Striking Terror by Denis Lipman to be released Oct. 2016

Striking Terror by Denis Lipman

Piscataqua Press has announced the upcoming release of Striking Terror, a thriller by Denis Lipman that will, for the first time, bring the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to life for middle grade readers in an accessible, entertaining way. “We’re very excited about Striking Terror,” says Piscataqua Press publisher Tom Holbrook. “We haven’t seen anything like this for middle graders and teens—a fun, real-life thriller using a real-world conflict as a backdrop.”

Author Denis Lipman says this is what drove him to write Striking Terror. “When I was a kid, I loved reading about spies, detectives and mercenaries. When I looked for a contemporary thriller to share with my daughter, I couldn’t find any. So I wrote one that hooks into one of today’s important issues—it just took longer than I’d expected, as I wanted to research everything thoroughly.” Creating a hero who uses his magic skills to get out of trouble was an added bonus, the former magician says with a smile. “Think Harry Houdini, not Harry Potter,” he hastens to add. “I’ve been thinking for years about a boy who will use tricks to get out of scrapes.”

Striking Terror is the fictional story of Micah, a Jewish teen sent by his parents to stay with relatives in Israel. While settling down to a new life in Jerusalem, the amateur magician befriends a troupe of performers—and a Palestinian girl, Shireen, who is training to blow up the bus he rides to school. When Shireen chooses to abort the attack, her handlers turn on her and the two teens must run for their lives. Using every trick he knows to stay alive, Micah helps Shireen escape the alleyways of old Jerusalem into the Negev Desert. Here in a remote farmhouse, Micah and his friends have only illusion, luck and courage to fight a well-armed and murderous enemy. Then, beyond the desert, Micah and Shireen are pulled into a plot that will rip the peace process apart.

Before emigrating to the U.S. from his native England, author Denis Lipman was a professional magician for several years. His first book, A Yank Back to England (GemmaMedia 2010), is a travel memoir now in its third printing. Before moving to New England, Lipman and his wife Frances
Erlebacher ran a small advertising company in the Washington, DC area for more than 20 years, where he was also active in theater.

Piscataqua Press is a small, independent publisher that focuses on New England authors.

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Piscataqua Press
(603) 431-2100

AUTHOR INFO: Denis Lipman
(603) 319-8852

The Prolific Blogger Award

Yesterday, I was delighted that my author friend A.F. Stewart named me as a “prolific blogger” (see her post: and I’m now the recipient of the Prolific Blogger Award. I have the honour of a “Mr. Linky” badge and get to pass the award on to other bloggers.

Here’s the scoop and the official award rules:

1. Pass this award to at least seven other deserving prolific bloggers.
2. Link to the blog from which you received the award.
3. Link back to this Prolific Blogger post, which explains the origins and motivation for the award.
4. Add your name to the Mr. Linky.

So here are my deserving recipients, a talented bunch of writers who delight me with their blogs:

Catherine Kustanczy –
Jill Crossland –
Karen Roderick –
Denis Lipman & Frances Erlebacher –
Lucy Bertoli –
Meghan Burton –
Saba I. –

A Yank Back To England: The Prodigal Tourist Returns by Denis Lipman

A Yank Back To England: The Prodigal Tourist Returns by Denis Lipman

Book Review
Title: A Yank Back To England: The Prodigal Tourist Returns
Author: Denis Lipman
Publisher: Gemma
Released: 2010
Pages: 320
ISBN 10 – 1934848247
ISBN 13 – 978-1934848241
Stars: 4.0

I have spent my Christmas vacation relaxing and reading a delightful, splendidly written travel memoir by Washington, DC playwright and author Denis Lipman entitled A Yank Back To England: The Prodigal Tourist Returns.

I made Denis’ acquaintance last year through his interesting and colourful blog, England Rents, Raves & Rants and after reading his book about his family’s annual trips to England over a six year (actually nine) period, I feel as if I know not only him but them as well! His writing is fluid, to the point, and extremely witty, and his English sense of humour and Dagenham, Essex upbringing sparkle in A Yank Back To England which is charming and authentically English.

Denis Lipman, at first glance, may seem an unassuming sort of English gentleman who has become fairly Americanized, but his life has been anything but mundane. He dropped out of school at the age of 15 to become an apprentice printer and within a week realized that magic was his calling so he left to pursue a career as a magician and magic dealer. It was this endeavor that initially led him to the United States where he would later meet his wife, Frances Erlebacher, and together, they and their only child, Kate, would spend their annual vacation visiting Denis’ elderly parents, the somewhat eccentric Lew and Jessie, in the Old Country.

When magic lost its luster, Denis experimented with writing scripts, songs, and even album production and after years of trying on different occupations for the right fit, he ended up relocating to Washington, DC where he became a senior writer for a major advertising agency and a playwright for the Washington Theatre Festival. In the early 1990s, Denis and Frances started their own agency, The Creative Shop.

It was Frances who decided that they should take advantage of their yearly sojourns to England when they would visit Denis’ parents and relatives and really get to know the country, both as tourists, and as their second home. Denis wasn’t initially all that keen on traipsing around to see the sites, but in spite of his reluctance, discovered that he really did enjoy his homeland and even fell in love with it. I certainly fell in love with the England (Hammill, close to Sandwich) he described in Year Six: A Regency Cottage on a Bridle Path as their accommodation at Madrigal Cottage is how I have always envisioned the beauty and charm of the English countryside.

This affectionate memoir actually reveals more about the characters portrayed in it than the sites that they visit. Restaurant and hotel names are not mentioned, although cities, towns and villages are, as well as some of the prominent sites one would associate with those places, which according to Denis are all within a half-day trip from London. Meals are described in such a way that you sometimes salivate and occasionally crinkle up your nose in disgust while tea and Jack Daniels flow copiously. The weather is always a force to be reckoned with and the countryside as charismatic and as challenging as one could imagine. This is a depiction of the reality of travel and it’s not always brilliant but it is remarkable.

A Yank Back To England is just as much about Denis getting to know his aging parents as adults, friends and grandparents as discovering what makes England the historical, magnificent country that it is. The events here are not sugar-coated in any way and Denis describes his parents, in particular, in a very honest and not necessarily flattering manner but you fall in love with them anyway. We also meet Denis’ aunts Flo, Vi and Mary and cousins Pam and Kevin and his wife Maxine, and briefly Denis’ brother Tony and his wife Tricia. We get a glimpse of Kate’s early years and recognize that Frances is ever thoughtful, practical, diplomatic, and easy to get along with and Denis owes the success of this book to her.

A travel memoir cannot be easy to write as it would be hard to remember entire conversations the way that Denis has written them here, but because he has managed to do so, the book reads like a novel and when it ends you find yourself sighing, smiling, reflecting and utterly yearning for your next vacation abroad. And don’t forget to dress in layers and place a bet on the horses while you’re at it!

England Rents, Rants & Raves by The Prodigal Tourist

Author and blogger, Denis Lipman
December’s Featured Blog:
England Rents, Rants & Raves
by The Prodigal Tourist

Hello everyone! I hope that you are enjoying this holiday season and if you are as fortunate as I am, you have this whole week off!

Since the launch of my new website I have been thinking of ways to keep my blog fresh and interesting. I’ve decided that each month I am going to attempt to feature a favourite blog that’s written by my online friends.

This month I have selected one of the first blogs I chose to follow when I first started writing my own. It’s by Denis Lipman and is called England Rents, Rants & Raves. Denis refers to himself as The Prodigal Tourist and I am currently reading his wonderful travel memoir, A Yank Back To England: The Prodigal Tourist Returns, which actor Michael York describes as:

“A perceptive, engaging and informative take on contemporary England as seen through the eyes of a fellow expatriate who writes with humor and affection. The cast of characters has an almost Dickensian vivacity.”

Mr. York is absolutely right.

My review of the book will be posted soon.

Denis Lipman is from Dagenham, Essex and he has a very interesting and colourful history that you can read about here. His American wife, Frances Erlebacher, is not only his life partner and the mother of their daughter Kate, but also his business partner as together they run an advertising agency called The Creative Shop in Washington, DC. Denis also writes plays for the Washington Theatre Festival.

Denis explains on his blog,

“Years ago I shed my Cockney accent and left London’s blighted East End for America. Since then, I’ve only returned to see my increasingly cantankerous parents and assorted relatives. Until my American wife comes along. She wants to tour, see the sights. No thank you. It’s not for me. But she insists, and I become a reluctant tourist in my former homeland.”

England Rents, Rants & Raves is a delightful, interesting and colourful blog about Jolly Ol’ England! It features various vignettes from the Lipmans’ travels and Denis’ new book, as well as photos, recipes, and everything related to the Lipmans’ life. You’ll be hard pressed to find a more creative, friendly and fun couple in blog land than Denis and Frances. I highly recommend their blog which is especially enjoyable for armchair tourists like me!

“You did what to Tony?”