Author Archives: Judy M. Miller

A Few New Reviews

INCONCEIVABLE, by Sean and Carolyn Savage, is a heartrending account of a life-changing fertility clinic mix-up. (Reviewed by Susan Ideus)

Pithy words of wisdom for those who seek to unclutter in A CLUTTERED LIFE, by Pesi Dinnerstein. (Reviewed by Martha Meacham)

Author Clarissa Pinkola Estés is a cantadora, a keeper of the old stories in the Latina tradition, who conceptualizes Blessed Mother image in UNTIE THE STRONG WOMAN.  Reviewer Judy Whelley feels this book is “to be kept and reread because as the reader grows so too will the understandings and insights.”

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Recent Reviews

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Reviewer Sharon Lippincott recommends COCKTAIL HOUR UNDER THE TREE OF FORGETFULNESS, a story about author Alexandra Fuller’s family within the historical perspective of revolutionary and transitional Africa, to “anyone fascinated with the experience of white colonists who chose to stay in Africa when most had fled, and to anyone who has been to or hopes to go to Africa.”

Author Donna Johnson compellingly, and with great detail, chronicles growing up and being impacted by a Holy Roller preacher in HOLY GHOST GIRL. Reviewer Sharon Lippincott found the book “so rich in detail and provocative thoughts” that she was tempted to read it twice!

Reviewer Mary Ann Moore says THE SPOKEN WORD WORKBOOK, by Sheri-D Wilson, is “a marvelous celebration of life, writing, performance and an invitation to write and perform your own work.”

A STOLEN LIFE, by Jaycee Dugard, is enduring and moving story of survival, supported by Dugard’s journal excerpts, says reviewer Sallie Moffitt. Simple and direct.

ALWAYS PLENTY TO DO, by Pamela Riney-Kehrberg, explains what it was like for children who grew up on farms around 1900. (Reviewed by Doris Anne Roop-Benner)

THE LITTLE BRIDE, by Anna Solomon, is a novel based on historical facts. A gripping story of a strong, determined heroine who survives, then, finally thrives. (Reviewed by Judith Helburn)

PALESTINIAN WOMEN, by Fatma Kassem, is a collection of memories of women who lived in Palestine in 1948. (Reviewed by Susan Andrus)

Reviewer Laura Strathman Hulka says JOYFUL COOKING, by Joy Feldman, sets out to make eating well and eating right the same things in today’s world.  Concepts of nutritional balance, along with recipes and a wellness guide are included.

This Week’s Reviews Round-Up

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Samantha White’s SOMEONE TO TALK TO is a concise five-ingredient “Recipe for Healing” for grief work. (Reviewed by Sharon Lippincott) 

100 PRETTY LITTLE PROJECTS from Lark Crafts, is a simple user-friendly book presenting projects that take little time and can be made with fabric on hand. (Reviewed by Laura Strathman Hulka)

In BATS SING, MICE GIGGLE authors Karen Shanor and Jagmeet Kanwal share “that animal behaviors are remarkably similar to human behaviors—behaviors that we thought set us above all other living things.” (Reviewed by Judy King)

WHITE HEAT, by M. J. McGrath, sets her story in the land of superstition and apparitions as backdrop for genuine Arctic thriller.  Reviewer Diana Nolan says the “novel is a story waiting to be on the front page of a local newspaper.”

TRUE CONFESSIONS by Susan Gubar, is a retrospective of the 60s’ and 70s’ women and their experiences leading to feminism. (Reviewed by Judy Alter).

This Week From SCBR

Yemeni reviewer Khadijah says author Deb Reich shows a new way of looking at people and dealing with conflict in NO MORE ENEMIES.

Philippa Gregory’s THE LADY OF THE RIVERS is a sweeping saga that has it all: romance, rivalry, betrayal, grief, and battle. (Reviewed by Becca Taylor).

PEACE IN THE HEART AND HOME, by Charlette Mikulka, examines how relationships can be good, healthy and honorable. (Reviewed by Laura Strathman Hulka)

BABY DOE TABOR, by Joyce B. Lohse, is the story of a woman always looking for next exploit, and a feminist at heart. (Reviewed by Doris Anne Roop-Benner)

Sheila Bender’s WRITING AND PUBLISHING PERSONAL ESSAYS is a solid basic reference on writing creative nonfiction. (Reviewed by Sharon Lippincott)

Reviewer Linda Wisniewski shares that Chef Gabrielle Hamilton, owner of Prune restaurant in New York’s EastVillage, has written an engrossing memoir about her “inadvertent education” as a “reluctant chef” in BONES, BLOOD & BUTTER

In sharing her fresh appreciation for dreams and lives of those who ranch today in RIGHTFUL PLACE, author Amy Hale Auker inspired reviewer Susan Schoch to look again with gratitude at her own rightful place.

BLOOD WORK, by Holly Tucker, contrasts the world of medicine that was with the world of medicine that is. (Reviewed by Judy King)

Reviewer Judy Miller says MOTHER ME by Zara Phillips is a raw, honest, and tough look at oft hidden or not discussed emotions of adoptees.

Theresa Weir’s memoir THE ORCHARD illustrates inherent importance of women directing their own lives. (Reviewed by Kim R Cox)

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An Author Thank You and Fresh Reviews

SCBR is doing great work promoting women’s stories and lifting sisters up everywhere. Our reviews matter. Reviewer Judy King received this heartfelt thank you from Anne Gross, author of The Polio Journals. Well done, Judy!

Hi Judy,

Thank you so much for reviewing my book.  I  thought you did a great job of capturing the essence of my story, recognizing its appeal beyond those interested in the topic of disability, as well as appreciating its historical value.

Thanks again!

Warm regards,

Anne K. Gross, Ph.D.
Author, The Polio Journals (
Finalist, 2011 National Indie Excellence Book Awards

We welcome strong reviews of stories by, for and about women. We regularly receive wonderful books about a vast array of topics relevant to women: memoir, creative life, relationships, history, spirituality, romance, thrillers, anthologies, and young adult, just to name a sampling…

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Below are our new, fresh, fascinating reviews. Click on the links to read the in-depth reviews and to order the books. Purchase through SCN and help support SCN’s many programs and women’s life-writing work.

Author Gail Straub takes readers with her on a deeply moving literal and spiritual journey as she seeks to come to terms with her mother’s untimely death at in the award winning RETURNING TO MY MOTHER’S HOUSE. (Reviewed by Lisa Shirah-Hiers)

THE POLIO JOURNALS by Anne K Gross is about a journey through pain, shame, and the accomplishment of living with polio. (Reviewed by Judy King) 

Reviewer Judith Helburn says WILDFLOWER HILL by Kimberley Freeman is lush historical romance, a lovely read and hard to put down.

Authors Alma Flor Ada and Gabriel Zubizarreta portray difficult adolescent and cultural struggles in DANCING HOME. For younger readers, ages eight through twelve. (Reviewed by Judy Miller)

Reviewer Judy King says PACKING FOR MARS, by Mary Roach, is an entertaining look at the nuts and bolts concerns of sending humans into space.

LOST EDENS, by Jamie Patterson, offers hope for everyone in or observing dysfunctional relationships. (Reviewed by Sharon Lippincott)

THE ARTIST’S RULE by ChristineValters Paintner, explores and shares a graceful journey through creativity and contemplation. (Reviewed by Mary Ann Moore)

Readers will be treated to an eye-opening collection of stories on the sustainable farming movement/revolution in FARMER JANE, by Temra Costa. (Reviewer Judy King)

Reviewer Sharon Lippincott  came away with a fresh perspective and respect about Kansasafter reading MY RUBY SLIPPERS by Tracy Seeley.

MARRIED TO BHUTAN, by Linda Leaming, gives detail on geography, scenery, culture, and people of Bhutan. (Reviewed by Penny Appleby)

Humorist Susan McCorkindale’s 500 ACRES AND NO PLACE TO HIDE  is light-hearted and fun. (Reviewed by Laura Strathman Hulka)

Reviews Are In

Summer is winding down and reviews appear to be picking up. We hope you will consider reviewing for Story Circle Book Reviews (SCBR), if you haven’t already. You can get started by submitting a review here.    

SCBR welcomes strong reviews of stories by, for and about women. We regularly receive wonderful books about a vast array of topics relevant to women: memoir, creative life, relationships, history, spirituality, romance, thrillers, anthologies, and young adult, just to name a sampling…

Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and share our tweets!

Reviews this time out include:

BURYIN’ DADDY by Theresa Nicholas is an elegantly crafted memoir about the effect of early loss of the author’s father. (Reviewed by Trilla Pando)

WRITE A MARKETABLE CHILDREN’S BOOK IN 7 WEEKS by Shirley Raye Redmond and  Jennifer McKerley is an easy to follow writing course in book format. (Reviewed byJudy Miller)

Sharon Lippincott says “exquisitely intimate thoughts and reflections combine with a skillful rendering of social conditions of the seventies to evoke a hauntingly complete sense of that age in both calendar and human development sense.” in author JoAnn Beard’s IN ZANESVILLE.

A CRACK IN EVERYTHING by Angela Gerst is a classic containing politics, love, hate, and greed; nothing is as it seems. Reviewed by Judy Alter.

MARCUS OF UMBRIA by Justine van der Leun is a love story about bond between a woman and her dog. (Reviewed by Laura Strathman Hulka) 

Encouraging quotations, probing questions and journaling prompts lie within the pages of SOULISTRY by June Mack Maffin. (Reviewer Sharon Lippincott)

WHAT WE HAVE by Amy Boesky Dynamics chronicles generations of family dealing with the tragedy of living and dying with a legacy of cancer. (Reviewed by Janet Caplan)

Short and Sweet

We’ve a short list this time around, ladies.

Tender compassionate portrayals describe life with JFK Jr. in COME TO THE EDGE , by Christina Haag. (Reviewed by Sharon Lippincott)

A city girl faces hard times trying to be rancher in MARRIED INTO IT, by Patricia Frolander. (Reviewed by Doris Anne Roop-Benner)

Reviewer Laura Strathman Hulka shares  that “Remarkable women are not the exception to the rule” in Levi’s and Lace: Arizona Women who Made History.

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Consider reviewing for Story Circle Book Reviews. You can get started by submitting a review here.

Books available for review can be found at Story Circle Book Reviews Distribution.