BOOK CLUB- April and May Picks
With so much going on (graduations and finishing up books) I am late bringing you the April and May Picks. But it is never too late to give love to your imagination and your future by reading a new and award-winning book!
Meg’s Book Club introduces up-and-coming debut authors – one of my favorite things! For April and May introducing the She Writes Press 2021 Cohort with a spotlight on authors Judith Rabinor, PhD. Melanie Gibson, Alissa Carpenter and Barbara Linn Probst. Enjoy!
The Girl in the Red Boots: Making Peace with My Mother By Judith Ruskay Rabinor, PhD
I wrote The Girl in the Red Boots: Making Peace with My Mother because I know that many people have been wounded— temporally or permanently– by loved ones; unhealed wounds limit our lives. My book offers many stories from my office, but it’s my own story that’s been my greatest teacher.
Some years ago I was giving a workshop, “Mothers, Daughters and Eating Disorders: Honoring the Mother-Daughter Connection.” Suddenly, while leading an exercise, I broke out into a cold sweat and started trembling. I was blindsided by a traumatic childhood memory: I was eight years old, and it was a sunny June day. I was dressed in my new party dress, seated in the back seat of our car, happily humming along to Nat King Cole crooning “ Mona Lisa” on the radio. I thought my mother was driving us to the city for my cousin Winne’s birthday party. Instead, she took me to the hospital where she would leave me and I would have my tonsils out. To say I was in shock is an understatement. Somehow, I finished leading that workshop. Then I realized: I’m here, helping other people, yet I am troubled by one of my own unhealed wounds. I thought I’d made peace with my mother, but this trauma was only the first in a series of secrets, deceptions, and betrayals. This trauma had resonated through my life.
I made a commitment to dig deeper and heal. It wasn’t easy, but what I learned made me a better therapist —and a better person. If you are like most people, you have some baggage— unresolved issues that keep you stuck rewinding painful stories. The Girl in the Red Boots is my story– how I came to recognize my own blind spots and broken places, how to understand, accept and make peace with my mother. If you have unfinished business with anyone you love, it’s never too late to dig down, change your story and change your life. The Girl in the Red Boots can help you get unstuck.
Kicking and Screaming: A Memoir of Madness and Martial Arts
By Melanie Gibson
My book is a memoir and is my first book. I live in Texas and currently work in the healthcare industry.
The book is about how I overcame my most difficult struggles with mental illness by practicing taekwondo, a Korean martial art similar to karate. I first started taekwondo training as a child and returned to it in my early thirties. This is a both journey from white belt to black belt and also of an emotionally immature, miserable loner to a happy, confident woman.
When I was training I began having a lot of insights and reflections about the life lessons I was gaining from martial arts. My mental and emotional wellness was improving, and I wanted to share that with an audience. I started my blog Little Black Belt (as a shoutout to the little black dress) and was motivated not long after to write a book.
How to Listen and How to Be Heard: Inclusive Conversations at Work, By Alissa Carpenter
There’s no denying that our workplaces are more diverse than ever. Age, race, gender—there are so many different perspectives and experiences being brought to the table. And the best employees and leaders know that harnessing the power of these differences will build stronger teams, ideas, and organizations. But how do we do this? If we all think, feel, and act so differently, how do we get anything done?
The first step is recognizing that these differences exist. And that they’re here to stay. We need to respect and embrace our varied viewpoints, and then we can start to communicate across (not against) them.
How to Listen and How to be Heard shows you how to bridge the conversation gap and use your unique voice to start powerful conversations. This book is about learning how to communicate with, through, and alongside what makes us different. It’s about open dialogue and practical tools that get everyone on the same page—or at least in the same room. It’s not about quick fixes or the absence of conflict; it’s about working toward authentic communication in the workplace—for managers, employees, and colleagues from all fields. It’s about remembering that we’re all here to work together.
I wanted to create a book for anyone who has ever felt their voice wasn’t heard at work. Early on in my career, I was nervous to have difficult conversations, to speak up, and to challenge the status quo with a new idea. There wasn’t anything out there that covered diverse and inclusive workplace communication and empowered people at all levels with this skill set.
My book is a guide on how to empower yourself and others to communicate with people who think, act, and experience things differently than you do, and do so with more confidence, candor, and authenticity.
Too often, people avoid difficult conversations; but these discussions often need to happen to bring people together so we can all succeed.
The Sound Between the Notes
By Barbara Linn Probst
I’m Barbara Linn Probst, and I’m delighted to introduce my second book, The Sound Between the Notes. It’s a work of “upmarket” women’s fiction and follows my award-winning debut, Queen of the Owls.
Told through the unique perspective of a musician, The Sound Between the Notes is the story of a woman who’s offered an unexpected second chance at the career she thought she’d set aside forever. Susannah, the protagonist, is an adoptee searching for what it means to be a daughter, a sister, a mother. As her now-or-never concert draws near—and the difficulties escalate, in every aspect of her life—Susannah struggles to fulfill her artistic passion while reconciling past and present and doing right by those she loves.
In its starred review, give only to books “of remarkable merit,” Kirkus has called the book “a tour de force … sensitive and astute.” Readers Favorite Reviews describes it as “a breathtaking emotional journey” and a compulsive page-turner with “awesome characters, a twisty plot, and gorgeous writing.”
I’m what they call a “serious amateur pianist,” as well as a mother by adoption—two powerful sources of inspiration for a novel! The challenge was to find the best way to bring those elements together. I wanted to tell a story about the search for identity and belonging, the meaning of family, the struggle to integrate nature and nurture—timeless and universal themes—but in a fresh and engaging way.
It took a while for the right structure to appear, to be honest. I had a lot of ideas, but I had to mature as both a writer and a musician before I was ready to make the book what it needed to be. There’s always a journey from the initial inspiration until you can bring a story to life in the way it deserves to be told!
It’s available right now, wherever books are sold! You can find many ways to order on my website. You can contact me there too, and also on Instagram and Facebook.
Give love to your imagination and your future by reading a new book!
Support Indie Authors! Tune in Next Month for More Incredible Book Choices