned her doctorate in anatomy and neurobiology from the Boston University School of Medicine and conducted research at the Boston University Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Center and the Psychiatry Neuroimaging Laboratory at Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital.  She is an alumna of University of Wisconsin-Madison where she earned her degree in kinesiology/athletic training and is currently a clinical assistant professor at the university.

 


1 June, 2021

SPIN, Peter Zheutlin

Ride away on a ’round-the-world adventure of a lifetime—with only a change of clothes and a pearl-handled revolver—in this transcendent novel inspired by the life of Annie Londonderry.

“Bicycling has done more to emancipate women than anything else in the world.”—Susan B. Anthony

Who was Annie Londonderry? She captured the popular imagination with her daring ‘round the world trip on two wheels. It was, declared The New York World in October of 1895, “the most extraordinary journey ever undertaken by a woman.”

But beyond the headlines, Londonderry was really Annie Cohen Kopchovsky, a young, Jewish mother of three small children, who climbed onto a 42-pound Columbia bicycle and pedaled away into history.

Reportedly set in motion by a wager between two wealthy Boston merchants, the bet required Annie not only to circle the earth by bicycle in 15 months, but to earn $5,000 en route, as well. This was no mere test of a woman’s physical endurance and mental fortitude; it was a test of a woman’s ability to fend for herself in the world.

Often attired in a man’s riding suit, Annie turned every Victorian notion of female propriety on its head. Not only did she abandon, temporarily, her role of wife and mother (scandalous in the 1890s), she earned her way selling photographs of herself, appearing as an attraction in stores, and by turning herself into a mobile billboard.

Zheutlin, a descendent of Annie, brilliantly probes the inner life and seeming boundless courage of this outlandish, brash, and charismatic woman. In a time when women could not vote and few worked outside the home, Annie was a master of public relations, a consummate self-promoter, and a skillful creator of her own myth. Yet, for more than a century her remarkable story was lost to history. In SPIN, this remarkable heroine and her marvelous, stranger-than-fiction story is vividly brought to life for a new generation.  SPIN is published by Pegasus Books, June 2021.

Review

“An icon at the dawn of women’s cycling, Annie Londonderry was part athlete, part adventurer, and part scoundrel. In Spin, Peter Zheutlin takes inspiration from her real-life story to present a rollicking account of her bicycle trip around the world and explore the personal costs of forging ahead as an ambitious New Woman in the 1890s.” — Sue Macy, author of Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom

About the Author

Peter Zheutlin is the author of the New York Times bestseller Rescue Road: One Man, Thirty Thousand Dogs and a Million Miles on the Lost Hope Highway; Rescued: What Second-Chance Dogs Teach Us About Living with Purpose, Loving with Abandon, and Finding Joy in the Little Things; and The Dog Went Over the Mountain: Travels With Albie—An American Journey (also available from Pegasus Books), a Lowell Thomas/Societ of American Travel Writers Award winner. Peter lives in Massachusetts with his wife, author Judy Gelman.

18 May, 2021

THE QUIET BOY, Ben H. Winters

From the “inventive…entertaining and thought-provoking” (Charles Yu) New York Times-bestselling author of Underground Airlines and Golden State, this sweeping legal thriller follows a sixteen-year-old who suffers from a neurological condition that has frozen him in time—and the team of lawyers, doctors, and detectives who are desperate to wake him up. 

In 2008, a cheerful ambulance-chasing lawyer named Jay Shenk persuades the grieving Keener family to sue a private LA hospital. Their son Wesley has been transformed by a routine surgery into a kind of golem, absent all normal functioning or personality, walking in endless empty circles around his hospital room.  In 2019, Shenk—still in practice but a shell of his former self—is hired to defend Wesley Keener’s father when he is charged with murder . . . the murder, as it turns out, of the expert witness from the 2008 hospital case. Shenk’s adopted son, a fragile teenager in 2008, is a wayward adult, though he may find his purpose when he investigates what really happened to the murdered witness.

Two thrilling trials braid together, medical malpractice and murder, jostling us back and forth in time.

The Quiet Boy (Mulholland Little Brown, May 2021) is a book full of mysteries, not only about the death of a brilliant scientist, not only about the outcome of the medical malpractice suit, but about the relationship between children and their parents, between the past and the present, between truth and lies.  At the center of it all is Wesley Keener, endlessly walking, staring empty-eyed, in whose quiet, hollow body may lie the fate of humankind.


17 May, 2021

THE GIFT OF PRESENCE: A Mindfulness Guide for Women, Caroline Welch

A practical, user-friendly guide for women seeking focus and calm in the midst of life’s storms, now in paperback (Tarcher Perigee, May 2021)!

“A gift for us all—filled with practical insights about the power of mindfulness.”
—ARIANNA HUFFINGTON, founder and CEO of Thrive Global

“This is an important, eye-opening book. . . . Caroline Welch offers pragmatic mindfulness exercises to discover one’s purpose in life, to summon the courage to change direction if necessary, to set priorities, and to let go of what simply can’t get done in order to cultivate inner peace and harmony.”
—SHARON SALZBERG, New York Times bestselling author of Real Happiness and Lovingkindness

Overwhelmed by the demands of family, work, and multiple responsibilities, many women find themselves feeling scattered, and distracted. In this eye-opening book, co-founder and CEO of the Mindsight Institute, Caroline Welch takes readers on a mindfulness journey to help them de-stress and cultivate inner peace. According to Welch, you do not need countless hours sitting in silence to be more present in your life–the key is to practice mindfulness wherever you are and whenever you can.

The Gift of Presence (first publication, March 2020 by Tarcher Perigee) guides readers in developing four innate capacities we all possess that will allow us to become more resilient and centered in our lives–even when life is throwing all that it has at us:

Presence: the ability to remain firmly in the present moment; to be fully aware of what’s happening as it’s happening.

Purpose: the personal meaning that gets us going and gives direction to our lives.

Pivoting: an openness to change that allows you to switch direction if that is what is needed.

Pacing: the awareness that it is impossible to do everything we want or need to do all at once; the ability to take life one step at a time.

This life-changing book reveals that you already hold in your hands the keys to a more harmonious life–you simply need to look within.

Caroline Welch is the CEO and Co-founder with Dr. Dan Siegel of the Mindsight Institute in Santa Monica, California. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin Law School with a master’s degree from the University of Southern California, she started her career in law as a corporate litigator. Welch has served as a Los Angeles County court-appointed mediator, as well as in house counsel at MGM Studios and Spelling Entertainment Group. She began her mindfulness practice forty years ago while working in Japan as an English teacher for three years. Welch provides lectures and workshops to enhance well- being in our personal and professional lives. She and her husband live in Santa Monica with their dog Charlie, and have two adult children.


29 April, 2021

MEN I’VE NEVER BEEN, Michael Sadowski

Men I’ve Never Been (University of Wisconsin Press, Living Out Series)/May 2021) recounts Michael Sadowski’s odyssey as a boy who shuns his own identity—and, ultimately, his sexual orientation—in order to become who he thinks he’s supposed to be. Beginning with the memory of a four-year-old sitting in a dingy dive bar, sounding out newspaper headlines while his boasting father collects drinks from onlookers, each chapter highlights a different image of manhood that Sadowski saw at home, at school, or on television—from sports heroes, hunters, and game show hosts to his charismatic but hard-drinking father. As he learns not to talk, laugh, cry, or love, he retreats further behind a stoic mask of silence—outwardly well-functioning but emotionally isolated, sinking under the weight of the past.

Through wrenching tragedy and tense, life-threatening challenges, Sadowski learns to find love, purpose, and healthy self-regard. In coming to understand his identity and his place within his family, he meditates on the power of real human connection and comes to grasp the damage of his troubled upbringing and the traumas caused by toxic masculinity. By turns comic and tragic, this nuanced memoir uncovers the false selves we create to get along in the world and the price we pay to maintain them.

Review

“A powerful, beautiful sock in the stomach of a memoir. It’s filled with living, breathing, three-dimensional people, settings that are so vivid they have a cinematic quality, refrains and reprises that give the whole story a musical coherence. The ending will leave readers in a state of—I don’t know what—grief? joy? wonder? hope? All of those and more. I can imagine this book changing lives.”—Domenica Ruta, author of the memoir With or Without You

“A compelling and exceedingly well-written memoir that is, at times, as heart-wrenching and hilarious as any book I’ve read in a very long time. Sadowski is a craftsman; there’s so much earned empathy and experience in here that it’s hard to overstate.”—Jared Yates Sexton, author of The Man They Wanted Me to Be

About the Author

Michael Sadowski is an award-winning writer and author of several books, including In a Queer VoiceSafe Is Not Enough, and Adolescents at School. He is an administrator and professor at Bard College.

23 April, 2021

CITIZEN 865: The Hunt for Hitler’s Soldiers in America, Debbie Cenziper

Paperback release, May 2021 (Hachette Books)
Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) Book Award Finalist**
 
The gripping story of a team of Nazi hunters at the U.S. Department of Justice as they raced against time to expose members of a brutal SS killing force who disappeared in America after World War Two.

In 1990, in a drafty basement archive in Prague, two American historians made a startling discovery: a Nazi roster from 1945 that no Western investigator had ever seen. The long-forgotten document, containing more than 700 names, helped unravel the details behind the most lethal killing operation in World War Two.

In the tiny Polish village of Trawniki, the SS set up a school for mass murder and then recruited a roving army of foot soldiers, 5,000 men strong, to help annihilate the Jewish population of occupied Poland. After the war, some of these men vanished, making their way to the U.S. and blending into communities across America. Though they participated in some of the most unspeakable crimes of the Holocaust, “Trawniki Men” spent years hiding in plain sight, their terrible secrets intact.

In a story spanning seven decades, Citizen 865 chronicles the harrowing wartime journeys of two Jewish orphans from occupied Poland who outran the men of Trawniki and settled in the United States, only to learn that some of their one-time captors had followed. A tenacious team of prosecutors and historians pursued these men and, up against the forces of time and political opposition, battled to the present day to remove them from U.S. soil.

Through insider accounts and research in four countries, this urgent and powerful narrative provides a front row seat to the dramatic turn of events that allowed a small group of American Nazi hunters to hold murderous men accountable for their crimes decades after the war’s end.

“Cenziper brought her investigative skills to bear on the challenge of retrieving the hard facts, but she also possesses the gift of a storyteller….[Citizen 865 is] a highly significant work of investigation that is eye-opening and heartbreaking. She compels us to confront the crimes of the Trawniki men in a way that burns itself into both memory and history.”―Washington Post

“Skillfully written and reported….Riveting….Cenziper’s account moves cinematically around in time and place.”―The Forward

“This riveting saga, replete with heroes and villains, is the true story of a few good men and women who worked tenaciously to expunge an evil in our midst.”―George F. Will, author of The Conservative Sensibility

“Enriched by Debbie Cenziper’s world-class investigative skills, Citizen 865 is a powerful piece of history that washes over you in waves of horror and beauty.”―David Maraniss, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of A Good American Family

“Debbie Cenziper has written a page-turning detective story about the hunt for Nazi killers living openly in neighborhoods across the United States….This is a book that anybody interested in the quest for international justice should read.”
Michael Isikoff, New York Times bestselling co-author of Russian Roulette: The Inside Story of Putin’s War on America and the Election of Donald Trump

“This is a gripping tale, which reads at times like a novel. Just when you thought you knew everything about the Holocaust, we learn about the uniquely devastating role of the Trawniki training center. At a time of rising anti-Semitism, Debbie Cenziper’s Citizen 865 offers a harrowing reminder of the consequences of unchecked racism and anti-Semitism. And it serves as a repository of hope-that the leadership of good men and women could bring a measure of justice to the world in the face of such overwhelming evil.”
Jonathan A. Greenblatt, CEO and National Director, Anti-Defamation League

Citizen 865 is a great book that couldn’t come at a more crucial time. In telling the story of a little-known Holocaust site called Trawniki and the people who dedicated themselves to bringing some of modern history’s worst monsters to justice, Debbie Cenziper has honored the vanishing plea to never forget, first by breaking my heart with the worst of humanity, and then, with the best of us, stitching it back together.”―Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist David Finkel, author of Thank You for Your Service and The Good Soldiers

Citizen 865 is a fantastic piece of detective work…. A compulsively readable story of mass murder and an epic quest by Nazi hunters to bring evil men to justice.”―Alex Kershaw, New York Times bestselling author of The Bedford Boys and The Longest Winter

Citizen 865 reads like a thriller, but it is so much more… [It] tells an essential and unknown tale of post-war justice and the search for truth, linking the events of the Holocaust to the familiar, more recent past. Telling this story of a decades-long quest for justice is itself an act of justice. “―Ariel Burger, author of Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel’s Classroom and winner of the National Jewish Book Award in Biography

“Anchored in painstaking research and reporting, Citizen 865 chronicles the efforts of the lawyers and historians of the Office of Special Investigations to rid the United States of the Third Reich’s mass murderers who had been hiding in plain sight. Debbie Cenziper’s account vividly-and movingly-captures both the frustrations and triumphs of this extraordinary group of dedicated men and women who refused to abandon the quest for a measure of long overdue justice.”
Andrew Nagorski, author of 1941: The Year Germany Lost the War and The Nazi Hunters

About the Author

Debbie Cenziper is an investigative journalist, professor, and author based in Washington, D.C. A contributing reporter for the investigative team at The Washington Post, she has won many major awards in print journalism, including the 2007 Pulitzer Prize. Cenziper is the co-author of the critically acclaimed Love Wins: The Lovers and Lawyers Who Fought the Landmark Case for Marriage Equality. She was recently named the director of investigative journalism at the Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism.

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