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16 new books worth reading in 2019, including Nickolas Butler and a ‘Fonz’ murder mystery

Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel

For sheer magnitude, Milwaukee’s biggest book event in 2019 will be Michelle Obama’s March 14 appearance at the Miller High Life Theatre, 500 W. Kilbourn Ave., where the former first lady will speak about her memoir “Becoming.” Except for a few high-end seats in the $925-$1,125 range, it’s a sold-out show.

But fear not, dear readers. The first part of the year brings many promising books and local author events. In chronological order, here’s a selection of 15 forthcoming books and events that may interest you, with an emphasis on Milwaukee and Wisconsin writers.

Mighty Marty HayesThe Stupendous Adventures of Mighty Marty Hayes
Lora L. Hyler (HenschelHAUS)

In Hyler’s middle-grade novel, a multicultural class of 7th graders get involved in gene editing, spy gadgets and superpowers.

Hyler will speak 2 p.m. Jan. 12 at Nō Studios, 1037 W. McKinley Ave.

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How to Be a Make a Change in Life and Business with Larry Cockerel on the ABA Podcast

Draw in Customers/ Authentic Business Adventures

Larry Cockerel has the energy to rival just about anyone.  With his quick wit and solid answers to even the tough questions, he has a genuine talent for helping people.  We discuss his books, mistakes and ways he helps his clients.  This podcast is filled with little tidbits that make it worth listening to a few times. Visit the Larry Cockerel, The Change Guy.


Visit for more great small business videos, blogs, podcasts and general business building good times!Draw in Customers Business Coaching brings you another Authentic Business Adventures Podcast to help you with your business knowledge.

Watch on youtube or listen here.


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Doctor Pens Books on Diabetes

The Freeman – Waukesha County

OCONOMOWOC — Dr. Eno Nsima-Obot, a board-certified primary care physician, will promote her book, “Dr. Eno’s A-to-Z Guide to Thriving with Type 2 Diabetes” at Books & Company on Nov. 15, which is during National Diabetes Awareness Month. Nsima-Obot is behind “Dr. Eno’s A-to-Z Guide to Thriving with Type 2 Diabetes.” She will be at Books & Company, 1039 Summit Ave., at 7pm, Nov. 15th.

“Being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes is an invitation to adopting a healthy lifestyle,” she said. “It is possible to thrive despite being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and not just focus on the complications.”

Read the full article (pdf)

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Matt Geiger on “Conversations Live with Vicki St. Clair”

Conversations Live with Vicki St. Clair

Matt Geiger, our second guest, says “Anytime I’m able to talk about Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, and Chekhov in a single interview, I’m happy!” So Vicki makes him happy and asks why. We’ll chat about his latest book Astonishing Tales: Your Astonishment May Vary – a collection of stories and essays.

Matt is a humorist, essayist, and award-winning journalist and author, who lives in Wisconsin with his wife, daughter, ten animals, and several metaphysical questions. Listen to the interview.

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Matt Geiger on KSCJ

KSCJ Radio

In his new collection of stories and essays, acclaimed author and humorist Matt Geiger seeks to de-familiarize us from the world, from the smallest detail to the most cosmic mythology, in order to see it all as if for the first time. Turning his philosopher’s vision to his own abundant Neanderthal DNA, parenting, competitive axe throwing, old age, and much more, he sets out in search of comic profundity. With a nod to the limits of human knowledge and understanding, particularly his own, he draws from the wisdom of an 83-year-old pin-up legend, Peter the Great, Santa Claus, modern boxers, Medieval monks, and of course small children. Blending whimsy and gravitas, he unveils beauty, joy, and happiness in a seemingly broken world. Hear the full interview.

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Matt Geiger on Jefferson Public Radio

JPR Radio

Humorist, journalist and chronicler of the weird Matt Geiger is part David Sedaris, part Dave Berry and part John Waters.

His latest book of essays and stories, Astonishing Tales, will have you scratching your head, in between belly laughs.

That’s what you might expect from a writer who has won both literary awards and a one-hand axe throwing competition.

Listen in while Matt Geiger tells selected tales from his book.  Hear the interview.

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Review: Mighty Marty Hayes Takes Readers On An Interesting Spy Adventure

Elena Reads

Mighty Marty HayesMarty Hayes has a secret. He has super powers! The only people who know about this is Marty’s family and his best friend Christopher.

In The Stupendous Adventures of  Mighty Marty Hayes, (which author Lora L. Hyler sent me to review) Christopher and Marty’s girlfriend, Aisha, are all in the same Advanced Science class. Marty thinks he’s the only one with special powers. Soon, he figures out that Aisha has powers too!

Since Marty loves anything spy related, he is super excited about this  science class.  They will be testing the CRISPR-Cas9, a gene editing tool. But everything turns upside down when the school bully, Wade, ruins the experiment. From letting loose mosquitoes to stealing Marty’s spy manual, Wade keeps sabotaging their work. But why? Marty and his friends go on a spy mission to figure out what Wade is up to and to stop him and other bad guys from stealing important data from the International Spy Museum! Who will succeed? You have to read the book to find out!

Read full review…

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“The Mystic Chaplain: My Story” by Kathy Collins is Best Book Awards Winner


Mainstream & Independent Titles Score Top Honors
in the 15th Annual Best Book Awards

St. Martin’s Press, Penguin/Random House, Simon and Schuster, Berkley, New World Library, Hay House, Llewellyn Worldwide, Taschen, New World Library, Palgrave Macmillan, Rowman & Littlefield and hundreds of Independent Houses contribute to this year’s Outstanding Competition!

LOS ANGELES – American Book Fest has announced the winners and finalists of The 2018 Best Book Awards on November 13, 2018. Over 400 winners and finalists were announced in over 90 categories. Awards were presented for titles published in 2016-2018.

Jeffrey Keen, President and CEO of American Book Fest said this year’s contest yielded over 2,000 entries from mainstream and independent publishers, which were then narrowed down to over 400 winners and finalists.

Keen says of the awards, now in their sixteenth year, “The 2018 results represent a phenomenal mix of books from a wide array of publishers throughout the United States. With a full publicity and marketing campaign promoting the results of the Best Book Awards, this year’s winners and finalists will gain additional media coverage for the upcoming holiday retail season.”

Winners and finalists traversed the publishing landscape: St. Martin’s Press, Penguin/Random House, Simon and Schuster, Berkley, New World Library, Hay House, Llewellyn Worldwide, Taschen, New World Library, Palgrave Macmillan, Rowman & Littlefield and hundreds of independent houses contributed to this year’s outstanding competition!

Keen adds, “Our success begins with the enthusiastic participation of authors and publishers and continues with our distinguished panel of industry judges who bring to the table their extensive editorial, PR, marketing, and design expertise.”

American Book Fest is an online publication providing coverage for books from mainstream and independent publishers to the world online community.

American Book Fest has an active social media presence with over 140,000 current Facebook fans.

A complete list of the winners and finalists of The 2018 Best Book Awards are available online at American Book Fest.

The Mystic Chaplain: My Story by Kathy Collins
HenschelHAUS Publishing, Inc.


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Midwestern doctor shares ways to thrive with Type 2 Diabetes

WKOW – Madison

MADISON (WKOW) — Those who’ve been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes may feel like their life is turning upside down but a Midwestern board-certified physician says it’s still possible to live well with the condition.

On Wednesday, Dr. Eno A. Nsima-Obot, a Chicago area physician, joined the Wake Up Wisconsin team to share tips on how to live a healthy life with Type 2 Diabetes.

Dr. Eno wrote a book titled, “Dr. Eno’s A-to-Z Guide To Thriving With Type 2 Diabetes” to help those living with the chronic disease.

“Being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes is an invitation to adopting a healthy lifestyle,” says Dr. Eno. “It is possible to thrive despite being diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes and not just focus on the complications.”

Dr. Eno also mentioned that she will be giving a free presentation at the DeForest Area Public Library on Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. The presentation will be held in the community room. Copies of Dr. Eno’s book will be available for purchase at the event.

To learn more about Dr. Eno and her book, click here.

Watch the clip here.

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Surmounting life’s challenges

Active Living for Savvy Seniors


Author and renowned speaker, Larry Cockerel, has surmounted extraordinary challenges, including homelessness, debt and cancer. His new book, Your Life Matters– How to Get out of the Life You Don’t Want and Live the Life You Do Want, Helps Change Your Thinking, and Change Your Future. No one has the answers to the full meaning of life, but sometimes, when you’ve overcome numerous hurdles, the answers appear far clearer. A few years ago, if you asked Larry Cockerel, Wisconsin author and motivational keynote speaker and member of the National Speakers Association if he thought he’d become known as an author, he probably would have said it wasn’t in his game plan. In addition to his latest book, Your Life Matters, he also has written It’s Not About Cancer, It’s About You –Six Reasons to Keep Living and Enjoy Your Gift of Life. But as life enfolded and he faced several adversities, including cancer, he says, “I learned to believe in myself and become a person of significance and value.” He also decided cancer had delivered a message. He became determined to share that message —to never give up — through his books and motivational talks. Cockerel is a survivor of head and neck cancer, and his wife Debbie, is a survivor of colon and rectal cancer. Consequently, he has the unique ability to thoroughly empathize with others. He’s been successful at encouraging people to get out and support the American Cancer Society (ACS) events — he and Debbie have been involved in numerous events including kicking off the UW-Madison ACS rally to support cancer research and survivors this past spring.

Your Life Matters
On the back cover of his new book (published in September ’18), Cockerel is standing at the end of Cedarburg, Wisconsin’s famous covered bridge. The photo could be a metaphor for “coming into the light.”

“My life only matters if I can help others to live a life of significance,” he says. Those words ring true with readers who have followed Cockerel’s ( personal journey. If you feel afraid of letting go of a life not well lived or feel stuck, angry, and afraid to face the future Cockerel understands. In a recent article he wrote, “Finding Meaning through the Cancer Journey” in Coping with Cancer magazine, he talks about choosing to conquer your dreams. He says whatever your challenge you can learn how to change your thinking and see life full of gifts.

“No matter what mountain you face, whether it’s cancer or something else, there’s always hope,” Cockerel says. “Life is a series of choices. How we choose to react or respond to life’s events can make all the difference.”

In the recent Coping magazine article, Cockerel explains how his journey with cancer opened his eyes to new beginnings. In an excerpt he writes, “Looking back, the cancer diagnosis could have been a negative experience; it has turned out to be positive on many different levels. I learned so much about myself, recognized my strong drive to survive, and today, my most sincere desire is to use this experience to positively influence the lives of others in whatever way I can.” The slogan on his website, “Making a Difference on Purpose,” perfectly sums up the idea that a positive attitude can change your world. It all starts with deciding to take that first step forward.

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Author Rex Owens’ Novels Bring Irish Stories to Life

Active Living for Savvy Seniors


As a history buff and storyteller, author Rex Owens weaves together fictional stories around actual events in Northern Ireland. His “Irish Troubles Series’ includes his latest book, Dead Reckoning, and his previous books, Murphy’s Troubles and Out of Darkness. The series focuses on intriguing characters that face life-changing decisions and emotional burdens during the “Irish Troubles.” Readers identify with Owen’s fictional characters because everyone faces decisions of varying magnitude during their life. Owens points out, “I write about themes. Murphy’s Troubles is about how betrayal can be a two edged sword. Out of Darkness is about how both an individual and Ireland search for atonement following the end of The Troubles. Dead Reckoning is about how self-discovery through art (writing) and an act of contrition.”

Preparing to Write
When Owens grew up in Northwest Indiana he never thought about a writing career. He worked with the State of Wisconsin for most of his career and later in assisted living and managed care implementing Family Care in Wisconsin. In 1997 when he attended his first Wisconsin Writer’s Institute he says he was hooked.

He prepared for a writing life by taking writing classes such as Write by the Lake and Weekend with Your Novel. “I also joined a critique group and studied various books such as How Fiction Works by J. Woods, Take Your Characters to Dinner by L. Yourke, Building Believable Characters by M. McCutchen, and Creating Plot by J. Davis.” After his son visited Ireland in 1997 and brought back newspapers, Owens says. “I read stories about lingering IRA activities, and in particular, I read a story about a 12 year old girl being injured while playing in a Peace Zone in Belfast. That became the inciting incident for my first novel, Murphy’s Troubles.”

In addition to writing, Owens hosts a popular radio program, “My World and Welcome to It” on 103.5 FM The Sun Radio at: with archived shows at He offers suggestions for first-time authors. “Today’s authors need to understand that writing and publishing is only half of the task. The other half is to find your readers, which means marketing and promoting,” says Owens. “The reality is that the skills needed to write and publish are completely different from those you need to promote your work and yourself. Authors need editors, cover designers, book layout, beta readers and those with marketing and promotion skills to bring a book into the world.

Research Surprises
While researching his books he learned surprising facts. “I was surprised to learn that after voting for the 1998 Good Friday Agreement more walls were built in Belfast separating Catholics and Protestants,” he says. “I was also surprised that after the referendum for the Good Friday Agreement passed in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, a renegade group formed calling themselves the Real IRA and they continued bombing public buildings. The Real IRA claim the Good Friday Agreement was a sham and would not abide by the terms of the agreement. The Good Friday Agreement required the IRA to turn in all their arms. I was surprised to learn they never fully complied with this requirement.” Owens adds, “Finally, the Good Friday Agreement required Gaelic or Irish be taught in schools in Northern Ireland. To this day this has not been implemented.”

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“Happiness is Homemade in Door County”

hapiness is homemade in door county

hapiness is homemade in door countyFeatured on Fox11 News

Recipe Featured in Karen’s cookbook – Happiness is Homemade in Door County. (Available at Amazon or in Door County)


2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
A pinch of salt
1 cup Crisco
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, and salt. In a stand mixer on medium high speed, cream together Crisco and white sugar until light and fluffy and peaks form, about 15 to 20 minutes. Add brown sugar and mix until combined. Beat in eggs one at a time, then beat in vanilla. With mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture until well combined. Stir in chocolate chips.

Using an ice cream scoop, drop dough onto prepared cookie sheet 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheet for 10 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool completely.

Makes approx. 18 cookies, depending on size.

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Stingl: Transgender author shares her story and joins the effort to preserve her civil rights

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Jim Stingl

Carla Ernst didn’t think of herself as an activist, though she’s realizing it comes with the territory when you write a book about becoming a transgender woman.

Speaking engagements have followed, and she attended her first rally last weekend on the lakefront, joining others pushing back against a leaked Trump administration memo saying your genitalia at birth locks in your gender.

“They can say I don’t exist. That’s what this whole thing is about,” Ernst told me when I visited her Wauwatosa home on Monday. “It’s horrible. It takes the human dignity away from 1.4 million Americans for no good reason.”

And it erodes their rights in matters of housing, jobs, medical care, insurance and other aspects of life, reversing Obama-era policies granting federal recognition to transgender people.

“It’s one more assault on the transgender community,” Ernst said.

Read the rest of the article….

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Milwaukee Pride announces its 2018 BeOUT Award Winners

Milwaukee Pride, Inc. is excited to honor the winners of this year’s BeOUT Awards for LGBTQ Visibility!
The BeOUT Awards celebrate individuals who have taken heroic strides to elevate the visibility and voice of local LGBTQ people within the past year.
The awards will be presented at Milwaukee Pride’s annual autumn event, BeOUT Milwaukee, Thursday, October 11 from 5:00 – 9:00 P.M. at LVL Events (801 S. 2nd St., formerly La Cage / Montage.)
BeOUT also celebrates National Coming Out Day and the ever-increasing importance of LGBTQ visibility, while encouraging visitors to support local businesses in Historic Walker’s Point — a neighborhood that has been the historic heart and soul of LGBTQ Milwaukee for 50 years.

This year’s honorees are:

Carla Anne Ernst:   In 2018, Carla shared her deeply personal journey to her best self in “Life Without Pockets: My Long Journey Into Womanhood.” Her book elevates the voice and visibility of diverse transgender lives beyond our local arena, and serves as an inspiration for individuals everywhere who might be beginning their own transition — or doubting their own strength and resilience to do so.
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Put It In The Blender!

Three Point Wisdom blog

David has a unique story – it’s a basketball story that goes far beyond the court.  In Getting Undressed: From Paralysis to Purpose, David describes his journey to move beyond a medical obstacle during his high school years, and one learns very quickly that Coach Cooks has a unique outlook on life.  Why would any of us complain about our own circumstances or why would we limit our thinking or joy for life when we realize that each of us has our own obstacles and our own journey?  Getting Undressed helps each of us to look beyond our own circumstances to strive for success and purpose in anything we do, including basketball. Read more…