Sunacumen Books and Consulting

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No Way to Win – by Marjorie Pinkerton Miller. Published by Sunacumen Press (2017)

Her mother said this was how to get ahead. Sandra had intended to prove her wrong. A romance for smart girls, this sequel to One Way to Succeed continues the story of the loves and lives of the people at the Casa de Buen Dia.  When Buen Dia’s hotel management arm announces it needs a new manager, it offers Sandra the perfect opportunity to get her career back on track. But when she interviews for the job, Sandra senses that Brian, the man in charge of hiring, is interested in more than her credentials. Meanwhile, Brian’s brother Nathan, who was left out of their mother’s will, comes back to ask for a favor that Brian feels he can’t refuse: interviewing Nathan’s girlfriend for the job.  Will Brian finally accept that she is the best candidate, despite his attraction to her?

Hacienda: A South American Romance – by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2014)

Monica has spent two years in therapy to rid herself of the guilt she feels over how she responded to her husband’s sudden death. When she receives an offer to buy a troubled Colonial hacienda in Bolivia, her friends decide to join her in renovating the old estancia into a bed and breakfast.  Not knowing what to expect, the women are first shocked at the horrible condition of the hacienda and then face harrowing challenges-both political and physical. A scion of a brutal tin-baron family threatens to assert his right to the hacienda, although his motives are inscrutable. A series of murders inch closer and closer to the hacienda and people involved with it. And when a jaundiced policeman and an enigmatic bureaucracy put the entire project on hold, they face the possibility of running out of money and time before they finish.

Professional Lies – by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2015)

Nothing attracts donors like headlines … as long as they don’t include the letters FBI.

Sidney Stapleton had won five LPGA tournaments, and as a tall, graceful beauty, she was the Tour cameramen’s favorite, even when she wasn’t winning. A car accident ends her professional golf career, she marries a Seattle millionaire and starts a charity for young women. But Sidney craves her lost celebrity, and as her marriage falters and her charity doesn’t attract donations, sports agent Peter hires her as a high-end escort, bringing in thousands of dollars for her cause. Now the risks and costs of her illicit activities are piling up, and Sidney stands to lose both her credibility as a philanthropist and the first true love of her life.

One Way to Succeed – by Marjorie Pinkerton Miller. Published by Sunacumen Press (2016)

She wanted a career. He wanted her. Could they both succeed?

Amy’s career aspirations have been put on hold by her TV-anchor boyfriend who has been moving from town to town, up the network ladder. In Palm Springs, they finally break up, and he leaves for Los Angeles. Now she is intent on leaving waitressing jobs behind and finding a job she can be proud of that will finally set her on a career path. Meanwhile, Rick needs a new administrative assistant and a chief operating officer at his real estate development company, Casa de Buen Dia, which creates little boutique hotels in this trendy desert city.

Thwack! – by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2015)

Astrophysicist Cetacea Whitholm looks the very picture of success with a best-selling textbook on the origins of the moon, a handsome young philosophy professor for a husband, and a nice Tudor home on Prof Hill. Recognizing that she is at the probable end of a sometimes illustrious, sometimes mediocre career, Cetacea is tortured by the unrealized ambitions of her youth that spoil any chance of enjoying an easy semi-retirement as an emeritus professor. When her second husband is murdered in their basement, she is the prime suspect, and she realizes she is running out of time to resolve her life's issues. Could she have committed the heinous crime, or was she framed by the moon goddess Basina, the odd, yet brilliant mathematician in the astrology department?

Putt for Show – by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2013)

Lena Bettencourt, stuck in mid-management at one of America's most mediocre companies, jettisons her job and devotes more than a year of her life to competitive golf.

Drive for Dough – by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2014)

Just when she is finally establishing her credibility as a CEO in the Internet world, Lena Bettencourt faces the worst kind of crisis for an online-company executive: a hacker who threatens her customers’ credit card information. 

John Nickoli: An emigrant's return to the Land of the Midnight Sun - a memoir by John Jacobson - Published by Sunmemoir Press (2017)

Limited release "Family and Friends" publication. Not for sale. 48-pages, full color cover, b&w interior, limited print-run.

Bluewater Gold Rush - by Tom Kendrick. Originally published by Azalea Press, 2007, reformated and republished in 2018 by Tom Kendrick and Sunacumen Press

The Odyssey of a California Sea Urchin Diver

A beautifully written memoir about the lifestyle and characters in the sea urchin diving communities of Santa Barbara and Santa Rosa, California, in the mid 1980s to mid-1990s. Sunacumen reformatted and edited the interior for print-on-demand so this lovely story can continue to be enjoyed by generations to come--generations that will never have the opportunity to experience this lifestyle and enterprise.

Kameleona – by Judith Fabris. Published by Valdesol Press (2017)

Running from a life of crime, Jack Metzger flees Singapore. Landing on the small Hawaiian island of Molokai, he steals a dead doppleganger’s identity to hide from those chasing him. After tossing the body of minister Paul Kanga into the ocean to the sharks, he adapts to his new role as pastor of the Good News Church. Over the years, he improves the lives of his congregation. The people of Molokai come to him with their problems. He is befriended by the stalwart residents of Molokai he came to the island to help destroy, Malia and Mike Palani. Jack’s personal demons and vivid dreams of the past plague him. Meanwhile, he must keep his old navy buddy, a mean town drunk, from harming the Palanis. In the end, will the community that has trusted and embraced the new Paul forgive his deceit? Will he find redemption, or has Jack succeeded only in constructing a tower of lies that will eventually prove to be the scaffolding of his own reckoning? (Sunacumen cover, interior, copyedit.)

 despite his benevolent and successful new life, Jack’s personal demons and vivid dreams of the pas

My Mother is Losing Her Memory and I Am Losing My Mind - by Kathleen Bjork, Published by Birch Tree Publications (2017).

A memoir of caring for a mother with Alzheimer's.  Sunacumen reformated and re-edited the book for distribribution on Print-On-Demand platforms. 

The Claire Stories – by Rose Baldwin. Sunacumen Press as publishing consultant (2016)

These vivid, connected short stories invite you into the always surprising, slightly twisted mind of a woman who faces her dotage with uncommon sense and humor.

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The Johnson Station Novels

Gracie’s Revolution –  by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2016)

Tiny Johnson Station, Iowa, is dying, but Gracie Jensen, the town librarian, sees its potential for revitalization, even if the local established leaders don't seem to care enough to try. Meanwhile, one of the old guard--ambitious politician Gregory Thungaard--fights to turn back the clock and buck the town's growing diversity. As Gracie loses hope in her battle to save Johnson Station, she discovers a secret that could kill Gregory's political career, but revealing it would betray the teenager she's taken under her wing. Setting a heartwarming example of resilience, Gracie starts a revolution that will change the town and the people in it.

Jackie's Campaign -- by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2017)

The Sequel to Gracie’s Revolution: The battle for the soul of Johnson Station, Iowa, is far from over. The old guard thought that Gracie’s departure from the library meant their power over the town was once again secure. But then Jackie joins the revolution Gracie started when she signs on as campaign manager an old flame, Armand, in his race for mayor. She now has a chance to help forge a brighter future for the town, but it will mean postponing the inevitable end to her marriage, keeping her sons’ troubles out of the public eye,  hiding her identity as the town blogger, and tamping down her attraction Armand until the election is over. Can she prove she is the brave person she was once declared to be?

If Not for Music - by Brooks Coleman with Marj Charlier, Published by Sunmemoir Press (2018)

There was a time when Brooks Coleman's expectations were like that of every other kid in his Southern California neighborhood - get out of school, get a job as good as his dad's and spent the rest of his life pushing a broom or manning a shovel. But from the time he started playing violin, his destiny was altered by his aptitude and love for music, and Brooks' story became the quintessential American tale of a poor kid raising in a large family who, without encouragement or planning, goes to the Air Force, continues on to college, starts a family, earns a doctorate degree and ultimately enjoys a successful career in education. Eventually, though, he comes back to the one thing that made all this possible - his music. 

Theme and Variations: Musical Notes by a Neurologist - by Carl Ellenberger, M.D. Published by Sunacumen Press (November 2018)

A fascinating glimpse into the mysterious workings of music on the human brain: Part neuroscience, part memoir, Dr. Ellenberger makes the latest evidence about how we process music in our mind accessible to every reader. Through his own experiences, the author, a musician and neuroscientist, shows how he came to understand the importance of music in his life - in all of our lives - revealing a number of surprises that will fascinate physicians, musicians, and the music-loving public alike. Music, Dr. Ellenberger tells us, is an affirmative medium that stimulates us to imagine and embrace our fullest human potential.

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Better than 

Marcia's Revenge - by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2018)

The sweetest revenge is the one you never see coming.  Since she was a young girl, Marcia knew she couldn't stay in tiny Johnson Station, Iowa, and have a great career. Now, unjustly fired from the town's only bank, she yearns for a job - somewhere - that will cap off her professional life with the patina of success. Waylaid by her friend's need for help in turning around the town's economic stagnation, she is torn between contributing to its revitalization and accepting a job offer in Seattle. A financial disaster weights in on the side of the job in Seattle, but a personal tragedy postpones her decision. As she grows to understand her stake in her hometown's survival, Marcia discovers bringing people together can be the best revenge against those who aim to tear them apart.

Better Than Fiction by Marj Charlier. Published by Sunacumen Press (2019)

The workbook that accompanies the Better Than Fiction memoir workshops presented by the author in Southern California's Inland Empire and in the Midwest, this volume provides short lessons and exercises designed to help the novice memoir writer jump-start the story they've always wanted to write.  Starting with a discussion about "what is memoir," the workbook provides practical advice on how to choose the theme for memoir, the importance of transformation in a story from a life, and provides tips on the craft of writing. Not just for workshop attendees, the workbook can be used for self-study by anyone who wants to investigate the possibility of leaving a legacy of stories for friends and family. Available for sale through only and at Better Than Fiction workshops.