Try Something New!

One of my favorite aspects of publishing is the opportunity to read the submitted manuscripts and learn about new things. The world is full of new opportunities to learn about the world and take on something new. Are you looking to pursue a new hobby, new interest, or new perspective? Check out one of these books!


Put A Stamp On It!: Seventy-Seven Sparkling Stories Showcasing How Stamps Have Intercepted Historical Events

By: Herman “Pat” Herst, Jr.

WHAT do the Charley Ross kidnapping, the Dunning sale, Britain’s female mason, Sherlock Holmes and the Littlewood’s pool, the founding of the YMCA, George Sloane, and the Madeline Smith Postcard all have in common? Stamps were an important part of these historical events. Even though we don’t often think of stamps in the context of making history, those small, decorative aspects of the mail system are far more than just there to decorate the envelope. At the heart of every letter, every postal moment for hundreds of years, stamps can be found, changing history as we know it. In this book, author and stamp historian Herman Herst, Jr. shares with us about the rich history of several historical events and the way that stamps influenced them. Told with good humor, perspective, and solid documentation, Herman Herst, Jr. offers us insight into the smallest details of the mail industry – stamps – and shows us that history is often staring back at us every time we mail or open a letter. Come along to share in seventy-seven stories where history proves that stamps are the stars, sealing history in ways we would least expect it.


The Promises Of God Spiritual Checkbook

By: Abigail Lawrence

DO you believe God’s promises apply to you? Believe it or not, there are many individuals who have never heard about the wonderful promises God has in store, just for them. By comparing our spiritual blessings to a checkbook, we are able to gain a practical, visual way in which the promises of God are applicable to our everyday lives. Come along with Abigail Lawrence and explore this realm of spiritual blessings, benefits, and all things life-changing in God as she expounds upon the many benefits that being a Christian believer has to offer you, right where you are, in your life.



Fruit Of The Vine: Study And Commentary On The Fruit Of The Spirit

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.

MANIFESTING the fruit of the Spirit is an essential aspect of the believer’s life. Jesus calls us to not only produce fruit, but produce more excellent fruit. How can we do this, and how can we operate in the principle of spiritual fruit? How do we recognize it in our lives? In Fruit Of The Vine: Study And Commentary On The Fruit Of The Spirit, Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino invites the reader to learn more about what it means to bear “fruit,” specifically the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control. Presented with detailed word studies, background information, humor, warmth, and a whole lot of reflections on what it means to be in the vine and live a spiritually fruitful life, this book will change how you view the fruit of the Spirit and developing its important characteristics in your life.



Your Personal Road Map To Self-Fulfillment: A Book For All Families As Life Lessons From A Teacher, Coach, And Parent

DID you know everyone has a philosophy? You might not realize it, but you do. The philosophy you have can either help or hinder you on your personal life journey to self-fulfillment. We all have the same number of hours in a day and a week, and in our lives, we should all focus on the ways we can make our lives be the absolute best they can be. In this book, Harvey D. Heartley, Sr. shares his approach to life and years of life wisdom as a coach, a teacher, and a a parent. Coach Heartley (as he was known) presents his personal answer to your own “Personal Behavior Map To Self-Fulfillment,” breaking it down into 12 areas he calls “The Real Daily Dozen:” Attitude, Relationships, Imagination, Socializing, Education, Mentality, Physical Fitness, Finances, Professionalism, Politics, Sexuality and Spirituality. Having written this book for all people, all families, all races and all cultures, Coach Heartley provides insight into life that will help you jump start your own destiny of self-fulfillment.



Experiencing God: Discovering The God You Can Perceive

How can we know there is a God, and that He is with us? The world today is full of debates about the existence of God, the nature of God, the way we can approach God, and whether or not God reaches out to us. In “Experiencing God: Discovering The God You Can Perceive,” Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.D. discusses the issue of God, answers questions about God, and explains both how we can know God and experience Him in our lives. A combination of apologetics and Bible studies presented in an easy-to-understand manner, this book is perfect for the individual who is seeking, a new believer in the faith, and even the minister of God who is training and preparing others for their own walk with God in their everyday lives.


My Money Has A Mission!: An Introduction To Faith-Based Finances

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.

TURN on your television, visit a local congregation, sign on to a social network and odds are good you will hear from a minister that tells you God needs your money. They promise everything from new lives to new cars, and an endless flow of “prosperity.” But in a world where ministers have fallen flat on their promises and prosperity seems to be real for only a few, what does God teach us about finances? What should we know about finances from a practical perspective? Join with Dr. Marino to learn the ins and outs of finances from a faith perspective and the ways that you, as a believer, can put your money to its mission in a more profound way. From tithing and offerings to ministry partnership, getting out of debt, and trusting God with all of your financial matters, see the practical ways that the Bible instructs us about money from a wise and purposed perspective.




51w7saKMGLLReal Talk: Becoming A Woman In Ministry: Telling My Story The Way It Really Is…No Matter What!

By: Yolanda Y. Davis (Greggs)


  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (August 26, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197104
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197104
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.3 x 9 inches


As a woman who is in ministry myself, I can definitely testify that life does not always turn out the way you might hope. One of the best signs of ministry endurance is the ability to push and pursue through difficulties to set one’s sights right to where they should be. Real Talk: Becoming A Woman In Ministry: Telling My Story The Way It Really Is…No Matter What! by Yolanda Y. Davis is a testament of overcoming spirit, endurance, and finding God in even the most difficult and impossible to bear situations.

This book chronicles the author’s entire life, from birth and childhood, to her adolescent and young adult years, to married life, divorce, remarriage, and her present-day experiences. The author is very candid in the book, revealing many things that others would be hesitant to speak on or discuss, in an honest, open, and truthful way. It is obvious that she has learned from her mistakes, taken life in stride, and had a new outlook as she speaks on the realities of ministry that many ignore, life and remarriage, and a special section for men who are married to women in ministry.

I would personally like to hear more from this author and learn more about her life since publication, as I haven’t a doubt that there have been many more things for her to discuss and draw upon as she has a few more years in ministry than she did back then. I would definitely recommend this book for any woman in ministry, because you will identify with it; you will see yourself in the struggles of the author, even if yours are a little different than hers; and it will give the overall encouragement to continue on, even if you want to give up. The chapter written for men who have wives or girlfriends in ministry is also most important, and you will want to read that and then share it with the man in your life to help him gain greater perspective. A read that must have been hard to write, to confront and to experience all in one, this book is a must-read for anyone serious about pursuing ministry, especially if you have a past.

Book is available at:



51hCAQZ51hL.jpgPut A Stamp On It!: Seventy-Seven Sparkling Stories Showcasing How Stamps Have Intercepted Historical Events

By: Herman “Pat” Herst, Jr. and Forward by Kenneth Herst

  •  Paperback: 362 pages
  • Publisher: Lee Ann and Veronica’s Publishing (June 1, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197384
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197388
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches

This book has an interesting history. The manuscript was discovered by the late author’s wife one day on a closet shelf, long after the author had died. It contains seventy-seven different stories about stamp collecting, about experiences in the stamp collecting world as a stamp dealer and enthusiast, and about the way that history and stamps often intercepted, even though we might never know otherwise how they were connected. The author reveals the connection between historical events and stamps in several countries, behind wartime and peacetime, and how interests in stamp collecting have brought people together, all over the world, in different times and seasons.

I am personally not real familiar with the ins and outs of stamp collecting, but I am a history nut, so the contents of the book were of interest to me, even though I am not a stamp collector. It was fascinating to hear the warmth, good humor, and insights as the world of stamp interests, histories, and even postal systems and mail have changed from era to era. I also was interested to learn about the interpersonal side of stamp collecting, which the author did well in promoting. When we stereotypically think of stamp dealers or collectors, we tend to assume that they are boring, stodgy people who aren’t interested in much that has to do with life or with dynamics. Herman “Pat” Herst proves this theory wrong, as he interjects real-life stories and situations into his understanding of stamp collecting and history: family incidents, family history, characters who dealt in stamp dealing in the neighborhoods, and a great attention to detail when historical events are told.

Overall, it is obvious to me that the book is a reflection of the true historical gem the author was to the stamp collecting community and to its history. He took deep interest in the hobby and in the business-side of the hobby as well, and this gem of a book reflects five-star purpose in its folksy, memorable, gentle story-telling style.

Book is available at:

Autographed copies can be obtained from the author’s son at



Book Masters Magazine, February 2016

Book Masters Magazine, February 2016

Book Masters Magazine: Book Masters Magazine, February 2016

Literary magazine featuring the best in writing, editorial commentary, poetry, short stories, books, and publishing. Published by Lee Ann and Veronica's Publishing, an imprint of The Book Masters Group International. Feature interview: Veronica M. Downing, author of three devotional books with an…

Find out more on MagCloud

Our Top Ten Books That Are A MUST READ IF You Want To Get Closer To God

next_step_up Collage.jpg

No matter what you are looking for in life, you probably have questions about spiritual things, God, and desire some level of spiritual insight.  Righteous Pen Publications is our spiritual imprint, publishing books that relate to spiritual matters and delve into all things that relate to God.  Here are our top ten picks for our books that are a MUST READ if you want to get closer to God!

revelation_bkAll That Is Seen And Unseen: A Journey Through The Book Of Revelation

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.

  • Paperback: 306 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (June 15, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197279
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197272
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format

THE book of Revelation is one of the most talked about books in history, and also one of the most misunderstood. There are a variety of ways Revelation is understood: some believe it is historical, with the whole of its contents fulfilled; some believe it is all about futuristic events that have not yet happened, but are soon coming; some believe it has happened in part, and the rest is yet to come; and the rest of people fully well acknowledge that they have no idea what the book of Revelation is about. Many avoid it in teaching, and feel that if it is not a long dramatic recitation of events, it has no relevance in our world today. Who is right? In the “right fight” of Revelation, there is one very important aspect that many readers and scholars alike ignore, and that is the principle of the church’s participation in prophecy and prophetic history. Drawing on historical apocalyptic trends of the early centuries of Christianity, the obvious symbolism present, and the imagery contained therein, Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino attempts to give the reader a different view of the book of Revelation: One that opens up the reader of Revelation to all that is seen and unseen. Rather than seeing Revelation as an encoding to plug in modern-day headlines, Dr. Marino looks at Revelation from a mystical and revelatory perspective, viewing the church and the role of the church as central to history, from now until Jesus returns, and beyond. This gives all of us as readers hope and inspiration as we see ourselves not as pawns in a struggle, but participants in the history of creation, all that is seen and unseen: past, present, and future; that which was, that which is, and that which is to come.

To order your copy, click here!

days_of_grace.jpgDays Of Grace: Seeking The Heart Of God For 30 Days Through Prayer

By: Veronica M. Downing


  • Paperback: 124 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (November 13, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197333
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197333
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.3 x 8 inches
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format


PRAYER is an essential part of the Christian’s walk with God. Our conversation with God is our very lifeline to eternity as well as our perseverance through the trials and tribulations of this life. Through prayer, we realize just how much God is at work for us, in our lives through the flow of His Grace. Yet it is amazing to realize how intimidating prayer can be. Where do we start? What do we say? How long should we take? In this beautiful devotional work, Veronica M. Downing offers prayer and meditation for the believer for 30 days. Offering essential focus on important areas such as change, love, pruning, fear, financial help, and more, this book offers readers introduction to prayer that can help them develop a deeper prayer life, going boldly before God’s throne without fear. Here you will find days of power, days of prayer, and a true place full of days of grace.

To order your copy, click here!

song_of_solomonDiscovering Intimacy: A Journey Through The Song Of Solomon

(Company Best-Seller)

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.

  • Paperback: 196 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (March 29, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197236
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197234
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format

THE Song of Solomon is uncommon reading material in today’s church. Many are uncomfortable with its contents, and many others readily admit they have never read it. Why are we avoiding the book? In treating the Song of Solomon with such discomfort, what are we, as a church, missing out on? The Song of Solomon is about many things: relationships, men, women, freedom in relationships, love, marriage, sex, sensuality and, believe it or not, our relationship with God. Above all, the Song of Solomon has much to offer on the topic of intimacy and intimate dynamics, ways in which we, as people, interact with one another in loving, committed relationships. Tackling the complicated prose of the book, Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D. explores the incredible beauty God intends us to find in intimate relationships, and why these relationships start with a balanced perspective of our needed intimacy with God. By looking at the depth of this book, the depth of interpersonal relationships, and the depth of our relationship and love for God, learn the proper reading for this important book – and what it has to teach every single person, whether single, married, divorced, and set apart for the Lord.

To order your copy, click here!

forgive_me_father.jpgForgive Me, Father…For I Have Sinned…And Sinned…And Sinned Again!: A 30-Day Devotional To Help You “Get Over!”

(Company Best-Seller)

By: Veronica M. Downing

  • Paperback: 134 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (October 31, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197317
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197319
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.3 x 8 inches
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format

WE try to do better. We try to get it right, this time around. We try to make it work, yet again…and then we sin, and sin, and sin…all over again. We feel the discouragement, disappointment, and failure, when we fall into sin. We’ve also all been there…time and time again. How can we break out of what seems to be a hopeless cycle of sin, especially when we want to do better by God? If you’ve got the right heart and the right spiritual attitude, all it takes is 30 days! In this book, author Veronica M. Downing takes you, one day at a time, into a place of victory. By following these devotions, you will find needed encouragement to overcome sin and walk in a deeper way with God. By healing your relationship with Him, gain profound insight into Bible experiences and your own to “get over” these hurdles and celebrate the excitement of overcoming in Christ.

To order your copy, click here!

tragedyFrom Tragedy To Triumph: ‘The Accident’…A Drama In Real Life Journey To Recovery

By: Cecile Jo Higginbotham


  • Paperback: 170 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications; 1 edition (December 10, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197023
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197029
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Available in paperback


YOU are faced with the greatest fear of your life. Most will never have to endure a test of this magnitude. From that fateful moment in December to her complete recovery years later, author C.J. Higginbotham takes you through her ordeal day by day. On a back country road which was not heavily traveled, horribly and severely injured in an automobile accident. She sustained multiple massive injuries and was not expected to live. Enduring 11 1/2 hours of reconstructive surgery, on a ventilator in ICU, weeks in critical condition, 2 months in the hospital and unable to walk for nearly a year. She overcame debilitating permanent injuries, drug addiction, homelessness, hopelessness and fear. Through her faith and trust in God, which carried her through it all. Take ‘a walk back in time’ with this author as she details her triumph through the tremendous odds against her, both physical and emotional, and how she victoriously overcame them all. Through her faith and trust in God, she knows brought her through the ‘most’ intense battle of her Christian life and walk with Christ. “From Tragedy To Triumph” is surely a book most needed for those whose faith and belief in God and the miraculous healing power of prayer is weak!

To order your copy, click here!

fruit_of_the_vine.jpgFruit Of The Vine: Study And Commentary On The Fruit of the Spirit

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.


  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (May 31, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197260
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197265
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format


MANIFESTING the fruit of the Spirit is an essential aspect of the believer’s life. Jesus calls us to not only produce fruit, but produce more excellent fruit. How can we do this, and how can we operate in the principle of spiritual fruit? How do we recognize it in our lives? In Fruit Of The Vine: Study And Commentary On The Fruit Of The Spirit, Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino invites the reader to learn more about what it means to bear “fruit,” specifically the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control. Presented with detailed word studies, background information, humor, warmth, and a whole lot of reflections on what it means to be in the vine and live a spiritually fruitful life, this book will change how you view the fruit of the Spirit and developing its important characteristics in your life.

To order your copy, click here!

boot_camp.jpgMinistry School Boot Camp: Training For Ministry, Appointments And Beyond

(Best-selling book by our company)

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.


  • Paperback: 152 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (January 24, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 194019704X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197043
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format


ALTAR work. Nursery. Cleaning the church. Hospitality ministry. Community outreach. Do you still see helps ministries in the church? Do you believe they are important? In days gone by, helps ministries was the first avenue of church service required for anyone who felt they had a ministry call. While some found their niche in helps, others went on to do incredible things within the ministry, having that solid, purposed foundation, recognizing service as the key to ministry work. With modern trends pushing toward leadership, the ministries of helps have all but disappeared in favor of premature promotion and adaptation of offices and titles many do not properly understand. What are we missing in ministry today? In Ministry School Boot Camp: Training For Helps Ministries, Appointments, And Beyond, Apostle Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.D. takes the participant through the meaningful and vital role helps ministries play in the function of the church. Learn about the various appointment ministries, assistants, volunteers, protocol, dress, and assignments – and their importance – all while learning the proper way to interact as a minister coming up under the work of helps. Whether you are working toward a greater ministry call or find your greatest joys in the various helps ministries, this book sets the participant on the straight and narrow of the forgotten art of church service.

To order your copy, click here!

next_step_upThe Next Step Up: Not Just Another 30-Day Devotional!

By: Veronica M. Downing

  • Paperback: 142 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197325
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197326
  • Will be available in paperback and electronic book format

ARE you ready to take that next step of faith? Moving forward in God is something we often talk about and encourage each other to do, but it seems like somewhere in the process, we often get off track and stay where we are. What is holding you back from taking your next step up to reach your ultimate victory? Sometimes we shrink back because are afraid, or feel unworthy, or because we don’t have the right information to move forward, but God is there, waiting and cheering you on, to come up higher with Him.

Your victory awaits, but God is waiting for you to take that next step! Make the commitment to come along for 30 days and gain the knowledge, insight, and devotional power to take your next steps up with God. In this second volume of her devotional series (meant to follow the book, Forgive Me, Father…For I Have Sinned…And Sinned…And Sinned Again!), author Veronica Downing guides the readers of her book with gentleness, insight, a little humor, and strength through many of the toughest issues that believers face and confront in modern times. Read along to step up views and concepts about the existence of God, attending church, drunkenness, tattoos, same-sex marriage, celebrating holidays, communion, and more! So some on out, put on your best pair of shoes, and for the next 30 days, let’s step up together.

Available for purchase February 15, 2016.

ephesiansTouching The Church In Eternity: A Journey Through The Book Of Ephesians

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.

  • Paperback: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197368
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197364
  • Will be available in paperback and electronic book format
WHEN you think of the word “church,” what do you think of? Does church look like a nice, neat white building on the corner? Is it gathering every Sunday for a service? Is it more trendy, with the buzz of electric music and a casual atmosphere? Is it from the traditional years of high church experiences, complete with formal choirs and liturgical robes? If we do a survey of what “church” means to different people, we will, most likely, come up with many different answers. Seldom do we ever step back and consider, what is church in the eyes of God – especially in the eyes of eternity?

Often we look around at the church and take special note of the people who are misrepresenting what church is supposed to be about. If we don’t look at the church with right eyes, it is easy to look around and feel discouraged, as if the church is progressively falling apart. The truth about the church, however, is that it is never falling apart. Despite the best-laid attempts to destroy it, the church is an eternal entity, something that has been within God’s plan since the very beginning. As we, too, have become a part of God’s plan through our salvation, we are also a part of the church, in relationship with God and other believers.

The entire book of Ephesians outlines the church’s purpose from beginning to end: in eternity, in membership, in grace, in the work of the apostle, in belief, in leadership, in everyday life, in marriage, and in our encounter with the world. Covering the depth of eternity from past to present to beyond, Dr. Marino delves deeply into the significance of the church for believers. A powerful read, this book will help each and every believer develop a love for the church, seeing her relevance in their everyday lives, and growing in purpose and participation of the Gospel with each moment of growth through God’s grace. Read along to see for yourself that the church is neither in ruins, nor lost, nor perishing…because she is truly beautiful, adorned by God for His purpose.

Available for purchase February 25, 2016.

evangelism.jpgWith Lovingkindness Have I Drawn Thee: Foundations To Transform Evangelism Into Discipleship

By: Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.Min., D.D.


  • Paperback: 234 pages
  • Publisher: Righteous Pen Publications (August 30, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1940197120
  • ISBN-13: 978-1940197128
  • Available in paperback and electronic book format


The call to share with others about the work of Jesus Christ, His life, and salvation promise is central to the Christian message. The Bible tells us that the word “Gospel” means “good news,” and we are to share this message of “good news” with the world. God loves you! God is with you! God wants you to join with Him for eternity! With a message like this, it would seem like everyone would want to receive it…right? One would think that with such an awesome message to carry, the Christian community would desire to represent it well and with joy. So why are evangelistic efforts so frequently thwarted? The general consensus of the non-Christian world is that Christians are judgmental, hypocritical, unchristlike, narrow-minded, and uneducated…and can we honestly say they are wrong? What can Christianity learn from the unsaved about their witness? For far too many years, the Christian community has allowed politics, fads, and errant base theory to negatively affect the way in which they witness to the world. In With Lovingkindness Have I Drawn Thee: Foundations To Transform Evangelism Into Discipleship, Dr. Lee Ann B. Marino, Ph.D., D.D. examines several hot-button points in the evangelistic arena and how we, as Christians, need to change ourselves and our perspectives on the way we view others and ourselves so we can transform the world. Based in observations through years of ministry, training other leaders in effective evangelism methods, and extensive discussion with the non-believing community about things that they dislike about Christians, Dr. Marino has provided a foundation for us to set others on the path not just to salvation, but discipleship for life.

To order your copy, click here!




Book Masters Magazine, November 2015

Book Masters Magazine, November 2015

Book Masters Magazine: Book Masters Magazine, November 2015

Literary magazine featuring the best in writing, editorial commentary, poetry, short stories, books, and publishing. Published by Lee Ann and Veronica's Publishing, an imprint of Righteous Pen Publications. Feature interview: Maegan Hagan, a blogger, upcoming author, podcaster, and activist from…

Find out more on MagCloud

Lee Ann Marino’s Review of The Truth About Psychics: What’s Real, What’s Not, And How To Tell The Difference

psychicsThe Truth About Psychics: What’s Real, What’s Not, And How To Tell The Difference

By: Sylvia Browne (with Lindsay Harrison)

  • Hardcover: 411 pages
  • Publisher: Thorndike Press; Lrg edition (April 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1410424073
  • ISBN-13: 978-1410424075
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 0.9 inches

I’ll start by saying that I was never the biggest fan of Sylvia Browne (1936-2013) when she was alive. I used to keep track of her predictions, particularly the ones that related to world events or to celebrities, and she had a horrible track record. I remember her accuracy being somewhere in the area of about 10%, which made me wonder why anyone would seek her out, let alone pay her tremendous amounts of money, for readings. Then when I found out she had her own Gnostic-based church, I really wondered what the draw was to her. I get that we are all curious about the paranormal and all, but to actually sit up under a woman who claims to have a “gift” that renders her inaccurate just seemed…well…unwise.

Alas, when I came across her book, The Truth About Psychics, I only bought it because it was a Bargain Book and I thought it might give me some insight into spirits that I was seeking to learn about. As a Christian minister, I find Christian books about spirits and witchcraft all have the same tone: they are trying so hard to make something seem spiritually wrong, they start giving out exaggerated or incorrect information that can be easily proven false. So, when I want to learn more about spiritual activity, particularly in the realm of witchcraft, demonology, or “alternative powers,” I try to read sources that are more about information than prevention. This helps me to better identify things I see in ministry, especially when they are different or manifest differently from what our often untrained experts tell us they are.

The book itself presents some interesting insights into the afterlife as is viewed in the major world religions. She also breaks down different forms of divination in a way that anyone who desires to learn more about it can understand. That’s about all I have to say about the book that is positive. The book itself really isn’t about psychics, but about the entire expanse of New Age paranormal studies, including past life regression, the modern history of the paranormal movement, and different tricks of the trade, but very little of it really focuses on psychics themselves. It also is very clearly written from the personal perspective of Browne herself, and is very opinionated based on her own personal revelations of these matters, rather than fact-based, on issues that pertain to the paranormal. For example, she adamantly opposes Ouija boards, feeling they invite any type of spirit into one’s life, but she is very much in favor of tarot cards. If Ouija boards can invite spirits, why does she think that tarot cards, or divining methods, or reading tea leaves, or even crystal balls are not door openers to the spirit world in a questionable way? Her inconsistencies in perspective as well as slanting of facts from her own clearly biased perspective make the book a huge disappointment.

I give the book one star, as the information on the afterlife and divination methods are decent and easy to understand. The book overall, however, just doesn’t measure up. If you are looking for a book on how psychics operate, don’t let the title fool you. This book isn’t it.

Lee Ann Marino’s Top 10 Book Picks

Lee Ann B. Marino is Editor-in-Chief of Righteous Pen Publications ( and a corporate partner in the entire imprint family of Righteous Pen Publications along with Veronica Downing, including Lee Ann and Veronica’s Publishing (  She is also a designer for Rose of Sharon Creations ( and for a new and upcoming design company.  She is also the author of 17 books (   Here she posts her all-time top ten favorite books to share with all of us!

(All summaries are from the books themselves)

41RSrTXr0aLThe Courage To Be (by Paul Tillich)

Originally published more than fifty years ago, The Courage to Be has become a classic of twentieth-century religious and philosophical thought. The great Christian existentialist thinker Paul Tillich describes the dilemma of modern man and points a way to the conquest of the problem of anxiety.

Selected as one of the Books of the Century by the New York Public Library.

413T3N9ARELExistentialism And Humanism (by Jean-Paul Sartre)

It was to correct common misconceptions about his thought that Jean-Paul Sartre, the most dominant European intellectual of the post-World War II decades, accepted an invitation to speak on October 29, 1945, at the Club Maintenant in Paris. The unstated objective of his lecture (“Existentialism Is a Humanism”) was to expound his philosophy as a form of “existentialism,” a term much bandied about at the time. Sartre asserted that existentialism was essentially a doctrine for philosophers, though, ironically, he was about to make it accessible to a general audience. The published text of his lecture quickly became one of the bibles of existentialism and made Sartre an international celebrity.

The idea of freedom occupies the center of Sartre’s doctrine. Man, born into an empty, godless universe, is nothing to begin with. He creates his essence—his self, his being—through the choices he freely makes (“existence precedes essence”). Were it not for the contingency of his death, he would never end. Choosing to be this or that is to affirm the value of what we choose. In choosing, therefore, we commit not only ourselves but all of mankind.

411pKy3d50LThe Second Sex (by Simone de Beauvoir)

Simone de Beauvoir’s masterwork is a powerful analysis of the Western notion of “woman,” and a groundbreaking exploration of inequality and otherness.  Vital and groundbreaking, Beauvoir’s pioneering and impressive text remains as pertinent today as it was sixty years ago, and will continue to provoke and inspire generations of men and women to come.

413q2tEgAVLLes Miserables (by Victor Hugo)

Les Miserables is widely considered one of the greatest novels of the 19th century. First published in France in 1862, it is Victor Hugo’s greatest achievement–the ultimate tale of redemption. Former prisoner Jean Valjean struggles to live virtuously after an unexpected act of forgiveness by a kindly bishop changes his life. His righteous actions change people’s lives in surprising ways and culminate in romance between two young people. Les Miserables is a must-have addition to the libraries of all classic literature lovers.

41UQrc0TaRLThe Prophet (by Kahlil Gibran)

This is Khalil Gibran’s best and most powerful work ever-written…. Blending the elements of Eastern and Western mysticism, Lebanese – American essayist – Khalil Gibran, in this enriching collection of parables expounds the philosophy of living conveying a strong and beautiful message on every aspect of life. Set forth in the form of profound wisdom and philosophy of life, these discourses apply dynamically with amazing timeliness to our human problems in day-to-day life. Millions of followers today absorb Gibran’s writings with religious devotion and fervours because his thoughts are ageless and realistic.

41le8ej-fiLBrave New World (by Adolus Huxley)

The astonishing novel Brave New World, originally published in 1932, presents Aldous Huxley’s vision of the future — of a world utterly transformed. Through the most efficient scientific and psychological engineering, people are genetically designed to be passive and therefore consistently useful to the ruling class. This powerful work of speculative fiction sheds a blazing critical light on the present and is considered to be Huxley’s most enduring masterpiece.

515JNXDM1QL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_The Bell Jar (by Sylvia Plath)

The Bell Jar chronicles the crack-up of Esther Greenwood: brilliant, beautiful, enormously talented, and successful, but slowly going under — maybe for the last time. Sylvia Plath masterfully draws the reader into Esther’s breakdown with such intensity that Esther’s insanity becomes completely real and even rational, as probable and accessible an experience as going to the movies. Such deep penetration into the dark and harrowing corners of the psyche is an extraordinary accomplishment and has made The Bell Jar a haunting American classic.

51UtwJuDRhL._SX328_BO1,204,203,200_To Kill A Mockingbird (by Harper Lee)

“Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit ’em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”

A lawyer’s advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee’s classic novel—a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with rich humor and unswerving honesty the irrationality of adult attitudes toward race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence, and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina and quiet heroism of one man’s struggle for justice—but the weight of history will only tolerate so much.

One of the best-loved classics of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has earned many distinctions since its original publication in 1960.

It has won the Pulitzer Prize, been translated into more than forty languages, sold more than forty million copies worldwide, and been made into an enormously popular movie. It was also named the best novel of the twentieth century by librarians across the country (Library Journal).

51SG563T7ELA Tree Grows In Brooklyn (by Betty Smith)

The beloved perennial classic—named as one of the books of the twentieth century by the New York Public Library.

Orville Prescott has called this American classic “one of the most dearly beloved and one of the finest books of our day.” Indeed, when A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was first published in 1943, four printing plants were required to keep up with the demand.

Seventy years later, readers are still fascinated by Betty Smith’s moving portrayal of the Nolans, a poor family living in the Williamsburg slums of Brooklyn. A poignant tale of childhood and the ties of family, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn will transport the reader to the early 1900s where a little girl named Francie dreamily looks out her window at a tree struggling to reach the sky.

41zXo8Ryj0LNotes From The Underground (by Fyodor Dostoyvesky)

A predecessor to such monumental works such as Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov, Notes From Underground represents a turning point in Dostoyevsky’s writing towards the more political side. In this work we follow the unnamed narrator of the story, who disillusioned by the oppression and corruption of the society in which he lives withdraws from that society into the underground. A dark and politically charged novel, “Notes From Underground” shows Dostoyevsky at his best.

41RQcP5Qo8L._SX320_BO1,204,203,200_Honorable Mention: Being And Nothingness (by Jean-Paul Sartre)

Here Sartre has systematically presented his philosophy of Being. This book is a sine qua non for any understanding of existentialism and its importance as one of the leading philosophical movements of the twentieth century.

51RYg-1mBoLHonorable Mention: The Stranger (by Albert Camus)

The Stranger is as beautiful as any work of art can hope to be. It is in the latter parts of the book, where Mersault’s words have a lyrical power not seen previous, that the English translation achieves the haunting effect that must be even more prevalent in the French. The first thing readily obvious is that the character has no emotional connection to what he experiences; he simply experiences. Thus, Camus utilizes an American style, terse and detached. Some reviewers were off put by this. “How could he not care that his mother died? ” Attaching immorality to Mersault merely shows a total misunderstanding of the book. Camus believed in “absurd freedom,” life has no inner value and is futilely cut short, but it is up to us to determine our life in such uncertainty. If one doesn’t interpret life, emotion doesn’t exist. But the values that society has incriminate you if you don’t conform. They make you strange. They take no account of individuality. That is the peril of the main character after a bizarre series of events on a sun drenched beach. The power of Camus is that even though he creates such a bleak, hopeless human situation the characters still go on as best they can, perhaps even attaining happiness. “One must imagine Sisyphus happy,” to quote The Myth of Sisyphus. That is also the power and beauty of mankind.

71UYUk+swXLHonorable Mention: Dangerous Liaisons (by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos)

Published just years before the French Revolution, Laclos’s great novel of moral and emotional depravity is a disturbing and ultimately damning portrayal of a decadent society. Aristocrats and ex-lovers Marquise de Merteuil and Vicomte de Valmont embark on a sophisticated game of seduction and manipulation to bring amusement to their jaded lives. While Merteuil challenges Valmont to seduce an innocent convent girl, he is also occupied with the conquest of a virtuous married woman. Eventually their human pawns respond, and the consequences prove to be more serious-and deadly-than the players could have ever predicted.