Great Books, Great Publishers

Linda Silverman's picture
 
In the past few weeks, I have had the privilege of reviewing two new books from authors I admire. 
 
February 26th, 2016, Midwife Tom Kemnitz of Royal Fireworks Press sent the Columbus Group an email with the cover of Stephanie Tolan’s book and this comment:
It was a natural birth...
Mother and child are doing fine.
 
 
On March 6th, Tom followed with this second message: 
After the Christening on Thursday, Stephanie was honored with the Parent of the Year award on Friday.
 
 
Tom produced a spanking new book, after coaxing Stephanie Tolan to put together a collection of some of her most provocative and well-loved speeches, essays and articles in Out of Sync: Essays on Giftedness. The day after she held her baby for the first time, Stephanie received the well-deserved Parent of the Year Award from the North Carolina Association for the Gifted & Talented. 
 
Stephanie had already established her career as a novelist when she discovered that she had an exceptionally gifted child. Advocating for the highly gifted became her second (unplanned) career. Her riveting metaphors have been a lifeline for parents of the gifted all over the world. “Is it a Cheetah?” has been translated into 40 languages. I’m sure you know it well.
 
Although I was familiar with most of the articles and heard most of the speeches, I used up several packages of flags for all the quotable quotes in this volume. On some pages, I put four flags! Stephanie’s message is still vital. Her book will undoubtedly become a classic. I love the introductions to each piece, as well as their sequence, tracing her own development as well as the development of the field.
 
I have to give kudos to Tom Kemnitz, without whose insistence this book would never have been written. I remember when Stephanie scribbled the notes to her speeches on yellow legal pads in the wee hours of the morning and then passionately presented her insights at the Hollingworth Center for Highly Gifted Children conferences. Filled with emotion, she struck a chord in the hearts of so many parents. There were few dry eyes.
 
This is a really good read. Be open to a shift in your perspective.
 
Your Rainforest Mind: A Guide to the Well-Being of Gifted Adults and Youth by Paula Prober has not been released yet.  But oh my… I need to own stock in a book flag factory. This precious book is another jewel in the crown of GHF (Gifted Homeschoolers Forum) Press. If you aren’t familiar with GHF Press, you need to be—even if you aren’t homeschooling.
 
And if you are homeschooling, then you already know that Royal Fireworks Press and GHF Press are your best sources of guidance.  Publishers who have the vision to support gifted homeschoolers are a rare treasure. Small profit margins, big risks, and bigger hearts. Theirs is a labor of love. They have been steadfast in producing high quality, thought-provoking books.
 
I love Your Rainforest Mind. Paula is a counselor of the gifted in Oregon, who has written delightful articles for Advanced Development about the journey to self-awareness of gifted adults. Wondering what a Rainforest Mind (RMF) is?  Here is a taste:
 
If you think of people as ecosystems, you can see some as meadows, others as deserts, some as mountains—and some as rain forests. While all ecosystems are beautiful and make valuable contributions to the whole, rain forests are particularly complex: multi-layered, highly sensitive, colorful, intense, creative, fragile, overwhelming, and misunderstood, while thick with possibility and pulsing with life, death, and transformation. … The rain forest is not a better ecosystem, just more complicated. It also makes an essential contribution to the planet when allowed to be itself, rather than when cut down and turned into something it is not. (p. xi)
 
This is just the beginning. It gets even better. Interwoven with rich case studies from Paula’s counseling practice, Your Rainforest Mind will be earmarked and tear-stained. Prepare to lose your first copy to your best friend.