Authors Showcase features the works of Jackie Taylor Zortman and Christina Carson
June 6, 2013
The Book: We Are Different Now
The Author: Jackie Taylor Zortman
The Story: Pete worked late on the night of July 4th and watched the city fireworks with a friend. Then he drove three miles up the mountain dirt road to a spot where his buddies had gathered. This area is a shelf road with a cliff on one side and canyon on the other.
t is pitch black at night, but the acoustics are fantastic. Pete lit and dropped a firework of some magnitude and instinctively jumped backwards, falling 100 feet to the rocky canyon floor and creek bank below where he died instantly from a skull fracture at age 21.
When an EMT friend found him unresponsive, the Mountain Rescue Team and sheriff were summoned and thus began the true story of his maternal grandmother’s journey with death on the mountain.
Come and walk along to learn what has been revealed since we lost this young man with the angelic face and who was born possessing an old soul.
Early Readers Say: “We Are Different Now: has many of the answers grandparents are looking for and need to hear…” – Keith Bettinger, author, retired police officer and grief counselor.
“…I am indeed indebted to Jackie for sharing her touching, bittersweet, awe inspiring book…” –Dr. Marilyn Regan Frankland, retired psychologist and teacher.
“Very few resources are available for grieving grandparents. We are Different Now, fills a much needed void…” –Connie Iddings, Ordained Grace Association Pastor.
About the Author: former bookstore owner in a beautiful Colorado mountain tourist town, I have been writing since 1990. Normally I write in the law enforcement genre, since I am married to a 42-year veteran police officer, now retired. I used to write poetry and that evolved into short stories and magazine articles in the field of law enforcement, history, genealogy and, finally, into my first stand-alone book. I have been a contributing author to several anthologies, some of which are American Blue; Felons, Flames & Ambulance Rides (coming in July); Echoes From the Silence; Dusting Off Dreams and The Centennial Book of the National Society of Daughter of the Union 1861-1865.
My oldest grandson, Pete, died beside the river in the pitch black of night after falling 100 feet to the rock-strewn canyon floor. He was only 21 years old and the apple of my eye. My book invites you to come along with me on my journey through death on the mountain. Read the true story of what has been revealed to us since we lost this young man with the angelic face and who was born possessing an old soul.
Besides writing, I love being outdoors in these beautiful mountains in all of the seasons, spending time with my family (I have 3 kids and 5 beautiful grandchildren) and relaxing in the arms of nature’s quiet and beauty that our little mountain town provides. We live at 8000 feet and our house has one of the most spectacular views ever seen and I love it here, moving from Ohio 32 years ago. That surely makes me, at least, a semi-native of Colorado.
The Book: Suffer the Little Children
The Author: Christina Carson
The Story: Family is not our greatest success story; the Mueller’s being no exception. Set in a present-day wilderness community, the story recounts Anne Mueller’s determination to find her runaway daughter, save a neighbor child on the run, and understand what it is we do that drives our children from us.
She persists, inspired by her Cree native friends’ model of harmonious living and a harrowing wilderness experience that changes everything for her.
Anne’s relationship with her dog, Timber, her horse, Spook, a neighbor child, Little Bit, her friend, Billie and the vast wilderness around her are compelling elements of this novel, which proves to be both thought provoking and brimming with wildness. It is an adventure story on many levels.
Review by Kathy Lynn Hall: Sadly, I finished this book last night. The experience of reading the story of Anne (Nannie) and her transitions over several months will remain with me throughout the remainder of my life and guide me through many situations. The truths that Christina Carson lay out are so simple and yet so profound. If we all found a way through our troubles as Nannie does, we would all be so much happier.
But the book isn’t special simply because of it’s message, the characters are heart-breakingly real and the places are touchable. I know the house Nannie lives in and her clearing in the Alberta bushland. I can see the path she and Little Bit travel on the during that fateful night.
If everyone read and absorbed a 10th of this book, the world could change for the better. Congratulations and thank you to Christina Carson for writing a life-altering story.
Review by Patricia Macvaugh: This is a lovely book, beautifully written and thought provoking. The pacing is quick, yet the main character, Anne, is fully developed. The relationship that eventually blossoms with Anne’s deceased husband’s friend grows gently, tastefully, and honestly. The metaphors are exquisite, especially when Carson is writing about the boreal forest she so clearly loves. Her treatment of the Cardinals of the Cree Nation reminds me of parts of Louise Erdich’s works; her love of the natural world is reminiscent of Linda Hogan.
This is a good book for mothers and daughters of all ages to share. And anyone who loves animals will find Spook and Timber locked in their memory. You’ll be thinking about the life lessons this book shares long after you read the final words.