December 9, 2014

Business, Education, Entertainment, Trends

Trends, Travel, Film, History and Books provide readers with information that might be off the beaten path of their traditional news sources.   Whether its innovation, unique travel, classic or new age films and documentaries, looking at history from a different perspective or discovering new and established authors, it brings a fresh look to things that are either old or new again.

Oprah Book Club 2.0SOURCE:  Oprah / OWN / Oprah’s Book Club 2.0


Photo Courtesy: OWN/ Oprah’s Book Club 2.0

The Best New Celebrity Memoirs
These memoirs prove that even the talented and famous struggle with issues we all find challenging. Let their revelations and advice (some of it funny) help you change-up your own life.


Surrounded By Thunder − The Story Of Unsung Heroes Who Made Space Travel Possible

SOURCE:  Ascot Media


Surrounded by Thunder. Picture Courtesy: Ascot Media

Marco Island, FL – From America’s first satellite Explorer I, through Apollo and putting the first man on the moon, aeronautical engineer Darrell Loan had a hand in them all! Surrounded by Thunder: The story of Darrell Loan and the Rocket Men (Inspire on Purpose Publishing), by Tom Williams, tells the true story of this extraordinary man, his family, friends and colleagues, and of a time not to be forgotten in America’s history – a time that has never been surpassed and that truly was and always will be, Surrounded by Thunder.

Only twelve years separated the launch of the Russian satellite Sputnik and Americans landing on the moon but during those golden years of space exploration the most fearless aviators ever climbed aboard the most dangerous creations ever assembled to rocket into space and claim a true pinnacle of human achievement. Information on the mission dates, the astronauts, and many of the unforgettable characters that made up this account of America’s race for space and then to the moon are all factual; however, thanks to the author’s talent for gripping storytelling, this historical narrative reads more like an incredible science-fiction adventure!

Tom Williams has spent many fascinating hours with Darrell Loan, an astute and active 84 year-old (fall and winter) resident of Marco Island, hearing of his exploits and secrets to give readers a factual look at what it took to put Americans into space and on the moon; at the same time paying homage to the brilliant men ‘behind the scenes’ who actually made it all happen!

“It was only twelve years from Sputnik to boots on the moon,” says Williams. “Darrell was one of the top engineers at NASA from the 1950s, when Sputnik was launched and the space race started. He was on the main team and was in the front row when you see the engineers during Apollo 13. He worked side-by-side with Wernher von Braun and Kurt Debus, the German-American rocket scientists. If it hadn’t been for them, we never would have gone to the moon. Those two Germans figured out how to lift one hundred twenty-five tons into a hundred mile orbit and fifty tons to the moon.”

While Surrounded by Thunder is a non-fiction narrative of the early years of the American Space Program, the exciting, fast-paced dialogue makes it more like a front seat rocket ride at warp speed. So, climb on board, strap yourself in, and get ready to ride a true rocket of adventure as the thrill of early space exploration rises above controlled explosions and soars all the way to the mountains on the moon and the Sea of Tranquility!

Tom Williams already has two action-packed novels under his belt, the second of which drew acclaim from New York Times bestselling author Steve Alten, and resulted in interviews on numerous television and radio programs nationwide. Tom is also a highly successful columnist and feature article writer for a series of Scripps newspapers in southwest Florida, and has had many of his articles featured in magazines and publications across the country. A 30-year veteran Master Merchant Marine Officer licensed by the U.S. Coast Guard, Tom lives on Marco Island, FL, with his wife Victoria.



Nationwide — Solid Rock Book Publishing has published Rising Up From The Blood: A Legacy Reclaimed – A Bridge Forward – the Autobiography of Sarah Washington O’Neal Rush, the Great-Granddaughter of Booker T. Washington by Sarah Washington O’Neal Rush, with Yvonne Rose, and a forward by Tony Rose, NAACP Image Award Winner for Outstanding Literature, and Publisher of Amber Books.

Although there had been hints throughout her childhood that she had a special calling from her ancestors it would be years before a bridge between her deprivation and her calling were revealed.


Rising Up From the Blood book cover. Picture Courtesy:

Sarah’s great-grandfather, Booker T. Washington, was the inspiration for this book. He was born a slave on a plantation in Virginia and became an adviser to United States Presidents. He was the founder of the Tuskegee Institute, today known as Tuskegee University, and became the most influential world-renowned black leader and educator of his time. This is the brilliantly told story about a young woman’s struggle to reclaim her legacy.

Many years had passed and Sarah knew nothing about the true meaning of her heritage; but finally everything came full circle when she realized the power of her legacy. Sarah had an epiphany when she visited Tuskegee University for the first time. For Sarah, the veil of ignorance was lifted that day. Shortly thereafter, she became clear about her purpose and began to embark upon her intended journey in life.

For decades, as a child, a teen and a young adult, Sarah struggled with many insecurities brought upon her by unstable living circumstances; and she carried those insecurities into adulthood. Little did she know that the time spent falling and failing could only serve as a stepping stone to a future that would help her own children and grandchildren, and the numerous youth that she would encounter.

“I have learned that success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life, as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.” — Booker T. Washington

In Rising Up From The Blood: A Legacy Reclaimed – A Bridge Forward, Sarah states that her journey was by no means easy, but it has led to a place that she could have only arrived at with the trials she overcame along the way. It also allowed her to have genuine compassion for the underprivileged, while affording her the wherewithal to empower those who were within earshot to do something about their circumstances. Where Sarah is today is remarkably different from where she started. Each chapter of the book includes lessons learned and solutions.

Sarah states: By understanding more about my great-grandfather, I learned if I get down in the trenches with others and help to pull them out, I am much more effective than if I tell them how to get out. As one saying goes, People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.

Sarah currently resides in Northern California with her husband, Anthony W. Rush.


(The Assassination of Fred Hampton and Murder of Mark Clark)


Dallas, TXMockingbird Films has announced the launch of pre-production of The Black Messiah Murders, a drama/action/suspense whose starring roles are partially cast or presently being cast or negotiated. The film is directed by Lance Flores (U.S.) and Steve OBrien (24/25 Films, New Castle, England). The film has completed development and has launched a crowd funding campaign to reduce their dependence on traditional film business interests and secure bank funding.

Howard Bridges, “We’ve completed the development of The Black Messiah Murders and are now initiating pre-production of the largest independent feature film of this type, subject matter and genre.”

black_messiah_murders black panthers

This film Memorializes the 45th Black Panther Anniversary. Picture Courtesy:

The Black Messiah Murders is a story based on the actual events of J. Edgar Hoover’s “COINTELPRO” operations and the assistant federal attorney that exposed the detail of a government conspiracy. The Counter Intelligence Program mostly targeted groups and individuals deemed by Hoover to be “subversives.” This included individuals associated with Civil Rights Movement, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others associated with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and the Congress of Racial Equality and other civil rights organizations; black nationalist groups and Fred Hamptons Rainbow Coalition. The Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King Jr., stories have been told; this story awaits its moment for the silver screen.

Bridges continues, “This story is told through a breakthrough screenplay written by Lance Flores, who had known Fred Hampton and had been with him, having driven from San Antonio to Chicago only a couple of months before Fred was murdered.”

Fred Hampton was assassinated during the pre-dawn raid at 2337 W. Monroe St. in west Chicago on December 4th in 1969.

“Lance had been introduced to Fred by the founder of AIM (the American Indian Movement), Russell Means, actor and Native American rights advocate whose organization had joined with Hamptons Rainbow Coalition. Later in life, Lance would work on Russell’s bid in the Libertarian Party for Presidential nomination,” said Bridges.

“Years later, he (Flores) would meet Shelly Waxman, the Assistant Federal Attorney in Chicago that was assigned to defend the FBI and William ONeal (the FBI informant that provided information for the raid) in a civil suit against the government. Waxman uncovered the details of the government plot by the FBI, Illinois State Attorney for Cook County, and the Chicago Police during the discovery process in a lawsuit and refused to cover up the criminal activities of those government officials,” Bridges said.


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