Literary Ashland with Jim Phillips

Jim PhillipsBook CoverOur October guest was professor Jim Phillips of the Anthropology and International Studies programs at Southern Oregon University. Jim discussed his new book Honduras in Dangerous Times. Jim’s interest in Honduras and Central America goes back a long time. How long? Listen to the interview. Since then, he and his partner Lucy have been active in the human rights movements there.


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Literary Ashland with Jeffrey Gayton

Jeffrey GaytonOur September guest was Jeffrey Gayton, University Librarian and Director of the Learning Commons at Southern Oregon University. Jeffrey filled us in on the upcoming Ashland Book and Author Festival, his responsibilities at SOU and the role of libraries in the digital age. Spoiler alert, they are more important than ever.



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The Ethics of Ad-Blocking


One of the features of Apple’s new iOS 9 is the ability to block content when using the Safari mobile browser. Since much of the current web content is financed by ads, marketers and content providers have expressed opposition, claiming that the foundation of providing web content as we know it is threatened. The usual narrative is this: users won’t pay for content, so the only way web publishers can pay for providing content is through advertising.

The odd thing is that the ad model first emerged in a decidedly low tech context. Traditional newspapers have always used classified and display ads to pay for a large part of the cost of delivering their content. I didn’t block those ads, or stop reading the paper. So why do I use online ad blockers?

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Blog Tour: Dead of Summer by Sherry Knowlton

dos_preview_2 copyWhat’s it about?

In a tale of suspense that travels from South Central Pennsylvania to Africa to the iconic Woodstock Festival of 1969, Dead of Summer embroils attorney Alexa Williams in the dangerous world of sex trafficking.

With help from friends, family, and her yoga practice, Alexa Williams is finally starting to recover from last autumn’s trauma of finding a dead body and the violence that ensued. The young attorney can’t believe that her summer has begun with the discovery of another body. This time, the dead woman was famous for her worldwide campaign against sex trafficking. The murder hits close to home: the late activist was a friend and mentor to Alexa’s best friend, Melissa.

Searching for answers, Alexa becomes entangled in a web of deception and danger that puts both her heart and her life at risk. By the time she discovers that the key to the present lies in the halcyon days of peace and music, it may be too late.

What do reviewers say?

Amazon review by Tina: Sherry grabs your attention from the first two pages and doesn’t let go. I loved the main character, having gotten to know & love her from Sherry first book, Dead of Autumn. 

Who wrote it?

Sherry Knowlton (nee Rothenberger), author of Dead of Autumn and Dead of Summer, was born and raised in Chambersburg, PA, where she developed a lifelong passion for books. She was that kid who would sneak a flashlight to bed at night so she could read beneath the covers. All the local librarians knew her by name.Sherry Knowlton ITW

Sherry spent much of her early career in state government, working primarily with social and human services programs, including services for abused children, rape crisis, domestic violence, and family planning. In the 1990s, she served as the Deputy Secretary for Medical Assistance in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The latter part of Sherry’s career has focused on the field of Medicaid managed care. Now retired from executive positions in the health insurance industry, Sherry runs her own health care consulting business.

Sherry has a B.A. in English and psychology from Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA and now lives in the mountains of South Central Pennsylvania, the setting of Dead of Summer.

Where can I get it?

Sunbury Press and Amazon.

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