Finishing Year by Bentley Bryce Finley


What inspired you to write your memoir?
I have always written non-fiction books, but none about my own life or experiences. Probably I thought everyone has stories to tell, so why write about mine? But then, when I was 46, I went to study overseas to finish my university degree, and I thought I would write down what happened to me during that year away, mostly so my kids could read it later. I collect travel typewriters, so I bought one in Europe and started typing out my experiences as a mature student of art history in Europe. Pretty soon, I had a manuscript sitting there. A year later, it was edited and ready to produce as my book, “Finishing Year”.

About your Book:
Can a man change his stars? Can he ever really rise above? These are the questions that plague our mortal souls. Bryce Finley, a 48-year-old Canadian single father with an unfinished university degree, two nearly grown children, and no visible (future) means of support, is about to find out.
After three years working at his local university, he decides to hit the books and go back to finish his degree and show his kids he never meant to be a dropout. His eldest has already quit high school, but is there still time to show the youngest one?
When his university contract ends, completing his long-delayed education in art history proves to be financially difficult, so he jumps at the chance to study – with the aid of a small scholarship – as an international exchange student in Europe.
What follows is a life in a cramped student dorm in an industrial town in Germany that is – luckily – an ideal jumping off point for visiting the great art capitals of Europe.
Life-changing experiences follow, along with chances to reflect and improve upon a life some have called “a financial train wreck,” in which only one of his two kids might ever graduate from high school, and in which our hero finally realizes he never, ever, decided what to be when he grew up.
But that was then, this is now, and class is in session. With style, humour, and cunning linguistics, Finley makes his way through his last year of university, the great museums of Europe, and the social fabrics of a handful of European countries, to emerge a wiser, more-educated, and potentially more-employable person.

How did you decide how to publish your book and where is it published through:
I knew I would self-publish this new book, as I had previously published my own business, health, and travel volumes when I was a journalist. I think self-publishing is much quicker, less stressful, and results in more control than working with a publisher.

How do you see writing a Memoir as different from writing other genres of books?
That is a good question. A memoir needs to be as truthful as possible, and I think that demand really opens an author up to a lot of things: a bit of embarrassment, a bit of self-loathing, judgement, a lot of things. It is hard to write about yourself. It is probably even harder to write about others. And it is hardest of all to decide when you are telling your story for your own purposes or when you are boring a potential reader to death with the inner working of your own mind.

Author Bio:
Born in 1964 in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.
Father of two kids.
Holds an honours degree (with distinction) in History in Art from the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.
Teaches at the Co-operative State University of Baden-Wuerttemberg at Mannheim, Germany.
A former journalist and author of four previous books on health, business, and travel.
Writes personal experience adventure tales about living this life.
Has a passion for Weimaraner dogs and possibly antique European sports cars and wooden sailboats.

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SPIKED by Sharron Gold

SPIKED_Cover_for_KindleSPIKED was Finalist on The official list of the CLUE Awards that recognize emerging new talent and outstanding works in the genre of Thriller, Suspense and Mystery.
The author shares her shocking account of how her life was destroyed overnight after her drink was spiked with GhB – a drug that can virtually turn anyone into a willing slave, combined with the potentially lethal power of hypnosis, gang stalkers on two continents, the latest technology for monitoring and recording all voyeuristic activity, outwardly “respectable” criminals send her on a journey into a 21st century hell which defies imagination, gravely endangering her physical and mental health and leaving her destitute.
Even while she is still outwardly compliant, she begins to understand that something is very wrong in the way she feels and what is going on around her. How does anyone survive such an ordeal? What are the effects on the victims of mind altering and so called “truth” drugs? How does a woman caught in the net of gang stalkers escape? How does she rebuild her life and start the process of seeking justice against the perpetrators?
Her only weapon is her continuity trained memory. Over the three months she was drugged, she mentally kept track of everything that happened like a continuity girl on her own nightmare. As she battles with the withdrawal from the forced addiction, the hundreds of pages she has mentally written down float around in front of her. In a race against time, she has to pick up the pages, number them and turn them into a book as fast as possible. This is her shocking story.
Robert Priebe – I met the author a few weeks ago at her shop in Hallstatt. My wife was trying on a dress and I picked up one of two copies of Spiked lying on a table. I saw the author’s picture and asked if the story was true and if anyone was prosecuted. I am a police chief in California and had investigated sexual assaults involving “date rape” drugs. When the author, Sharron, found out I was in law enforcement she begged me to read and review her book and to give it an honest review. I promised her I would, and I’m glad I did. The story is compelling and kept me involved and anxious to read more, There’s my honest assessment but I am equally honest in saying I recommend everyone make effort to read it because the story is more than worth it. I could see this story becoming an excellent movie. For those contemplating this book, do it!
Carla Allgeier
This book illustrated the randomness of good and bad luck, and that, once targeted, someone who wants to do you harm has a frightening array of possibilities at his or her disposal, and you will be none the wiser until disaster strikes.
This book is a must-read for women who travel alone, to warn them to follow their instincts and to advise them that if a drink bought by a stranger tastes salty, not to drink it. Leave immediately. It’s also a good idea to only accept a drink that comes out of an unopened can or uncapped bottle.
The gut-wrenching terror of Sharron’s experience written with such insight..
5.0 out of 5 stars another good read, May 16, 2013
john vaughn
Amazon Verified Purchase
I just picked this no reason except I am a nurse I think all single people out there I should say women should read this and take heed
5.0 out of 5 stars An extreme case of manipulation…Frightening, May 14, 2013
Karen G. Harrill “kh-nc-quilter” (Greensboro, NC USA)
Unfortunately there are horrible people out there who are willing to get their way at any cost. These are the ‘strangers’ you warn your children about. Then as the ‘stranger’ becomes someone who is a friend of a friend…or is always at the coffeehouse at the same time…and they begin to talk they start working their way into your life.
It is also part of our culture to be kind. These people prey upon kindness. Ms. Gold is lucky to be alive.

Targeted Age Group:: 13 +

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FEATURED BOOK: The Boy Who Was Afraid of the World by Jamie Bowlby-Whiting

The-Boy-Who-Was-Afraid-of-the-World-Cover-700Genre: Memoir, Adventure travel, Fear

As a child who suffered from crippling and irrational fears, Jamie was not the typical candidate to start hitchhiking alone through Europe. Yet at the age of 25, tired of a mundane life involving routines and comfort, he gave up everything and put his trust in the goodness of strangers. Told in the first person, this true story encapsulates the dizzying highs and desperate lows of what happens when a fearful individual chooses to let go of everything and travel alone through the world, sleeping under the stars and in the homes of strangers. It is a story about places, about people, about the constant internal battle that occurs during six months on the road.

This is not an epic adventure or a travel diary. This is not a story about defeating fear and being courageous. This is an internal roller coaster spread across a whole continent. This is real life, and sometimes real life is big and scary.

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Ever the Patriot: Recollections of Vincent J. Riccio, World War II Veteran and POW by Candace R. Salem by Candace Riccio Salem


What inspired you to write your memoir?
Despite an avid interest in history, and European history in particular, I didn’t find out that my father, Vincent J. Riccio (1921-2004), had been a Prisoner of War in World War II until I was in high school. Even then, he declined to elaborate on his experiences. Several years would pass before my father agreed to discuss the war with us. “Ever the Patriot” was born out of a desire to preserve the legacy my father and other brave Americans who fought in World War II – many of whom had been reluctant to talk about the war when they came home.

*This memoir is about my father – not about me.

About your Book:
Like many Americans, as soon as Vincent J. Riccio heard about the attack on Pearl Harbor he wanted to enlist in the military. This memoir recounts his experiences in the United States Army Air Corps as an Instrument Technician, Aviation Cadet, and Flight Engineer in World War II. It describes his escapades during training and deployment, the missions flown over Germany, the fateful events that led to his captivity in Stalag Luft IV, and the long road to his eventual return home. It reflects his impressions of military service, the people he met, and the lessons he learned along the way. Retold in Riccio’s own words, it tells the story of a fun-loving and patriotic guy, who, despite the difficult aspects of his military service, managed to recognize the humanity in the people he encountered on both sides of the conflict.

How did you decide how to publish your book and where is it published through:
Selling books was not a key motivational factor, however I wanted to make it available to a wider audience. I knew people who had used Createspace and Amazon KDP to publish their books in the past. I found the process to be fairly simple and inexpensive.

How do you see writing a Memoir as different from writing other genres of books?
In my opinion, what sets a memoir apart from other genres should be the truthfulness of its narrative. In other genres, embellishment and creativity are encouraged.

Author Bio:
A native of Connecticut, I currently reside in Israel where I work as a freelance technical writer, editor, and trainer. I hold a B.A. in Education. I devote my spare time to reading, writing, folk dancing, and singing in an a cappella ensemble. Most of all, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, and travel with her husband and son whenever possible.Our travels have taken us to destinations throughout the United States and Europe, as well as Scandinavia and the Middle East.

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Bargain Book for 03/20/2015: HOOKED: A True Faerie Tale by Michaelbrent Collings

Hooked433x650This book is bargain priced from 03/13/2015 until 03/20/2015 Check book price before you buy, as prices can change due to expiration of the sale or other technical issues.

What if Peter Pan was real? And what if he was the bad guy?

Eve has always lived on the outskirts. An outcast at high school, living in a home with no father and a mother who barely knows she exists.

But when the new boy comes to school, things start to change. He’s popular, he’s good-looking, he’s smart. He likes her.

And he’s a vampire, come to claim her as his own and take her to a Neverland that is far different from the one in the stories.

Now, Eve has to uncover the mysteries that cloud her past, and that will determine her future. Mysteries that will determine whether she lives, dies… or suffers a fate worse than death.

Targeted Age Group: YA to adult

Book Price: .99

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FEATURED BOOK #TFOB: The Street or Me: A New York Story by Judith Glynn

Street-or-Me-491kbGenre: Personal memoir & true story

The Street or Me: A New York Story begins with a sidewalk hello between two women in a Midtown Manhattan neighborhood. Michelle Browning is 33, a former Italian beauty queen, habitually drunk, homeless for six years and nears death. Author Judith Glynn is divorced with grown children and struggles to support herself in her adopted city.

Despite the odds, a loving and trusting street friendship develops where Judith’s initial response to Michelle’s inhumane existence is compassion. Over time, she sets out single-handedly to restore Michelle’s dignity and return her to her family in Italy. It’s then the danger and hopelessness of the deed surfaces, evidenced one night when Judith finds Michelle in a shabby apartment with a creepy man wearing a Batman mask and a black velvet cape.

This true story may sound like a do-gooder’s memoir but it’s not. It’s a brutally honest account of Judith’s fixation to rescue Michelle that consumes her to the point of exhaustion and despair. She often wonders if her new found role of Good Samaritan is worth the effort. Always at stake is whether Michelle’s alcoholism will enslave her to a street life and death in the gutter or will she follow Judith’s lead back to sobriety.

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FEATURED BOOK #TFOB: Words We Carry by D.G. Kaye

Words-We-Carry-ebook-cover1800x2700_72dpiGenre: Nonfiction/self help

“I have been a great critic of myself for most of my life, and I was darned good at it without the help of anyone else’s criticisms to assist in the deflation of my own ego.”

What do our shopping habits; high-heeled shoes and big hair have to do with how we perceive ourselves? Do the slights we endured when we were young affect the choices we make when choosing relationships?
D.G. takes us on her journey of unlocking the hurts of the past by identifying the situations that hindered her own self-esteem. Her anecdotes and confessions about Chic-Lit for real demonstrates how hurtful events we encounter in our lives linger and set the tone for how we begin to value our own self-worth.
Words We Carry is a candid view and a raw, personal accounting of overcoming the demons of low self-esteem with the determination to learn to love oneself.

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FEATURED BOOK #TFOB: Hospital Days – A Memoir by Hudson Owen

cama2Genre: non-fiction,memoir

During the late Sixties, I worked in a number of hospitals as an aide or orderly. Two of them were world famous: McLean Hospital, Belmont, Massachusetts; and the Massachusetts General Hospital, in downtown Boston. Two were in Toronto. They were my first full time jobs.

I saw incredible things, people and incidents that have stayed with me all these years: the managed blood of surgery, the chaos of emergency, tense moments in a mental ward.

These are human-interest stories, with a smattering of medical terms, where appropriate. It’s about what happened in the hospital and outside the hospital during a turbulent period in history. I learned about life and death in hospitals, which has tempered my understanding of the world ever since. Approximately 17,000 words. I am a published poet and author, produced playwright in New York City, digital artist, and wilderness canoeist.
Book will be on $0.99 sale during the week.

Read more about Hudson Owen here
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FEATURED BOOK #TFOB: Wedding Photographer: A 45-Year Career by Bill Collins

wedding-51600x2000dpiGenre: nonfiction

LAUGH, SMILE, THEN LAUGH AGAIN! Get your copy now!

Memoir of one pro wedding photographer’s 45-year career. A rollicking romp down memory lane, written as a humorous fun read for non-photographers to enjoy.
~ ~ ~ WHAT
…humorous stories does he tell about what all he’s seen?
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Bargain Book for 03/05/2015: I’ll Never Wear a Backless Dress by Sandy Appleyard

IllNeverWearaBacklessDressCheck book price before you buy, as prices can change due to expiration of the sale or other technical issues.

Diagnosed with Scoliosis at age twenty three, there was little doctors could do to help her. She was faced with daily discomfort or pain, fear, and not knowing what future complications the medical condition would bring.

The author illustrates to the reader what the last twelve years have brought her in dealing with her deformity. Against the perceived odds; she started a career, birthed two children, went through several specialists, clinics and therapists, wrote two books and fought for disability.

This book was written for anyone who is challenged with daily pain, and would like some help emotionally with how to make the best out of life despite it.

Targeted Age Group: 13 years to adult

Book Price: 1.99

Learn more about Sandy Appleyard
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Mostly Momentous Minutes, Mawkish Memories, and Myopic Musings of Marc from Maine: Stories of life from the Moose State and beyond by Marc E. Zimmerman


What inspired you to write your memoir?
I have always related my uncommon life experiences to many of my friends and relatives. In so many instances, recipients have said, “you should write a book.” So I did.

About your Book:
A lifetime of moments including a front-page, international incident involving the FBI, KGB, CIA, and honest-to-goodness circus clowns. Other tales related take the reader from the Maine coast to Boston to Capitol Hill. A series of true stories about John Wayne, saving lives (swimmers, my own, and U.S. citizens), great white sharks, cats, cows, Ronnie of the Wrinkles, and dental records chicken.

How did you decide how to publish your book and where is it published through:
It became apparent early on that Amazon was the fastest venue to getting the book available to readers.

How do you see writing a Memoir as different from writing other genres of books?
One must always be accurate and relate as many details as is necessary to offer a complete picture from the author’s perspective.

Author Bio:
Marc E. Zimmerman grew up in Bath, Maine and graduated from University of Maine at Orono and George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. He spent 15 years in Washington DC, working on and with Capitol Hill. Marc now lives in Washington state where he works in mid-market mergers and acquisitions and teaches courses in government and finance. His new autobiography Mostly Momentous Minutes, Mawkish Memories, and Myopic Musings of Marc from Maine is available on

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(Three book series) American Experiences in Arabia During the War On Terror by Matthew D. Heines

What inspired you to write your memoir?
My experiences as an English teacher in the countries of Oman and Saudi Arabia in the weeks, months and years following September 11th 2001.

About your Book:
Book 1 My Year in Oman
What do you do when you find yourself alone in Arabia during the beginning of the War On Terror? A month after the September 11th attacks, the somewhat skeptical teacher and ex-paratrooper decides to take a job teaching English in the Sultanate of Oman. In spite of the warnings of friends, family and the U.S. State Department, the author arrives in Oman to find the country is nothing that he had imagined.

Book 2 Another Year in Oman

What do you do when you are a lone American in Arabia during the War On Terror and you fall in love with an Arab woman?
In the second of a three book series describing his life in the Middle East after the tragic events of September 11th, 2001, the author finds he is alone again in the remote regions of Arabia. To make matters worse, the U.S. is gearing up for an invasion of Iraq to the north and everyone is looking at the author, the only American in the region, with even greater suspicion. In the middle of it all he finds himself involved in a surrealistic, clandestine relationship.

But is it real, or is it just a dream? It’s up to you to decide.

Book 3 Killing Time in Saudi Arabia
What would you do if you found yourself in the middle of the War On Terror, without knowing it? What would you do if you worked for a company that didn’t care if you lived or died?
In the third book of his American Experiences in Arabia During the War On Terror series, Matthew D. Heines takes a job as an English Instructor training National Guard Officers for the Saudi Arabian military. After his arrival, thanks to Iraq and Abu Ghraib prison, the heaviest fighting erupts in Riyadh during the years 2004-2005. For eighteen months, the author experiences life in the Middle of the War On Terror. It’s crazy, funny and tragic, all at the same time.

How did you decide how to publish your book and where is it published through:
I could not find an agent who knew where or what the country of Oman was, and when I finally did, she sat on my manuscript for a year. Once I found out I could publish myself and not have to write to fit some publisher’s niche, I couldn’t get my first book out fast enough. Unfortunately, the publisher was more interested in money than my success. It was not until I finally published the book, to include formatting, editing and design that I was finally happy and pleased to offer the book to you.

How do you see writing a Memoir as different from writing other genres of books?
It is much more difficult.

Author Bio:
Matthew Heines is a teacher and a writer. He has taught from Anchorage, Alaska, to Washington State in the U.S. He has also taught English for seven years in the Sultanate of Oman and four years under military contracts in Saudi Arabia. He is a graduate of Washington State University and the University of Alaska in Anchorage. To pay for college, he served as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division, United States Army.

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