Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Books by Lisa Saunders with image, summary, reviews

Through researching letters, journals and out-of-print books, award-winning writer Lisa Saunders sheds new light on historic figures. She is a part-time history interpreter at Mystic Seaport, teacher at New London Adult & Continuing Education, TV talk show host, and active Cornell University alumna.

Click for two-page flyer of books and talks.

Quick links for free "Look Inside" and purchasing followed by images and descriptions:
  1.  Mystic Seafarer's Trail: One woman's quest for high seas adventure, easy fame, and a place to call home. A sedentary writer embarks on a long, winter voyage with a blind sailor. Includes secrets behind Amelia Earhart's Noank wedding.
  2. Anything But a Dog! The perfect pet for a girl with congenital CMV (cytomegalovirus)--The true story of a homeless old dog and the little girl who needed him
  3. Shays' Rebellion: The Hanging of Co-Leader Captain Henry Gale--dramatic events leading up to the noose around his neck.
  4. Ride a Horse, Not an Elevator (children's novel)-- A chubby city girl leaves the elevators and bullies of her apartment complex for her grandparents’ farm. Facing her fear of horses and outhouses, she finds a skinny friend who likes her just the way she is.
  5. Ever True: A Union Private and His Wife--True Civil War love letters reveal war's ever-present threat of death, scandals and infidelities. Includes the court-marshaling of a cow.
  6.  Surviving Loss: The Woodcutter's Tale-- a tender fairytale for all ages about the process of healing after the death of a loved one. (A free e-book at: Surviving Loss: The Woodcutter's Tale)
  7.  Lisa's Guide for Writers (How to get published--even if you're not thin and famous!)
  8. Mystic: Images of Modern America
  9. Once Upon a Placemat: A Table Setting Tale
  10. After the Loss of a Spouse: From Henry VIII to Julia Child--the bittersweet human condition of love and loss is examined in this collection of 18 famous (and infamous) figures. Anyone who loves a romantic history lesson will be intrigued by this book.  

More Info

Jpeg images of all book covers (includes ISBNs, publishing dates, etc).

Genre(s): Non-fiction, memoir
Theme/Plot: A mother cares for several dysfunctional pets and two very daughters--one a tomboy and the other severely disabled by congenital cytomegalovirus. The true story of a homeless old dog and the little girl who needed him. A family learns how to laugh again despite disabilities.

Brief Description for each book: Anything But a Dog! The perfect pet for a girl with congenital CMV (cytomegalovirus)
Author Lisa Saunders says “no” to daughter Jackie’s pleas for a dog, fearing it will be too rambunctious around her disabled little sister Elizabeth. But she does make her a promise she thinks she will never have to honor: “If God brings a dog to our door, then you can have it.” In the meantime, the family wrestles with a series of dysfunctional pets: a flesh-eating hamster, an attack cat, killer ants and a very stinky rabbit. Then one day, the unexpected happens: a shivering, dirty puppy shows up at their door. But is this dog really Heaven-sent?
Plus: Latest news on how to prevent the far-reaching but little publicized effects of congenital CMV (cytomegalovirus), the #1 viral cause of birth defects—causes more disabilities than Down syndrome.
2-3 testimonials/reviews:
"Sheds light on a disorder that is preventable and not talked about enough. If you're an animal lover, you'll love the critter tales as much as the special-needs storyline...really lifted my spirits." About.com
"Saunders takes readers on a road trip as harrowing as any Dog Whisperer training challenge...Beyond the laughs about a dizzying pet search, Saunders' dog tale is about a mother who candidly reveals her family's burden, love, and acceptance of a daughter born with severe disabilities-and the people, and pets, forever touched by her life." — Rockland Magazine
"Very touching, moving, personal; a joy to read. I laughed out loud and I cried. I congratulate Lisa on producing a very good piece of work.” Gail J Demmler-Harrison MD, Professor of Pediatrics, Director of the Congenital CMV Disease Registry and Research Program, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas

Genre(s): Non-fiction
Brief Description for each book: Ever True: A Union Private and His Wife
True Civil War love story (also one-act play). “Charming and romantic in a very personal way."
The transcribed letters of Charles McDowell and his wife, Nancy, display remarkable devotion, and offer readers a unique perspective of the Civil War. These letters contain little known details about: hangings, prostitution, amputations, desertions, theft and murder among Union troops. Charles also describes personal contacts with Lincoln and Seward (of "Seward's Alaskan Folly"); battles of Cold Harbor, Jerusalem Plank Road, Monocacy, Opequon, Fisher's Hill, Cedar Creek; the Siege of Petersburg; Mosby's Men; and the Shenandoah Valley and Appomattox Campaign. The Ninth Heavy Artillery was a part of the Sixth Corps. This story is cohesive and informative yet charming and romantic in a very personal way. Vintage photographs enhance the text.
Available for sale: Ever True: A Union Private and His Wife is available through the publisher, Heritage Books;  author; and  Amazon. Heritage Books, Call: 800-876-6103
"The story of how the marriage between Charles and Nancy survives separation, disease, the threat of death, and malicious gossip is compelling." Pamela Goddard, Ithaca Times
"Unusual ..."American Civil War Magazine
"An intimate portrayal of the relationship between a husband and wife that makes them interesting reading for anyone." Civil War News
 "I could not put the book down, it was fascinating at several levels. The story is wonderful as a view of a marriage under difficult circumstances and as military history. It is also fascinating to read of the gossip and moral lapses among the folks left behind. I enjoyed the down-to-earth language of Nancy and Charles and got several chuckles from their expressions. It is also interesting from the standpoint of a farming community coping with the loss of so many workers. I always wondered how they managed, this story helped me see. It was a great month-by-month list of chores and plantings and harvestings and just plain fun, like sleigh rides. You'll also get some insight into political opinions and racial attitudes among these folks in Central New York." D. Montano 

Book Title(s): Mystic Seafarer's Trail
Genre(s): Non-fiction: Travel memoir, New England History
Theme/Plot: One woman's quest for high seas adventure, easy fame, and a place to call home. A sedentary writer embarks on a long ,winter voyage with a  blind sailor.
Brief Description: Mystic Seafarer's Trail--A historical–and sometimes hysterical–journey to the “7 Wonders of Mystic” and beyond.
When most people think of the quaint seacoast village of Mystic, they think of the movie, “Mystic Pizza.” Yet when they visit this maritime community, they find a lot more than pizza! National Geographic named Mystic one of the top 100 adventure towns in the United States.
Want to embark on your own adventure in the greater Mystic area? Then follow the path featured in the adventure guide Mystic Seafarer’s Trail by local author Lisa Saunders.  Within its pages  you’ll uncover little-known facts behind  the “7 Wonders of Mystic,” Amelia Earhart’s secret wedding location, the sea captain who accidentally discovered Antarctica and several tragic shipwrecks off Watch Hill, R.I. You will also learn hidden stories behind Mystic Seaport and Mystic Aquarium, which houses the “Titanic – 12,450 Feet Below” exhibit. Read eye-witness accounts from residents about what it was like when Julia Roberts came to town to star in “Mystic Pizza.” Other locals you’ll meet include an old fisherman whose cousin is listed among those lost at sea on Stonington’s Fishermen’s Memorial and Ernie the Ledge Light Ghost.

The book also includes information about how to kayak under the drawbridge to pick up an ice cream order and where to paddle to the partially submerged schooner Marmion. Valuable tips include what NOT to wear for seal watching in the winter, where to thaw out afterwards, and how to picnic “Mystic Style” for excursions on historic vessels in warmer months. Learn about Mystic’s free bike sharing program.

About the author: While searching for the Seven Wonders of Mystic with her beagle/basset hound, author Lisa Saunders uncovers the secrets behind the Titanic’s shoes, Amelia Earhart’s Noank wedding and Captain Sisson’s hunt for gold. But will she ever find an adventure of her own—one that will make her thin and famous? Then it happens: when walking the Mystic Seafarer’s Trail (which she designed for those who don’t like to go uphill), she meets a blind sailor who invites her on a long winter voyage. Can this landlubber defy squalls, scurvy, and her fear of scraping barnacles to survive this epic journey?
Mystic Seafarer’s Trail can be purchased online, through the author and at these locations.
Also see Mystic Seafarer’s Trail: Self-Guided Tour Map
“You will laugh out loud at Lisa’s adventures in this part travel guide, part historical reference and completely hilarious tale.” Bree Shirvell, Editor, Stonington-Mystic Patch
 “Author Lisa Saunders has mastered the art/science/gift of writer-reader communication. She’s not writing at you; she’s talking to you…no holds barred. Her frequently disarming candor evokes reader reactions ranging from chuckle to head-shaking laughter.“ George Nammack, Long Island Boating World
Lisa Saunders has written an engaging and solidly researched narrative which should capture the attention of all who are interested in early New England history and the traditions of the sea that were one of its foundations.” David S. Martin, PhD., Professor/Dean Emeritus, Gallaudet University, Washington, DC 

Genre(s): Juvenile fiction
Theme/Plot: A chubby city girl leaves the elevators and bullies of her apartment complex for her grandparents’ farm. Facing her fear of horses and outhouses, she finds a skinny friend who likes her just the way she is.
Brief Description for each book: Ride a Horse, Not an Elevator is a test of young courage. Lisa is a chubby city girl searching for friendship and excitement. She leaves home, and the elevators and bullies of a big apartment complex, to spend a summer in the country at her grandparents’ farm. Culture shock! Accompanied only by her loyal beagle, Donald Dog, Lisa faces a summer in a very different environment with its own challenges and dangers. Using an outhouse is the least of her problems! She is terrified of her new pony. Lisa’s grandfather is injured by a charging cow and needs her to ride the pony to get help. Remembering Grandma’s lesson about how love overcomes fear, she pushes herself past her anxieties to ride alone and obtain the help he needs. Also includes recipes from grandma’s kitchen.Where your book is available for sale: Ride a Horse, Not an Elevator is available through the author and Amazon.
2-3 testimonials/reviews:

“A ‘warm fuzzy’ in paperback form. It is a tangible tale for storytelling that provides a springboard for discussion between children and adults.” Ruth Zwick, Educational Director, Sentinel Publications
“A special treat for children and adults!” Mary K. Henderberg, Editor Wayne County Star
Ride a Horse Not an Elevator is a refreshing tale of a young city girl lucky enough to still have grandparents living on a farm.  Using the horse as a magnet, we have tied Lisa’s story of life’s lessons in this child-friendly setting to agriculture, the care of horses and horse nutrition, to human nutrition and good eating habits, fitness and exercise.” Jeannie Griffiths, Cornell Cooperative Extension Horse Specialist, Department of Animal Science, Cornell University

Available through author, Amazon, How to Get Published (even if you're not thin and famous) and as free e-book on Smashwords.

"A great resource for writers and people who want to change the world. I highly recommend it for people who want to spread a message or promote their work."  Faye Hollidaye

"I love it. Lisa gives a lot of practical advice that's worked for her during her career. I have recommended this book to follow writers on two of my websites and have referred back to it multiple times." Dominique Rambert

Available through author, Amazon, Shays' Rebellion: The Hanging of Co-Leader, Captain Henry Gale;  and as e-book on Smashwords.

"Henry Gale was a survivor, as Lisa Saunders so ably illustrates in this fascinating account of his close encounter with death. He lived in perilous times, not only as a soldier of the Revolution, but as one of the leaders of Shays' Rebellion. His revolution lasted from 1775 till he left Massachusetts for the wilds of Vermont about 1790 and eventually upstate New York about 1800. Not to be missed!" David Sisson

"Tremendous Details of My Family History and the political actions of the time and era. Good read on my ancestor." Carolyn Johnson

Also available as a free e-book, The Woodcutter’s Tale is a tender fairytale for all ages about the process of healing after the death of a loved one. The afterword, written by Julie Russell, LCSW, seeks to help individuals understand the grieving process and to return to a life with purpose and meaning. This booklet includes Lisa’s story of how she's trying to move forward in a way that will honor the memory of her child.

Available through author; Amazon, Surviving Loss: The Woodcutter's Tale; free e-book on Smashwords.

"Please do not let this book pass you bye. The pictures and words are so very special. This is a simplistic story for children, parents, and grandparents alike who have ever dealt with the loss of a loved one-especially a child. This story expresses love, grief, and the most important hope of seeing our loved ones again. My family lost our 3 year old son recently, and this is a book I'm so happy to have. Not only is this special to our 5 year old son, but will be passed on to the many families around us who are facing the steps of life with heavy hearts of a loss. I'm so grateful this book has been written!!! Thank you!!!" Kendra M.

"A great quick read. For such a short book, it sure packs a punch. With honesty and radiance that only Lisa can provide, the reader gets a glimpse into the pain and healing that comes with the loss of a loved one. This book is very informative. I think that the CMV community is very fortunate to have Lisa as an advocate for them." Denise Ide

After the Loss of a Spouse: From Henry VIII to Julia Child examines the loves and losses of 18 famous (and infamous) figures such as Mark Twain; George Burns;  Mary Lincoln; C.S. Lewis; George Putman (Amelia Earhart’s widower); Martha Washington; Norman Rockwell; Grandma Moses; Milton Hershey; Captain von Trapp;  Coretta Scott King; William Gillette (aka Sherlock Holmes); Katharine Graham; Groton widow whose 100-year-old time capsule was recently opened; Mystic widow whose husband drowned in Texas’s worst maritime disaster; plus world's greatest miser.