Story Circle Book Reviews

                        reviewing books by, for, and about women

October 2011, Vol. 4, No 4

We provide a review venue for small presses, university and regional presses, and for women authors whose books may not be reviewed elsewhere. We are selective in the books we review and choose only those we think are worth reading. If you're looking for mass-market, high-profile books, you'll find those reviewed on other sites. If you're looking for strong, insightful, well-written books by women of strength and courage, you'll find them here. With over a thousand reviews and a team of sixty-some reviewers, Story Circle Book Reviews is the largest and most comprehensive women's book review site on the Internet. For previous issues of our monthly eletter, go here.

Book Report

Editors' Picks:
Every month, our editors choose remarkable books by and about special women. Here are our choices for this month:

Books that show us courage

Books that keep hope alive

Books that take us on adventures

Books that tell hard truths

Books for & about brave girls

Our Favorite Authors

Donna Johnson Read Sharon Lippincott's interview with Donna Johnson, author of Holy Ghost Girl.

Our Reviewers and Editors Make News
  • Barbara Heming's mystery novel, Death Wins the Crown, a Hall of Fame Mystery, has been published. It is available in print and will be available for the Kindle soon. To learn more and read an excerpt, go to Barbara's website.

  • Judy Miller recently presented "Tips from the Trenches: Finding Middle Ground in Open Adoptive Parenting" at the Open Adoption Symposium: Realities, Possibilities and Challenges at the University of Richmond Law School (Richmond, VA). She is also presenting "Your Adopted Child and Racism" and "Adoption versus Normal," as well as sitting on a panel about adoptive family advocacy.

  • Judy Alter's new Kelly O'Connell mystery, Skeleton in a Dead Space, is available as e-book or print copy. You can keep up with Judy at her blog. And congratulations to Judy for her promotion to STAR reviewer status! Thanks, Judy, for your great work.

  • Congratulations, also, to Judy King for her promotion to STAR reviewer status! Judy brings a strong science background to our review team. We always enjoy reading her reviews.

  • SCBR editor Linda Hoye is the idea person behind SCN's One Woman's Day blog. Editor and Review Team Coordinator Susan Ideus is one of the blog's three editors. Thanks, Linda and Susan. Women's stories are so important—and now we have so many different ways to share them!

If you're interested in joining our review team, go here for all the details.

Cover Stories

Stories From the HeartStories From the Heart VI. Plan now to join us at the Wyndham Hotel in Austin, Texas on April 13-15, 2012 for a unique and exciting event: the sixth national women's memoir conference of the Story Circle Network! Come, learn, share, celebrate with us as we honor our stories!

• Here at SCBR, we always receive more wonderful books than we can possibly review. So we've created a new feature on our website: a section called Briefly Reviewed, a selection of titles, briefly described, that represent the wide range of recently-published memoirs written by strong women who have been there, done that, and lived to tell the tale. Recommended for your reading pleasure!

Advertising your book at SCBR. We are now posting carefully selected ads on our website—books and writing-related activities that we're confident you will enjoy. If you are a new author, please consider StoryCircleBookReviews as a part of your promotional efforts. Promotion on our site will allow you to take advantage of SCN's growing reputation as a unique member of the international community of women writers. Details to come.

SCN Online Classes: The Story Circle Network offers the only online lifewriting program designed exclusively for women. We teach general writing skills, organization, and critical editing, as well as technical skills in book design and development, online marketing, blogging, and other Internet-related activities. Through our Mentor Program, we can connect you with a helpful mentor who will provides you with individually tailored, constructive assistance designed to help you strengthen your writing, sustain your efforts, and complete your projects. For full class listings, faculty bios, enrollment, and more, visit our website.

HerStories and One Woman's Day. SCN hosts two blogs and dozens of bloggers. The HerStories bloggers are a dozen women writers and teachers who regularly share their passion for the how-to and why, the art and craft of lifewriting. The One Woman's Day bloggers share occasional stories of the special days of their lives. If you're a member and would like to contribute to OWD, visit the blog and see how to get involved.

• Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

                Review of the Month                

Rightful Place

From Susan Schoch's review:
It's the early, formative years that lead us there, wherever "there" is for us. But it's the older and wiser years that sharpen our wonder at the many ways humans are shaped by where we live. And by what we do there. Home and work. There are as many variations as there are people. If we're lucky, we recognize at last, as Amy Hale Auker did, our Rightful Place.

Susan Schoch
Reviewer of the Month:
Susan Schoch

SCN is proud to announce a new literary award to be granted to an outstanding woman's memoir published in 2011 in the United States or Canada. The Sarton Memoir Award is named in honor of May Sarton (1912-1995), distinguished American poet, novelist, and memoirist. The winning author's name and the title of her book will be announced at Stories from the Heart, the SCN National Memoir Conference, Austin TX, April 13-15, 2012. For full details of the competition, including guidelines and application form, visit the Sarton Memoir Award website. You'll also want to check out our scoring rubric, so you can see what our team of memoir experts will be looking for.

True Words From
Real Women

"I have never written a book that was not born out of a question I needed to answer for myself."
—May Sarton

"The more articulate one is, the more dangerous words become."
—May Sarton

Read more thoughtful words from women writers.


Three Books from SCN

What Wildness is This
What Wildness is This

Kitchen Table Stories
KTS cover

Starting Points
Starting Points

Who We Are

Story Circle Network

Our mission: The Story Circle Network is dedicated to helping women share the stories of their lives and to raising public awareness of the importance of women's personal histories. We carry out our mission through publications, a web site, classes, workshops, writing and reading circles, and woman-focused programs. To join us, see our online membership form.

Our Newsletters: We publish four monthly e-Letters:
  • This monthly e-Letter brings you information about book reviews and features. You'll find archives here.
  • The monthly Story Circle National e-Letter brings you writing tips, quotes, and Story Circle news.
  • The Online Class e-Letter brings you information about women-only writing classes.
  • The monthly Internet Chapter e-Letter is sent only to members of the Internet Chapter; it features chapter news and events.

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    This e-Letter is written and edited by Peggy Moody & Susan Wittig Albert. It is a publication of the Story Circle Network, (P.O. Box 500127, Austin TX 78750-0127). ©2011 Story Circle Network

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