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ArtsMart

BOOKS, ART, TRAVEL AND MORE


Are you looking for perfect gifts for all the special people on your holiday gift list? Well, here they are! Scroll through ArtsMart, and you’ll find a dozen or more super gift ideas - fascinating books on every subject, music for Christmas and for the rest of the year, too - something for everyone on your list! And they all come with the wish that you have a joyous holiday season and a peaceful - and healthy - new year.

The Wright Sister

The Wright Sister
By Patty Dann

 

 

When Katharine Wright, sister to the famous Wright Brothers, married for the first and only time at 52, her brother, Orville, refused to speak to her ever again. The Wright Sister is a historical novel made up of imagined letters from Katharine to Orville, as well as what she calls her Marriage Diary.

 

“The Wright Sister is a marvel—a perfect, very dear and brilliant novel whose characters are now stored in my heart like favorite, absent friends. Long live the remarkable Katharine Wright, her famous brothers, and author Patty Dann, who brought them back to life for this gobsmacked, grateful reader.”
 

— Elinor Lipman, author of Good Riddance and On Turpentine Lane

 

To order, CLICK HERE.

As You Write It: Lucky 7

As You Write It: Lucky 7
featuring Estelle Cade, Joan Hopkins Coughlin, Sally Fairfield, Lillian Fiske, Penny Jordan, Noreen O’Brien, Ellen Brucker Marshall, Ann Marie Meltzer, Laura Rodley, Alice Thomas, Barbara Waters

 

The As You Write It series is a great gift to our community: a page-turning read, a window into our local past, and a platform for brilliant storytellers, all in one. In turns reflective, touching, and funny, this anthology is a reminder of the worlds that can open up when we take the time to listen to the voices already among us.

Mike Jackson, Managing Editor, The Montague Reporter

 

With its seventh gift to our community, the As You Write It group once again reminds and encourages us: Everyone should write! And when talent is fostered, it blossoms. Lucky 7‘s eleven writers pull a deep spectrum of living color through the prism of the short memoir, leaving something new and different shining on every page: poetry and portals into our local history, childhood sense-memories returning, reveries and touching reflections. Place this little volume on your bedside table. You’ll be grateful.

Jean Varda, poet

 

To place an order, send a check
for $16 plus $3 shipping and handling to
Laura Rodley
P.O. Box 63
Shelburne Falls MA 01370

Reclaiming the Sacred Source

Reclaiming the Sacred Source
by Lynn Creighton

Reclaiming the Sacred Source: The Ancient Power and Wisdom of Women’s Sexuality

Arguing for the return of celebrating the life-force with orgasm, Reclaiming the Sacred Source explores the sexual imbalance that disturbs the lives of millions. Some have been abused. Some believe it their right to take sexual gratification. Most have forgotten the purpose of sexuality: to celebrate life. Five thousand years ago the invading and over-powering Indo-Europeans disrupted sexuality as a sacrament in the celebration of the ancient Goddess. Modern religions perpetuate the false story of sexuality as evil. This book provides insight into this historical occurrence and offers suggestions for healing that can restore memory and practice of high-level orgasm as a celebration of life and all that is sacred in the highest vibratory peak of our pleasure.

Available on-line everywhere www.lynncreighton.com

The Topography of Hidden Stories

The Topography of Hidden Stories
By Julia MacDonnell

A National Indie Excellence Awards Finalist 2021

The stories in Julia MacDonnell’s first collection, The Topography of Hidden Stories create a shining tapestry of women’s lives in the late 20th and the early 21st centuries. Her characters, among them women trapped in a pious patriarchy that has yet to loosen its control of women’s lives, grapple with doubt and disquiet in their search for love and connection. However difficult their situations, they confront experience with sharp eyes, ironic wit, and a sense of their own historical matrix.

Kirkus Reviews:
MacDonnell’s writing is frequently elegant, full of vivid metaphors…and descriptive language. The plots are both familiar and unpredictable, drawing readers in while challenging their preconceptions…. A strong collection of stories connected by deep Irish American roots.

Midwest Book Review, D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer:
The Topography of Hidden Stories holds many hidden gems…Dissimilar, evocative, and compelling, these snapshots freeze pivotal moments in time. They will captivate readers looking for literary examples of women trapped by circumstance and fate, their choices, their commitments to family, and their illusions and realities about the world and their place in it.

Readers seeking stories of growth and change and women’s evolving lives will find The Topography of Hidden Stories hard-hitting and thought-provokingly unexpected in its diversity and impact.

Indie Reader, Stephani Hren:
Julia MacDonnell …can cut to the quick of a character with a single sentence, or …stretch her exploration through an entire story…There’s an element of yearning to MacDonnell’s writing that makes her stories utterly entrancing and the characters, conflicts, and relationships that she’s crafted are deeply insightful.

 

To order, CLICK HERE.

Counter Point

Counter Point
Poems of the Whydah
by Laura Rodley

 


Learn more at laurarodley.com.

Laura Rodley’s remarkable poems transport you to the North Atlantic in the early 1700s. Novelistic in scope, Counter Point uses scene, dialogue, and action-driven narrative. And like any good novel, this book introduces an unforgettable character, Marie, an ordinary girl (“A laundress wears no jewelry on her / hands, only the roses of chapped skin”) who navigates the world with extraordinary fortitude. Artful language and sensual detail–whether evoking love’s first desires (“and here we splice open our shirts / like oysters after plucking / and just as lush”) or describing the malodors of a pirate ship (“even the smell of their feet / had a noise called squelching”)—bring to life a briny world, both intimate and writ large. It’s not often a poetry book is described as a page-turner, but Counter Point is that book: a heroine’s adventure lyrically told.

– Ellen Wade Beals, Publisher/Editor of Solace in So Many Words.

 

To order online, click here or also available on Amazon.

When You Lose Someone You Love

When You Lose Someone You Love
… a journey through the heart of grief
by Susan Squellati Florence

 


 

When someone we love dies, a part of our own self dies too. I had a dream after my father died, that I was shot in the dark by a stranger. I lay on the ground on my stomach, not knowing what had happened. I didn’t know if I would live or die. We are physically hurt when someone we love dies, and don’t know how we can go on. 
 
   
It takes time and a thousand tears to accept the death of someone you love. Stay with this sadness. Your tears are holy water from the deep place of your loving. You will receive great comfort from people who have been in the place of sadness, where you are now.  They will be friends, family and even people you have not known before. In our sorrow, we are all connected.
     

I hope this book of few words and soft watercolors will be a way to offer sympathy and comfort to the ones who are traveling this journey through the heart of grief. 

 

Available at your favorite indie bookshop through Bookshop.org https://bit.ly/3i9Laqs

Amazon https://amzn.to/2S7OxDJ

Barnes & Noble https://bit.ly/34Hv7bC

The Understudy

The Understudy
by Ellen Tovatt Leary

 

The Understudy is a charming, evocative, and authentic novel about the life of a Broadway actress in the 1970s, written by someone who has been there. Part theatrical love letter and part romance novel, The Understudy shows that while true love is never completely perfect, it can come pretty close if all parties involved are willing to work at it.

“Couldn’t put it down. If you love the theater and would like to share in the experiences of the inner life of a play, the production, directing, acting and the other myriad tasks of this world, THE UNDERSTUDY by Ellen Leary is a must read. Throughout the book one lives with the anxieties, the tensions, the pleasures and excitement of this page turner of a novel.”

(A five-star Amazon review)

 

Available on Amazon.

The Lady with the Crown

The Lady with the Crown
A Story of Resilience
by Kathleen Canrinus

 

A gritty, matter-of-fact account of tragedy and how to make it a beginning and not an end.

— David B. Teplow, Ph.D. Professor of Neurology, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA

 

Bold, brave, honest! A beautifully told mother-daughter love story.

— Ann Davidson, Alzheimer’s: A Love Story

 

Heartbreaking and hilarious.

— Sylvia Halloran, poet and author

 

This beautiful uplifting little book resonates with love, regret, grief, and much more, showing us that perfection is unnecessary: love still can win out in the end.

— Carol Cassara, The Healing Spirit

 

The Lady with the Crown: A Story of Resilience explores how unforeseen trauma can, in the blink of an eye, transform a normal happy family into a uniquely wounded one. It charts not only their resilience and courage but also Canrinus’s indomitable pursuit and reinvention of joy.

—Molly Best Tinsley, Editor, Fuze Publishing

 

Available on Amazon.

Miami in Virgo

Miami in Virgo
A Feminist, Mystical Novel
by Sally Mansfield Abbott

 

A disturbing encounter with a hermaphrodite at a county fair presages teenage Miami’s loss of innocence in 1970’s California. MIAMI IN VIRGO is a literary fiction coming-of-age novel narrated by precocious seventeen-year-old Miami.

She and her friends form a tight-knit circle practicing feminist Wiccan ritual, as her childhood fundamentalism casts a long shadow.

Conflicts with her friends over boys threaten their newfound feminist solidarity. An anticipated trip to a women’s demonstration devolves into a nightmarish questioning of her sexuality, further fracturing her friendships. An ill-fated romance at a Halloween party becomes thoroughly spooked when Miami winds up exiled in her new family after her mother’s remarriage.

Her peccadilloes take on a spiritual dimension and she goes through a soul-searing scrutiny which eventually leads to the resolution of her conflicts through the deepening of her character. The twists and turns of her fast-paced story make a compelling read.
 

Order the book, on Amazon.

Learn more about the book and its author: https://miamiinvirgo.com/

Modern Women: 21st Century DANCE, A Coloring Book

Modern Women: 21st Century Dance, A Coloring Book
by Julie Lemberger, edited by Elizabeth Zimmer

 

Women, the largest and yet the most unrecognized population of the dance arts community, are spotlighted in renowned dance photographer Julie Lemberger’s Modern Women: 21st Century Dance, a coloring book. Using her more than two decades of dance images, Lemberger transformed them into illustrations almost ready to color and then added psychedelic, floral, and abstract backgrounds for the figures “to dance in.”

Featured are today’s leading dance innovators and interpreters, celebrating their diverse genres and perspectives. More than 60 women participated in the 92-page volume, including Wendy Whelan, Annie-B Parson, Merian Soto, Eiko Otake, Francesca Harper, Jinju Song-Begin, Pam Tanowitz, Andrea Miller, and many more. Additionally, read about these women’s accomplishments with their quotes, biographies, and a glossary of 21st-century dance terms.

Dance Magazine’s Lisa Traiger wrote:

“Get out the crayons, markers or colored pencils. Modern Women: 21st-Century Dance, feels like the antidote to a COVID-19 winter. Created by Brooklyn-based dance photographer Julie Lemberger, the book pays tribute to this generation of powerful and creative women dancers.”

Modern Women: 21st Century Dance is a perfect holiday gift for children of all ages, including grandparents and their grandchildren, especially those who love women, dance, and art!

For $20 + $5 each s/h (within U.S./please contact for International shipping rates), it is available at:
etsy.com/shop/dancecoloringbook or julielemberger.com

Ballroom
By Alice Simpson

“Seldom does one come across a debut novel, which sings so sublimely from each page that you don’t want it to end. Alice Simpson’s Ballroom is one such whirligig of a read, leaving you heady and happy and weepy, all at the same time.

Simpson’s writing is crisp and clear. She views her characters with an overriding godly fondness, embracing the good fortune with the mishaps in the lives of these amateur dancers.

The tale is bittersweet, holding up a mirror to the lonely vanities and foibles of both men and women, but it is told with such buoyancy and smooth delight that lends even the coarsest of characters a lightness and brilliance you won’t forget.”

– Robyn Sassen, My View/THE ARTS AT LARGE

 

“Simpson is a master at creating realistic characters who are flawed, a bit unappealing and yet sympathetic.”

– KIRKUS REVIEWS

 

To order, HarperCollinsPublishers

A Place Like This

A Place Like This
Finding Myself in a Cape Cod Cottage
by Sally W. Buffington

 

A book for anyone who’s ever loved a house.

When newly engaged Sally Buffington is introduced to Craigville, she meets an expansive Cape Cod cottage that is virtually a family member itself. She quickly finds herself competing for airtime among the talkative, assured band of brothers—and her new mother-in-law, the cottage’s lively and confounding matriarch.

Sally, a Cape Cod local, soon wonders how she’ll ever maintain her independence, let alone her sense of self when the day’s agenda and every detail is already set in stone. But she navigates her new life with quiet persistence and a boundless curiosity that guides her to explore life through the creative lens of her camera and her pen.

Sally writes with a whimsical candor that is both honest and humorous. Through poetic prose and heartfelt reflection, A Place Like This reveals the beauty of Cape Cod and shows us that sometimes the simplest of moments brings us the most lasting joy.

Sally Buffington is a writer and photographer, also a classically trained musician. From her home in southern California, she migrates back to native ground in Massachusetts, especially her spiritual homeland of Cape Cod. Writing lyrically and imaginatively, ever aware of sensory experience and memory, Buffington takes the reader into her thoughts wherever she finds herself.

Buffington can “see things other people don’t see” in everyday scenes and find them beautiful. But her prose is where that ability most shines through. This memoir paints a vivid and lasting memory of a home with as much personality as the family who lived there.

– Book Life

“Punctuated by sensory delights, the author’s prose can prove particularly mouthwatering” …. “An elegantly observant account that transports readers to a beloved place.”

Kirkus

To learn more, and order the book, go to www.sallybuffington.com