NEW AND NOTEWORTHY
Here is a wonderful new review of THE UNRESOLVED by the Canadian information services librarian from LibrisNotes:
"The Unresolved is a fascinating blend of ghost story and historical fiction. The historical event that forms the basis of the plot is the sinking of the paddle steamer ferry, General Slocum, June 15, 1904. The steamer was ferrying members of the St. Mark's Evangelical Lutheran Church when fire broke out in the forward Lamp Room. It was thought that a careless discarding of a lighted cigarette onto straw ignited the blaze, which rapidly spread throughout the steamer. Contributing to the terrible loss of life (over 1000 persons perished) was the lack of working fire hoses and life jackets which caused women and children to sink like stones. It was considered the worst disaster in New York city until the events of 9/11.
"The author, T.K. Welsh, takes many of the facts known about the disaster and the subsequent inquest and incorporates them into her story. She tells the story of the disaster from the viewpoint of 15 year old Mallory Meer who is on the General Slocum with her mother, her younger sister Nixie, her older sister Louisa and her brother Helmuth. Also on the excursion is Dustin Brauer, the boy Mallory is falling in love with. Unfortunately, Mallory does not survive the disaster - she is a ghost relating the events to us, the reader.
"The book opens with Mallory who lingers as a ghost recounting the tragedy and who cannot find peace until she helps bring to justice those responsible for the fire and the loss of life. From the character of Mallory, we trace the events that happened just prior to the fire, the disaster itself and on through to the inquest. It is through Mallory, as a ghost, that we learn what people think and feel. We learn about Dustin's past and the history of Mallory's family too. We are told about the German community in New York city, Kleinduetschland and about the Knickerbocker Steamship Company who owned the steamer.
"As happened in real life, in The Unresolved, those truly responsible are not held accountable and punished. Or are they?
"This gripping historical novel held my interest to the gripping and shocking end.
"For those who would like to do further reading on the General Slocum disaster please see the following website: General Slocum."
And here is a new review of RESURRECTION MEN from YA reader Olivia Janowicz @ Newbie Critics:
"...What I absolutely loved about this book, is how descriptive the author was when describing ‘London’...There were many parts where I just wanted to lean to the side and hurl; there were others that made me feel the pain of having my leg smashed against the hard metal of a ship; and other parts where I could smell the rotting carcass of a body being crushed underneath someone being trapped in a coffin; or where I could just feel the thick fog of the putrid air in the streets...I really enjoyed this book, and I’d recommend it for the older age group."
CALLING ALL TEACHERS and SCHOOL LIBRARIANS!
Have your students read one of my YA historical novels and then bring me directly into your media or music lab to talk about the book. Using Skype and a webcam, a PC video call is easy and free, and it makes a real difference to the students when they can pose their questions directly to the author.
In fact, participants of any Book Club or Book Circle with ten members or more who purchase one of my books--like THE UNRESOLVED or RESURRECTION MEN--can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a similar FREE Skype Book Reading & Conference.
Invite me into your living room, and I'll invite you into mine. Rather than simply discussing a book amongst yourselves, as usual, imagine having the author right there to answer your questions directly.
RESURRECTION MEN was recently featured in Curriculum Connections ("Murder and Mayhem Under Grey skies" by Joyce Adams Burner), a joint venture publication between School Library Journal and TeachingBooks.net that reaches more than 60,000 educators and librarians around the country every month. Click here to hear the author speak about the name T.K. Welsh through the TeachingBooks.net "Name Pronunciation Guide".
Check out the latest in-depth author interview at Wordswimmer. See what inspires T.K. Welsh to write, and learn about the author's writing process.
RESURRECTION MEN has been named a Junior Library Guild selection.
Publishers Weekly called RESURRECTION MEN, “A haunting tour of London's underclass during the 1830s...Teens will likely be both captivated by Victor's harrowing story as well as his ability to prevail in the face of harsh injustices." BIG A, little a called the novel, “A moody, evocative tale...T.K. Welsh is fast becoming one of my favorite writers. His work transcends genre and audience classification.” VOYA said, "Teen readers will thoroughly enjoy the hair-raising suspense in this historical thriller." Kirkus Reviews called RESURRECTION MEN perfect for, “audiences that relish historical fiction." TeensReadToo termed it, “an intense, dark work of historical fiction...I highly recommend this book.” KLIATT said, "Like M.T. Anderson's The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, this look at sinister events in history makes the era come alive and lingers in the memory." Jen Robinson's Book Page called the novel, “Gripping and fast-paced, filled with intriguing historical details...The ending is utterly satisfying and consistent. Highly recommended for fans of historical fiction." The Miss Rumphius Effect said, “T.K. Welsh, where have you been? I loved this book...Pick it up and you'll find it hard to put down.” And School Library Journal said, “Part historical fiction and part adventure story, the novel brings excitement to Victorian England...Readers will be on the edge of their seats.”
Inspired by the 1831 "Italian Boy trial" of body snatchers in London, England, RESURRECTION MEN is a spine-tingling murder mystery that pits a beggar boy named Victor against a nefarious group of Resurrection Men. In this tumultuous dark underworld, where a fresh subject can fetch as much as nine guineas -- the yearly salary of a working man -- Victor must risk his life to uncover the identity of the murderer who is at the heart of London's furtive trade in human corpses.
For a sample chapter of RESURRECTION MEN, click here.
If you already own a copy, click here to access a secret section of the site...just for you. [NOTE: Make sure to enter the name Secret (S-e-c-r-e-t) and the correct Password, printed at the rear of the book.]
To buy your copy, click here!
THE UNRESOLVEDTHE UNRESOLVED was recently added to Horn Book's list of Recommended American Historical Fiction.
Ranked one of the Top Ten Children's Books of 2006 by the Washington Post, THE UNRESOLVED was nominated for a Young Adult Library Services Association -- YALSA 2007 Teens' Top Ten, the only book award recommended and awarded solely by teens. The novel was previously named a 2007 Association of Jewish Libraries Notable Book for Teens by the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee, which recognized only six works in Jewish teen literature that year. THE UNRESOLVED was also nominated for the 2006 Cybils literary awards, and for the 2007 Best Books for Young Adults (BBYA) by the American Library Association. The novel was featured as one of the Best Teen Books of the Year 2006 at BarnesAndNoble.com.
The Washington Post said, "Welsh writes with a precision and delicacy unusual for YA fiction...a subtle gem (of a book)." School Library Journal said, "THE UNRESOLVED tells a remarkable story in a remarkable way." Horn Book Magazine called THE UNRESOLVED, "A decidedly unconventional ghost story ... (and) a tightly wound novel." Kirkus Reviews termed it, "A remarkable account." Romantic Times said, "THE UNRESOLVED is a book you shouldn't pass up." All About the Book said, "THE UNRESOLVED is a great one. Mallory is the most well-developed ghostly character I've seen in a long, long time." Midwest Book Review called THE UNRESOLVED, "a wonderfully different kind of ghost story." And Bookslut.com said, "THE UNRESOLVED scores on several levels, most notably as a drama that blows apart all preconceived notions of how history can be retold."
Inspired by the tragic events of 9/11, THE UNRESOLVED reaches back into history to explore what was, until recently, the greatest disaster in New York City history. Based on the sinking of the General Slocum steamship -- which caught fire in the East River, New York, in 1904, resulting in the death of over 1,000 mostly German immigrants on a church outing -- THE UNRESOLVED is at once a ghost story, a courtroom drama, an examination of immigrant life, and a tale of love, redemption and revenge. The novel dramatizes how a single life -- and death -- can have a powerful influence on history.
For a sample chapter of THE UNRESOLVED, click here.
To buy your copy, click here!