Archive for October, 2014

Book Tours: Promo and Excerpt for A Different Kind of Safari

safaribanner

Book Excerpt

I walked over to the huge bush and carefully pushed aside its thorny branches. There, in the heat of the sun, a pod of hippos was splashing about, submerging themselves in the water like submarines.
 
All except one.

interior1

That one looked straight at me and then did the oddest thing.

A Different Kind of Safari

bookcover_smallTitle: A Different Kind of Safari

Author: Helen Hipp

Genre: Children’s Books

Has a book ever changed your life? Not just inspired you but helped you to see you’re life differently? In a tale that celebrates differences “A Different Kind of Safari”  addressing the many questions life asks by offering up lighthearted, ever-changing perspectives that transform personal challenges into opportunities. Engaging and fun young children begin to figure out how they are the same and different from other people, and how they feel about the differences. Full of fun and enjoyable teachable moments that move children and allow them to make personal connections with the characters handling of similar fears, interests, and concerns that they experience.

Author Bio

Hip9860_7x5final150dpiHelen Hipp’s experience raising a special needs child led her to an M.A. in clinical psychology and certification as a life coach. She began her career as a psychotherapist to help people find answers for their life problems. Her work eventually evolved into a coaching practice, WithinU Life Coaching, focusing on individuals with special needs and their families. Helen uses her 13+ years of counseling experience and 20+ years’ experience as a successful advocate for individuals with special needs by helping them reveal their innate ability to solve difficult situations. Her debut book ” A Different Kind of Safari” puts into words the essence of Helen’s teachings addressing the many questions life asks by offering up lighthearted, ever-changing perspectives that transform personal challenges into opportunities.

Links

For more information, visit the books official website and to see a picture of the real Rosie the real life pink hippo that inspired this story, go to www.adifferentkindofsafari.com

Award Winning Book trailer: http://youtu.be/5vd_sH64kt0

Buy the Book:

A Different Kind Of Safari | Hardcover

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-different-kind-of-safari-helen-c-hipp/1115058594?ean=9780989013406

A Different Kind Of Safari | Hardcover

http://www.amazon.com/Different-Kind-Safari-Helen-Hipp/dp/0989013405/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1403620957&sr=8-1&keywords=a+different+kind+of+safari

A Different Kind Of Safari | Audio Book

http://www.audible.com/pd/Kids/A-Different-Kind-of-Safari-Audiobook/B00FWXPS2U

Giveaway

There is a tour-wide giveaway for a $35 Amazon gift card.

Go here to participate in the giveaway.


October 29, 2014 at 8:46 am Leave a comment

Book Tours: Promo and Excerpt for First Experience and Weekend Experience

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Book Excerpt

This excerpt is from “First Experience”. Enjoy. Adults only.

“OK, young lady, step out of that mess around your legs. I bent down, and Kelly put her hand on my shoulder, as she alternately lifted one foot and the other, and I pulled her clothing aside. She stood back up, putting her hands on her head, and I grabbed her clothes, and stood up in front of her. I slowly untangled the pants and underwear. I handed the pants to Kelly, and said, “Fold these nicely, please.” She did so. I then handed her the underwear, and said, “Put these things on one of the chairs in front of the desk, then come back here.”

Kelly walked over to the office area, carrying her clothes, while I watched her red, receding bottom sway with every step. I quickly picked up the things next to the stool, put the stool back against the wall, and walked into the bathroom to throw away the tissues, and clean the thermometer. While I was washing my hands, I looked into the mirror, and a very self-satisfied face smiled back at me. I was living a dream – but it was better than any fantasy that I had ever had.

When I returned to the playroom, Kelly was in a proper standing position where the stool had been before, awaiting my return. “Kelly, are you hungry or thirsty? I know you haven’t had much this morning.”

Kelly watched me walk through the room towards her, and said, “I guess I’m getting a little hungry, but my stomach is still pretty nervous. Could I please just have some water, Sir?” I backtracked to the coffee table, grabbed her glass, and went behind the bar to add some ice and fill it with purified water. I brought the water to her, and as she took it, and drank almost half in a few gulps, she looked sheepishly at me, and said, “Thank you, Sir. You’re being very nice to me, considering you’re also beating me!”

Her tone sounded nice, but that statement got me a little upset. I took the glass, and put it down on the table near the wall, and then turned towards her. She had put her hands back on her head. “Kelly! First of all, I already told you that your punishment would be given with respect. Other than your bottom being sore, I want you to be comfortable. And I certainly don’t want you to get dehydrated, or have any other health problem.

Secondly, I’m not ‘beating’ you! I am applying a measured degree of pain, taking care to let your bottom acclimate to the experience, and not taking it too fast for you. And, if you remember our discussion earlier – it is not about ‘hurting’ you, but about giving you the experience of feeling fear – and some pain – and being strong enough, brave enough, having enough control over your body, and wanting to please me enough to deal with it. As I said, you’ve done very well so-far.”

Kelly looked down at her feet, thinking about what I had said. “I don’t know, Sir. I’m trying to understand all this.” She looked at me again, with a child’s face, “It’s confusing … one moment you’re spanking me so hard, I don’t think I can stand it … and the next, you’re treating me like an honored guest, making sure all of my needs are met. When you’re spanking me, it feels like I should hate you, and when you’re nice again, I almost think I love you. I’m on an emotional roller-coaster, and I still don’t know if I could do this again.” Kelly looked down again, with her face in a pout, her hands still on her head.

I gently lifted her chin, until our eyes met. “I told you that pain and pleasure, love and hate, are related feelings and emotions that are very close together. Your feelings and confusion are normal; please hang in there, and let’s see how you do on your next two level-10 punishments – which we are about to begin now. After you have successfully reached level-30, we’ll take a break and have some lunch. Then we can talk more about how you’re feeling. Does that sound alright?”

Kelly looked at me, with tears starting to fill her eyes again. “Yes, Sir. I’m sorry, Sir, I didn’t mean to complain … but this is all so weird … I expected this to be about the physical pain and doing simple things like undressing for you; I’m realizing it’s not really about that at all. I’m sorry to tell you this, Sir, but it’s not about you at all. It’s much more about me dealing with my own feelings. And, I’ve never been very good at that.” Kelly looked down again, and was silent.

In my most fatherly voice I said, “Kelly, it sounds like this experience may be good for you – to put you in touch with yourself, give you confidence that you are strong enough – emotionally – to do this, and give you some insight into the perversions that some of us ‘old guys’ have. We are still doing this only because you’re willing to, and we can still stop the scene any time you feel it is getting too much for you. All I ask is that you give it a chance. Let’s talk about this again during lunch. Maybe after another two level-10 punishments, you will have a better idea of what you think about all this. OK?”

Kelly mumbled, “Yes, Sir.”

About The Books

First Experience

Cover First SMALL 140821Beyond 50 Shades … Way Beyond!

FIRST EXPERIENCE is an intimate exploration of kinks and fetishes by an unlikely couple, with thoughtful and philosophical discussion by the characters, and graphic descriptions of their erotic adventures.

Sam meets Kelly, a beautiful but troubled woman half his age, leading to a ‘first experience’ exploring the surreal world their fantasies.  Sam realizes that he desires more than a play partner.  And Kelly knows that she needs more than a lover:  Someone to whom she can expose her inner soul; someone whose values transcend the ordinary; someone who will fulfill her own dark fantasy world.

The Experiences series is an epic love story of erotic relationships and sexual desires. Written in a ‘literary realism’ style, the series introduces Sam in the prequel, and the blossoming of his intimate relationship with Kelly as the series progresses. Fantasies and real-world adventures coalesce to mold a unique bond between unlikely lovers. Where needs are mutually satisfied in an open, creative and trusting environment. Where physical and mental boundaries are pushed. Where the concepts of love and sex are never confused, but sometimes confusing. Where openness is required and intimacy is expected. And where fair-is-fair, regarding the punishment of transgressions.

Contemporary erotic romance: Suitable for mature readers, aged 18+ years.

Experiences:  Book 2 is 111,000 word, 17 chapters, 374 print pages

Acclaim from reviewers:

“Erotic, sexy, imaginative, and descriptive”

“The dialog in this book is top notch”

“Origins of a Fetish is well written, fast paced, and a true page turner”

“After reading Origins of a Fetish, I truly wanted more”

“An extremely sexy novel that is filled with substance”

“Will leave you questioning your own beliefs on sex”

WARNING!

This work contains mature content, including graphic sexual descriptions and scenes, and is provided for adults only. The Experiences series contains scenes of psychological and physical submission, discipline, and medical fetish.  The characters explore various fetishes, which evolve throughout the series.  ALL CHARACTERS IN THE BOOK ARE 21 YEARS OLD OR OLDER, and all activities are consensual.

Weekend Experience

49abee_b9add4d56f2945828a42ebba1ebc7f1a.jpg_srz_p_231_323_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srzBeyond 50 Shades … Way Beyond!

WEEKEND EXPERIENCE is an intimate exploration of kinks and fetishes by an unlikely couple, with thoughtful and philosophical discussion by the characters, and graphic descriptions of their erotic adventures.

Sam and Kelly have role-played some of their most intimate fantasies in an atmosphere of openness and trust.  Now, Sam wants to share with Kelly new kinks, fetishes and sensual pleasures.  Kelly is more than a willing participant:  She is the mirror by which Sam sees that his openness and submission is as important as Kelly’s.  A visit by her friends leads to new fantasies for both of them.

The Experiences series is an epic love story of erotic relationships and sexual desires. Written in a ‘literary realism’ style, the series introduces Sam in the prequel, and the blossoming of his intimate relationship with Kelly as the series progresses. Fantasies and real-world adventures coalesce to mold a unique bond between unlikely lovers. Where needs are mutually satisfied in an open, creative and trusting environment. Where physical and mental boundaries are pushed. Where the concepts of love and sex are never confused, but sometimes confusing. Where openness is required and intimacy is expected. And where fair-is-fair, regarding the punishment of transgressions.

Contemporary erotic romance: Suitable for mature readers, aged 18+ years.

Experiences:  Book 3 is 101,000 words, 17 chapters, 336 print pages

Acclaim from reviewers:

“Erotic, sexy, imaginative, and descriptive”

“The dialog in this book is top notch”

“Origins of a Fetish is well written, fast paced, and a true page turner”

“After reading Origins of a Fetish, I truly wanted more”

“An extremely sexy novel that is filled with substance”

“Will leave you questioning your own beliefs on sex”

WARNING!

This work contains mature content, including graphic sexual descriptions and scenes, and is provided for adults only. The Experiences series contains scenes of psychological and physical submission, discipline, and medical fetish.  The characters explore various fetishes, which evolve throughout the series.  ALL CHARACTERS IN THE BOOK ARE 21 YEARS OLD OR OLDER, and all activities are consensual.

 

About The Author

SimoneFace Small 140811An adventuress and traveler, Simone is a sensual being who loves to read stories that excite her.  She takes exception to authors who promote their works as ‘dirty’, ‘filthy’, or ‘smutty’:  She believes that sex is wonderful in all of its incarnations, and doesn’t shy away from graphic descriptions of realistic sexual experiences, no matter how messy.  Her writing is mainly in the ‘literary realism’ style – i.e., it is wild (even outrageous) … but could really happen to you!  She values openness in relationships, and demonstrates this through her characters.

Prior to becoming an author, Simone was a nurse.  One of her pet peeves is reading erotica that gets simple anatomy wrong!  She is continually bewildered by women who haven’t explored their own bodies.  Another pet peeve is the mostly hung-up Victorian society prevalent in the U.S. and U.K., and she tries to do her part to change that by introducing people to new sexual and sensual experiences through her erotic writing.  The activities in Simone’s books are quite realistic, as she has participated in most of these in ‘real life’, as surreal as it may seem.

Simone is currently completing the Experiences series, which will run an estimated 1,000,000 words!  That is why she refers to it as an ‘epic’ romance, although each volume is intended to stand on its own, with a ‘happy for now’ ending.  Experiences combines literary style and philosophical discussion by the characters with graphic portrayal of sex in all of its kinks and fetishes.  You may not like all of the things Simone’s characters do … but neither do they.  Their exploration of new experiences will hopefully motivate some readers to explore their own sexuality to a greater extent.

Simone loves to hear from her readers, so feel free to contact her.   In fact, she hopes you will feel ‘free’ sexually and spiritually, as well.  Please follow her on social media and her blog.  On her website, you may interact directly with the main characters in her books, including asking them questions in order to understand their perspectives in more depth.

You can sign up to her mailing list to learn about new releases, and take advantage of promotions.  All readers on the mailing list will be sent an excerpt from each of her next novels, prior to publication.

You can contact Simone at sf@simonefreier.com

Visit Simone’s website:  http://simonefreier.com

Friend Simone on her Facebook page:  http://facebook.com/SimoneFreierAuthor

Or, tweet Simone at:  http://twitter.com/simonefreier

Links

Buy Weekend Experience on:

Amazon Kindle | iBooks | B&N | Smashwords | Createspace

The Experience series on Kindle.

October 28, 2014 at 9:16 am Leave a comment

Book Excerpt from School of Deaths

schoolofdeathsbanner

Book Excerpt

“Suzie, my gawd, you look like death.”

Crystal hadn’t changed. The smiling redhead with large blue glasses and the ever-present smell of cherry bubblegum was her best friend. She was grateful Crystal had spent the summer away. “Did you have a nice summer? How was Colorado?”

“My summer was great. Colorado’s cold. Geesh, what happened to you, Suzie?”

“I’ve been sick,” said Suzie. Not a complete lie, obviously something was wrong with her, but she didn’t know what.

“Sick?” Her voice lowered to a whisper. “You look like you’re dying.”

“I’ll be fine.”

“Crystaaal. Suzieee,” shouted a voice from across the parking lot.

“Oh gawd, it’s Monica,” said Crystal. “Let’s go inside quick.”

Suzie and her friend started to walk away, but the tall, lanky girl with small eyes caught up to them. Monica. She wasn’t too bad, if you ignored her whiny voice and her inane stories.

“Hiii guys,” said Monica. “I missed youuu this summer. Did you lose weight? The funniest thing happened the other day…”

Suzie realized the worst of the day was over. She got teasing looks from the kids and concerned frowns from the teachers, but like Monica, most people were too wrapped up in their own little world to pay any attention to her. Even Crystal eventually stopped asking questions.

“Tell me again, do you like the way you look?”

“I’m sorry, what?” she asked.

Suzie snapped to attention. The day had blurred by, and she was sitting in Dr. Fox’s office, wearing a hospital gown.

“Suzie, I asked if you like the way you look?”

Suzie was cold and annoyed. The office smelled of bleach, and the fluorescent light overhead hummed like a dying fly. Dr. Fox glanced up from her notes and smiled a dry, lifeless smile she probably practiced in front of a mirror.

“No, Doctor.” She repeated the same answers she had given last time, and the time before. “I despise the way I look. I’m a damned skeleton. You can see every bone. I love to eat, I don’t purge, I hardly exercise, and I actually feel fine.”

“Yes, that’s the strangest part,” interrupted Dr. Fox. “Every test seems to indicate that you’re at the peak of health. No lanugo, no joint issues, no skin problems, and your stomach and the rest of you are actually functioning fine. I’ve almost completely ruled out anorexia, but your weight is still drastically low. It’s like your calories are vanishing into some other dimension.” She laughed. “My husband wishes that would happen with me.”

“May I get dressed now?”

About The Book

CoverSchoolofDeathsTitle: School of Deaths

Author: Christopher Mannino

Genre: YA Fantasy

Thrust into a world of men, can a timid girl find bravery as the first female Death?

Thirteen-year-old Suzie Sarnio always believed the Grim Reaper was a fairy tale image of a skeleton with a scythe.  Now, forced to enter the College of Deaths, she finds herself training to bring souls from the Living World to the Hereafter.

The task is demanding enough, but as the only female in the all-male College, she quickly becomes a target.  Attacked by both classmates and strangers, Suzie is alone in a world where even her teachers want her to fail.

Caught in the middle of a plot to overthrow the World of Deaths, Suzie must uncover the reason she’s been brought there: the first female Death in a million years.

Author Bio

image002Christopher Mannino’s life is best described as an unending creative outlet.  He teaches high school theatre in Greenbelt, Maryland.  In addition to his daily drama classes, he runs several after-school performance/production drama groups.  He spends his summers writing and singing.  Mannino holds a Master of Arts in Theatre Education from Catholic University, and has studied mythology and literature both in America and at Oxford University.  His work with young people helped inspire him to write young adult fantasy, although it was his love of reading that truly brought his writing to life.

Mannino is currently working on a sequel to “School of Deaths” as well as an adult science fiction novel.

Watch the trailer here

Book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3AeszKiTz0k

 

Links

All purchase links can be found at http://www.christophermannino.com/school-of-deaths.html#.U81VLPldWSo

www.ChristopherMannino.com
http://poetsfire.blogspot.com/
https://www.facebook.com/CTMannino
https://twitter.com/Ctmannino
http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00K2XOP88
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8108129.Christopher_Mannino

Giveaway

There is a tour-wide giveaway for free ebook copies of the book. Participate by filling in the form below: you can participate by either commenting on one of the blogs participating, or tweeting about the book.

 Go here to participate in the giveaway. 

There is also a tour-wide giveaway for an Amazon gift card, value $20. All you need to do to participate is sign up for the author’s newsletter, and fill in the form below.

Go here to participate in the giveaway.

October 27, 2014 at 12:23 am Leave a comment

Book Excerpt Outcasts of the Worlds

outcastsbanner

Book Excerpt

From Chapter 8 – Shedding Skin

            Chari was conditioned to wake with the sun, and soon rose and began her day. Bereft of priestess duties, she left her sandals behind, hiked up the wraps around her legs, retied them in place, and climbed down the rocks to the shore below to catch what she might for breakfast. Dozens of crustaceans skittered along the shore, and she suddenly wished she had a better idea of how the fishermen took their catch. Having only ever needed to take what she wanted, Chari had put little thought into how those things were gotten or made.

            For a moment, she felt inspired and picked up a large rock to smash one of the crabs with, but when it came time to deliver the killing blow, she found she didn’t have it in her. Killing felt hypocritical now, after spending years of her life preaching against it. She hadn’t forgotten the double standards that women like

Inquisitor Thunau lived by, nor she herself, who had had fresh meat most of the days of her life. She recalled the rifle, back at the camp. How childish, to train with something that could be used to kill and find not the nerve for it.

            Chari felt mocked by something so tiny, which had none of the woes and worries that she did. Contempt for the crab built as it shuffled back and forth, until finally she found the courage to let the rock drop. The creature beneath broke and cracked but didn’t quite die. Feeling worse, she lifted the rock up again. She wanted to touch it, to apologize—she even considered healing its injuries. But to have one’s whole body crushed and survive … it would hurt her as much as it had hurt the creature. If killing was cruel, even to survive, so too was letting something suffer because she lacked follow-through.

About The Book

OutcastsFrontTitle: Outcasts of the Worlds

Author: Lucas Aubrey Paynter

Genre: SciFi Fantasy

Beyond the remnants of Earth lie many worlds, connected by pathways forgotten and invisible. They were left by the gods and have been found by Flynn.

A confidence man. A liar. A monster. Flynn has seen himself for what he really is and has resolved to pay for everything. Even if it means spending the rest of his days locked in Civilis, a tower prison for society’s unwanted – “half-humans” gifted by the fallout of nuclear holocaust centuries past.

Jean, a prisoner in the neighboring cell, has different ideas and despite himself, Flynn finds himself joining her daring escape. After rescuing her friend Mack, the three flee Civilis as Flynn pieces together the hours before his capture and finds himself drawn to an abandoned facility where a rift to another world opens at his nearing.

Together they will venture farther beyond the stars than humanity ever imagined, find others like them that will never belong, and tangle with forces both ancient and immortal. They stand alone, hated and scorned – and the last hope of making things right in a cosmos gone terribly wrong.

Author Bio

IMG9776Lucas Aubrey Paynter holds a Creative Writing degree from California State University Northridge—which looks really good when one talks about how they want to write for a living. A fan of engaging storytelling in any medium,  he spent years developing the worlds, characters and conflicts that Flynn and his company encounter, before settling at his desk and writing Outcasts of the Worlds, the first part of a much larger tale to come.

Currently residing with his wife in Burbank, California, Lucas enjoys reading in a variety of formats, potentially overanalyzing character motivations and arcs, and the occasional good, stiff drink.

Links

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/outcastsoftheworlds
Twitter – @OutcastWorlds
Website – www.outcastsoftheworlds.com
Book Trailer – http://youtu.be/7lL9bHigFyc

Amazon – Amazon

Barnes and Noble – B&N

Feedbooks – Facebook

October 26, 2014 at 12:53 am Leave a comment

Book Review The Luddite’s Guide to Technology

21247087Title: The Luddite’s Guide to Technology

Author: CJS Hayward

Genre: creative non-fiction / religion and spirituality / technology – social aspects

Mammon, as it is challenged in the Sermon on the Mount, represents such wealth and possessions as one could have two thousand years ago. But that is merely beer as contrasted to the eighty proof whisky our day has concocted. The Sermon on the Mount aims to put us in the driver’s seat and not what you could possess in ancient times, and if the Sermon on the Mount says something about metaphorical beer, perhaps there are implications for an age where something more like eighty proof whisky is all around us.

The Luddite’s Guide to Technology focuses, as the title suggests, on the role between religion on the one side, and science and technology on the other side. It explores Frankenstein-like themes, the real possibility of our world being ruled by machines (which is already truth, in some way – we’re being dominated by machines in just about everything we do), and often religion gets lost in the overwhelming sea of technology. It’s always believed religion and science cancel each other out, but CJS Hayward offers a different perspective.

The collection exists of individual essays, so one can pick and choose which ones to read and which ones not to. I started out reading the ones with the most intriguing titles and topics, and then went back to read the other essays. One of my favorite essays was “Religion Within the Bounds of Amusement”, a satire. “The Luddite’s Guide to Technology”, for which the collection was named, was interesting too.

October 25, 2014 at 8:21 am Leave a comment

Book Review Globaloonies: The Big Red Button

Globaloonies1_EbookTitle: Globaloonies

Author: Max Candee

Genre: Children’s Picture Book, Time Travel

Rating: 5 stars

Amazon

“Joey Papagopolis is your typical 10-year-old.

Like most boys that age, Joey has a pet chameleon named Larry and a mysterious Big Red Button that can transport the two of them through time and space to the far reaches of the planet…

Hey, wait a second, that’s not typical at all! In fact, that’s pretty amazing — which is why you will want to follow along as Joey and Larry set off on their first Big Red Button adventure.

An absent-minded wish and an accidental pressing of the button land Joey and Larry smack in the middle of a conflict between a Native American tribe and some English settlers. Yikes!

Are their lives in danger? Can Joey resolve the conflict? Will Larry teach them all how to line dance? Does Larry even know how to line dance?

The answers to these questions and more await you in the fun and fantastic adventure of THE BIG RED BUTTON.

65+ illustrated pages (may vary by device).
Humorous illustrations by Anne Zimanski.

Includes a professionally crafted audiobook. Look for the link inside!“

“The Big Red Button” is the first book in a brand new picture book series, “Globaloonies” by author Max Candee. We meet up with Joey Papagopolis, a regular 10-year-old who has a common first name and not so common last name. He wants to be part of the Guinness world records book, but so far, all his attempts have failed. He also has a pet chameleon named Larry. He thought it would make him cool, but that plan failed too.

But then Larry and Joey find a mysterious Big Red Button which can transport the two of them through time and space. The discovery turns Joey’s life upside down, and makes him the most interesting ten-year-old in the world.

But when he presses the button and he and Larry end up in the middle of a conflict between a Native American tribe and English settles, their lives might become endangered.

I absolutely loved this book with adorable illustrations (most of them in color, some in black and white) and about a boy, a magical button, and the boy’s pet chameleon. I’m sure all kids (especially boys) will enjoy Joey’s adventures as well. The writing is spot on for kids, without using too many difficult words, and with the right dose of humor. Loved it.

October 24, 2014 at 9:50 am Leave a comment

Guest Post The Best of Jonathan’s Corner

bestofjonathanscorner

I’m sharing a guest post today for the book tour for creative non-fiction / spirituality “The Best of Jonathan’s Corner”. Enjoy the guest post!

The Best of Jonathan’s Corner: Readers speak out

 
I thought about trying to delve deep in myself and find something special to share, but there was something not quite right about doing things that way. I have, perhaps, done so in some of my works, and the best of these, included in The Best of Jonathan’s Corner, is An Author’s Musing Memoirs About His Work: Retrospective Reflections, Retracings, and Retractions.
 
What I thought would be better is to let readers speak in their own words as my final guest post on this tour.

 


Cynthia Clampitt, “Spirit and Skill:”
 
Jonathan Hayward is a remarkably deep thinker with a pronounced skill for allegory. In the tradition of C.S. Lewis, he finds ways to make extremely subtle, complex material comprehensible, and even comfortably recognizable. While the title and foreword suggest that this is for Orthodox Christians, I think any believer who thinks about the “big ideas” of Christianity will find this a treasure of valuable insight. It’s a great introduction to the spirit, thoughts, and work of this multifaceted young writer.​

Kent Nebergall, “C S Lewis and Steve Jobs walk into a bar…”
 

Thank God for Kindle, and praise His holy name for Text-to-Speech. On otherwise dreary winter days at work, I can listen to the wisdom of theologians and great men and women while I work in my cubicle. No day without meetings can avoid being blessed with wisdom of the ages (and no day with meetings… you get the picture). I can carry a thin piece of electronics or read my iPhone app without calling attention to myself with some crushing work of Bonheoffer or Plato to intimidate my fellow cubicle meerkats.

When I read C. S. Lewis, A. W. Tozer, or G. K. Chesterton, there is a deep ache for both the times and the men that made honor, wisdom, and clarity a thing of such beauty and strength. We wonder what they would say of our time, and why, with so many more people and better communication, we don’t see more of them.

Jonathan Hayward is such a person of wisdom and depth. I do not say this lightly or flatteringly. He and I don’t agree on everything, but when we contrast, it will never be his side of the issue that is lacking in depth, beauty, or elegance. He’s Orthodox, yes (I’m not). But I suspect all sides will claim him as they do Lewis and Chesterton.

Before you assume you need a Masters in Theology to follow his work, I suggest actually reading it. If you loose a point, it may be because he occasionally uses examples from his mathematical or programming background. You won’t feel talked down to, but your intelligence will be respected. He’s a bit like a game you can explain to a child clearly but may have difficulty getting through to a professor, because professors may be too busy tripping over their convoluted filters to see the point.​

Vincent J. Frattarulo, “Essays from an Eastern Orthodox perspective”
 
CJS Hayward’s book consists of a series of essays covering a variety of subjects, both cultural and religious from the perspective of an Eastern Orthodox Christian. I recommend this book to both Catholics and Protestants who are interested in Eastern Orthodoxy.​


Colleen Woods, “A gift that is given”
 

The Best of Jonathan’s Corner (author: Christos Jonathan Hayward) is written work that has been divinely inspired for our day and age’s spiritually thirsty fellows. More than ever, people are starting to search for deeper answers to things they might not be able to answer on their own. They’re looking for their path in and with God, and reading this book will lead them to the way. Perhaps through each page flipped and every line read, Orthodox Christian or not, readers will discover answers they’ve been looking for. They will be able to grasp it with such great ease and genuine understanding. The way this book is written it wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the author’s drive, his very own inspiration to bestow this thirsty world with his book. His knowledge hails from written passages of Church Fathers and the best of all his own life experiences that helps transform this book from enlightening to relatable for our present day and its people.

Spiritual topics are explored throughout the book to pique interest in the reader and to engage the reader on subjects that should be brought to the forefront in one’s faith. The author, as mentioned above, delicately and attentively writes about these sometimes touchy subjects in such a manner, that he it makes it comfortable for the reader to retain the information that they’ve read. Due to it being written that way, it allows the reader every angle of the topic and not just one, allowing them to be able to discern and form their own answer, especially when religion and science is discussed in the pages. This author has gathered bundles of knowledge, piecing it together to quench our thirst for answers or simply for something more. It is only fair for us to take this gift that is given and to not only deepen our faith, but to strengthen our ties to God.​


Sydney Nicoletta Freedman:
 

The Best of Jonathan’s Corner: An Anthology of Orthodox Christian Theology is a book that provides not only a good introduction to the author’s work but also a dose of the clear thinking and spiritual wisdom prescribed for our times. The author lives to create treasure, and he has mined, refined, and gathered wisdom for our age. It is not new knowledge, but rather, it has been artfully distilled from the writings of Church Fathers and his own life, from study and experience.

The pieces in this book speak with clarity about spiritual topics and with depth about practical ones, addressing the intrigues and issues that we all face, explore, and question. Orthodox Christian readers will find insightful discussions of art and worship, such as Lesser Icons, and lucid, applicable discussions of the spiritual life, such as God the Spiritual Father. This Eastern Orthodox perspective may shed light on matters for readers from other traditions as well. Such is especially true for pieces on such timely issues as economic hardship (Money, and The Best Things in Life are Free) and the discussion of religion and science, including “Religion and Science” Is Not Just Intelligent Design vs. Evolution. Regarding this latter work, a Roman Catholic reader recently deemed it to be one of the ‘most intelligent and erudite’ things that he has ever read. The essays on silence, the place of technology, and nature are treasures among the discussions of such popular and important issues.

The poetic and fictional works in this book offer the same spiritual knowledge for which our society thirsts but in the deeper and more elevated way that is inherent to their genres. Some of the poems, Open, for example, are prayers, which readers may find to voice some of their own words and which fittingly glorify God and His saints. Other poetry, such as How shall I Tell an Alchemist, pointedly deals with questions of spirituality and theology with the magnified acuity that only this particular art can achieve. Socratic dialogue (The Damned Backswing) and other creative forms play their part as well, rounding out the book.

The work that stands out most among the creative pieces, perhaps among all of them, is that which opens the book, The Angelic Letters. I have had the pleasure of reading nearly all of Hayward’s writings, and I was delighted that he undertook to write such a work. Readers who are familiar with C. S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters will recognize at once that it is the very book which that author desired, but felt unable, to write in order to balance the demonic correspondence. It is a mark of Hayward’s skill, knowledge, and spiritual insight that he has successfully written something that such a theologian as Lewis did not wish to attempt, and according to a psychologist of his acquaintance, the average Harvard PhD has not ever met someone as talented as Hayward. He has of course accomplished this work with God’s help, but one must realize the spiritual struggle, mental effort, careful study, and deep prayer that has gone into every piece in this anthology. Hayward has done much work for us. He has grappled with questions and problems that many of us face, but we may not feel that we have the resources to confront them. We therefore can find within these pages words that will perhaps directly answer some of our questions and certainly facilitate the difficult but necessary task of learning and discerning that we all must carry out, each is he is able. I am privileged to introduce some of the fruit that has come from the author’s efforts to complete this task himself so that all may benefit from both its example and its contents. May it leave seeds of knowledge in all who read. This author has gathered pearls for us, and may we gladly look upon them. They hold glimmers that can reflect our lives.

 
And that last review is included as the foreword for The Best of Jonathan’s Corner. I invite you to read it!

About The Book

the-best-of-jonathans-corner-front-coverTitle: The Best of Jonathan’s Corner

Author: CJS Hayward

Genre: Creative non-fiction / many genres / religion and spirituality / Eastern Orthodox

The Best of Jonathan’s Corner, newly expanded ​ after getting five star reviews​, is a collection of varied works of Eastern Orthodox mystical theology. It spans many topics and many different genres of writing, but it keeps coming back to the biggest questions of all. It is inexhaustible: the works are independent, and you can read a few, many, or all of them to suit your taste. Fans of CS Lewis and GK Chesterton will love it.

Author Bio

wardrobe_full Christos Jonathan Seth Hayward wears many hats as a person: author, philosopher, theologian, artist, poet, wayfarer, philologist, inventor, web guru, teacher.

Some have asked, “If a much lesser C.S. Lewis were Orthodox, what would he be like?” And the answer may well be, “C.J.S. Hayward.”

Called “Jack of all trades and master of many” by one boss, he also wears many hats professionally: open source / IT generalist, front end developer, JavaScript programmer, back end web developer, Pythonista, PHP and Perl user, Django developer, end to end web developer, Unix/Linux/Mac wizard, LAMP guru, SQL generalist, Unix shell (both using existing shells and implementing a new shell), system administrator, researcher, technical writer, usability advocate, UI developer, UX/IA enthusiast, and more.

Hayward has lived in the U.S., Malaysia, England, and France, and holds master’s degrees bridging math and computers (UIUC), and philosophy and theology (Cambridge).

Links

http://tinyurl.com/best-of-jonathans-corner

http://CJSH.name

http://amazon.com/author/cjshayward

http://JonathansCorner.com

October 22, 2014 at 3:03 pm Leave a comment

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