Archive for the ‘Books & Authors’ Category

Antioch author to host book signing celebration and dinner at Southern Cafe Saturday, April 14

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2018

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Antioch author to hold book-release signing of historically-based, sci-fi book Saturday at Tailgaters

Thursday, March 1st, 2018

A prolific writer since the age of fifteen, James Sanford has employed his prose to author numerous books, articles, stories, and one motion picture project. He sold his first short story to DC Comic Books, when he was fifteen. His book, Storm Treasure, inspired a major motion picture in 1999.

Now, his latest book, While the Gods Slept, demonstrates his profound knowledge of history, as well as his love for travel. Sanford will be holding a book-release signing of his historically-based, science-fiction work at Tailgaters in Antioch, this Saturday, March 3 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

While the Gods Slept brings together many of the disparate anomalies, myths, and religious beliefs that confound and confuse those who would like answers to age old questions. The story begins some four hundred thousand years into our past, when a great civilization occupied this planet. After a great cataclysmic event, the few survivors begin a project to rebuild and repopulate the Earth. Their efforts are recorded throughout the book, but there is a parallel story. One that is taking place around our globe today.

James and Linda Sanford

Sanford holds a B.A. Degree in Mass Communications and an M.A. Degree in Communication Arts from California State University, Chico. He has also earned a PhD. In Education. For the past forty-two years, he has worked as a Teacher and Education Administrator in various venues, including junior high, high school, community college, and within the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. He has taught science, English, creative writing, art, reading, Adult Basic Education, and Substance Abuse Education. In all, of these settings, Sanford has used his communication skills to teach, mentor, and coach individuals to express themselves through writing, music, poetry, and art. During his final years in education, James had the privilege of supervising and mentoring teachers who worked in jails and parole offices throughout California.

After retiring from full time employment as an educator with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, he has focused on his own creative endeavors and focused on his two great passions, travel and history.

While the Gods Slept is Sanford’s most ambitious effort to date. His capability to weave together real, historical facts with plausible fiction is masterful. He, has the ability, to take Dan Brown’s and Clive Cussler’s historical fiction to a new level. His chronicles are riveting, and his characters are memorable.

Sanford enjoys debating history, politics, and science. He claims it stimulates his writing process and forces him to keep up to date on various topics. His comprehension of what he studies, and reads is evident in every page of his books.  Sanford lives in Antioch with his wife and constant traveling companion Linda. They have two daughters, five grandchildren, and a great granddaughter.

Meet James and Linda Sanford and purchase an autographed copy of his book, this Saturday night at Tailgaters, located at 4605 Golf Course Road at the corner of Lone Tree Way.

Book Synopsis

In While the Gods Slept, one man, Simon Krall, is discovered to have unique DNA. His DNA could hold the secret to increased longevity, immunity from most diseases, and the end to dementia and Alzheimer’s. He meets a beautiful scientist named Dr. Irina Bronstine, who wants to study his unique genetic make-up. When Simon travels to Washington, DC for some physical tests, it sets off a chain reaction of deceit, betrayal, and chaos.

With Dr. Bronstine at his side, Simon travels half way around the world to escape from an eccentric billionaire who wants to dissect his body for all its secrets. Pursued by cruel and merciless men, Simon begins to tell a tale that is so fantastic, that Dr. Bronstine believes he is crazy or delusional. Through Simon’s on-going chronicles, a few scientists begin to see the possibility that Simon was preprogrammed genetically.

Aided by a growing number of scientists and researchers around the world, Simon’s story slowly comes out. He answers questions that have plagued curious minds for ages. Some of the answers are difficult to accept. Others are completely outrageous to his listeners. All responses he shares come straight from information programmed into his DNA thousands of years ago.

Recorded history goes back a mere five thousand years, yet researchers keep finding evidence of older structures, cultures, art, and remains. Much of what is being discovered today does not fit the accepted account of human history. Debates continue to rage between archaeologists, paleontologists, geneticists, paleo archeologists, geologists, and scientists from many other fields. In addition to arguing amongst themselves, they are also bombarded with theories from those who believe ancient aliens created mankind.

One theory, that has always held intrigue for those interested in the subject, is that there were great advanced civilizations here long before recorded history. There is a belief that an earlier society gave us our knowledge of engineering, math, astronomy, agriculture, and science. The question has always been asked, but never answered. How did a group of nomadic farmers suddenly develop the skills and knowledge to build the great monolithic structures found around the world?

While the Gods Slept gives plausible answers to the questions of the ages. It is an intriguing, fictional story wrapped in real history. The many characters in this book are based on real people who ask the hard questions about man, every day. Buckle up and hang on, you are about to go from outer space to the Earth and back.

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Antioch author of inspirational book to hold signing in Pittsburg Saturday, Feb. 24

Thursday, February 22nd, 2018

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AAUW offers free gift wrapping during Bookfair fundraiser and Olympic Gold Medalist’s book signing at Antioch Barnes & Noble Monday, Dec. 18

Saturday, December 16th, 2017

A percentage of your purchases will benefit the Delta Contra Costa American Association of University Women scholarships to LMC students and Tech Trek for middle school girls. Please download the form and use the voucher with your purchase. bnvoucherflyer2017

See related article about Eddie Hart, here.

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Olympic Gold Medalist Eddie Hart to sign his book about tragedy and triumph at the ’72 games in Antioch, Dec. 18

Thursday, December 7th, 2017

Eddie Hart with his new book entitled “Disqualified”.

Meet the two-time World Record-holder at Barnes & Noble

By Allen Payton

Having previously equaled the World Record, Martinez-born and Pittsburg-raised Eddie Hart was a strong favorite to win the 100-Meter Dash at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany. The inexplicable happened, he was disqualified for arriving seconds after his quarterfinal heat. Ten years of training to become the “World’s Fastest Human.” The title attached to the Olympic 100-meter champion was lost in a heartbeat. How could this have possibly happened on athletics’ biggest stage, the Olympic Games?

Hart provides his story in a new book he’s written with the help of friend and former Oakland Tribune sports reporter, Dave Newhouse, entitled “Disqualified – Eddie Hart, Munich 1972, and the Voices of The Most Tragic Olympics.”

A Champion Since High School

Hart moved to Pittsburg when he was eight years old, and attended Village Elementary and Central Junior High. He graduated from Pittsburg High in 1967 where he lettered every year as a member of the track team, in the 100, 200 and long jump. He won “the conference in four events, including the 4×100 relay in 1966, then he repeated in the 100 and 200 in 1967,” Hart shared.

He then went on to attend Contra Costa College in San Pablo.

“That’s where I really blossomed,” Hart said.

It’s where he won the 100 and 200 at the junior college state meet in 1969.

Hart then transferred to U.C. Berkeley where he majored in Physical Education, because he wanted to be a track coach. In his first year, he won the 100-meter race at the PAC-8 championships and placed second in the 200.

Then at the NCAA national championships that year, Hart won the 100 and running anchor, helped his team win the 4×100 relay, as well.

One of his teammates, Isaac Curtis, who went on to play wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals, came in second in that same 100-meter race, making it the only time in NCAA history that teammates from the same school placed first and second in the championship race.

“At the end of that year I made the U.S. national team and toured Europe for six weeks competing in various meets,” Hart shared. “We competed in France, in Russia and Oslo, and Sweden, also.”

Champion in the 5,000-meter Steve Prefontaine was on that same team.

“I knew Pre, well,” Hart said.

First Major Challenge

Then in 1971 he placed second in the 100 and third in the 200 at the NCAA Championships due to an injury earlier in the year, having missed half the season and not even competing in the conference championships.

First Comeback

Hart withdrew from school to train for the Olympics and became an assistant to the head track coach in 1972, at the same time. He entered open competition that year and during the meets Hart made the qualifying times in the 100. In fact, he missed the World Record by just 1/10th of a second running 10 flat at the West Coast Relays in Fresno.

Second Major Challenge

Three weeks before the Olympic trials Hart injured his right hamstring while running in the 200 at the U.S. Championships in Seattle. He couldn’t do any starts between that injury and his first race at the Olympic trials in Eugene, Oregon.

“It was terrifying,” he said. “It was tough.”

Then at the trials, “It was a nightmare,” Hart said. “Each race, everyone was ahead of me.  I just kept pulling up.”

Asked if he was hesitant, he replied, “Oh, very much so. I was afraid I was going to reinjure myself.”

“You have to run four races,” Hart explained.  “A heat, a quarterfinal, a semi-final and then the final.”

Second Comeback

In the semifinal I was fourth and they only took four to the final. “I barely made it,” he stated.

“It was a wind-aided race and the first five guys ran a 9.9 in the 100 meters and the fifth-place guy didn’t even qualify,” Hart continued. “I was the fourth guy and I was scared to death, because from the finals they only took the top three.”

In the blocks at the starting line, he was still thinking about his leg, which was bothering him.

“This was all the marbles right here, there was nothing to save,” he shared.

“The gun went off and I was in a dream,” Hart explained. “I ran the best race of my life.”

Before or after, “Ever,” he said. “That was it.”

“I was an Olympian, an Olympic trials champion and the World Record holder at 9.9,” Hart stated proudly.

“It was legal, not wind-aided,” he added.

Hart had equaled the World Record in the 100-meter dash, which had been achieved by only two others before. It wasn’t broken until 1991 when Carl Lewis ran it in 9.86.

He also qualified for the Olympics as the anchor for the U.S. Men’s 4×100 relay team, which was made up of the four finalists in the 100-meter race.

From Triumph to Tragedy

About a month later he was with the U.S. Olympic Team in Boden, Maine for a few weeks to train in similar weather as Munich, Germany. They then competed in Oslo, Norway, France and Italy before arriving in the Olympic Village just a few days before the Opening Ceremony.

A few days later he ran and won his heat.

“It was easier to make it to the finals at the Olympic games than it was to make the finals at the Olympic trials,” Hart shared. “Of the top 10 to 15 sprinters in the world, the top 10 were in the  U.S. at that time.”

After all three U.S. sprinters had won their heats, the coach said “let’s go back to the Olympic Village and rest” Hart explained, “because there was so much time between races. But, that was his schedule.”

The Village was only about a mile or less away from the Olympic Stadium. But, the coach had the incorrect time for the start of the quarterfinals.

They rushed back to the stadium, but it was too late for Hart.  He had missed his race and was disqualified. Thus, the title of his book.

Tragedy Ends in Triumph

Hart’s Olympic story didn’t end there. The following week after the tragic murder of the 11 Israeli team members had halted the games for a day for the memorial, Hart once again ran anchor for the U.S. 4×100 relay team. They won that race in World Record time and he became an Olympic Gold Medalist and a World Record holder, once again. See video of Hart’s leg of the race here.

Returning to Pittsburg he was met with celebrations by the Mayor of Pittsburg and the city.

Hart returned to college to complete his degree, and became a paid assistant track coach at Cal Berkeley. He has since started his philanthropic efforts through his Eddie Hart All In One Foundation which holds an Olympian Track Education Clinic at Pittsburg High, each year.

Faith has been a big part of his life, all of his life. Hart has been a member of Stewart Memorial Methodist Church in Pittsburg since elementary school. He’s taught Sunday School for 35 years and for the past 20 years he’s taught the men’s class.

Asked if faith played a part in his Olympic journey, Hart responded, “In every aspect. I grew up in the church, it couldn’t have been any other way.”

“I never prayed to God for success in track,” he shared. “I asked God to give me strength in life to face the challenges as they come.”

“My prayer is that His will be done. God is interested in spiritual things, in our soul not our flesh,” Hart continued. “Ultimately at the end of the day whatever physical things we’ve accomplished here will be left here. It’s about our souls which are eternal. Our flesh is going to burn up. The Bible is clear.”

Asked if his story will become a movie, Hart said, “We’re working on it.”

But, he has to think about who will play the part of him, he shared with a laugh.

His book includes a foreword by Harvard professor Dr. Cornel West who has been a friend since high school, and whose brother Cliff was Hart’s roommate at Cal.

See Eddie Hart and get your copy of his book signed on Monday, Dec. 18 at 7:00 p.m. at Barnes & Noble book store in Antioch at 5709 Lone Tree Way.

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Antioch author shares autobiography on her struggle to overcome abuse during book signing

Tuesday, January 24th, 2017
Members of the Antioch Chamber of Commerce join author Rossolyn Turner (center) for her book signing on Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2017

Members of the Antioch Chamber of Commerce join author Rossolyn Turner (center) for her book signing on Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016

By Allen Payton

Antioch business owner and author, Rossolyn Turner held a book signing with the Antioch Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday, December 13, 2016 for her autobiography, entitled “I’ve Got Words for You: The abuse that killed me, and the words that brought me back to life.”

I've Got Words For You - Turner bookThe introduction to her book offers readers a hint of what to expect, as you will find out why Turner accepted abuse and molestation for years and how she finally found the courage and strength to deal with her past.

The description on reads: “Find out what she did to save her life and turned depression into love and success by starting her very own company. This book is perfect for junior high school age and up. Anyone who has experienced any abuse in their life will appreciate this book and will realize they are not alone.”

Turner also owns Playback Communications which provides captioning services and sign interpreting for clients with various disabilities. She shared a few thoughts during her book signing.

“Anyone can overcome abuse and become anything you want in life. It just depends on how bad you want it,” said Turner.  “I have heard from many who said they had decided to throw in the towel and after reading this book they began to fight harder to follow their dreams.  I knew then I accomplished my purpose for writing the book.”

“Once you begin reading it, you won’t want to put it down,” she added.

Purchase your copy of Turner’s book on Amazon by clicking here. She can be contacted for speaking engagements at (951) 496-8618,

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Antioch author at Barnes & Noble, Saturday for signing of Disneyland book

Tuesday, August 16th, 2016
Joshua Shaffer eating lunch at the secretive Club 33 at Disneyland in October, 2012.

Joshua Shaffer eating lunch at the secretive Club 33 at Disneyland in October, 2012. photo from his Facebook page

Antioch resident Joshua Shaffer, author of Discovering The Magic Kingdom: An Unofficial Disneyland Vacation Guide, will be at Barnes & Noble Bookstore on Lone Tree Way in Antioch for a book signing, on Saturday evening, August 20th. His Disneyland book is packed full of nearly 1,000 fun facts, trivia, history, Hidden Mickeys, money saving advice, and so much more.

The first-time published author, Shaffer, has spent his adult life frequenting Disneyland. One year while on a Disney vacation, it struck him that he should write an all inclusive book compiling every bit of information into one vacation guide that cannot be found anywhere else. It started with that simple notion and has evolved into this final work.

Joshua became fascinated with everything he learned about the park. He set out to put together a book to share with everyone the intricate details of The Happiest Place On Earth. For researching, he frequented Disneyland, read many books, interviewed Cast Members, watched interviews, read blogs, and surfed the internet for four and a half years to make sure his book had more information available inside it than any other of its kind.

As a hobby he spends much of his spare time researching and investigating to find out the facts not just the rumors on a variety of topics. Joshua has been a cartoonist and artist since the age of ten. He currently works as an Animal Center Technician with Contra Costa Animal Services.

Book cover

Book cover

Since his book’s release, he has been to many book signings, was interviewed on 95.3 KUIC, Living The Dream Podcast, Magical Day Radio, and The Sweep Spot. Recently he was interviewed for a documentary DVD about the Disneyland secrets for the film company Theme Parkology.

“People who have read the book love learning all the fun facts about Disneyland and its history,” Shaffer said.

As one reviewer states; “This is very thorough, well researched book on Disneyland. As Ed MacMahon would say to Johnny Carson, ‘Everything you ever wanted to know about Disneyland is in this book.’ If you love Disneyland, you will love this book. Well done!” – George M., San Diego, CA.

Joshua Shaffer will be at Barnes & Noble, 5709 Lone Tree Way, Antioch, on Saturday August 20, 2016, at 6:00 pm.

You can follow him on social media at and If you can’t attend Saturday’s book signing, you can order an autographed copy of his book at

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Antioch mother and daughter co-authors to hold book signing at Barnes & Noble, April 20

Monday, April 11th, 2016
Book cover for "Ava Goes to the Zoo."

Book cover for “Ava Goes to the Zoo.”

By Allen Payton

Antioch residents and co-authors Alicia Coleman-Clark and her daughter Ava J. Clark will sign their three books, “Ava Goes to the Dentist,” “ Ava Goes to the Zoo” and “Ava Goes to the Beach With Friends” at Barnes and Noble in Antioch, on Thursday, April 20th from 3:00 to 7:00 p.m.

Ava Goes to the Beach with Friends CoverAva is a nine-year-old, little girl who has autism. Released last year, “Ava Goes to the Dentist” was her first book on her personal experience. They have since released their second and third books. Autism impacts Ava’s daily life in ways that at times are unimaginable.

The event is a fundraiser to benefit Anova, a school for children with autism and behavioral needs, and which Ava attends.

Alicia and Ava hope that their books and enclosed resources will support other families in their journey. This is an awesome way to wrap up Autism Awareness Month.

Alicia and Ava are proud to share their books with everyone at Barnes and Noble.

“Ava Goes to the Dentist” is a social story from a child’s point of view. Ava was diagnosed with autism at the age of two-and-a-half. The book is the first of a series of books Alicia and Ava have planned, on various outings through the eyes of a child with autism.

Alicia’s philosophy for a life well lived is, to be present in every relationship, live with compassion and practice humility.

Barnes & Noble is located at 5709 Lone Tree Way.


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