Alaskan author Leon Mensch wins first place, the Gold Award, at the 2020 Moonbeam Children's Awards in Animals/Pets Fiction with his debut book, Me-Now, The Adventures of Mickey the Mushing Cat. CONGRATULATIONS!! For a complete 2020 Winner's List, click here.
We hope to see you tomorrow at the Once In A Blue Moose gift shop at their 4th Avenue & F location in Anchorage for Alaskan author and Kasilof musher, Leon Mensch, new book signing. The signing begins at 1:00 pm, right after the ceremonial start of the world famous Iditarod Sled-Dog Race and before the Fur Rondy's Running of the Reindeer downtown. Leon will be bringing a picture of the real Mickey, his adopted cat, to the book signing too! Come and meet Leon and get a glimpse at Mickey, the inspiration for Me-Now, The Adventures of Mickey the Mushing Cat is the first book in a new series for children, grades 3rd to 5th.
The Bright Lights Book Project is trying to save useful discarded books while promoting literacy. If you would like to get involved, they need volunteers, financial support, and organizations willing to take donated books. You can even specify a genre or types of books you are looking to find, and the volunteers sorting will save books for you to pick up and distribute in your desired area. If you want to learn more, contact Alys (Alice) at 907-745-4747.
We also had a lot of wonderful children's books including Brooke Hartman's newest release: Dream Flights on Arctic Nights. Ms. Hartman was the Alaska Writer's Guild president in 2019.
The most encouraging author I was privileged to meet was Adam Freestone. Adam writes the Sentinel Flame Series and his bio states, "he is a near quadriplegic man afflicted with Muscular Dystrophy, confined to a wheelchair and dependent on a ventilator, but despite everything he has going against him, he never lets it stand in his way. He is a go-getter, animal and nature lover, MDA participant, and smart minded writer. Everything that goes into his stories is carefully considered, nothing he writes goes down casually." After meeting Adam, I'd have to completely agree! His capitvating book covers are only a hint of this thriving and enthusiastic author. Book 1 is called Hyroe and is a fantasy book that has received 5-star ratings. His second book is coming soon.
Hope to see you at next year's book fair. Until then, you can purchase these books from your local bookstore or on Amazon.
Looking for unique Christmas gift ideas? Maybe you have a friend or relative who makes it difficult to find a present? Well, we have good news! ReadAlaska, Alaska’s largest book fair since 1993 will be at the Anchorage Museum on the second floor, the Friday and Saturday following Thanksgiving, November 29th and 30th. With thirty local publishers, authors, and photographers displaying hundreds of Alaskan books, most signed and personalized by local authors, finding unique and perfect Christmas gifts are now possible.
Whether your friends like fiction or nonfiction or you’re buying for adults or children, you can’t go wrong with the right book. Gifts are available from impossible crime to fishing adventures, fantasy/sci-fi to romantic suspense. Whether you’re looking for a book on how to survive in the wilderness or surviving your in-laws, there’s a great selection for everyone.
Impossible crime is a subgenre of mystery, where a detective has to solve how the crime was committed before he can track the perpetrators. Steven Levi, Alaskan author of impossible crime, will be showcasing his books including The Matter of The Deserted Airliner, in which a 737 lands in Anchorage with no pilot, no crew, and no passengers even though it was fully staffed and loaded in Seattle and never stopped. So where are the pilot, crew and passengers? When kidnappers ask for $25 million in diamonds, everyone knows space aliens aren’t involved. Now the detective has to figure out how the pilot, crew and passengers disappeared fast enough to stop the payment of the ransom and expedite their return.
Robin Barefield from Kodiak Island will be promoting her book, Murder Over Kodiak, the tale of a floatplane that mysteriously explodes above the Alaska wilderness. Investigators begin digging into the lives of the five passengers and the pilot to determine who was the target of the bomb. Was it the U.S. senator in the midst of a hotly contended re-election campaign or her husband, a corporate raider with no shortage of enemies? Could the bomb have been meant for the cannery owner involved in a contentious divorce, or the refuge manager who has a long list of adversaries? Even the pilot could have been the target, since his girlfriend has violent tendencies and knows how to use explosives. Readers will anxiously engage in this page-turning mystery.
Local Chugiak writer, E.M. Shue, will also be attending for the first time with her steamy romantic-suspense fiction novels beginning with her original Securities International series. E.M’s latest release, Accidentally Noah, is receiving 5-star ratings from Amazon readers and climbing the charts. Romance fans are sure to fall in love with the newest Caine and Graco Saga.
For nonfiction readers, ReadAlaska offers true stories of bush flying mysteries and disasters by Gregory Leifer, the life and dangerous times of a sniper in Vietnam written under the pseudonym of T. Martin O’Neil (for good reason). Of course, the book fair has a wide display of Alaskana books and memoirs, including local Chickaloon author, Hilda Luster-Lindner. We even have pet friendly books. Dog lovers are sure to enjoy Road Trip With Remington Beagle by Valerie Winans, and those looking for spiritual inspiration will be sure to find a little something for the man or woman of faith too.
Over the past 27 years, ReadAlaska also has presented a wide variety of children’s books ranging from Pre-K picture books to chapter books for older readers. This year, Anchorage author Brooke Hartman, current president of the Alaska Writer’s Guild, will be featuring her new release, “Dream Flights on Arctic Nights.” This beautifully illustrated book follows a child’s dreamy flight through the Arctic to discover the animals that live there. From the wolves prowling in the snow to the goats and sheep standing on the mountains to the walrus and sea lions lying on big glaciers, children explore Alaskan wildlife with a creative and poetic flare.
The ReadAlaska Book Fair offers extraordinary Christmas presents. Even better, readers can meet local authors and have their books autographed and personalized. Buying local is the best option. But, if you’re looking for local books and can’t attend the ReadAlaska event the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving at the Anchorage Museum, check out the latest website dedicated to Alaskan books at www.alaskanbooks.com where you can find local authors year-round. All Alaskan authors are welcome to submit their books to this website for inclusion. Building community begins by buying local.
Loussac Library, the main library in the Anchorage Public Library System has made it fun to return books! Check out their book return machine in the picture below. Isn't he cute? We just love the added details of a little mustache and googly eyes! The long white conveyor belt in the background moves returned books up and out of the way quickly. New technologies in the library are so exciting!
This year Relevant Publishers LLC is proud to sponsor the first Alaskan Book Booth, where Alaskan authors, illustrators, and publishers will be displaying unique books. Come out August 22nd -September 2nd to meet your favorite authors. We are located on the Red Trail between the Red Gate and the Don Sheldon Event Center (the large, green metal building). A schedule of current author signings is listed below.
We are so excited to receive our booth location on the Red Trail for next year's fair. At the fair you will find not only our books for sale, but many other books from Alaskan authors and publishers. Details of all the authors in the booth will be forthcoming, so plan on visiting our booth next August.
Small Moccasin Tracks: Memories of an Alaskan Mountain Family is the first book of memories from Hilda Luster-Lindner of growing up in Alaska during and after Territorial Days. Johnny Luster, the famous hunting guide and mountain man, was Hilda’s father. Her mother, Lillie, lived primarily alone in the wilderness, giving birth to most of her children in very primitive conditions, some under trees, and raised them in the wilds of the Last Frontier. Through hardships and tragedy, blizzards and summer flooding, the Luster family lived in the great outdoors or in small trapper cabins, surviving on what was gathered from the land. While life was extreme and often difficult, they found love and happiness. Learn their secret as you journey back in time to a simpler life, wild and rugged where each day was a battle for survival. This newly revised book has more pictures and memories! Available July 19th.
This weekend author Sharon Aubrey from Relevant Publishers LLC participated in the Young Writers' Conference in Palmer, Alaska. This conference was open to all school age children between Kindergarten and 5th Grade in the Matanuska-Susitina Borough School District. There were approximately 300 children that attended the conference.
Ms. Aubrey taught three different groups of students, totaling 54 children in grades K-2 about the writing process. She also shared with them the story of Mimsy Mouse Searches for a New Home by Linda N. Walz and Stephan Linton. All the children loved Ms. Walz's story and many were excited to learn Ms. Walz was a grandmother writing new books. Many kids hope to read the entire series of Mimsy's adventures on Farmer Brown's farm.
After learning about the parts of a story, Ms. Aubrey challenged students to write their own stories about a moose who had a dream or talent that the other moose didn't understand. These moose were not "normal." Students had to come up with a problem for their moose and a solution. The stories the children created were so imaginative that there was one moose who landed on the moon. A different moose went ice skating. Another moose wanted to operate an ice cream truck but was too big to fit through the truck doors. A magic shrinking potion helped him accomplish his goal to fit through the doors and sell ice cream cones to children. We also had a moose that got lost accidentally boarding a barge and went to the city. And there was a moose named Bruce with a loose tooth who couldn't eat his regular food, so he had to drink milkshakes. There were even a few moose that were like Mimsy Mouse and lived on a farm and needed help from their friends to find a new home.
Overall, it was a wonderful and educational day!
The 49 Writers Reading and Craft Talk Series presents Kathleen W. Tarr presenting On the Literary Road with Thomas Merton: Writing As a Pilgrimage. Held at the Indigo Tea Lounge on 530 E Benson Blvd #8 on Thursday, March 1, 2018 at 7 PM.
This series will discuss how writers must often dance in the “clarity of perfect contradiction,” as the famous Trappist monk and bestselling writer,Thomas Merton observed. Writers work in quiet isolation, and yet confront and answer the impulse to hit the road, turning themselves into wanderers and explorers. Whether physically or metaphorically, writers become pilgrims.
In this 49 Writers Reading & Craft Talk Series event, author Kathleen Witkowska Tarr discusses her newly-released book, part-memoir, part-biography, We Are All Poets Here (VPD House, January 2018), a shared story about spiritual seeking, and a surprising literary pilgrimage.”
Hilda's first book Small Moccasin Tracks was published in 2009 by PublishAmerica. Small Moccasin Tracks was the first of her memoirs describing the unique life of mountain folk in the Alaska Wilderness during Territorial Days and early Statehood. The stories filled with adventure and tragedy were the daily life of her family. Written in Hilda's distinctive style of plain language, Small Moccasin Tracks was a very entertaining book that almost seemed like a tall-tale except for the fact she lived it. Readers enjoyed this glimpse of a past lifestyle often forgotten in today's modern world.
The previous publisher placed her first book in nonprint status, and Ms. Lindner sought to revive her book and continue the story with her second book. As a result, Hilda has joined the Relevant Publishers LLC author family to bring these amazing real-life stories back to life.
There will be a revised second edition of Small Moccasin Tracks: Memories of an Alaskan Mountain Family coming in 2018. This new edition will have more pictures from Hilda's family life in the 1950s and 1960s and will also contain additional reading material.
Hilda's second book, Johnny and Me: The Story of Two Alaskan Children Growing Up Wild is also scheduled for release in 2018.
We are very excited to bring you these two new books.
Relevant Publishers LLC is looking for TRUE Alaskan stories of Miracles and/or Angelic Encounters for an upcoming project schedule for publication in 2019. If you are an Alaskan and/or were present in Alaska when you experienced a real-life miraculous event, please Contact Us.
The miraculous short stories must not have been previously published and must be based on accurate and true events. Stories should range between 2,500 to 6,000 words. Authors must be willing to provide a recent picture of themselves which will be posted on social media as part of the promotion of their story.
10 winning stories will be selected for publication.
Selected stories will receive $100 and 3 Free Copies of the new book after publication.
Today's Alaska author is our very own neighbor currently living in Sutton, Alaska Ms. Ingrid D. Shaginoff. Ms. Shaginoff's new book Chickaloon Wild is a memoir of an Athabascan family from the Chickaloon Village. The memoirs are from her husband's parents, Johnny and Mary Shaginoff. They were a very dynamic couple and some of the few elders in the 1990's remaining who spoke the original Athna language fluently, having grown up before the "white man" traveled the Talkkeetna Mountains. The Athna language is used in the book with a Athabascan-English translation list located in an index at the back, based on Dr. James A. Kari's work. Johnny Shaginoff was one of the elders Dr. Kari worked with to create the first Athna written language dictionary for the University of Alaska, Fairbanks' Alaska Native Language Center in 1990. Mrs. Shaginoff's use of Athna language in her book brings authentication to the conversations. The Shaginoff family's adventures in life are very interesting and will captivate readers who desire to know Alaska from an original history point of view. The Shaginoffs were some of the first guides assisting the US Army and US Geological Survey employees exploring the new frontier of Alaska from Anchorage to Copper Center along the Chickaloon-Knik-Nelchina Trail System. They lived wild before land claims, then in accordance with homesteading rules homesteaded at mile 89 of the Glenn Highway along the Purinton Creek Trail, part of the Chickaloon-Knik-Nelchina trail system. Later they lived in old Chickaloon, and eventually the family settled in Sutton, where Mrs. Shaginoff currently resides.
Book Synoposis: Chickaloon Wild
Imagine living deep in the Alaska wilderness where survival depends on your ability to hunt, fish, and gather. A place where as far as you can see is dense forest, rivers and sparkling lakes, set against a backdrop of majestic, snow covered mountains where the only sounds are those of nature; the caw of a raven, the lonesome howl of a wolf, or the sharp cry of the loon. In this place education means pulling the brush up around your snare to prevent the rabbit from going around it, or knowing to remove the scent glands from the beaver before you roast it. It means recognizing and following a track through thick brush. This is the ways of their Athabascan ancestors and the only way the Shaginoff family knew. With the Colonists moving into the Matanuska Valley as part of the New Deal their world is about to change forever.
Bristol Bay Summer by Annie Boochever is a fascinating tale of life the wild bush country of Alaska's Bristol Bay and also a thrilling tale of survival. Ms. Boochever is a life-long Alaskan who in additional to writing, expands the future of today's youth from her position as a high school English teacher. Previously, Annie taught elementary music and served as a librarian, during which time she wrote and produced award-winning musical plays for her students. Ms. Boochever has a solid connection to Alaska and the hearts of youth, which culminated in her first fiction novel, Annie Boochever earned a Master's of Fine Arts in Creative Writing for Children and Young Adults from the Northwest Institute of Literary Arts and has won numerous awards for Bristol Bay Summer, including the Literary Classics Award for Best First Novel. It was also a 2016 Alaska State Battle of the Books Selection for Middle School Grades. The Mom's Choice AwardsÂ® named Bristol Bay Summer as among the best in family-friendly media, products, and services, giving it their highest seal of approval, the Gold Mom's Choice Award.
In addition to the adventure in Bristol Bay Summer, parent educators and teachers will enjoy the FREE extensive Study Guide for Bristol Bay Summer aligned to Common Core standards on her website. Activities in the Student Teacher Study Guide include
Check Out the Trailer for Bristol Bay Summer, below:
âIâm not going!â Twelve-year-old Zoey Morley frowned at the raggedy airplane that would take her farther away, to Bristol Bay, Alaska, where she would somehow have to make peace with ten million salmon, her momâs bush-pilot boyfriend, a boy she doesnât understand, and the only family she has left. Along with its stunning beauty, Bristol Bay spits out one challenge after another, including stalking grizzles, a Japanese typhoon, and a plane crash that threatens to end everything. Will Zoey find the strength to save the one person she wished would go away? Or will they both end up like the pieces of airplane fuselage she saw embedded in a cliffside on her first flight into the huge wilderness beyond Anchorage?
Alaska Beer: Liquid Gold in the Land of the Midnight Sun written by award winning author Bill Howell explores the rich history of alcohol in Alaskan history and today's culture. From Alaska's fermented legacy, today's beer crafters retain the fierce and pioneering independent spirit that propelled early pioneers through the Prohibition and into the future.
Redefining the finances, Alaska's brewing industry has a half billion dollar impact on the local economy. With over 28 breweries in Alaska and many more on the horizon, beer lovers from all over the world are now being attracted to Alaska for more than scenery. By staying on the cutting edge of beer-making technology, Alaskan breweries, like the Alaska Brewing Company, are bringing new flavors to the beer community and expanding options for tourists desiring local tastes.
Bill Howell, an avid crafter since 1998, hosts the radio show "Drinking on the Last Fronter." His show brings news, insight, tips, and breakthroughs in the industry to both professionals, homebrewers, and novices in the beer industry. Mr. Howell has written several books on beer and developed a Beer Appreciation course for the University of Alaska entitled, The Art and History of Brewing.
To get a little taste of Alaskan beer, can check out Bills' blog on brewing: Drinking on the Last Frontier. To be fully refreshed and well informed, check out his last book:
Earlier this week, we introduced a new Alaskan, fiction book for teens. Today, we explore a great find for adults and teens alike. Dead Reckoning, Navigating a Life on the Last Frontier, Courting Tragedy on Its High Seas by Dave Atcheson is a true life tale of survival and an ode to outdoor life. This book provides an intimate look at Alaska's fishing industry. It also details an inside view into one of Alaska's small communities and the drama involved in that landscape.
Inside the pages of this Alaskan book, readers journey to a seaside town and the always unpredictable torrent of dark escapades that accompany a life at sea. Explore a world peopled by those who often live on the frayed edges of society and shun the world in which most people thrive. Dead Reckoning recounts a story in which college students and “fish hippies” work in canneries alongside survivalists, rednecks, religious freaks, and deckhands with damning secrets in dangerous waters, driven by the need to feed an insatiable appetite for adventure.
Dave Atcheson is an avid sport fisherman and hunter. He is the author of National Geographic's Hidden Alaska: Bristol Bay and Beyond and the guidebook Fishing Alaska's Kenai Peninsula. Dave also writes for a variety of periodicals from Outdoor Life to Boys' Life to Alaska Magazine.