Friday, June 19, 2015

Out from the Underworld by Heather Siegel (Book spotlight & Giveaway)

Today I'm featuring Out from the Underworld by Heather Siegel, a gutsy memoir of how the author and her siblings faced parental abandonment. It's well-written and almost reads like a novel.

You can find my review on This is a story that touches on mental illness, family responsibility and fighting to win against all odds. Heather is an author to watch out for, and I look forward to reading her future work.

In her memoir, Heather tells of how she and her sister are put into foster care with an Italian family. I had to laugh when Heather recounts her first meeting with Mrs. Giordano when even before being introduced, Mrs Giordano opens the refrigerator and offers them food. Heather states in her memoir, "I liked her way of food first, business second."

Food is a big part of the Italian culture. Everything revolves around it. Food is both seen as an art and as comfort. In North America the Italian Americans brought the customs from their small towns and are still practising them today, like making tomato sauce and wine in the fall. I grew up with these customs that are such an inherent part of my life.

Anyhow, be sure to check out this memoir and enter the giveaway!

About the Book:

Out from the Underworld by Heather Siegel
Greenpoint Press
ISBN: 978-0-9906194-0-6
Published: April 30, 2015
Trade paperback, 220 pages

Heather Siegel was six years old when her mother disappeared, sending her father into a tailspin that took Heather and her siblings down with him— from a comfortable suburban home to a barely habitable basement apartment, a dark world they soon found themselves fighting to return to from the exile of foster care, then fighting even harder to escape.

Forty years later, Heather Siegel tells the remarkable story of how she and her siblings, Jaz and Greg, banded together to find out what happened to their mother and fight their way Out from the Underworld with nothing but their wits, determination, unbreakable bonds and gifts for humor and compassion to sustain them. A wrenching, inspiring story filled with heartbreak, hope and love, Out from The Underworld will move you to laughter and tears.

Where to buy the book:

About the Author:

Heather Siegel holds an MFA in nonfiction writing from The New School. Her work has appeared on and in The Mother Magazine and Author Magazine, as well as in various trade publications. She was a finalist for the 2010 Pacific Northwest Writers Association Literary Award in Nonfiction Writing, the 2011 San Francisco Writers Conference Nonfiction Writing Award, the Carolina Wren Press 2012 Doris Bakwin Award and the 2012 Kore Press First Book Award. A multi-creative person with interests in the arts, nutrition, health and beauty, she has founded several independent businesses, including a coffeehouse, a café, an organic juice bar and a natural beauty bar. She currently lives with her husband, Jon, and daughter, Julia, in the woods of Long Island in a house filled with light.

Connect with Heather: Website ~ Facebook ~ Twitter


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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Life Outside the Box by Marilyn R. Wilson (Book Spotlight and Giveaway!)

Today I'm featuring Life Outside the Box: The Extraordinary Journeys of 10 Unique Individuals, written by Marilyn R. Wilson. This book is an absolute gem if you like reading inspirational real life stories of people who achieved success through hard work, creativity and sheer determination, especially when the odds were against them.

You can find my review of this book on Library of Clean Reads, along with my interview of Marilyn, the author. Several of the people featured in the book are part of the fashion world, and we all know Italy is capital of the fashion world. Lisa-Marie Mazzucco is one of the women interviewed in this book. Although she married the world-renowned Italian fashion photographer Raphael Mazzucco, Lisa-Marie forged her own career through sheer creativity, after raising her son. Her story resonated with me. But I liked every single one of the stories in this book.

About the book:

Life Outside the Box: The Extraordinary Journeys of 10 Unique Individuals by Marilyn R. Wilson
Influence Publishing
ISBN: 978-1771410663
Published: Feb 1, 2015
Trade paperback, 236 pages

Real Stories about Real People to Entertain, Inspire and Challenge You.

Get inspired to step out of your box and into a world full of potential. From the corporate world, to the arts, to working with the disenfranchised – the message is clear. There is no such thing as a normal way to live your life and no one right solution to any problem. Selected from amongst over 100 interviews, the stories shared here open a window on the journeys of seven women and three men who have charted their own path, including Ruthie Davis – top U.S. luxury shoe designer and the winner of the 2014 AAFA Footwear Designer of the Year award – and Geir Ness whose perfume is a staple in Nordstrom, Disney World and on Disney Cruise Lines. Enjoy a glimpse behind the scenes into the unique ways these individuals chose to deal with life's challenges and how they define success in their careers.

Where to buy the book:

About the Author:

Marilyn R. Wilson is a freelance writer and editor with a passion for interviewing. It all began in 2006 when the she answered a Craigslist ad from a NY magazine asking for story submissions. Two were accepted. The first live interview was life changing and Wilson has never looked back. With over 150 interviews now behind her, the love of interviewing is still as strong as ever. Whether through a random encounter on the New York subway or via a “one-on-one” interview with an internationally recognized artist, the goal is the same—to share the unique journeys of inspiring individuals.

In 2007, this goal led the author to co-launch a successful, innovative magazine focused on professionals working in the fashion industry, paired with photography and illustrations by local artists. Now on staff at Raine Magazine (NY/Miami/LA), as well as freelancing for other publications, Wilson has taken her passion to a new audience with the release of her first book.

Connect with Marilyn: Website ~ Facebook ~ Twitter


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