The Margaret of Greenwich(R) Young Adult series narrates the lives of a poor teenager and her wealthy friends in the richest town in America.
Margaret of Greenwich
Book One in The Margaret of Greenwich® Series by R.. L. Rhyse
Thirteen-year-old Margaret battles poverty, her school principal,
and a determined murderer in the richest town in America.
As Margaret's unwanted menstrual celebration party approaches she seems a typical thirteen-year-old of a fourth generation Mormon family. Except that her innocent boyfriend is facing jail, her girlfriend is sleeping with the notorious art teacher, Mr. Cylinder, and she fears that the next body which the police discover will be hers.
But Margaret has allies too: wealthy respectable Aunt Lena, who had been expelled from high school for selling marijuana; a disabled lawyer, her father; the Orisha God, Babaluaiye, her spiritual husband; and thirteen-year-old Randy who is the love of her life.
R. L. Rhyse is a former resident of Greenwich, Connecticut.
Margaret of Greenwich
by R. L. Rhyse
Introduction: "This book is mostly about me and how I was nearly murdered. But it also tells of Hillary's fixation with former President Clinton who lives nearby; and about the art teacher, Mr. Cylinder, who Laurie was sleeping with.
"Some events you may already know from Google News. But not the whole story since no one knows that except me and my husband, which no thirteen-year-old girl is supposed to have. Not even if she lives in one of those tiny Mormon towns along the Utah/Arizona border. And certainly not in Greenwich, Connecticut, the richest town in America where my family is one of the poorest.
"We survive on food stamps, the Mormon food bank, and my father's Social Security Disability payments. I get my clothes from the Salvation Army store closest to us, the one across the New York State border in Port Chester. My best clothes are the hand-me-downs from my seventeen-year-old sister. These were bought before my family's bad luck began though I'm not complaining.
"That my family wasn't always like this is also part of my story. And the rest, I must admit, will sound unbelievable but is true. Though if you won't believe me I can't imagine who you do trust since my family is fourth generation Mormon and we attend church religiously, to make a small pun.
"This is why, in the interest of honesty, I must also state something else. That if you're a boy you probably won't like this book since it has a lot about romance but no actual sex, two murders without a car chase, and very little about the zombie killer video game which Randy, my boyfriend, loves. And I doubt that you'll be interested in the details of my menstrual celebration party which even I didn't want to attend.
"Having said all this, like they say, it's time for me to raise the curtain and present the drama in which fate cast me a leading role. How a seventh grader from a dirt poor family battled poverty, her school principal, and a determined murderer in the richest town in America.
"Which I'll begin by telling about two boys: Randy, who is the nicest boy imaginable and the love of my life; and Brian, who boys call 'weird wheels,' which isn't nice at all."
Series in Order:
Book One: Margaret of Greenwich
Book Two: Margaret and Erika
Book Three: Margaret at War
Book Four: Margaret in Tokyo
Book Five: Margaret and Eve
Book Six: Margaret and Velda
Book Seven: Margaret and Emily
Book Eight: Margaret and Hillary
Book Nine: Margaret in London
Book Ten: Margaret at Barnard
Book Eleven: Margaret at Barnard/Part Two: Deliverance
Book Twelve: Margaret in Berlin
Book Thirteen: Margaret in Manhattan
Book Fourteen: Margaret and Venla
Book Fifteen: Margaret: Mother of Twins
Book Sixteen: Margaret in Moscow
Book Seventeen: Margaret and Randy
Book Eighteen: Margaret in Washington
Troubled Children/Troubled Parents: The Way Out 2nd Edition by Dr. Stanley Goldstein
"outstanding" - Publishers Weekly
"sober, readable perspective on troubled behavior" - Kirkus Reviews
"reassuring" - The Journal Gazette
"The work of a sensitive psychologist." - Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic
Dr. Stanley Goldstein IDENTIFIES the nine signals for concern which indicate distress in a child;
and the periods of natural childhood stress when your child must be unhappy. He EXPLAINS: how to diagnose your child's symptoms of distress, how to survive those times of stress, and the key techniques for successful parent intervention.
He DISCUSSES: the emotions naturally experienced by parents when their child is troubled; those times when parents are not enough; and what kind of help to expect from a psychotherapist. And he DESCRIBES some children who did not receive the kind of care they needed--until it was nearly too late.
Dr. Stanley Goldstein is an author and psychologist who has appeared on national broadcasts including The Larry King Show and Court TV. The first edition of this book was published by Atheneum (New York City).
Other books by Stanley Goldstein and published by Wyston Books, Inc., include: Shopping For a Shrink: Finding The Right Psychotherapist For Your Or Your Child, Mental Health In A Minute: One-Hundred and One, One-Minute Lessons To Improve Your Life, Through Children's Minds: The Marketing and Creation of Children's Products, Lies In Progress, Ghosts and Angels, and Park West. The first chapter of each of Dr. Goldstein's books and his Blog can be read at his website: www.drsanleygoldstein.com.
Excerpt From Chapter One of Troubled Children/Troubled Parents: The Way Out by Stanley Goldstein, Ph.D.
The Woman's Collection: A Razor and Pills and Rope
"Some years ago I was associated with a major mental health facility for children in the Midwest. On the staff of that clinic was an extraordinarily gifted child therapist, Dr. B. His skill in treating the most severely disturbed children was legendary. On occasion he also served as a consultant to adults with equally severe disorders.
"One day he agreed, as a favor to a colleague, to meet with a woman for several sessions only (for his work schedule was really filled). The woman came into his office and told him about her life. She was in her mid-thirties and had experienced immense emotional suffering since her earliest childhood. She spoke of her extensive efforts to remedy her difficulties: years of psychotherapy with countless practitioners, innumerable medications, electroconvulsive shock therapy, insulin shock therapy, all to no avail. Her life remained one of insufferable misery, totally lacking in warmth and social contact. So she decided to end her life, and came to Dr. B. to share with him the agony of her existence, to seek from him one reason why she should not commit suicide.
"Dr. B. had no doubt of the accuracy of the woman's description of her life; nor did he doubt that she intended to carry out her suicide upon leaving his office. And so he spoke to her simply, and with great care. He said, 'You have suffered greatly in your life. I would not tell you that you must continue to live, for such a commitment belongs to each individual alone. But I am not convinced that significant change cannot be effected in your life. If you will work with me and I come to believe that this is not true, that your suffering cannot be relieved, then I will obtain for you whatever drug you may desire to end your life so that you can finally achieve the peace you deserve.'
"The woman agreed to continue to see Dr. B., who found room for her in his impossibly busy schedule. On her next visit she brought to him for safekeeping those objects which were capable of causing her death and she had collected over the years: pills of various types, a razor, and a rope. Dr. B. put them into his desk drawer and said that if the day came when she wished their return he would give them to her.
"The woman and Dr. B. collaborated for several years, and there was some positive change in her life. But the day came when she felt that she could no longer endure her suffering. And so she asked Dr. B. for her objects, the razor and pills and rope which he had been holding for her. Dr. B. returned them. When she left his office he wept.
"Several days later the woman telephoned and entered into treatment with him once again. In the ensuing weeks they realized that her recently intensified desire to kill herself was a reaction against her growing realization that her life, unhappy though it was, had, through the caring and commitment of another person (Dr. B.), finally acquired a sense of meaning."
"After the bombing, when I closed my eyes, I heard the cries of the wounded and dying and saw the Prince’s tortured face. The foul stench of burnt flesh had permeated the room in this crime against Britain and humanity.
"Some of the survivors, though unscratched, were frozen in place by shock and unable to move. Body parts lay everywhere. I couldn’t keep my eyes off a severed arm. It lay palm up on the ground, perfect and relaxed. I felt nauseous and forced myself to swallow to keep from throwing up. From nowhere in the room could one escape the sight of what had happened.
"Tiny victims–a dark-haired baby boy in blue coveralls and a blond-haired girl in pink–lay still, their bodies torn and bloodied. They were later identified by small labels tied to their ankles.
"While describing the events to the detective, feelings had overwhelmed me. I felt as if I were recounting a battle that I was in the midst of fighting. My father held me but it was my mother that I needed. A mother’s binding love saves us from the reality of cruelty, I thought, but from the possibility of greatness too.
"These harsh memories had dimmed, as they do with the passage of time. Months later, while walking the streets of Greenwich, I suddenly realized that I had returned to where it all began and felt a new sensation: that I had survived and had power and could hope. Everything that was possible before remained possible—except for being the person that I had been. The innocent girl that existed was gone. Will I be her again? Was I ever her? I asked myself."
"Children are cherished in all societies but the same cannot be said of marketing and advertising professionals. And particularly not about those who market to children, an activity which many people consider unsavory and believe that the regulatory agencies should more vigorously confront.
"Moreover they insist, why should a company even bother to market to young people? They have minimal pocket money compared to adults, and behave inexplicably to their parents and less logically with strangers. If valid, these would be justified objections but they are not.
"The truth is that children like television commercials, which they consider thirty-second entertainment; and that they are far more sophisticated in their response to marketing than most people believe.
"And while children do present a far smaller market than adults, their spending money is in the multi-billions of dollars and has increased tenfold over the past fifty years.
"Children get money from their parents and relatives and the only people they have to spend it on is themselves. Adults have bills to pay but children only want to have fun. And while parents do buy most family products, children and particularly teenagers direct many of these purchases. Moreover, few parents will buy food which they are sure that their children will not eat, and children often determine the restaurant where the family eats.
"Furthermore, children who become familiar with a brand may, as adults, be faithful customers for their products and to a child, who is a new customer, all brands are novel and so the youth market is continually fresh.
"Shopping is an experience for children rather than an errand, an event and not a chore. And though often difficult to understand, there is a logic to children’s behavior which readers of this book will learn, along with guidelines to market and create products which children value.
"The belief that marketing to children is synonymous with exploitation is as false and simplistic as the notion that children believe all that they are told and are easily manipulated through advertising. Try telling that to the marketers of failed children’s products! They have learned that children are smart and that you can’t fool a child.
"The purpose of marketing is to provide a product which satisfies a need. This is, for children, to see the product and think “Wow!” Even if parents, who control the purse strings, like a product and consider it wholesome, their positive feelings can be offset by the whining influence which children have on parents.
"Through Children’s Minds provides insight into the marketing and creation of children's products. After reading this book you will understand: what children value and why; the buying behavior of children, and how children influence adult purchases; why some children's products, television programs, and commercials are more successful than others; marketing in the global children’s market; and the nature of market research with children.
"But behaving ethically is equally important for a company’s franchise is tenuous. If a children‘s product isn’t advertised accurately or the parent feels that the company is just selling products and doesn’t really care about their child, the child will be upset and their parents will be enraged, not only at that company but toward the entire industry.
"So because every child is someone’s child this book also includes ethical guidelines when marketing to children. These are crucial to consider to avoid causing harm, a public relations disaster, and possible government involvement.
"This book is intended for manufacturers, product designers, and marketers of products for children between the age of three and twelve years though there is some information about teenagers too.
"Readers who are seeking “recipes” to assure a successful product or marketing campaign will be disappointed for this is not possible. 'By the numbers' creation does not usually work, as evidenced by the reported statement of the Disney executive after the disappointing opening sales of their 2013 movie, The Lone Ranger: 'All the numbers looked good!'
"But while promising that your product will become a hit is not possible, combining the insights which you gained from this book together with your creative imagination will make your success more likely."
...at each epoch the world was lost, and at each epoch it was saved.
— Jacques Maritain
...on the subject of ghosts. I do not in the least pretend that such things cannot be.
— Charles Dickens
Paulie phoned me eleven months ago. When we last spoke nineteen years before, he had looked and sounded much like his present day namesake on The Sopranos though being shrewder and more talkative. He wanted to hire me.
“I'm not looking for a job.”
“It's not the typical freelance gig,” he told me, in his wheedling fashion which I still remembered. 'Think of it as being this year's mitzvah*'.
*Literally translated, a mitzvah is a commandment though the term is often loosely used to mean any act of human kindness which is intended to help one come closer to holiness and God. According to the teachings of Judaism, all moral laws derive from divine commandments of which there are six hundred and thirteen given in the Torah (the first five books of the Bible).
Hearing these words, I suddenly remembered my Italian grandmother's advice to be wary of non-Jews when they use Jewish expressions.
“Like the favor you did after that last meal at my house?”
“You have nothing to complain about,” he said, sounding hurt. Which was doubtful for no one had as thick a skin as Paulie. “You got an agent and book contract in three weeks. With Puzo's publisher too! How many new writers get that break?”
Though he knew that wasn't what I was referring to, Paulie was right. I still owed him and he had called to collect.
"How is Denise?” I asked. My ex-wife was no longer a painful subject for me.
“She's having our fifth child. Seventeen years to the month after our first,” Paulie proudly informed me. Removing Denise from my life was something else I owed him for: they running off together had ended our stormy marriage. Yet I still cared about her and was grateful to Paulie for making her happy. But I was puzzled why he called me now and pressed him about this.
“The manuscript of an autobiography badly needs editing. It's a rush job and my boss begs you to do it.”
“I'm a writer. There are plenty of editors around.”
“These pages need someone who thinks like the author. You both have doctorates. He's a mathematical physicist and Denise said you have a background in science.”
“College calculus and physics. My last books were thrillers with religious themes.”
“That's how we'll be marketing this book. And we'll say you're the author.”
Now I was really suspicious for no writer gives up credit for their work unless they absolutely must. I sprawled and prepared myself for a long story. “Tell me about it.”
“Read it first. Then give me your answer,” he pleaded. “There's no way to contact the author and I don't know how much of his story is true. But the manuscript sat for months on government desks waiting for clearance. Where it would still be except for the pressure from a senator who's also a minister. This is a touchy point.”
His congenial lie─that we must get together soon─followed, and our conversation ended. I agreed to read the book because, like I said, I owed him.
It arrived at my door the next day, four hundred pages held together by two large binder clips. It was typed and paginated but far from ready for publication, being undivided into chapters and written in that style typical of scientists who use multi-syllabic words where a small one would do. So after calling Paulie and agreeing on my fee, I created its chapters, shortened the sentences and simplified the language*, and took out all of the mathematics and most of the technical terms.
*Though all of this book has been cleared for publication by the required government agencies, I have left the original security classification of documents intact.
“Change the title. It's too long and will never sell,” Paulie had instructed me, and I did. But I anguished even as Ghosts and Angels went into production, feeling that the author's original description was more accurate: How, During an Epoch of Terror, Goodness Vanquished Evil and Restored Faith.
Of an earlier time, Anna Freud wrote about the power of the individual to battle tyranny, stating that "for every gang of evil-doers...there is always at least one
just man or woman ready to...sacrifice his or her own good for fellow-beings."
This book tells how, sixty years later when freedom again became threatened, it was saved by individuals: a wounded soldier, an orphaned girl, a dying minister, and perhaps another.
Despite Paulie's offer I left these pages unsigned, being unable to decide whether I wanted my name to be associated with this book. For I'm convinced it isn't possible that what the author described could have happened. Unless—unless—ghosts and angels do exist.
*Gardiner, Muriel (1983) Code Name “Mary”. New Haven: Yale University Press, p. xiii
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