Anthony & Jeremhy Cesar

Meet Featured Indie Authors Anthony and Jeremhy Cesar!

Join us for a Book Signing on Saturday, November 18 from 1 - 2pm.

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1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Anthony (A): My name is Anthony Cesar and I have been writing this book since I was nine. Also, I have Asperger's, and this book is about my perspective on the world.

Jeremhy (J): My name is Jeremhy Cesar, and I am Anthony Cesar’s brother. I assisted in the creation of Molly and Mousey: The Idiotic Husband. I started high school at the age of 12, and I help Anthony to write books from my experiences in English at school.

2. What do you do when you are not writing?

A: When I am not writing, I watch TV or read a book because it gives me ideas for my next story.

J: When I am not writing, I am studying because I love intelligence, playing some sort of puzzle game (e.g., Chess, Monopoly, Sudoku), or on leisure time. Sometimes there is an overlap between studying and leisure.

3. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

A: I first realized I wanted to be a writer when I started watching a lot of cartoons. Watching those cartoons made me want to make my own show and write my own episodes.

J: When Anthony and I started playing toys at a young age, Anthony realized that he wanted to write a book about the episodes we played. When we drafted the first story, it underwent many edits and changes. At that point, I realized I wanted to help Anthony become a writer and also become a writer myself.

4. What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

A: I can type very fast.

J: If you consider breaking all the lead in a pencil within a day, then yes, I do have an interesting writing quirk. Funny story actually: I bought a six-pack of mechanical pencils
(never buy just six pencils if you’re out), and while I was studying math, I went through all of those pencils, I kid you not, in two hours.

5. Do you have an upcoming book? If so, can you tell us a little bit about it?

A: Yes, there will be an upcoming book. The next book is going to be much crazier than the first story, while giving everyone a good laugh and keeping them on the edge of their
seats.

J: Yes, there will be an upcoming book and hopefully more to come after. Introducing more characters, setting, and plot twists, the next book is going to be even more chaotic than the first story, while giving everyone a good laugh and keeping them on the edge of their seats in suspense.

6. Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

A: Our book is mixed some real life experiences that happened to me in the form of imagination.

J: We added real life experiences that have happened to us in the story, so our imagination of this whole Molly and Mousey trilogy is based on real life events.

7. What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?

A: My favorite chapter to write was when Mousey was speeding while driving and Mousey going to clothes store because of the chaos and madness Mousey caused.

J: There were so many fun chapters to write, but I think my favorite part to write come up with the whole Mrs. Blitey scenario. I had tons of fun with Anthony brainstorming the things that could’ve happened in place of Mrs. Blitey being a robot. Making the whole plot twist about Mrs. Blitey being a robot was a great experience for me. My favorite Mrs. Blitey scene was when she threw the stapler at the hen.

8. Who is an author that you look up to today?

A: An author that I look up to today is Jeff Kinney.

J: An author that I look up to today would have to be J.K. Rowling. Her story is just incredible and I still admire her to date.

9. What is your favorite genre of book to read?

A: My favorite genre of book to read is teen fiction.

J: My favorite genre of book to read would have to be Action and Adventure. I also love a good Mystery book.

10. What is your favorite book?

A: Of course, my favorite book would have to be Molly and Mousey: The Idiotic Husband.

J: Of course, my favorite book would have to be Heroes of Olympus: The Blood Of Olympus by Rick Riordan. It is an epic conclusion to the Heroes of Olympus trilogy.

11. Is there any particular authors or books that influenced you growing up?

A: Diary of a Wimpy Kid books and some teen fiction books have influenced me growing up.

J: As aforementioned, Riordan and Rowling’s book have done a number (in a good way) on my choice of books and my reading style.

12. Who is an author that has inspired you?

A: Jeff Kinney is a author who has inspired me because he made many great books and is still writing books today.

J: There are so many amazing authors out there, but one who stuck out to me would have to be Rick Riordan. His books are amazing, and those books inspired me to read and write
more.

13. Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?

A: Here’s some advice: take your time writing your book and don’t rush. Also, get honest opinions from people who read your book so it can help you next book improve.

J: Writers! From me to you, never lose sight of your goals, whether it be long-term or short. Pursue your dreams and never give up. Perseverance ALWAYS pays off. Passion is an ever-burning fire, so LET IT BURN!
- Jeremhy Cesar

14. Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers?

A: To my readers: enjoy this book because it is very funny and heart warming.

J: To my readers: Enjoy this book and never stop reading.

Amy Gelsthorpe

Meet Featured Author Amy Gelsthorpe!

Meet our featured author in person at the shop on Friday, November from 6:00-7:30pm for a release party that is open to the public. Amy will participate in a Meet the Author Story Time during the event at 6:30pm, where she will read her new book Star Fishing.

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1. A little about Amy:

Amy Gelsthorpe is the author of Star Fishing (MacLaren-Cochrane Publishing, releasing Nov. 7, 2017), a children’s picture book about creativity and using the imagination. As a full time children’s book author and stay-at- home mom, Amy was inspired to write by the adventures of her family and her children’s imaginations. Amy has always loved writing, having written and kept her first book of poems from the fifth grade.

Amy seeks to inspire children to love to read from an early age. Not only is she focused on providing stories for avid readers, but she also has a special place in her heart for children with learning differences as one of her children has dyslexia, a learning disorder marked by difficulty in understanding written language. Amy was pleased to find a publisher, MacLaren-Cochrane, which offers books in both traditional and dyslexic fonts.

Amy has another picture book, I Love Outside, which her publisher will release in 2018. She lives outside Atlanta, Ga. with her husband; three amazing, talented children; and two adorable dogs.

2. What do you do when you are not writing?

I enjoy reading—children’s picture books, spiritual devotionals, and quirky, fun, fiction—writing, spending time with family and friends, yoga, and…Christmas! I am a passionate Christmas decorator and my Christmas adornments have been featured on the national news, social media sites of major retailers, and numerous blogs. I have lost count of my Christmas trees. Every room has at least one!

3. Tell us about your new book: what inspired the story or led you to write it?

I was inspired to write Star Fishing as it metaphorically honors my dad Billy. He passed away with pancreatic cancer 9 years ago and the story is dedicated to him.

4. Who is an author that you look up to today?

I love Judy Blume, Dr. Seuss, and Carmela Coyle. 

5. What is your favorite genre of book to read?

Children’s picture books

6. What is your favorite book?

Currently, The Book With No Pictures by B.J. Novak.

7. Do you have an interesting writing quirk?

Yes! I have a beautiful office with a lovely desk and comfortable chair- BUT I prefer the floor sitting criss-cross applesauce with my laptop in my lap! Sometimes by the fire :) 

8. Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?

If you want to become an author do it because you are passionate and have a story to tell… Everyone seems to think it’s an easy task but those of us who have accomplished the task know the obstacles it took to arrive. 

9. Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers?

To my readers: Thank you! Thank you for your support and my dream is to provide you with many books for many more years to come! 

Find out more about Amy and her books on her website.

Books that Feel Like Fall

Whether unconsciously or purposefully chosen, we usually gravitate toward books that feel like whatever season we're in at the time. Fall reads feel different from others. They feel cozy and nostalgic, and the adventure may be a little bit darker than a summer read, mirroring the shortening days.

Picture Books

A gold leaf appears in the forest. As soon as the animals notice it, each wants it more than anything else in the world. But in their struggle for it, the leaf is destroyed. Heartbroken, the animals wonder: Will we ever again see such a leaf?

This book is the anticipation of fall, beginning with one beautiful golden leaf.

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Young Isaac Gutenberg isn't a curious boy... that is, until he meets an old shopkeeper who tells him about The Book of Gold. This special book, hidden somewhere in the world, holds all the answers to every question & turns to solid gold when opened. Isaac is determined to find the book--it will make him rich! He opens many books in his search, but quickly closes them when they don't turn to gold. That changes one day when he opens a book, looks at the page, & a question pops into his mind. From then on, he reads every word. 

When I think of fall, I think of learning new things. The search for knowledge in this book feels right at home with this season's blooming curiosity.

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Walking his dog at dusk, one boy catches glimpses of the lives around him in this lovely ode to autumn evenings, exploring your neighborhood, and coming home.

This book feels like warm sweaters & crisp fall evenings, & it will make you want to go for a walk.

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Middle Grades Books

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Pax & Peter have been inseparable ever since Peter rescued him as a kit. But one day, the unimaginable happens: Peter's dad enlists in the military & makes him return the fox to the wild.

At his grandfather's house, three hundred miles away from home, Peter knows he isn't where he should be—with Pax. He strikes out on his own despite the encroaching war, spurred by love, loyalty, & grief, to be reunited with his fox.

Meanwhile Pax, steadfastly waiting for his boy, embarks on adventures & discoveries of his own...

This book is so obviously fall I want to say it's actually fall in the story. If not, then the tone & atmosphere carry the quintessential essence of fall, such as nostalgia and the comforts of home.

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Kansas, 2065: Adri has been handpicked to live on Mars. But weeks before launch, she discovers the journal of a girl who lived in her house more than a hundred years ago and is immediately drawn into the mystery surrounding her fate.

Oklahoma, 1934: Amid the fear and uncertainty of the Dust Bowl, Catherine’s family’s situation is growing dire. She must find the courage to sacrifice everything she loves in order to save the one person she loves most.

England, 1919: In the recovery following World War I, Lenore tries to come to terms with her grief for her brother, a fallen British soldier, and plans to sail to America. But can she make it that far?

While their stories span thousands of miles and multiple generations, Lenore, Catherine, and Adri’s fates are entwined in ways both heartbreaking and hopeful. In Jodi Lynn Anderson’s signature haunting, lyrical prose, human connections spark spellbindingly to life, and a bright light shines on the small but crucial moments that determine one’s fate.

 Melancholy and haunting memory are two elements that make this a good fall read.

 

Early Young Adult & Classics

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

Caramel popcorn, hot cider, and evenings at the circus: these are the elements of fall in this book. The circus is all fun, games, and illusions, on the surface that is. Something a little more sinister lies underneath the bright lights and carnival treats.

 
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Orphaned Jane Eyre grows up in the home of her heartless aunt, where she endures loneliness and cruelty, and at a charity school with a harsh regime. This troubled childhood strengthens Jane’s natural independence and spirit—which proves necessary when she takes a position as governess at Thornfield Hall. But when she finds love with her sardonic employer, Rochester, the discovery of his terrible secret forces her to make a choice. Should she stay with him and live with the consequences, or follow her convictions, even if it means leaving the man she loves?

The Gothic setting of this classic is perfect for cozying up in the shortening days.

 

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Can't wait to read one of these fall favorites?

Family Book Club

For October-November, we're reading Wonder by R. J. Palacio.

We've made changes to our format for book club! 

Welcome to the first month of The Story Shop's Family Book Club! 

Family Book Club is where we read together as a family and as a community. Read the month's pick aloud at home and have purposeful conversations with the whole family, instead of limiting it to your middle grade reader. There is no overhead charge for this book club, but please support us and purchase this month's pick through us. Around the end of each month, we will meet together somewhere to experience an element of the book.

After reading the book, we're meeting at the movie theater to watch the movie adaptation! If you can, we'll meet at the Bethlehem AMC opening weekend November 17. Date & time will be announced as soon as listings are available. Email us at visitthestoryshop@gmail.com for conversation starters and activity ideas while you read!

We would love for each family to choose a precept of their own and share that with us! Tag us on social media with #TheStoryShopPrecept & R. J. Palacio with #ChooseKind

Summary from the publisher:
I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.

August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face. Wonder, now a #1 New York Times bestseller and included on the Texas Bluebonnet Award master list, begins from Auggie’s point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community’s struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.

If You Liked...

Choosing what to read next can be a real task. There are so many good options! Let us help you find a new favorite or simply your next book based on one you've previously enjoyed.

With Halloween fast approaching, we thought we'd recommend books that are a little more on the spooky side. These books all have a slightly paranormal element to them, as well as elements of mystery and suspense.  

If you liked this book

“Never go into the deep parts of the forest, for there are many dangers there, and they will ensnare your soul.”

“Never go into the deep parts of the forest, for there are many dangers there, and they will ensnare your soul.”

Then you'll like these titles

It's World War II, Franny and her parents, Sina and Old Tom, enjoy a quiet life on a farm on Vancouver Island. Franny writes, Sina sculpts, and Old Tom tends to their many gardens--including the ancient, mysterious night garden. Their peaceful life is interrupted when their neighbor, Crying Alice, begs Sina to watch her children while she goes to visit her husband at the military base because she suspects he's up to no good. Soon after the children move in, letters arrive from their father that suggest he's about to do something to change their lives; and appearances from a stubborn young cook, UFOs, hermits, and ghosts only make life stranger. Can the forbidden night garden that supposedly grants everyone one wish help them all out of trouble? And if so, at what cost?

It's World War II, Franny and her parents, Sina and Old Tom, enjoy a quiet life on a farm on Vancouver Island. Franny writes, Sina sculpts, and Old Tom tends to their many gardens--including the ancient, mysterious night garden. Their peaceful life is interrupted when their neighbor, Crying Alice, begs Sina to watch her children while she goes to visit her husband at the military base because she suspects he's up to no good. Soon after the children move in, letters arrive from their father that suggest he's about to do something to change their lives; and appearances from a stubborn young cook, UFOs, hermits, and ghosts only make life stranger. Can the forbidden night garden that supposedly grants everyone one wish help them all out of trouble? And if so, at what cost?

A rambling old inn, a strange map, an attic packed with treasures, squabbling guests, theft, friendship, and an unusual haunting mark this smart middle grade mystery in the tradition of the Mysterious Benedict Society books and Blue Balliet's Chasing Vermeer series.

A rambling old inn, a strange map, an attic packed with treasures, squabbling guests, theft, friendship, and an unusual haunting mark this smart middle grade mystery in the tradition of the Mysterious Benedict Society books and Blue Balliet's Chasing Vermeer series.

Corinne La Mer claims she isn't afraid of anything. Not scorpions, not the boys who tease her, and certainly not jumbies. They're just tricksters made up by parents to frighten their children. Then one night Corinne chases an agouti all the way into the forbidden forest, and shining yellow eyes follow her to the edge of the trees. They couldn't belong to a jumbie. Or could they?

Corinne La Mer claims she isn't afraid of anything. Not scorpions, not the boys who tease her, and certainly not jumbies. They're just tricksters made up by parents to frighten their children. Then one night Corinne chases an agouti all the way into the forbidden forest, and shining yellow eyes follow her to the edge of the trees. They couldn't belong to a jumbie. Or could they?

For our Young Adult readers

Sierra Santiago was looking forward to a fun summer of making art, hanging out with her friends, and skating around Brooklyn. But then a weird zombie guy crashes the first party of the season. Sierra's near-comatose abuelo begins to say "Lo siento" over and over. And when the graffiti murals in Bed-Stuy start to weep.... Well, something stranger than the usual New York mayhem is going on.

Sierra Santiago was looking forward to a fun summer of making art, hanging out with her friends, and skating around Brooklyn. But then a weird zombie guy crashes the first party of the season. Sierra's near-comatose abuelo begins to say "Lo siento" over and over. And when the graffiti murals in Bed-Stuy start to weep.... Well, something stranger than the usual New York mayhem is going on.

Ged, the greatest sorcerer in all Earthsea, was called Sparrowhawk in his reckless youth. Hungry for power and knowledge, Sparrowhawk tampered with long-held secrets and loosed a terrible shadow upon the world. This is the tale of his testing, how he mastered the mighty words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and crossed death's threshold to restore the balance.

Ged, the greatest sorcerer in all Earthsea, was called Sparrowhawk in his reckless youth.

Hungry for power and knowledge, Sparrowhawk tampered with long-held secrets and loosed a terrible shadow upon the world. This is the tale of his testing, how he mastered the mighty words of power, tamed an ancient dragon, and crossed death's threshold to restore the balance.