Award-winning Celebrity Skincare Entrepreneur Jean Pierre Releases Powerful New Memoir on the Uphill Climb to Personal & Professional Success

TORONTO – Feb. 3, 2021  — On February 27th, Jamaican-Canadian Icon and Skin Care Guru Jean Pierre is set to release a bold new memoir entitled Uphill Climb. The book details Pierre’s inspirational journey as a healthcare practitioner, entrepreneur, international public speaker and creator of the popular Obsidian Skincare line. Uphill Climb delves into Pierre’s deeply personal health struggles as a two-time cancer survivor and the difficult experience that almost claimed her life. It celebrates Pierre’s cultural roots, her pure grit and determination to succeed and her audacious pursuit of new innovations in skincare and self-care to help others heal from the inside out.

Pierre, who is also the founder of Jean Pierre Aesthetics & Spa Inc., wrote Uphill Climb after having time to reflect during the COVID-19 pandemic on all the challenges that she encountered and overcame in her career. Pierre said she was motivated to write with a specific audience in mind, “I hope this book will inspire young Black women to pursue their chosen paths. I share my story for women who have reached a glass ceiling, are not feeling satisfied where they are and want to start their own businesses.” Pierre understands the trials that come from an entrepreneur’s battle to move from obscurity to making a name for oneself—while protecting the mission of leaving a positive impact on those they encounter.

Pierre, who never met a challenge that she was afraid to take on, approaches business as she does many of the circumstances life has thrown her way. She dares not take the easy way out. In the book, Pierre recalls an instance where a male client offered to invest $30,000 in her business. The offer came at a time when she struggled as an entrepreneur. Pierre instead turned down the enticing offer and decided to pursue her own path forward. The decision proved favorable because a few months later, the investor began ordering his favorite Obsidian Skincare products from prison. In Uphill Climb, readers will also learn what fueled Pierre’s brave decision to turn down a lucrative contract with a popular American cosmetics brand to mass-produce her Obsidian Skincare line.

It is experiences like that which make the skincare luminary’s story so striking and stirring. Uphill Climb is ladened with wisdom and courage. It shows Pierre’s fearlessness to achieve the life that she envisioned. Her stories are bound by an experience of faith, ambition and the quest to seek contentment at every stage of her journey. Uphill Climb will not only serve as a chronicle of resilience and hope, but it will also serve as a guide for every woman who knows there is greater.

The book is a page-turner that beautifully balances the unpredictability of life with the call and pursuit of destiny. “You know how and where your journey began, but you do not know where or how it will end. Things do not always go the way you plan or expect, but it is essential not to take your eyes off the ball,” said Pierre.

Uphill Climb was produced by Dawn James, Managing Director of Publish and Promote.

It is scheduled for release on Saturday, February 27, 2021, on Amazon.com.

To learn more about Jean Pierre please visit www.jeanpierrespa.com.

Contact
Henton Jones Media LLC
kaliah@hentonjonesmedia.com

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

Book Cover for The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

The Kingkiller Chronicle: Day One

Book Review
Title: The Name of the Wind
Author:  Patrick Rothfuss
Publisher: Daw Books, Inc.
Released: April 1, 2008
Pages: 736
ISBN-10: 0756404746
ISBN-13: 978-0756404741
Stars:  4.0

The synopsis for The Name of the Wind on Amazon reads: “The riveting first-person narrative of a young man who grows to be the most notorious magician his world has ever seen. From his childhood in a troupe of traveling players, to years spent as a near-feral orphan in a crime-ridden city, to his daringly brazen yet successful bid to enter a legendary school of magic, The Name of the Wind is a masterpiece that transports readers into the body and mind of a wizard. It is a high-action novel written with a poet’s hand, a powerful coming-of-age story of a magically gifted young man, told through his eyes: to read this book is to be the hero.”

The journey begins on an evening in a small village at the Waystone Inn on Felling Night where locals gather to listen to Old Cob’s stories about the most famous wizard ever known, Taborlin the Great, who had been locked in a tower and stripped of his tools by a mysterious group of seven supernatural beings known as The Chandrian. The young innkeeper is a quiet man with flame-red hair and dark green eyes who listens without comment to the tale. We learn that the locals not only believe in demons but that they appear to be lurking in their midst when a man named Carter walks in, smeared with blood, and tells them that his horse has been killed by a monstrous spider-like creature known as a Scrael, that is only one of many that threaten the townspeople. Thus begins our initiation into the fully realized medieval world of Rothfuss’ creation, known as the Four Corners of Civilization, in which something wicked this way comes, magic is not only possible but practiced, and iron kills demons.

The Name of the Wind is narrated by the protagonist, Kote, (a man who is known by many different names) as he tells the story of his life to a scribe called Chronicler, while his servant, apprentice, and friend, Bast, a dark, charming ladies man who calls Kote by the name Reshi, listens. Kote revisits his adventurous and often tragic past when he was known by his real name, Kvothe, and how as a teenager of 15, the poor but brilliant orphan that he was managed to get accepted into the University (the aforementioned legendary school of magic), to study to become a Master Arcanist.

While I thoroughly enjoyed this beautifully written epic fantasy story by Patrick Rothfuss – which won a Quill Award and became a New York Times Bestseller – I thought it would be more “high-action” than it actually is. One must be patient with this slow burn of a tale, as this book is the first in a trilogy that has not yet been completed, even though The Name of the Wind was published in 2007. I will definitely read volume two of The Kingkiller Chronicles, The Wise Man’s Fear, this year.

For me, this book is about the art of storytelling, the love of knowledge and music, as well as one man’s quest to find his way back to who he once was. The fact that the main character, Kvothe, does not initiate the quest, but rather his Fae friend Bast does, is something the reader doesn’t know until the end. Bast is my favourite character and I look forward to anything else that Rothfuss has to share with readers about him. He should have his own book if you ask me, but as fans of these books have already been waiting for 14 years for the last book in the trilogy, I won’t hold my breath.

I am truly intrigued and invested in the story of Kvothe, who I adore, although I was hoping for more magic, and at least some sex in this book. However, one of the things I love most about The Name of the Wind is the fact that Kvothe respects women and that there are no less than four significant women in his life, so far: Denna, Devi, Fela, and Auri, who are all interesting and complex characters. Auri even earned her own story in The Slow Regard of Silent Things. His story begins when he is a young boy, but the romance of this tale is both palpable and restrained and Kvothe’s restraint was as excruciating for me as it was for him.

That being said, it is Bast’s words that deeply moved me, in this part on page 716:

“No, listen. I’ve got it now. You meet a girl: shy, unassuming. If you tell her she’s beautiful, she’ll think you’re sweet, but she won’t believe you. She knows that beauty lies in your beholding.” Bast gave a grudging shrug. “And sometimes that’s enough.”

His eyes brightened. “But there’s a better way. You show her she is beautiful. You make mirrors of your eyes, prayers of your hands against her body. It is hard, very hard, but when she truly believes you…” Bast gestured excitedly. “Suddenly the story she tells herself in her own head changes. She transforms. She isn’t seen as beautiful. She is beautiful, seen.”

I think the reason that I love this passage so much is that I experienced that very thing only once in my life, and it has remained one of the most profound experiences of it. Kvothe states that there are seven words that will make a woman fall in love, and there are many possibilities within these pages but no definitive declaration. For me, they are, “I love you for who you are.”

Like it is written on the back cover jacket of this book, this “is a tale of sorrow, a tale of survival, a tale of one man’s search for meaning in his universe, and how that search, and the indomitable will that drove it, gave birth to a legend.” It’s a story that contains adventure, magic, monsters, friendship, a nemesis, romance, heroism, and heartbreak, and for me, all the best stories do.

I can’t wait to find out what happens next. 

“The Matrix” a Poem by Christine Bode

Lonely Is The Man Without Love
Painting by Karl Kenda; owned and photographed by Larry Samson

The Matrix

by Christine Bode

Everett,
in the movie Paterson says, 
after pulling a fake gun on everyone in the bar, 
“Without love, what reason is there for anything?”
I don’t know, Everett… nothing, 
not a fucking thing that matters anyway.
Without love, every day is the same damn pandemic day.
Wake up, walk the dog, 
make coffee, 
drink coffee, read a book,
do housework, 
work at the computer, walk the dog, eat lunch, 
work at the computer some more…
Make dinner, eat it, 
walk the dog, 
maybe phone a friend, 
watch Netflix, 
go to bed.
Get up the next day and 
do it all over again…
in pain.
For what?
How many useless facts can I hold in my head? 
I forget more than I learn, 
every day, 
so little of it matters.
Without love, 
there’s no reason for anything.
Without love, 
every day’s a pandemic day.
Without love…
we don’t really exist.
It’s all just the matrix.

Thank you, Jim Jarmusch, for the inspiration.

Sultans of String Interactive Zoom Concert #5 – Lockdown Smackdown on January 23, 2021

Happy New Year friends, I don’t know about you, but this new lockdown is making us feel a little too isolated…Therefore announcing our Sultans of String Livestream January 23, 8:00 pm EST Livestream -Lockdown Smackdown Edition!

Let’s super-spread some good live-streaming vibes and keep connected. Isolating doesn’t have to be lonely! And we can celebrate the inauguration of a new U.S. president at the same time!

Limited tickets available here https://sultans-lockdown-smackdown.eventbrite.ca

MORE DETAIL: Featured on the NY TIMES HITS LIST and the BILLBOARD WORLD MUSIC CHARTS! On the last day of Ontario Lockdown (unless that changes) let’s super-spread some good live-streaming vibes and keep connected. Sultans of String band members Chris McKhool, Kevin Laliberté and Drew Birston perform the “Best of the Sultans”, beamed right into your living room! Eddie Paton will also join us for a song from his musical lair.

This is over ZOOM, which is awesome because it is interactive, and we will be able to see and hear you, and you can see and hear us, and you can all see each other as well! It is a real show! So pour yourself a quarantini, and get ready to enjoy the music! Link becomes live at 7:40 pm to get settled and chat with our friends. And make sure you have speakers plugged in if you have them!

Show will last about an hour, including a talk back portion, so bring your burning questions, as we will be opening up the floor for anyone who has always wanted to ask any of the artists about their inspiration, or music, or whatever strikes your fancy. We have kept the ticket price low with a minimum $10 donation for the show, as many of our friends and fans are out of work right now. Please contribute what you can to support the arts through these strange times!

$1 from each ticket sold is being donated to our UN Refugee Agency fundraiser: http://fundraise.unhcr.ca/sultansofstring

Thanks and look forward to seeing you all soon!

Limited tickets available here https://sultans-lockdown-smackdown.eventbrite.ca

FEEDBACK FROM PREVIOUS ZOOM CONCERTS:

“Sultans of String are still ground-breaking after all the decades. The music is of-this-moment, our moment. It is a tonic, fresh air, in the midst of all that has separated us.”

“It was so intimate. Every seat was perfect, front row centre. It’s a great way to establish personal connections with the artists.”

“This was the best Zoom – online show I have seen. The setting and production values were excellent. It was obvious that time was taken to ensure us of a completely professional concert. Loved the music – hope there are more to come.”

“Wow! What a special evening of song, storytelling, dance and palpable heart-sharing! I was amazed at the coordination it must have taken to connect everyone, and was moved by having so much artistry connected in a “zoom-room”….just wow….what a joy!”

“It was great to have live music come right to our homes. The band played amazing music! The sound quality was wonderful. Hope to hear more live music from Sultans of String, soon.”

BIO: Three-time JUNO Award nominees and Billboard charting band Sultans of String creates “energetic and exciting music from a band with talent to burn!” according to Maverick magazine. Thrilling their audiences with their genre-hopping passport of Celtic reels, flamenco, gypsy-jazz, Arabic, Cuban and South Asian rhythms, the group celebrates musical fusion and human creativity with warmth and virtuosity. Fiery violin dances with rumba-flamenco guitar, while bass lays down unstoppable grooves. Acoustic strings meet with electronic wizardry to create layers and depth of sound, while world rhythms excite audiences to their feet with an irresistible need to dance.

Sultans of String have never taken the easy road. Since releasing their debut album Luna in 2007, they have continually strived to make each chart-topping album more original and meaningful than the last. That includes working with an orchestra (2013’s Symphony), teaming with Pakistani sitarist Anwar Khurshid (2015’s Subcontinental Drift) and even crafting a world-music holiday album (2017’s Christmas Caravan), which landed them on the Billboard charts and the New York Times. Their ambition and work ethic have garnered them multiple awards and accolades, including three Juno nominations, first place in the International Songwriting Competition (out of 15,000 entries), three Canadian Folk Music Awards, and countless other honours.

With their historic and visionary seventh album Refuge, McKhool and co. bring their unique brand of musical synergy and collaboration into the studio like never before. Their most ambitious, diverse, inclusive and passionately political album, Refuge puts the Toronto-based Sultans face-to-face with a VIP roster of artists from around the globe — including American banjo master Béla Fleck, Israeli vocalist Yasmin Levy and others, like Iraqi violinst Imah Al Taha and Iranian santur master Amir Amiri, who have fled the peril and persecution of their homelands for the safer shores of North America.

Their live resumé is similarly stellar. Equally at home in a concert hall, jazz club or festival setting, the Sultans have gigged at the legendary club Birdland in New York, the renowned Celtic Connections Festival in the U.K. and the San Jose Jazz Festival. They have performed with symphonies across Canada and the U.S., and played live on BBC TV, Irish National Radio, World Cafe and SiriusXM in Washington.