Faculty Author Reception at Muhlenberg College

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I am honored to have been invited to participate in Muhlenberg College’s Faculty Author Reception today at Trexler Library. This lovely event is hosted by Trexler Library and the Office of the Provost.

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GallowsHillFinalCoverEbook

Gallows Hill can be found here in ebook.

Gallows Hill in paperback can be found here.

An interview about Gallows Hill can be found here.

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Please follow the following links to find my novel:

ebook

Print book

Thank you!

The book trailer:

Maledicus:Investigative Paranormal Society Book I

My radio interview:

interview

FOE_Cover_French

 

Available on Amazon

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My New Journey Into Social Media!

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It has been suggested to me that I have an Instagram account, especially to try to reach younger readers. I tried a while ago, but I never did anything with it. So now, I am trying again. I have only begun, and I have done 3 posts so far. As I said, this is a beginning.

I can be found on instagram here:

@charlesfrenchauthor

Thank you to anyone who follows!

 

 

GallowsHillFinalCoverEbook

Gallows Hill can be found here in ebook.

Gallows Hill in paperback can be found here.

An interview about Gallows Hill can be found here.

32570160

Please follow the following links to find my novel:

ebook

Print book

Thank you!

The book trailer:

Maledicus:Investigative Paranormal Society Book I

My radio interview:

interview

FOE_Cover_French

 

Available on Amazon

Quotations on Education

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“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

                                                                         Mahatma Gandhi

 

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“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

                                                                         Nelson Mandela

 

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“Whatever the cost of our libraries, the price is cheap compared to that of an ignorant nation.”

                                                                        Walter Cronkite

Happy Halloween–Blessed Samhain!

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I want to wish everyone both a Happy Halloween and a Blessed Samhain!

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(http://lubuntu.me/blessed-samhain/)

On the pre-Christian Celtic calendar, October 31 was Samhain, pronounced Soo-when or Sow-when, and it marked the day when the world of the living and dead where at the closest. It is also the end of year, with November 1 as the start of the next year. This day is one of the most important Gaelic/Celtic/Pagan/Wiccan/Druidic holidays of the year!  And please do not worry about the devil–he is not a part of Samhain. There is nothing evil here.

Samhain/Halloween is a day to remember those who have passed and to think of the future.

So, enjoy the day, dress up, have candy, party, and raise a toast and wish all a Happy New Year!

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(https://pixabay.com)

GallowsHillFinalCoverEbook

Gallows Hill can be found here in ebook.

Gallows Hill in paperback can be found here.

An interview about Gallows Hill can be found here.

32570160

Please follow the following links to find my novel:

ebook

Print book

Thank you!

The book trailer:

Maledicus:Investigative Paranormal Society Book I

My radio interview:

interview

FOE_Cover_French

 

Available on Amazon

I Stand With The Jewish Community

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(https://pixabay.com)

Today we have seen the commission of a horrible act of terrorism and murder committed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. A shooter opened fire inside a synagogue and killed 11 and injured 6 others. I am not sure if those horrific numbers will increase–I hope they do not.

It must be said without any doubt that this was an anti-Semitic, racist, bigoted, and fascist act, that also is chillingly reminiscent of acts in Germany during the 1930s. In our current political climate, in which hatred is growing, and in which guns are easily available to anyone, including some people who have no business having them, such horrors occur far too frequently. This was an act of hatred by a racist, an extreme right winger.

People of all political views, at least those who are sane, must oppose these increases in hate. There are no excuses, no justifications, and no political spins that can reduce the culpability of a political culture that has lead to the massive increase of both shootings and attacks on places of worship, especially of people in the minority in the United States. These actions indicate a growing and disturbing trend towards fascism, and it must be opposed. My parents were of the generation that fought against totalitarianism by Japan and Germany and Italy. They did not sacrifice so much so that our country can slide into fascist attitudes. We must never forget the lessons of the horrors of the 20th Century, especially the Holocaust and World War Two.

Freedom and democracy demand that reasonable people, who can certainly disagree with how to fix problems in the United States of America, unite to oppose this disturbing trend.

Again, I am horrified by this shooting, and I feel great sadness for the Jewish people who suffered from this attack–the dead, the wounded, and their families and friends.

It is not enough to offer thoughts and prayers.

This must never happen again.

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Favorite Horror Films: The Curse Of The Werewolf: revisited

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(https://en.wikipedia.org)

The decade of the 1960s saw the production of many horror films, some fairly standard offerings and some innovative. In 1961, Hammer Studios continued the re-imagining of classic horror characters, which they had begun with The Curse of Frankenstein and The Horror of Dracula, in the release of The Curse of the Werewolf. 

Movie audiences in 1961 were still very aware of the image of Universal Studios’ The Wolfman and its assorted sequels with Lon Chaney Jr. as Larry Talbot, the unfortunate and reluctant lycanthrope. Talbot, a good man, was cursed to become a killing monster after having been bitten by a werewolf while attempting, unsuccessfully, to save a girl from its attack. This cinematic image was one that would be very difficult to alter for the horror viewing audience.

While not making viewers forget Lon Chaney Jr. and Larry Talbot, The Curse of the Werewolf, directed by Terence Fisher, did establish new cinematic territory in this often overlooked, but important, film. This film, unlike its Universal predecessors, which were made primarily in black and white and influenced heavily by German Expressionism, is shot in color and features an almost blond werewolf in an extremely effective makeup and, for the time, a great deal of blood.

The star of this film, in his first movie, is Oliver Reed, who would go on to have a long and productive career as a film actor. Set in 18th Century Spain, the film bases its lycanthropy  on the juxtaposition of two events: Leon is the result of a peasant girl being raped, and he is born on Christmas Day, which was considered a very unlucky event. Leon is raised by a kindly man, but when puberty hits, besides the normal changes in his body, he becomes literally a monster.  What would Freud have to say about that?

Just as religion plays a part in his curse, so does it in his death. His step-father, a kindly man becomes the agent of his release. His step-father has a silver bullet made from a cross.  He shoots Leon with it, while his step-son is in the form of the monster; thus, he  destroys the werewolf and release’s Leon’s soul, but it also fills his step-father with deep grief.

Like the previous Hammer productions, this film continues with its exploration of sex and violence, going further than that which had been seen in the Universal films. While tame in sexual depictions by our contemporary standards, it was shocking to many audiences of the time.

From a critical perspective, this film also introduces an element of class critique. The young woman who is raped at the beginning of the film comes from abject poverty at the lowest level of the class structure, and the man who puts her in the cell, setting up the circumstances for the attack, is a Marques, a Spanish nobleman. Clearly, the film indicts the abuse of power and the class inequity of that time. If this were an academic paper, I would focus heavily on the class critique, but I simply wanted to draw attention to it briefly in this post.

The Curse of the Werewolf was another successful entry in Hammer Studios’ new cycle of horror films, although unlike the Dracula and Frankenstein movies, it would not generate a run of sequels. On its own, however, it rates as a film of importance in the horror genre.

Overall, if you have not seen this film, I give it a very strong recommendation.

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(https://pixabay.com)

 

GallowsHillFinalCoverEbook

Gallows Hill can be found here in ebook.

Gallows Hill in paperback can be found here.

An interview about Gallows Hill can be found here.

32570160

Please follow the following links to find my novel:

ebook

Print book

Thank you!

The book trailer:

Maledicus:Investigative Paranormal Society Book I

My radio interview:

interview

FOE_Cover_French

 

Available on Amazon

Guest Post: Introducing the Educated Wanderer!

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I am very proud to have a former student of mine and her business partner present this guest post about their travel company. I hope all of you enjoy this post and consider using their business!

Charles French

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(Educated Wanderer)

Hello everyone!

Allow us to introduce ourselves. My name is Laura Pezzulich. My partner Creed Hyatt and I run our company, Educated Wanderer. We are based out of Allentown, Pennsylvania and have been around since 2015, though we have been leading travel groups for the past 12 years. As philosophers and avid travelers, our life’s work has grown into creating small group travel experiences to places that we want to or love to visit. The idea is to design trips that WE want to go on in hopes that other like-minded individuals will be interested to join us. Of course, this means there are certain preferable criteria each of our trips must meet as we plan our travel. Aside from the all-inclusive price which includes airfare, accommodations, admissions fees, transportation, and more, the kinds of experiences we incorporate into our travel are reading, culture, food, local spirits, and freedom to explore. I want to emphasize that education is what makes travel useful and that education truly encompasses all of these criteria.

Allow me to explain. By education, we do not mean simply learning the history of a place through reading or guided tours, though they are absolutely necessary pieces of the puzzle. What we mean by education is taking the culmination of experiences you will have, reflecting on how they challenge and make you feel, thereby learning something more about the world and its people, but most significantly learning something about yourself. This kind of knowledge sneaks up on you. It is not easily acquired, however our philosophy of travel is rooted in a belief of the zenith of the tangible and the intangible, the describable and the ineffable, of which we know will change ways you interpret everything. We feel comfortable claiming that we know this because we speak from our own experience and the experiences of those we have traveled with in the past. We want to help you understand your own experiences, just as any good teacher will do.

The problem that interferes with such understanding is life, which typically includes a list of duties we must perform to maintain a comfortable living situation. There is nothing inherently wrong about that. When we are at our jobs and at home we tend to be doing things for other people, thus we often neglect our spiritual and emotional needs, as we do not actively challenge our routines. That is where we come in. Creed and I want to give you the opportunity to disconnect from the usual to make room for connecting with your Self. At Educated Wanderer, we do not take you on vacations. Our job is not merely to show you a good time, regardless of the fact that we do indeed have an utterly fantastic time! Rather, we find it to be our duty to encourage and facilitate learning experiences for people because the most meaningful part of our work is people and cultivating a sense of community. Essentially . . . you.

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(Educated Wanderer)

To that end, we have designed four trips scheduled during the year 2019 to Italy, Spain, Iceland, and Germany. Please visit our website at http://www.educatedwanderer.com for more information. Scroll through our online library of relevant texts to help acquaint you with your intended destination. If you have questions please call us, email us or visit our office. If you are really old-school, we also respond to carrier pigeons or balled up pieces of paper thrown at us while we walk down the street. We absolutely love talking with people about our travel ideas and about your travel dreams! We hope to hear from you and we hope you will join us in 2019!

Call: 6104625886

Email: laura@educatedwanderer.com or creed@educatedwanderer.com

In-person Appointment: 707 N. 4th Street, Studio 106, Allentown, PA 18102

Don’t forget to like us on social media for travel updates and news!

Facebook: facebook.com/educatedwanderer

Instagram: @educatedwanderer

Twitter: @eduwanderer