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Spiritual Defiance by Robin Meyers

March 26, 2015

Spiritual Defiance: Building a Beloved Community of Resistance

Thousands of churches across the country, exist as shabby specters of once-vibrant and instrumental institutions of the community. “Church buildings are on lockdown most of the time,” writes Robin Meyers, “haunted hulks of vaulted ceilings, empty pews, and bygone glory.” During his thirty-year career as a parish minister and professor, Robin Meyers has focused on renewing the church as an instrument of social change and personal transformation. In this provocative and passionate book, he explores the decline of church as a community of believers and calls readers back to the church’s roots as a community of resistance. Shifting the conversation away from theological purity and marketing strategies that embrace cultural norms, and toward “embodied noncompliance” with the dominant culture, Meyers calls readers back to the church’s roots as a community of resistance and urges a return to the revolutionary spirit that marked Jesus’s ministry.

With Spiritual Defiance, Meyers casts the nature of faith as a force that stands against anything and everything that engenders death and indignity. He calls for active–sometimes even subversive–defiance of the ego’s temptations, of what he terms “the heresy of orthodoxy itself,” and an end to an uncritical acceptance of militarism and capitalism. Each chapter is a poignant and urgent invitation to recover the Jesus Movement as a Beloved Community of Resistance.

Praise for Spiritual Defiance:

“Here is a book that could not be more timely, or more urgent. Robin Meyers has carefully and persuasively sketched out exactly what we most desperately need today to defeat the divisive forces that threaten to shred our communities. Fair and comprehensive, the book is also eloquently composed.”
-Harvey Cox author of The Future of Faith

“A challenging and visionary manifesto. When this wind comes sweeping down the plain, it sounds a lot like the creative breath of a Genesis dawn and the fiery spirit of a Pentecost morning.”
-John Dominic Crossan

“Spiritual Defiance is a veritable landscape of dramatically beautiful phrases and insights, bon mots and felicitous subtleties. Meyer’s ‘Resistance to Orthodoxy’ section is particularly brilliant, seeming almost to scintillate before the reader. It would be hard, in fact, to imagine a more informing and/or pleasurable treatment than this of clericalism in the contemporary world.”
-Phyllis Tickle, author of The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why

Spiritual Defiance can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and your local indie bookstore.

He Wanted the Moon: The Madness and Medical Genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and His Daughter’s Quest to Know Him, by Mimi Baird with Eve Claxton

March 9, 2015

HeWantedTheMoonAmerican society has come a long way on a variety of hotly contested issues: sexual orientation, race, gender identity. However, one issue that remains shrouded in mystery and shame for its sufferers is mental illness. In Mimi Baird’s non-fiction debut, He Wanted the Moon, a daughter seeks to release her long-deceased father from the shackles of a legacy tainted by disease.

As a child, Mimi Baird was aware of her father’s absence, like a missing limb, but did not learn the truth about his painful struggle as a rising star in the medical community suffering from Manic-Depressive Disorder (now known as Bipolar Disorder). Dr. Baird was fascinated with identifying the biochemical root of the Manic-Depressive Disorder, but his research was cut short as his own diagnosis lead to institutionalization. His daughter discovers, through a combination of coincidence and research, a long-forgotten manuscript her father had written during his time in two mental institutions in 1944.

Dr. Perry Baird’s prose hauntingly illustrates a man trapped inside a brilliant but afflicted mind, subjected to a series of archaic treatments long since considered inhumane. Paired with Dr. Baird’s own words are contextual documents including hospital reports and photographs of Dr. Baird that shine a light on the disconnect between what Dr. Baird was experiencing and what was being observed by those around him.

At the heart of Baird’s book (written with Eve Claxton), equal parts memoir, science, and health, is the story of a daughter struggling with the loss of a father and her quest to gain both peace of mind for herself and to let her father, at last, tell his tale.

Praise for He Wanted the Moon:

“Extraordinary…a remarkably eloquent account of mental illness, reminiscent of Kay Redfield Jamison’s An Unquiet Mind and Susanna Kaysen’s Girl, Interrupted. Perry Baird emerges as thoughtful and at times eerily aware of his condition as well as his inability to elude either its symptoms or the primitive treatments for them…The elder Baird’s narrative is cinematic, featuring Ratched-like nurses and an escape scene straight out of The Fugitive… [Dr. Baird] never really knew his daughter — or her achievement in telling this story.” - The Washington Post

“The book is autobiography, biography, science, history and literature all in one, as instructive as any textbook and utterly impossible to put down.” - Abigail Zuger, M.D., The New York Times

“Perry Baird was a pioneer in attempting to understand the workings of manic depression…In bringing her father’s harrowing, tragic, and moving story to life, Mimi Baird celebrates him and gives voice to the terrible suffering the mentally ill once endured, and still do today, and challenges the prejudices and misperceptions the public continues to have about the disease.” -Publishers Weekly

He Wanted the Moon can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at your local indie bookstore.

Good Fat Cooking: Recipes for a Flavor-Packed, Healthy Life by Franklin Becker

March 5, 2015

When chef Franklin Becker was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes at the age of twenty-seven, he dedicated his career to finding the best ways to make healthy, flavorful food. Since then, Becker has won the New York City Wine & Food Festival’s Burger Bash, been featured on shows like Iron Chef America, The Today Show, Top Chef Masters, and Dr. Ozand published the books “The Diabetic Chef” and “Eat & Beat Diabetes.” He also co-founded The Little Beet, a gluten-free, quick service Manhattan lunch spot, and The Little Beat Table its full service restaurant counterpart.

In his new book, “Good Fat Cooking: Recipes for a Flavor-Packed, Healthy Life,” written with award-winning food writer Peter Kaminsky, Becker brings us a collection of recipes highlighting good fats—from sources such as nut oils, olive oil, fish, and avocados. From Acorn Soup with Pistachios to avocado ice cream, these new recipes will remind everyone that cooking with good fats is a smart and tasty choice.

You can find Good Fat Cooking on Amazon, at Barnes & Noble, and at your local indie book store.

Shame by Shelby Steele

February 26, 2015

Today, the United States of America is hopelessly polarized in a bitter impasse between the political Right and Left. In Shame, Shelby Steele traces the origin of this stalemate to the 1960’s – a decade of protest that has left the nation unable to fulfill its promise of change. In trying to abolish the nation’s hypocrisies – racism, sexism, and militarism – liberals have internalized the concept of the American character as inherently inauthentic, if not outright evil.

America has since endured a half-century of well-intended social programs that are not only ineffectual, but in almost every case harmful to America’s minorities and poor. Steele argues that by fighting to atone for the nation’s past sins, argues Steele, post-60’s liberals have in fact perpetuated the exploitation of America’s least fortunate citizens.

Therefore, the responsibility falls to the Right to preserve the American dream by reviving our founding principles of individual freedom and merit based competition. Steele approaches America’s political polarization with a wholly unique perspective, rigorously critiquing the failures of liberalism and defending the relevance and power of conservative America.

Praise for Shame:

“This timely critique warrants attention from anyone troubled by the persistence of racial discord in American life, from Selma to Ferguson.”   – Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“A conservative analysis of political polarization and race relations in America, more thoughtful and less vitriolic than most volleys from either side.”   – Kirkus

“Shelby Steele’s courageous challenge to Americans to get a moral grip on the country’s past and present is an important contribution to a future of liberty and justice for all, in the colorblind society of aspiration, solidarity, and achievement of which the classic civil rights movement dreamed.”   – George Weigel, Distinguished Senior Fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center

Shame can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at your local indie bookstore.

Zombie Loyalists by Peter Shankman

February 26, 2015

“Imagine an army of customers eager to do your PR, marketing, and advertising,” writes Peter Shankman, PR mastermind and CEO of Shankminds, “without ever being asked, each and every time they give you their money.” Shankman has been working with the biggest companies in the world to create these “Zombie Loyalists,” fervent fans who help companies massively increase their customer base, brand awareness, and, most importantly, revenue. In this book, Shankman explains why most businesses should abandon outdated models like points programs or mass emails and rebuild their service from the ground up in order to earn these zealous consumers with above and beyond customer service.

Zombie Loyalists closely examines exceptional companies like The Ritz-Carlton, United Airlines, GoGo In-Flight and smaller businesses with legendary followings to show how remarkable customer service can create a powerful customer army. From rude customer service representatives to impersonal mass emails, most people almost expect to be treated poorly–so a little strategic TLC from the right business can feel like a revelation. With so many products and platforms to choose from, extraordinary customer service is the only differentiator that will truly put you ahead of your competition. What’s stopping you from creating a powerful customer army of your very own by using infectiously outstanding customer service?

Praise for Zombie Loyalists:

“At the end of the day, all business comes down to customer service. If you want to win in the new customer-centric economy, check this book out.” -Gary Vaynerchuck, bestselling author, The Thank You Economy

“If anyone in any organization can’t figure out how to create loyal customers after reading this book, then their brains have obviously already been eaten by meat-eating zombies.” -Debbie Zmorenski, CEO, Moren Enterprises and former Disney Customer Service Leader

“Over the years Peter has created his own Zombie Loyalists, and I count myself as one! Now he is taking you and your business to new levels with his surefire strategies. The world around us has changed, and business must change with it. Your customers are key!” -Frank Eliason, Author of @YourService

Zombie Loyalists can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and your local indie bookstore.

The Last and Greatest Battle by John Bateson

January 30, 2015

The Last and Greatest Battle – the first book devoted exclusively to the problem of military suicides – shines a light on the true stories of individual soldiers, illuminating the unique challenges faced by American troops when transitioning from the front lines to the home front. Despite the millions of dollars the military spends on suicide prevention programs, record numbers of soldiers continue to take their lives.

Bateson, the former executive director of a nationally certified suicide prevention center, explores the history of suicide in the United States military from the Civil War to the present day and outlines a plan to ultimately end the tragedy of military suicides. If the military works to remove the stigma, make treatment more effective and accessible, and limit risk factors for suicide to begin with, an end to the crisis of military suicide is as achievable as it is essential.

Praise for The Last and Greatest Battle:

“This is an incredibly important book. John Bateson incorporates historical landmarks, cutting-edge data, and deeply textured real-life cases of suicide in the military to arrive at compelling recommendations for policy makers, military families, and mental health clinicians. Bateson is a meticulous researcher and a masterful writer. Understanding and effectively addressing military suicides begins here.”
–W. Brad Johnson, PhD, Professor of Psychology, Department of Leadership, Ethics, and Law, U. S. Naval Academy and Johns Hopkins University

“Suicide in the military is of urgent national concern, and the need for a book like this is pretty clear. The Last and Greatest Battle is a welcome addition to the literature on this topic. Bateson has had decades of experience in the field of suicide prevention and is an excellent writer. I highly recommend this book to anyone affected by military suicide, as well as those who are interested in learning what’s behind the problem and how we can address it.”
–Thomas Joiner, PhD, The Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor, Department of Psychology, Florida State University

The Last and Greatest Battle can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at your local indie bookstore.

Small Miracles from Beyond by Yitta Halberstam and Judith Leventhal

January 23, 2015

This latest addition to the bestselling Small Miracles series offers readers insight and solace. This eighth compilation shifts focus from the mortal world to examine death and the afterlife through inspiring true stories that demonstrate the soul’s immortality. Yitta Halberstam and Judith Leventhal provide incredible tales rich in miracles and extraordinary events, illuminating the enduring nature of our connections forged with our loved ones and illustrating the ways their relationships with us on earth continue long after they’ve passed

Praise for the Small Miracles Series:

“A special little book, an antidote to the stress, fury, and unfeelingness of many people’s hurried, everyday lives.” — Newsday

“Judith Leventhal and Yitta Halberstam amaze and inspire with their incredible-but-true story collections . . . of wondrous true coincidences.”—People

“Inspiring proof that small books, too, can make it big, Small Miracles is most assuredly living up to its title.” – Publishers Weekly

Small Miracles From Beyond can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at your local indie bookstore.


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