Monthly Archives: December 2016

My Favorite Books in 2016

Rather than create a top ten list, below I’ve listed the books I read this year that I loved, either because the book was a page turner or– as is more often the case– because I gained a new perspective that I could not have otherwise.

I stuck to popular titles that I found available for free in the public domain or through my library. I hope there are at least a few titles that are new to you, that you can enjoy in 2017.   Continue reading

Book Review: The Martian

Remember that scene in The Martian when (spoiler alert!) NASA attempts to send a Mars probe loaded with food to keep Mark Watney from starving? In the movie, the probe ascends into the atmosphere and tension in Mission Control builds signaling to us, the audience, that something is going wrong. Then the probe blows up.

In the book, the reader learns more about what happens inside the probe: Continue reading

Contributed Article: America’s Parade Veteran’s Day Magazine


In the 1960s, the war in Vietnam raged and was broadcast into the homes of Americans.  Public opinion frayed; skepticism begot distrust and distrust begot hostility.  The outcome was tragic on all fronts, especially in the treatment of veterans returning home.

Today at least, this is different.  Many organizations have championed veterans across a spectrum of needs as varied and diverse as the people who serve.  Fortune 100 companies have launched military focused recruiting, and top universities offer military scholarships.  Public interest in veteran treatment and mental health has even compelled top media outlets to investigate government agencies, and jurisdictions have founded Veteran Treatment Courts to address the specific needs of veterans who find themselves in trouble with the law.

“I know with PTSD, if we’re not treating it, [veterans] will continue in our system,” said Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge and Veteran Treatment Court founder, Stephen V. Manley. “That’s what we’ve seen with Vietnam veterans. We did not address the unique problems of veterans after Vietnam…and we had terrible outcomes.”

To not address the needs of veterans transitioning from military service is to repeat history; it’s one area where the trend is moving in a positive direction.