by James E. Causey
James E. Causey
believes everyone has a book inside them. The 43-year-old Milwaukee
native should know. He recently published his second novel,
"Twisted," a follow-up to his debut work "The
to explore the issue of the lack of strong male role models in urban
communities without being preachy," says Causey, who doesn’t
shy away from inner city social issues as a columnist for the
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. A fictional account of likeable
protagonist Travon Brown, whose chance encounter with a stripper at a
friend’s bachelor party results in a love child, seemed ideal.
"I wanted to create something that was entertaining, but
delivered a message," Causey says.
"Twisted," Brown returns, intent on revenge for the murder
of his surrogate father, while struggling with his own
responsibilities of being a new father.
lifelong affair with writing began in middle school when he won a
student essay contest sponsored by the Milwaukee Community Journal.
Thirty years later, Causey continues to receive writing accolades. In
March, he was recognized as one of three finalists in the commentary
category of the 2012 Scripps Howard Awards competition.
Next up for
Causey is a biography about former professional boxer, Gerald
Golden Ashfruit' by A.L.
parents instilled a love of reading and writing in their children from
an early age. The couple read to Harris and her siblings nightly and
encouraged them to keep journals. "In a way, books were my first
form of traveling," says Harris, who has a keen interest in epic
was Harris’ love of fantasy that led the 22-year-old Milwaukee
native to research elves and their beginnings. Her debut novel,
"The Golden Ashfruit," unfolded from there.
A young adult
fantasy novel, "The Golden Ashfruit" came out in December.
Based on Norse mythology, the book centers around the origin of elves
and faeries. "Epic fantasy is a distinct genre that just speaks
to me," Harris says.
young author, who has a degree in journalism from UW-Madison, started
her own publishing imprint to bring her book to market. Going forward,
she hopes to publish works by other authors, in addition to her own.
"I see a lot of potential for that," she says.
In the meantime,
Harris is working on a short story collection set in the same
alternate world as "The Golden Ashfruit." She expects the
new book to be available in June.
Supper Clubs: An Old-Fashioned Experience' by
researching his documentary about the Milwaukee fish fry phenomenon in
2009, Ron Faiola discovered another regional culinary pastime — the
supper club. Faiola filmed a separate documentary about the Wisconsin
supper club tradition, highlighting 14 clubs throughout the state.
After the film found national distribution, a publisher approached
Faiola about a book on the same subject. "It was an opportunity
to expand beyond the 14 supper clubs I originally covered," says
Faiola, a longtime Greendale resident who traveled the state for a
year taking photos and interviewing supper club owners and loyal
The result is a
charming coffee-table book that takes readers on a tour of more than
50 supper clubs in each corner of the state and everywhere in between,
from Superior to Racine to Crivitz to Hazel Green. Like his
documentary, Faiola’s book explores why supper clubs are such a big
part of Wisconsin’s food culture; and he describes the full supper
club experience: retro cocktails, relish trays and generous dinner
Faiola says the
topic of supper clubs tends to strike a chord with people.
them reminiscing about their own experiences," Faiola says.
photos and stories, Faiola’s book brings fresh appreciation for
these beloved old-fashioned fine-dining establishments.
By Sherry Rummler
When her oldest
son left home to attend college out East, Sherry Rummler reflected on
the shifting dynamics of the parent-child relationship. Her
introspective thoughts eventually gave way to her debut novel,
"Entrusted," released in January.
resident turned to writing after being laid off from her marketing
job. "I got tired of writing resumés so I wrote a book
"Entrusted," Rummler considered herself a closet writer,
penning countless short stories and poems. "When I write, it
feels like I’m watching a movie," she says. "The
characters drive me."
"Entrusted," that main character is Anna Bertram, a mother
whose grown son unexpectedly drops out of her life, leaving her
devastated and confused. After a chance encounter with a young soldier
on a beach, Bertram embarks on a journey to reconnect with her
Facing an empty
nest when her younger son goes off to college next fall, Rummler says
she can identify with Bertram. "But you need to let go at some
point," she says. "Kids are on their own life journey."
Working on her
second novel has helped Rummler deal with the impending transition. A
suspense novel with a spiritual element to it, it’s a major
departure from her first book.
More River to Cross: The Redemption of Sam Cooke'
by B.G. Rhule
author B.G. Rhule distinctly remembers learning about legendary
crooner Sam Cooke’s death. "My friend’s dad had just picked
us up from a concert in downtown Milwaukee when we heard the news on
the radio," she says.
circumstances surrounding Cooke’s death always struck a chord with
Rhule, who grew up listening to his music. "He had a voice like
from UW–Madison, Rhule spent 30 years teaching in southern
California. Later, she wrote for a college sports blog based in L.A.
But her desire to write about Cooke never abated. "Cooke was a
great artist who broke racial barriers," Rhule says. Then Rhule
read an article about embracing your passion in "O, The Oprah
Magazine." "It was serendipitous," she says. "It
led me to believe it was time for the truth to be told."
Rhule spent six
years interviewing Cooke’s family and friends and investigating his
untimely death — official accounts claim Cooke was fatally shot
after an altercation with an L.A. motel clerk. However, Rhule’s bio
asserts that Cooke’s business manager, the notorious Allen Klein,
was ultimately responsible for his murder.
currently in talks to bring her labor of love to the big screen.