Sheriff Promise Flynn discovers malfeasance at the Willis Asylum in Auburn Notch

PHILADELPHIA — Sunbury Press has released Between Good and Evil, R. Michael Phillip’s detective thriller — the first Auburn Notch Mystery.

BGaE_fcPromise Flynn is an overly impulsive Metro Detective whose disregard for procedure finally resulted in her being shot and left for dead during an investigation. To repair her bruised ego and splintered confidence she abandons the callous dark alleys of Chicago to patrol the quiet, birch-lined streets of Auburn Notch—a favorite vacation spot of her youth. For two years everything was idyllic, until the body of a young girl found in the abandoned asylum outside of town awakens the insecurities she thought her new life would insulate her from.

As the new Sheriff she begins her investigation refusing to accept the similarities between the young woman’s death and her own case, oblivious to being unexpectedly recognized and penciled in at the top of a clever murderer’s To-Do list. Her internal struggle intensifies when a discredited crime reporter from the past suspiciously arrives in town to resurrect his threadbare reputation, along with an FBI agent chasing down a lead in a cold case. Both men quickly become entangled in Flynn’s investigation and her attempts to finally put her past to rest.

Flynn reluctantly accepts the murder of the young girl might be the work of the two men responsible for her hasty departure from Chicago, but Agent MacGregor insists the evidence points to a man he’s been chasing. As the rising current of her past threatens to pull her under, Flynn finds herself unprepared for option three.

EXCERPT:
“Why are we b–back here? I hate this p–place. Why here?”

There was no answer. Glaring back in the reflection of the broken pane of glass in front of him was the dismissive, malevolent smile he received for most of his objections.

“S–say something!”

Nothing. Just a nod towards the task waiting behind him.

He lowered his head, leaning against the peeling, brown trim, tapping his knife against the shard remains of a windowpane. He cupped his neck with his hand, slowly rubbing the back of his neck, trying to calm his escalating nervousness. He looked over his shoulder and then at his watch, the second hand clicking past each of the illuminated dots above the hours. He couldn’t put it off any longer. The pale sliver of the moon resting just below the dense, gray storm clouds drifting to the east cast enough light to illuminate the second-floor room. It was a room best left in the dark. A room the innocence of day would find disturbing. A room long past its time for being of comfort to anyone. It was time.

In the center of the room a metal gurney rose up from the dust, its white paint yellowed and chipped with age, the leather straps and dark-brown stains hinting at a more sinister than assistive medical use. The large, thin-spoke, back wheels and angle iron frame attested to its pre-war age. Like the building it remained in, the medical conveyance for the mentally insane was abandoned decades before the young woman strapped to its cold surface entered into this world.

The young woman’s attempts to call out were futile, muffled by the cloth gag she franticly tried to bite through. Her clenched fists struggled against the coarse leather, her head rolling from side to side looking for any sign of a sympathetic face.

He ignored the desperate rattling of the old gurney, turning his attention back to the night sky.

“It’s not like you haven’t done this before.”

“S–stop it. Just stop it. I’ll d–do it when I’m ready.”

“You say that now, but you’re acting just like you did in Chicago. Sniffling coward.”

“S–stop calling me that! Th–that was different. She was a c–cop.”

“Was? So you think she’s dead? Maybe, maybe not.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
author photoMichael is a classically trained artist turned mystery writer. By combining his creative talents with a passion for mysteries he conceived his first series—The Ernie Bisquets Mysteries. It introduced Ernie Bisquets, a retired London pickpocket who decided he was going to assist the London police with there most difficult cases—whether they want his help or not. Michael has completed 3 books in the series, and has plans for at least five additional books.

Michael travels a bit, especially to Great Britain, but also has a fondness for New England. He spent many winters in the shadow of the White Mountains, skiing and enjoying the beautiful countryside. Those fond memories are the backdrop now for the new Auburn Notch Mysteries being published by Sunbury Press. The main character is Sheriff Promise Flynn—an ex-metro detective who left a dark past and her big-city detective shield behind and moved to a small New England town. What follows is anything but therapeutic.

When not painting or writing Michael is an avid antique collector, filling his current home—an 1894 Queen Ann Victorian he is restoring with his wife and son—with an assortment of antiques from around the world. Michael also enjoys cooking, working in the garden, and playing in the yard with their two rescues, Beau and Pup.

Between Good and Evil
Authored by R Michael Phillips
List Price: $16.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
222 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620067291
ISBN-10: 1620067293
BISAC: Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Women Sleuths

Also available as a hardcover and on Kindle

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Between-Good-and-Evil-ha…

Brother and sister flee with mysterious blue stone from coal mine — authorities in pursuit

POTTSVILLE, Pa.  — Sunbury Press has released From Blue Ground, Joe Harvey’s historical YA novel about a brother and sister trying to solve the mystery of their late father’s murder.

fbg_fcSet in 1876 in the coal hills of Pennsylvania, the story follows two unwitting orphans, Patrick and Sissy Hughes, who are propelled on a desperate journey after witnessing the murder of their father. They carry with them a wooden box retrieved from a secret compartment beneath their father’s bed. His dying words to them: “keep it safe, keep it hidden.” Powerful men are looking for what’s inside the box and they will do anything they can to get it.

One hundred miles to the South, large crowds have gathered at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. Patrick and Sissy’s father had promised to take them there for the Fourth of July celebration. Instead, they are running for their lives. Alone and on the run, they are pursued by their father’s murderer, James McKenna, a Pinkerton Security Agent who is working undercover investigating the Molly Maguires for the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad. Patrick and Sissy’s only hope is to unlock the mystery of the contents of the box: a diary, a translucent blue stone and a bag of blue ground. That hope lies in Philadelphia with Henry Carvill Lewis, a professor of mineralogy at the Academy of Natural Sciences. As they make their way to Philadelphia, their pursuers grow in numbers and Patrick and Sissy must fight against time and the odds to stay together.

EXCERPT:
Years later, when the ghosts of his childhood had long since faded, Patrick would remember the wooden box as clearly as the night he and his sister had found it. He remembered every detail: the pieces of scrap wood it was made of, the broken hinge that didn’t quite hold the lid, the frayed twine that was wrapped around it. It seemed strange that he would remember such an ordinary thing because, like every box, the box itself was not important. It was what was inside the box that mattered. The same was true of this box. Its contents sent Patrick and his sister off on an unexpected—and unwelcome—adventure.

It began with a warning in the small hours after midnight on July 3, 1876. Patrick nudged his sister across the bed. “Sissy, are you awake? Sissy?”

Sissy was fourteen, just two years older than Patrick, yet she had been a continued source of comfort to him since their mother died, when he wanted her to be, that is.

“What is it Patrick?” Sissy asked, still half asleep.

“I heard something.”

“What?”

“I don’t know . . . a noise.”

“What kind of a noise?”

“I don’t know . . . . Did you hear the whippoorwill?”

“The whippoorwill? That’s just a dumb bird.”

Patrick didn’t think so. The Native Lenape believed that the bird’s call was a bad omen, a warning that it intended to capture someone’s soul to carry it to the spirit world.

“Well, I heard something,” Patrick said.

Sissy propped herself up on her elbows and listened. She heard only the sounds of the sleeping mountain: crickets, an owl, a distant loon. “I don’t hear anything, Patrick.”

Patrick sighed. Bothered, Sissy listened again. Still silence. “It’s nothing Patrick—probably that ol’ black bear down from the mountain to scratch at the smokehouse again. Papa will scare it off. Now go back to sleep.”

I wont be able to go back to sleep, Patrick thought. Im sure I heard something—maybe it was a banshee. He pulled the blanket close to his nose, his eyes widened. Papa’s room lay just beneath their bedroom loft. If there was something outside, surely Papa would have heard it, he thought.

A cool mountain breeze moved the curtains and cleansed the cabin of the thick summer air. Their family’s cabin lay deep in the folds of Pennsylvania’s Appalachian Mountains, in the heart of the eastern coal region. Patrick and Sissy’s grandfather named the wooded hill where they lived “Shannon’s Hill” after the river in Ireland where he had made his living before coming to America during the Potato Famine of the 1840’s.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Joe Harvey is currently a fourth grade teacher at Saucon Valley Elementary School in Hellertown, PA. He began his career teaching music. Joe received his bachelor’s degree in education from Millersville University and his Elementary K-6 certificate from DeSales University. He holds a Master of Arts from West Chester University and has conducted historical research in the field of musicology, identifying a lost symphony by the mid-nineteenth century American composer William Henry Fry. He is six credits shy of a Master of Education from DeSales University. He is married to his high school sweetheart, Kara. They have two children. Outside of teaching, Joe loves to read, write, play the guitar, watch the Iron Pigs and root for the Phillies.

From Blue Ground
Authored by Joe Harvey
List Price: $14.95
5.5″ x 8.5″ (13.97 x 21.59 cm)
Black & White on White paper
150 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620066546
ISBN-10: 1620066548
BISAC: Juvenile Fiction / Historical / United States / 19th Century

Coming Soon on Kindle

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/From-Blue-Ground-9781620…

Philadelphia Region volume of Keystone Tombstones now available

kstsph_fcPHILADELPHIASunbury Press has released Keystone Tombstones Philadelphia Region by Joe Farrell and Joe Farley.

About the Book:
Biographies of famous people buried in the Philadelphia Region are the focus of this first localized edition of the Keystone Tombstones. Farrell and Farley have combed the Philadelphia area to bring you the most entertaining tales about interesting people buried in Pennsylvania. Included in this volume:

Bucks County

  • Pearl Buck
  • Saint Katherine Drexel
  • Tom Gola

Chester County

  • Smedley Butler
  • Jim Croce

Delaware County

  • Marian Anderson
  • Paul Arizin
  • John McDermott
  • Herman Webster Mudgett aka Dr. Henry H. Holmes
  • Danny Murtaugh
  • Philadelphia Sinners
  • Bessie Smith
  • Anthony Wayne

Montgomery County

  • Alan Ameche
  • Richie Ashburn
  • Lafayette C. Baker
  • De Bonneville “Bert” Bell
  • Jay Cooke
  • Dave Garroway
  • Winfield Scott Hancock
  • John Hartranft
  • Herman Haupt
  • Teddy Pendergrass
  • Arlen Specter
  • Grover Washington Jr.
  • Harry Wright
  • Samuel K. Zook

Philadelphia County

  • William (Willie) Law Anderson
  • John Barrymore
  • Ulric Dahlgren
  • Four Founders
  • Samuel W. Crawford
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Joe Frazier
  • General Controversy
  • Franklin Gowen
  • Harry Norbert Kalas
  • Oliver B. Knowles
  • Connie Mack
  • George Meade
  • Robert Morris & James Wilson
  • St. Clair Augustine Mulholland
  • Saint John Newman
  • Dennis O’Kane
  • John C. Pemberton
  • Galusha Pennypacker
  • Frank Rizzo
  • Bill Tilden
  • John Wanamaker

Keystone Tombstones Philadelphia Region: Biographies of Famous People Buried in Pennsylvania
Authored by Joe Farrell, Authored by Joe Farley, Authored by Lawrence Knorr
List Price: $19.95
6″ x 9″ (15.24 x 22.86 cm)
Black & White on White paper
360 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065457
ISBN-10: 1620065452
BISAC: Biography & Autobiography / Rich & Famous

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Keystone-Tombstones-Phil…

Harrisburg's historic Bethel African Methodist Episcopal church predates the Civil War

HARRISBURG, Pa.Sunbury Press has released Along the Bethel Trail: The Journey of an African American Faith Community presented by Friends of the Bethel Trail.

About the Book:

Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church of Harrisburg, 1835 – 2015

atbt_fc smThroughout its history, the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church of Harrisburg has been a critical link in the chain of places, people, and events that bind and strengthen Pennsylvania’s quest for equity, parity, and social justice. Along the Bethel Trail is an anthology of articles by area authors, scholars and humanists that guides readers through the history of this resilient congregation in relationship to the legacy and impact on the community that it serves. Each contributing author writes of a specific historical period and geographic site where the church was located. From that vantage point, the authors explore the social and civic engagement of the congregation and its leadership in time and place, as the church and surrounding communities were continuously uprooted to make room for the expanding state capitol complex. Together their articles frame the impact of the church and congregation on the development of Harrisburg’s diverse community. The combined articles also articulate the struggle of Harrisburg’s African-American community for economic development, sustainability, and a sense of place over the past 180 years.

The anthology of articles supports the eight paneled interpretive signage and self-guided experience along Harrisburg’s Bethel Trail. Discover the location of Bethel’s first church at the current Amtrak station, key 19thcentury sites at Harrisburg’s Forum, Fountain, and Justice buildings along Commonwealth Ave, its 20th century site at 6th and Herr and Bethel’s current 21st century home in midtowns at 1721 N.5th street.

Along the Bethel Trail: The Journey of an African American Faith Community
Authored by Lenwood O. Sloan, Nancy Mendes, and Michael L. Barton
List Price: $29.95
Hardcover: 60 pages
Publisher: Sunbury Press, Inc. (April 15, 2015)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 162006586X
ISBN-13: 978-1620065860
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.3 x 11 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
BISAC: History / African American

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Along-the-Bethel-Trail-9…

Swedes once ruled the Philadelphia area

SUNBURY, Pa.Sunbury Press has released John L. Moore’s Rivers, Raiders, and Renegades, the fifth of eight volumes in the Frontier Pennsylvania series.

About the Book:
rrar_fcAs the Delaware Indians moved west through Pennsylvania during the 1700s, they carried with them tribal memories of the day they first met people from Europe. Their ancestors had lived along the Atlantic Ocean, and, according to tradition, which a missionary eventually wrote down, a group of Indian men in canoes had ventured out into New York Harbor to fish. Suddenly they saw a strange object floating in the ocean far to the east. When it got very close, they saw that it was a large floating house with people on it.

There are remarkable similarities between this legend and journal entries written in September 1609 by an officer of Henry Hudson’s ship, the “Half Moon,” as it sailed into the harbor and up the Hudson River. Author John L. Moore explores the differences and similarities of the European and Native American versions of this fateful meeting.

A work of non-fiction, “Rivers, Raiders, and Renegades” provides colorful details of the 1600s, an obscure era in colonial history. Among the many people it depicts is Etienne Brule, a young Frenchman who lived with the Indians after arriving in Canada in 1608 and who in 1615 became the first European to travel the entire length of the Susquehanna River;

printzMoore draws upon written observations of early colonists who described the Native Americans they encountered. Peter Lindestrom, a Delaware River colonist, reported that Indians occasionally cut themselves all over their bodies, then rubbed special ointments into the wounds so that “blue streaks” remained when the wounds healed. This made “the savages appear entirely striped and streaky,” Lindestrom said. Another Delaware colonist, Johann Printz, said, “They walk naked with only a piece of cloth … tied around their hips.” In the Hudson Valley, Dutch colonist Isaack De Rasiere reported: “In the wintertime they usually wear a dressed deerskin; some have a bear’s skin about the body; some a coat of scales; some a covering made of turkey feathers.”

The descendants of these natives eventually passed through Pennsylvania as they migrated farther west to the Ohio River Valley or north to central and western New York. These stories are set mainly in the valleys of the Delaware, Hudson, and Susquehanna rivers.

Excerpt:
1643
Sir Johan Printz achieved two distinctions during his eleven years as royal governor of the New Sweden Colony.

The first was significant. Arriving in the colony in February 1643, Printz strengthened the colony’s existing defenses along the Delaware River, built several new ones, and then closed the river to ships of merchants from rival colonies. This let Swedish merchants monopolize the fur trade with the Indians, but angered the authorities of other colonies on the Eastern Seaboard.

The second distinction was colorful, but trifling. The governor, who was obese, acquired a derogatory nickname that the Lenni Lenape Indians bestowed on him—“meschatz.” The Indian word “meschatz”meant “large belly,” according to Peter Lindestrom, a Swedish military engineer who arrived in New Sweden in 1654. “Thus they called him,” Lindestrom reported in a book titled Geographia Americae that he wrote about the colony. He never met Printz, who had sailed for Europe several months before Lindestrom’s arrival in New Sweden.

devriesA decade earlier, David de Vries, a Dutch adventurer, had recorded his impression of Printz after meeting him at Tinnicum Island in the Delaware River in 1643. “He was …,” de Vries said, “a man of large size who weighed over 400 pounds.” The Dutchman described the Swedish governor as hospitable. When Printz learned that de Vries had explored and traded on the river years before the Swedes colonized it, he “had a silver mug brought, with which he treated the skipper with hop beer, and a large glass of Rhenish wine, with which he drank my health.”

About the Author:
johnJohn L. Moore, a veteran newspaperman, said he employed a journalist’s eye for detail and ear for quotes in order to write about long-dead people in a lively way. He said his books are based on 18th and 19th century letters, journals, memoirs and transcripts of official proceedings such as interrogations, depositions and treaties.

The author is also a professional storyteller who specializes in dramatic episodes from Pennsylvania’s colonial history. Dressed in 18th century clothing, he does storytelling in the persona of “Susquehanna Jack,” a frontier ruffian. Moore is available weekdays, weekends and evenings for audiences and organizations of all types and sizes.

Moore’s 45-year career in journalism included stints as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal; as a Harrisburg-based legislative correspondent for Ottaway News Service; as managing editor of The Sentinel at Lewistown; as editorial page editor and managing editor at The Daily Item in Sunbury; and as editor of the Eastern Pennsylvania Business Journal in Bethlehem.

Rivers, Raiders, and Renegades
Authored by John L. Moore
List Price: $9.99
5″ x 8″ (12.7 x 20.32 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
102 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065150
ISBN-10: 1620065150
BISAC: History / United States / State & Local / Middle Atlantic

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Rivers-Raiders-and-Reneg…

Cover artwork by Andrew Knez, Jr.  For more information about Andrew’s work, please see:http://www.andrewknezjr.com/

Benjamin Franklin leads troops through the wilderness from Philadelphia to Bethlehem

SUNBURY, Pa.Sunbury Press has released John L. Moore’s Forts, Forests, and Flintlocks, the fourth of eight volumes in the Frontier Pennsylvania series.

About the Book:
ffaf_fcAs the officer in charge at Hyndshaw’s Fort in the Pocono Mountains, Captain John Van Etten knew that few Indian war parties raided the settlements during the snowy winter months, but that warm spring weather often signaled the sudden onslaught of Indian attacks.

The captain himself was wary, and he made it a point to keep his troops on their guard. He had good reason for this. The morning of May 7, 1757, for instance, he learned that while on sentry duty during the night, some of his men had observed “that the dogs kept an unusual barking and running to a particular place … ” With daylight, the soldiers ventured out to investigate “and found that an Indian had stood behind a tree about 25 yards from the fort. Being told, I went to see and found it true, his tracks being visible enough to be seen.”

John L. Moore’s non-fiction book contains true stories of Van Etten and other real people caught up in the struggles that took place all along the Pennsylvania frontier throughout the 1700s. Other chapters tell how:

Blacksmith Anton Schmidt repaired guns for Indian hunters who came to the Moravian mission at Shamokin. He knew Chief Shikellamy, the Iroquois territorial governor who lived in the town at present-day Sunbury. When Shikellamy died in 1748, carpenters at the mission made a wooden coffin for him, and Schmidt was one of four men who carried the old chief to his grave. Seven years later, as Indian attacks shattered the long peace that William Penn had established in 1681, the blacksmith guided a small military force headed by Benjamin Franklin from Philadelphia over muddy country roads to Bethlehem, where the Moravian Church was based. Franklin’s column included a wagon carrying firearms for settlers to use against enemy Indians. It also transported equipment for building stockade forts in the mountains.

Major James Burd, the commandant at Fort Augusta, welcomed a delegation of Iroquois leaders. In March 1757, they came down the Susquehanna River’s North Branch in a fleet of fifteen canoes and three flat-bottom boats. The visitors ““informed me that there was 800 French and Indians marched from Fort Duquesne against this fort, and they were actually arrived at the head of the West Branch of this river, and were there making canoes and would come down as soon as they were made.” To Burd’s relief, no such invasion ever occurred.

Captain Patrick Work, a Pennsylvania officer who in October 1757 was marching his troops along a forest trail that crossed Peters Mountain north of present-day Harrisburg. As they reached the top of the ridge, “the advance guard, consisting of a sergeant and 12 men, discovered a party of Indians … Our party advanced supposing them to be friends until they came within about a hundred yards, when the Indians fired upon them, which was returned briskly by our men.”

The author uses journals, letters, official reports and other first-person accounts to portray the frontiersmen and the events and conflicts in which they were involved. The stories are set mainly in the valleys of the Delaware, Juniata, Lehigh, Ohio and Susquehanna rivers.

Excerpt:
ben_franklinJanuary 1756
In January 1756 Benjamin Franklin was in Northampton County preparing to lead a column of Pennsylvania soldiers into the mountains to fortify strategic passes north of Bethlehem. “Just before we left Bethlehem, eleven farmers, who had been driven from their plantations by the Indians, came to me requesting a supply of firearms, that they might go back and fetch off their cattle,” Franklin reported. “I gave them each a gun with suitable ammunition.”

A steady rain began as Franklin’s men moved out, “and it continued raining all day,” he said. By the time the troops stopped for the night and took shelter in a barn, “we were … as wet as water could make us.”

Writing years later in his autobiography, Franklin remarked, “It was well we were not attacked in our march, for our arms were of the most ordinary sort, and our men could not keep their gun locks dry.”

Franklin said that the farmers hadn’t been as fortunate. The Indians had met them along the road and killed ten of the eleven. “The one who escaped informed that his and his companions’ guns would not go off, the priming being wet with the rain,” Franklin said.

About the Author:
johnJohn L. Moore, a veteran newspaperman, said he employed a journalist’s eye for detail and ear for quotes in order to write about long-dead people in a lively way. He said his books are based on 18th and 19th century letters, journals, memoirs and transcripts of official proceedings such as interrogations, depositions and treaties.

The author is also a professional storyteller who specializes in dramatic episodes from Pennsylvania’s colonial history. Dressed in 18th century clothing, he does storytelling in the persona of “Susquehanna Jack,” a frontier ruffian. Moore is available weekdays, weekends and evenings for audiences and organizations of all types and sizes.

Moore’s 45-year career in journalism included stints as a reporter for The Wall Street Journal; as a Harrisburg-based legislative correspondent for Ottaway News Service; as managing editor of The Sentinel at Lewistown; as editorial page editor and managing editor at The Daily Item in Sunbury; and as editor of the Eastern Pennsylvania Business Journal in Bethlehem.

Forts, Forests, and Flintlocks
Authored by John L. Moore
List Price: $9.99
5″ x 8″ (12.7 x 20.32 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
106 pages
Sunbury Press, Inc.
ISBN-13: 978-1620065136
ISBN-10: 1620065134
BISAC: History / United States / State & Local / Middle Atlantic

For more information, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/Forts-Forests-and-Flintl…

Cover artwork by Andrew Knez, Jr.  For more information about Andrew’s work, please see:http://www.andrewknezjr.com/