Friday, November 26, 2010

Book Review: Stand For The Family

Everyone who was born on this planet has lived in one kind of family or another. The family is the basic unit of our society and after reading Sharon Slater’s book Stand for the Family, I am in fear that the family as we know it, will disintegrate starting at the international level.
The story of Slater attending several UN conferences is scary and a great eye-opener to anyone who is concerned with the welfare of the family. Her book takes you through many controversial topics of the day and answers many questions we as parents have been struggling with for the past decade. Why is the world so obsessed with homosexuality, same-sex marriage, abortion, and assaulting motherhood? Mrs. Slater answers these questions and provides a way to join her team of pro-family advocates to safe-guard family rights for the future.
This book is a must read for everyone concerned with the assault we have seen on the traditional family. If our family life is weakened, then our country is weakened and if our country is weakened then we as Americans will be taken over by outside and inside forces.
From Mrs. Slater’s own words on the three main goals accomplished in writing this book.
“I felt compelled to make people aware of what is happening behind closed doors at the UN and in their own countries to undermine the family.
I wanted to equip legislators, policymakers, educators and responsible citizens with the knowledge and tools they need to defend the family, and third, it was designed to be a gathering tool to bring together good people throughout the world to stand for the family.”
Thanks to a short run that came off the press just hours before she left, Sharon was able to take some copies to the World Congress of Families in Amsterdam in August.
“I was pleasantly surprised by the overwhelmingly positive response to the book. People flocked to our booth and many stated that the book was sorely needed,” she says.

You can buy her book in three places:



Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Book Review: True Miracles with Genealogy--Help from Beyond the Veil

If you are the kind of person who loves doing family research but gets bogged down on running into brick walls for information then this new book would be an asset to your geneology collection. Anne Bradshaw has compiled a wonderful book of stories which are inspiring to those whose family members have passed on. This unique idea of getting information from beyond the veil is not new to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, which most stories are from. I have heard countless incidences of family searches which were helped by those who have passed on. It is a fascinating subject and Bradshaw has collected them for us to enjoy and be inspired so we can continue on searching even through the rough times.

Here is what Anne Bradshaw has to say about her experience:

What is your current book and how would you describe it?

I actually have two new books out, but the one I'm concentrating on right now is "True Miracles with Genealogy~Help from Beyond the Veil." Compiling it was an amazing experience.

"True Miracles" is a collection of inspiring research stories, spiritual moments as help comes from beyond the veil. It is unique, comforting, and powerful. Each account can't help but touch hearts as readers come to the heady realization that there really is a world of spirits.

How and when did you gather stories for this book?

I put out requests for stories on many social websites, including Facebook. Genealogists from all over the USA and from other countries responded. It amazed me to read so many unusual experiences—to learn of the many different ways researchers received the help they needed.

I'm sure my book contains only a tiny portion of the vast number of stories that go unrecorded every year—even every day—throughout the world. As someone says in the book, "Heaven is only a whisper away." It really is that close, but most times in the busy hours of our life, we're not in tune, or not ready to listen and act.

I began compiling seriously at the beginning of 2010. The more stories I received the more fascinating, and compelling it was to keep going. Once the initial call for stories went out, friends began telling others about the project and story gathering took on its own momentum.

There was a lot of work involved in the initial story editing to make each one fit the book's style. I thought about putting different accounts into categories within the book, but as stories kept arriving, I they simply didn't fit neatly into any particular groups because each experience was.

Is there a website for "True Miracles with Genealogy?"

Yes, I created a website at to further the book's purpose of sharing research stories. I hope many readers will send in their experiences. I realize it's unusual for most people to have more than one or two genealogy miracles in a lifetime—and many have none—but treasuring and sharing these events is so worthwhile. The website is also home to the book's reviews. These are under the Book Review tab, top of the page.

Where can readers purchase this book?

It's available in both paperback and electronic form. I deliberately kept the price low so more can afford to enjoy it. The Kindle and Nook eBook versions are only $2.99

I hope local bookstores will soon make it available. The book is on many Internet sites. Below are sample links. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can download free software for your computer, phone, iTouch, iPad, and more on Amazon at .

Amazon's CreateSpace $8.99, shipping $3.61
Amazon $8.99, shipping $3.99
Kindle eBook $2.99

So for all of you who love to read stories of those from the life beyond, whether you do family research or not, this is a fantastic read. Very inspiring.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Link to my writings on Yahoo!!!

Here is the link to my writings on yahoo!!!!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

A New Person in the Family

My daugther just called to tell me that I will be the proud grandparent of another grandchild. It's a boy and he will arrive somewhere around May!!!!!! Very exciting.

We had quite a weekend. A movie Friday night--Morning Glory,--Saturday: Help a friend rearrange a room full of book cases, Sunday--emotional struggles at church. Very exhausting!!!

It's been raining all day today but I got my editorial done and submitted a recipe for a website and did some school with the boys. I even got a nap and finished addressing the invitations for Isaac's Grooms party to be mailed tomorrow!!!

I feel much better today. Jim got a job offer from someone at church and life is getting much better!!!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Free Men and Dreamers: Oh Say Can You See

A writer friend of mine is launching her next book which is just up my alley!!!!!

L.C. Lewis is prepping for the national launch of “Oh, Say Can You See?” This book is the fourth in a series of American history stories. I love historical fiction and this is an interview which was posted about her and her book!!!!

I’m not always interested in reading historical fiction when I read for leisure but this book held my curiosity without question.  My knowledge of the history of our national anthem is not very noteworthy so with reading Oh Say Can You See, I knew I would learn something; and learn I did.

This story is weaved with the triumph and tragedy of the War of 1812 and what the British tried to accomplish in their last push to overcome the colonists.  Frances Scott Key played a great role in this era as did other patriots fighting for the freedoms of this new country.  A great epic story for the young and old alike, it ended with me wanting more. If you ever get the chance to read this series, take the opportunity!!! It is great.

Here is a synopsis:
The bicentennial of the War of 1812 is less than two years away, and America is gearing up to host spectacular celebrations of the 200th anniversary of her second war of independence. LDS author, L.C. Lewis, saw the event fast-approaching and began writing a historical fiction series to commemorate this often overlooked moment and generation. Along the way, Free Men and Dreamers has garnered an impressive array of reviews, endorsements, and awards. Though each book continues the overall story, each volume is written as a stand-alone read as well, and Lewis thinks volume four, “Oh, Say Can You See?” which weaves her characters through the events surrounding the writing of the Star-Spangled Banner, may be the most timely of all the volumes.

From the backliner of the book:

Although the British raids have left Washington a devastated, blackened city, the battered Constitution has held and the presidency has survived!

But the struggling government has no home. The British saw to that. Gone is the Capitol and her magnificent library, the chambers of the Supreme Court, the President’s House, and every relic and document not secreted out of the city.

Next on the list of British prizes—the rebellious port city of Baltimore! A victory here would assure the Americans’ defeat, but a loss would dilute the importance of the destruction of Washington.

But has the raid on Washington stiffened the backs of the Americans? This is the question gnawing at the leaders on both sides.

The Willows women are mourning their absent men—gone to war, or wounded, or captured—as they await the birth of a blessed child.

Mere miles away, attorney Francis Scott Key embarks on a diplomatic mission that will leave an everlasting mark on America. Proving that a pen can be more powerful than a sword, Key records his fears and hopes—the fears and hopes of his embattled people—as he watches the bombardment of Baltimore while detained in the midst of the British fleet.

What changed in this noble man’s pacifist heart, empowering him to pen the powerful anthem, known today as “The Star Spangled Banner,” an epic poem that rallied a shattered nation to rise from its knees to claim the dream of “one nation under God?”

Experience the personal sacrifice of five families placed in the firestorm of the War of 1812, citizen heirs of the sacrifice of the Founding Fathers.

View the trailer at:

Steimle: This all sounds very exciting! You’ve mentioned that “Oh, Say Can You See?” may be the most timely of all your books. What do you mean by that?

Lewis- I could lump volume three, “Dawn’s Early Light” in there as well because it surrounds the British attack on Washington. In my opinion, the devastation there really culminated in the writing of the Key’s epic poem, “Defence of Fort McHenry,” which we know now as the “Star-Spangled Banner.” But what I meant is this, America is enjoying a renewed reverence for the Founding Fathers and their brilliance in designing the government they did. Sadly, many of us know less about the Constitution now than we did in sixth-grade, but that is changing today. There is a sense of patriotism sweeping across the land that resembles that passion and urgency felt in 1814. Remember the American political landscape was changed after the British attacked us. The iconic buildings Americans were beginning to identify with their nation and government had been destroyed. It was then that the flag rose from being a mere fort marker, to an emblem of this nation. Key recognized that as he peered across the Baltimore harbor, praying to see one of the last surviving symbols of America—that star-spangled flag flying above Fort McHenry. I think most Americans can identify with those feelings.

Steimle: I’ve read that your research has been extensive. Why did you choose to write the events of this period as historical fiction rather than just as straight history?

Lewis: There are some spectacular historical accounts of this period, many of which I reference, but as I read reviews of those authors’ brilliant work, I recognized that there was an entire audience of people who didn’t enjoy that format, but who learn history best when it is personalized and wrapped around a compelling storyline. So I researched this period and created characters readers can invest in, and had them experience these events. By doing this, I can place them anywhere and in the midst of any event I choose.

Steimle: What was the hardest part of writing “Oh, Say Can You See?”

Lewis- Since this volume thrusts our characters into the pivotal Battle of Baltimore and the events surrounding the writing of the "Star Spangled Banner," I really wanted readers to feel the emotions experienced by the families as well as the soldiers and sailors during that "perilous night" with "bombs bursting in air.”

Steimle: The cover is beautiful! Did you have a hand in designing it?

Lewis- I had input. I knew I wanted an image of the bombardment of Fort McHenry with the focus on that splendid flag. Amy Orton, the cover designer at Walnut Springs Publishing presented a concept and we tweaked it together. I hope it will make readers hungry to tear into the book.

Steimle: You’ve already received some beautiful endorsements. I'm posting a few listed on the book’s back cover:

"This book touched me deeply, causing me to reflect on the countless lives that have sacrificed freedom and happiness so that I could pursue my own. Lewis has written a compelling, almost epic, novel, full of themes that span from 1812 to 2010—and beyond. As her characters wrestle with the dislocation and trauma of a war, they come to realize what it means to be Americans, what it means to be free—and ultimately, what it means to be human." Braden Bell, author of "The Road Show."

“Master storyteller L C Lewis weaves her tales using well researched American history facts as the warp and masterful plotting and characterizations as the woof. (The word might be weft. I'll try to check if the wireless persists.) Oh Say Can You See carries all the threads of the previous three books in her Free Men and Dreamers series and presents a rich tapestry of life, love, conflict and triumph during the War of 1812.”. Liz Adair, award-winning author of “Counting the Cost.”

Once started, I had to read the whole thing through, and many parts brought tears to my eyes. (Ernest Runge, a Viet Nam veteran and history enthusiast)

Lewis- I love reading the early reviews. I sent unedited copies to some colleagues and readers and I was deeply, deeply touched by the warm reception the book has had so far. I especially love hearing that whole families are reading the series and writing to tell me how much they’ve learned about America. I can’t wait to hear their reaction to “Oh, Say Can You See?”

Steimle: Tell us a little about your research for this volume.

Lewis- Aside from tons of reading, and visits to Frederick and other sites, my research for this book took me to Fort McHenry where I spent time with the expert on the Battle of Baltimore--Scott Sheads--who not only heads the staff at the fort, but who has served as the curator of the "Star Spangled Banner" exhibit at the Smithsonian. Like most historians with whom I've had the pleasure of chatting, Sheads is generous with his research and observations, offering me tidbits of little-known information about the perilous battle upon which the hopes of a battered nation hinged, and about the principle characters like Francis Scott Key who observed it as a detainee in the harbor, including details about the days surrounding the writing of the poem that became our nation's anthem.

Steimle: I hear one more volume is planned after this one. When will it be released, and tell us about the other volumes.

Lewis- Book five is set for a spring 2011 release and it will carry us forward, as we see how the events of this period shaped America and affected the next generation. We’re toying with two titles—“The Morning Breaks,” and “In God We Trust.” Right now, we’re all leaning towards “In God We Trust.”

The other three books in the series are:

Volume 1, DARK SKY at DAWN, introduces the complex story of our six lead families--three American, two British, one slave--and the devastating prelude to the war.

Volume 2, TWILIGHT'S LAST GLEAMING, carries readers into the harrowing events at Hampton, Virginia, and illustrates the toll the war takes on civilians--women and children. But through it all, a new tenacity begins to strengthen the young nation's spine as Americans rally to the cause of their nation.

Volume 3, DAWN'S EARLY LIGHT, throws our characters into the attack on Washington and the events that proved the mettle of the the Constitution and the Presidency.

Steimle: Tell us a little about L.C. Lewis.

Lewis- Well, many readers will be surprised to hear that I’m a grandma and not a grandpa! Publishers tend to obscure female historical fiction authors behind a pen name because some readers just expect the authors of these books to be male. I write women’s fiction under my real name, Laurie Lewis. My most recent release was in April—a women’s novel titled, “Awakening Avery,” which is currently nominated for a Whitney Award. (

I’m a long time resident of Carroll County where my husband and I still reside. The past few years have been consumed by these books, but as soon as volume five is released I hope to pick up some of my old hobbies—genealogy, cross-stitch, the guitar and gardening. I’m dying to learn to play the piano and my brave daughter has offered to teach her uncoordinated mother the ropes.

Steimle: Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing your book with us today. Let’s just remind readers that OH, SAY CAN YOU SEE? is set for an November release but autographed copies can be pre-ordered at

L.C. Lewis is beginning pre-release promotional activities readers can participate in by visiting her web site and blog at, and