House of Rougeaux wins 2019 Benjamin Franklin Award!

House of Rougeaux by Jenny Jaeckel was awarded the silver medal in Historical Fiction during the 2019 Benjamin Franklin Awards. This is a huge honor, and we thank IBPA for the award that marks independent excellence. Here’s the press release from IBPA.

House of Rougeaux is a gorgeous, emotional, and heart-wrenching family saga about enslaved islanders and their descendants. From the Caribbean, to Canada, to the US, and back, the Rougeaux family overcomes frightening odds and obstacles. Don’t miss this award-winning tale!

Find House of Rougeaux in Audio or Print wherever you get your books. The audiobook is narrated by Bahni Turpin, who has earned many awards for her performances including the 2018 Odyssey Award for The Hate U Give.

Jenny Jaeckel has won multiple awards for her graphic novel Spot 12: Five Months in the Neonatal ICU. House of Rougeaux is her fourth book and her first novel published. She’s currently working on a sequel to House of Rougeaux, and recently finished her second novel titled Eighteen. Find out more about Jaeckel and read her personal essays at www.jennyjaeckel.com.

Backlist Spotlight ~ From Ashes Into Light

Looking for that perfect tearjerker, a love-overcomes-evil epic? Check out From Ashes Into Light, a three-part historical paranormal #metoo  saga. Author Gudrun Mouw garnered seven awards for her debut novel From Ashes Into Light, including the silver medal in Inspirational Fiction from the Living Now Awards, and the winner of the International Book Awards in Visionary Fiction. Don’t miss Mouw’s lyrical prose and mind-bending journey that takes one soul through centuries of lives.

Synopsis

From Ashes into Light is a transpersonal tale of epic tragedy, spirituality, family, and personal redemption. It is told through three distinct voices: the haunting story of Ruth, a Jewish adolescent during Kristallnacht in World War II Austria, Saqapaya, a stalwart Native American from coastal California during the time of the Spanish conquest, and Friede Mai.

Friede is born during WW II to a Bavarian soldier and an East-Prussian mother. As those around her struggle with the inevitable chaos and paradox of war, young Friede opens her heart to gruesome enemies, at times helping her family members escape atrocities.

With war behind them, the Mai family immigrates to the US, where Friede, her veteran father and ex-refugee mother, struggle with reverberations of trauma, suspicion and prejudice. Upon leaving home, Friede meets her spiritual guide and confidant in her fiancé’s Rabbi, who helps her see that the voices from her past are teachers and the horrors of history also contain beacons of light.

Three electric characters weave a narrative of raw consciousness, a moving example of transforming the ripple of suffering through the incredible strength of vulnerability.

Gudrun Mouw Bio

At age 49, Gudrun Mouw spent a summer in Europe doing the initial research for From Ashes into Light (forthcoming for February 2016). Originally from Germany (she emigrated at age 7, and became a US citizen in 2001) her knowledge of German came in handy traveling in the former Czechoslovakia, the former East Germany, Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Especially provoking was her visit to Dachau, the former Jewish concentration camp now turned into a museum.

During the 12 years of writing and revising From Ashes into Light, Gudrun Mouw worked as a health-educator and a yoga/meditation teacher. She wrote the novel in the vacuum created by her only daughter attending college and moving away. She also weathered a divorce while working on the novel.

Gudrun Mouw

After failing to find a publisher for the manuscript, Mouw put the novel on the back burner. She continued writing poetry and worked on several non-fiction manuscripts. In January 2014, Mouw began working with the publisher Raincloud Press and published Wife of the House, a collection of poetry, in April 2014. Around the same time, Mouw sent her novel to her publisher, who found an editor for this unique and rich work. After yet another round of revisions, it was only after seeing the advance copies in late 2014, did the reality of publication finally start to sink in for the author, at the tender age of 70.

House of Rougeaux Publishes Today!

House of Rougeaux publishes today! A great team of people have come together for the last 18 months to make this happen. We’re finally here on the publication date, thanks to multiple editors, beta readers, marketing and publicity experts, an awesome designer and  a dream author.  The book is now out on shelves across the US and Canada. If you don’t see it at your local bookstore, just ask them to order it. House of Rougeaux is available through all the normal channels. Also, the audio version (narrated by Bahni Turpin) is available as a digital download or a CD set. Ask your local library to carry it, or order any version here.

We are honored that Foreword Reviews chose to feature House of Rougeaux on their Book of the Day Roundup for the current week. Their review of House of Rougeaux was published in their magazine in March, and it was pretty awesome. Here’s a snippet:

Perhaps the greatest achievement of the book is that in spite of the inescapable presence of slavery and prejudice, it isn’t really about either of these. Jenny Jaeckel’s House of Rougeaux  is about people—varied and fully realized individuals who make a flawed world their own.

Foreword Reviews

Also, Hello Giggles featured House of Rougeaux in their feature, Books Coming Out This Week and they offered this blurb:

House of Rougeaux is a multi-generational family saga. It begins on the Island of Martinique in 1785 and follows the descendants of African slaves over the next 200 years, one family member at a time. Read this one with a box of tissues, because every other page will move you to tears.

Hello Giggles

A very cute article appears on the UK magazine Female First called “10 Things I’d Like My Readers to Know About Me.” Where Jenny Jaeckel shares details of her quirky, artist’s brain. Check it out here.

Watch for more publicity this week, including Read it Forward & Bitch Media!

Raincloud Press Titles Receive the 2016 Best Book Awards

best_book_award_badgeThis is an especially good day at Raincloud Press. All three books that we published this year became finalists in the 2016 Best Book Awards! From Ashes Into Light is a finalist in both Fiction: New Age and Fiction: Visionary. For the Love of Meat: Nine Illustrated Stories is a finalist for Fiction: Short Stories. And Spot 12: Five Months in the Neonatal ICU is a finalist in Comics: Graphic Novel.

From_Ashes_Into_Light_Award_Cover_90This is a huge honor for us! It’s great to have the talent of our authors, Gudrun Mouw and Jenny Jaeckel, acknowledged in this way. For Gudrun Mouw and her debut novel From Ashes Into Light, this is her third award. Although her reviews on Goodreads have been mixed, the award judges are picking this book again and again. There really is nothing like From Ashes Into Light: spiritual fiction about some of the world’s biggest tragedies and a soul who reincarnates through the ages. The narrative is poetic and shifts between four main characters, making it perhaps a little complicated for those used to genre fiction.

Our lead title for Fall of 2016 is Spot 12: Five Months in the Neonatal ICU. The Best Book Award is the first award for this title and we are thrilled. Spot 12 is an adult comic book about the author Jenny Jaeckel’s time in the NICU with her newborn who was born with a genetic condition. The baby Asa survives a harrowing first five months. Spot 12 is getting great reviews and by word of mouth is transforming how friends, families and strangers are viewing the NICU experience.

For the Love of Meat: Nine Illustrated Stories by Jenny Jaeckel got squeezed out of it’s summer publication spot so that Raincloud Press could transfer all our titles to a new distributor (Small Press United). For the Love of Meat was published in October alongside Spot 12, but without the same media attention. That wasn’t the original plan. But some books gain notice after slowly building fans, and this is what For the Love of Meat will probably do. Some of the biggest fans of this collection of short stories are librarians, who can appreciate the Latin flavor of this multicultural and multinational collection.

meat_front_3_small-copyWhat’s Next

We had a few titles scheduled for 2017, but I’ve pulled those to make room for House of Rougeaux, Jenny Jaeckel’s debut novel now scheduled for the beginning of 2018. This is a novel of a lifetime and we need a whole year to midwife our precious manuscript. Thanks go out to our test readers who are bouncing up and down with excitement over this title, and also managing to give insightful and helpful feedback. Next step, professional editing and cover mock-ups. Advance copies should be ready by June 2017.

Raincloud Press is publishing quality literature, inclusive literature and narratives that feed the best of what people have to offer: Community, love, overcoming oppression, humor, racial and spiritual tolerance and harmony, and an LGBTQ supportive environment. Something about that feels so radical right now. And I just can’t put my finger on why…

 

 

Spot 12 ~ Published at Last

img_1254We have been very busy all summer getting ready for the publication of Jenny Jaeckel’s two latest books: Spot 12: Five Months in the Neonatal ICU and For the Love of Meat: Nine Illustrated Stories. Two very different books that ended up publishing in the same month because of delays over the summer.

If you need some recommendations for Spot 12, Jaeckel’s memoir about her baby who spent 5 months in the NICU because of a congenital condition, see this review from the blog tour: Lovely Bookshelf. Or you can go to www.spot12book.com for a list of about 12 reviews that went up during our blog tour that just ended today.

For the Love of Meat is Jaeckel’s first collection of short stories and reading it is like taking a mini-holiday around the globe. We did a review campaign on Amazon, getting advance copies in the hands of reviewer, and you can read the reviews if you want to hear what people are saying. Of course, both books are on Jaeckel’s Goodreads page, which is always a great place to go to decide whether you want to read a book or not.

As the publisher, October was very demanding. I’ll be glad to put my feet a little up in the coming months. But there’s not too much time for rest, because Jaeckel’s first novel is out to the first batch of test readers. After the next rewrite, I’ll be getting together with our editor, cover designer and publicist to begin to get House of Rougeaux in shape to be published in March 2018.

Yikes! That’s a long time from now! But the better the book, the longer it takes to come out because everything has to be just so. I won’t say anything more, except that this is an amazing full-length novel.

Visionary Novel Wins Silver Medal in Inspirational Fiction

livingnowaward-copyRaincloud Press Author Gudrun Mouw just won Living Now Awards silver medal for Inspirational Fiction. The Living Now Awards are in their 8th season and were created to celebrate books that “enhance the quality of our lives.” We are honored that the Living Now Awards saw fit to bestow From Ashes Into Light a medal. It means a lot to our team and to the author to have this moment of recognition. Thank you Living Now Awards!

For those of you who haven’t heard of From Ashes Into Light, it’s a visionary novel about overcoming great adversity and prejudice, and it takes place over the course of 200 years. From Ashes Into Light is available in hardcover through any bookstore. If it’s not in stock, it can be ordered since it’s available through all the wholesalers. The novel will be available in softcover at the end of November.

Here’s a link to the award announcement at Living Now Awards.

Here’s a link to the order page to order From Ashes Into Light directly from IPG.

Here’s a link to Gudrun Mouw’s blog.

Description of From Ashes Into Light

From Ashes into Light is a transpersonal tale of epic tragedy, spirituality, family, and personal redemption. It is told through three distinct voices: the haunting story of Ruth, a Jewish adolescent during Kristallnacht in World War II Austria, Saqapaya, a stalwart Native American from coastal California during the time of the Spanish conquest, and Friede Mai.

Friede is born during WW II to a Bavarian soldier and an East-Prussian mother. As those around her struggle with the inevitable chaos and paradox of war, young Friede opens her heart to gruesome enemies, at times helping her family members escape atrocities.

With war behind them, the Mai family immigrates to the US, where Friede, her veteran father and ex-refugee mother, struggle with reverberations of trauma, suspicion and prejudice. Upon leaving home, Friede meets her spiritual guide and confidant in her fiancé’s Rabbi, who helps her see that the voices from her past are teachers and the horrors of history also contain beacons of light.

Three electric characters weave a narrative of raw consciousness, a moving example of transforming the ripple of suffering through the incredible strength of vulnerability.