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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Jamarr's Promise: A True Story of Corruption, Courage, and Child Welfare by Kristin Morris

MEET AUTHOR KRISTIN I. MORRIS



Kristin I. Morris is a devoted wife and mother of four children.  She has been with her husband Benny since age nineteen. She is a devout Catholic and tries to live in a Christian manner.  She always wanted to help people, by working with the church teaching CCD, pro-life club, soup kitchen, and doing charity work.
Kristin earned her bachelor’s in Psychology from Rowan University. After school, she began to work as a social worker for the State of New Jersey’s Division of Child Protection and Permanency, formerly Division of Youth and Family Services. As part of the child welfare system, she found herself watching over New Jersey’s most vulnerable citizens: abused children. She was extremely excited and na├»ve, wanting to save the world. Working in the city of Camden among the people that needed the most help was extremely eye opening, but revealed the corruption of the inner systems of the Division. Jamarr’s Promise is the true story of Kristin’s battle with the State over the murder of a child she tried desperately to save..
Kristin’s dream is to open and run a foster care organization as a safety net for abused children, and to eliminate the politics and hidden agendas of larger organizations.


        MEET  Joseph J. Zielinski , PH.D



Joseph J. Zielinski, Ph.D. is a New Jersey licensed psychologist certified in both Clinical Psychology and Clinical Neuropsychology. He completed his undergraduate in Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania and earned a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. He has been in private practice for almost forty years as a psychologist, often working concurrently for public schools in special education, in a headache clinic, and in a management consulting firm. He also publishes in professional journals. He most enjoys working as a practitioner and seeing patients of all backgrounds and experiences.
For seventeen years, Dr. Zielinski has spearheaded a group of pioneering psychologists to pass legislation that would allow trained psychologists to prescribe psychotropic medications. This is an effort to help the dire shortage of psychiatrists in New Jersey and around the country. Their efforts to help the people of New Jersey are near to fruition.
Dr. Zielinski has been married for forty years, has two grown children and two grandchildren. He is an avid landscaper and is particularly fond of evergreens. He is a fitness enthusiast and a former marathoner. He enjoys classic rock and live concerts at local venues.


Jamarr's Promise: A True Story ofCorruption, Courage, and Child Welfare


Jamarr’s Promise is the shocking personal memoir of social worker Kristin
I. Morris’ fight to protect a nine-year-old child, Jamarr Cruz, that ended in
his tragic murder and New Jersey’s Division of Youth and Family Services
(DYFS)’s denial of its responsibility in the case.
As a caseworker for DYFS, Kristin helped many children and families; it
was her life’s passion. Nine-year-old Jamarr was living with his grandparents
after his mother’s boyfriend, Vincent Williams, beat him repeatedly. Jamarr
told Kristin it was not safe for him to return home. Kristin urgently tried
to keep Jamarr safe with his grandparents, but was told by superiors that
Latino children are kept in the home at all costs. This time, the cost was
Jamarr Cruz’s life. In 2009 after Jamaar’s return to Omayra Cruz and Vincent
Williams, Vincent beat Jamarr to death. Not only did Kristin’s superiors at
the DYFS block her efforts to help Jamarr, but when he was killed, they
blamed Kristin for his death.
Jamarr’s Promise is a call to end corrupt loyalties in New Jersey’s DYFS.
It is a call to protect children from Jamarr’s fate and promote child welfare.
It is a call for justice for Kristin Morris, who did the right thing and was
punished unjustly for it.

Chapter One Excerpt
Chapter 1

          The suburban New Jersey town of Pennsauken changed a lot in
          recent years and still in 2009, bordering as it does on the city
          of Camden. I am a caseworker for the State’s Child Protec-
tive Services agency long known as the Division of Youth and Family
Services, or DYFS, now called the Department of Child Protection
and Permanency, or DCPP. I am driving to my last scheduled client
of the day, the Pena family. The Pena case is about to be closed based
on earlier visits by my colleague, Omar Mateo. His supervisor has
already completed the pink slip approving the closing, so this should
be just a matter of paperwork after this last Required Monthly Visit. I
might even get home on time tonight. Providing excellent services to
New Jersey’s troubled families is my pride and joy; that . . . and pride
and joy in my own family.
    I turn into the driveway of a fairly well kept home, walk up to the
house, and ring the bell. It doesn’t work, so I knock. I hear a woman’s
voice muffled from behind the door.
    “Coming.”
    A late twenties Latino woman answers the door smoking a ciga-
rette. She looks gaunt and disheveled. I am taken aback more by her
appearance than by the fact that I expected the children’s stepfather
to answer the door.
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     “Are you the mom?” I ask.
     “No. I’m the babysitter.”
     I doubt it, but I flash my official State of New Jersey name badge.
“I’m Kristin Morris from the Division of Children Protection and
Permanency. I need to speak with the stepfather, Mr. Pena. Can I
come in?”
     The woman hesitates, then acquiesces. “He’s not here now. Yeah,
come in.”
     I enter the Pena house and observe three children staring silently
back at me. Bella is a crawling one-year-old, Tony is a four-year-old
sitting in a diaper, and Jimi is a seven-year-old bare chested in pajama
bottoms. All of the children appear Latino.
    Since it is shortly after noon, I address Jimi. “Hi, Jimi, I’m Miss
Kristin. How come you aren’t in school today?”
    Jimi shrugs his shoulders. I immediately notice a history of burn
injuries on his torso. I try to hide my grimace. “What time will their
stepfather be home?”
    The woman is evasive. “Don’t know.”
    I turn my attention to Tony and my eyes widen at a fresh burn scar
and a black eye. I get closer to look at Bella sitting on the floor and
spot a burn on her leg. Tears come to my eyes. I blink them away and
say to the toddler, “Hey, cutie.”
    I look around and begin to survey the house. My jaw goes slack as
I see makeshift wiring and exposed light bulbs at every outlet. I walk
into the kitchen and see a hole in the floor that reveals the basement. I
kneel over it to look in and whip my head back. “You have a sewage
problem,” I say. I stand and leave the kitchen, crossing the hallway
and heading toward the bathroom.
    It is filthy and there is no sink. An exposed bulb dangles to the floor.
I turn back into the hallway and see a closet door with a padlock. Inside
there is a Nintendo. I look to Tony who stares at me with fear in his
eyes. I suddenly realize what the closet is used for. I try to reassure him.
“It’s OK, Tony.” I am appalled, and I know I must call this in.
    I approach the woman in the living room and say, “OK, I’ll have
to meet with the kids’ stepfather. I’ll have to make another visit.”
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    I exit the home and search my casebook schedule for any other
visits in the vicinity. I find one and make an uneventful visit, being
careful to document it.
    Two hours later, I return unannounced to the Pena home. The
stepfather of two of the children, Rodolfo, is home and on the speaker
phone with his own father.
    The older man refers to the four-year-old. “Just beat his ass.”
    Rodolfo sees me and responds, “Oh, the DYFS worker’s here and
she can hear you. But she’s cool.” He hangs up.
    I question Rodolfo about Tony’s black eye and get a confused
series of ludicrous explanations. “He bumped it on the door . . . he
bumped it in the pool while playing . . . he came home with it.”
    I have heard and seen enough. I dial my supervisor Yolanda on
my cell. “Hey, Yolanda . . . Kristin. I’m at the Pena house and it’s a
disaster. I need to remove the kids.” I look at wide-eyed little Bella.
    Yolanda replies, “Yeah, I understand. Mateo was going to close
the case. What the hell was he thinking?”
    “I have no idea, but I can’t close it now.” I continue to look around.
The so-called baby-sitter won’t even look in my direction. It becomes
clear that the Pena children have been through this routine before.
They are no longer distressed, and even visibly excited.
    “Yay, McDonalds, yay!” Tony calls out joyfully.
    Yolanda continues, “I’m good with it. How long do you think
you’ll be?”
    “Mommy, are you coming with us?” Tony asks.
    I tell Yolanda to hold on and I ask Tony, “Who is this lady?”
    “My mommy.”
    “No, I’m not the mom, I’m the babysitter,” the woman protests.
    I step outside for a moment of privacy and get back on the phone.
“Yolanda, yeah, the mother was here alone with the children, and
there’s a court order forbidding it. She’s to be supervised 24/7 due to
chronic heroin addiction. The stepfather has full custody.”
    “OK, bring the kids in. Estimated time of arrival?”
    “About an hour, after we stop at McDonalds.”
    “I’ll set up the pediatric appointments. You’ll need the rest of the
day to process the paperwork. See you then.”
    I walk back inside and speak to the entire family, “The children
are coming with me. Kids, get your clothes on. Where are Bella’s
clothes?”
    The mother points to a basket overflowing with unfolded clothes.
The two older children quickly throw on their socks, clothes, and
shoes. The mother hands me a onesie. I clothe Bella and continue to
hold her. Rodolfo stands helplessly in the background.
    Jimi and Tony bid farewell to their mother.
    The mother’s cigarette hand trembles as she smokes with a vacant
look in her eyes. She appears emotionless and remains silent.
    Jimi addresses me with enthusiasm, “If we’re getting McDonalds,
can I have a Happy Meal?”
    “Yes, Jimi, you can.”
    As I leave the house with the children, the stepfather mutters
curses. We all walk down the front steps to the driveway. The older
children smile while we hold hands walking to the car, and I carry
Bella. It takes a few moments to put the children in baby and child
seats in the state car marked, “For Government Purposes Only.” We
drive away.
    This is exactly what I have come to expect as a case manager in a
child protective service agency. I see the worst of the worst and can
always be surprised in the saddest fashion. I can only do my job to the
best of my ability to meet the needs of these children.

Seeking Justice for Caseworker who warned
NJ DYFS before Tragic Death of 9-Year-Old Boy
Jamarr’s Promise is the shocking true story of Kristin I. Morris’ fight to protect a nine-
year-old child, Jamarr Cruz, that ended in his tragic death and New Jersey’s Division
of Youth and Family Services (DYFS)’s denial of its responsibility in the case.
As a caseworker for New Jersey’s Division of Youth and Family Services (DYFS), Kristin
helped many children and families; it was her life’s passion. Nine-year-old Jamarr was
living with his grandparents after his mother’s boyfriend, Vincent Williams, beat him.
During the last required monthly visit before Jamarr was scheduled to return to his
mother and Vincent’s care, Jamarr told Kristin it was not safe for him to return home.
Kristin urgently tried to keep Jamarr safe with his grandparents, but was told by
superiors that Latino children are kept in the home at all costs. This time, the cost
was Jamarr Cruz’s life.
In 2009 after his return to Omayra Cruz and Vincent Williams, Vincent beat Jamarr to
death. Not only did Kristin’s superiors at the DYFS block her efforts to help Jamarr, but
when he was killed, they blamed Kristin for his death. Kristin was terminated at work
and sued by Jamarr’s mother Omayra Cruz—even after Omayra won a settlement for
$425,000 from the State of New Jersey. Kristin’s witnesses who provided proof of Kristin’s
innocence were pressured to alter their testimony by Kristin’s superiors. After Kristin
won a court arbitration, was completely exonerated, and was ordered to be permitted
back at work, DYFS still would not let Kristin return to work. Meanwhile, those above
Kristin who sealed Jamarr’s cruel fate have been promoted to higher offices.
The State of New Jersey has crippled Kristin financially, has stripped her of a career
helping vulnerable children, and has blatantly ignored facts and sworn testimonies
that an investigation of the herein named DYFS and State corroborators is necessary.
Jamarr’s Promise is a call to end corrupt loyalties in New Jersey’s DYFS. It is a call to
protect children from Jamarr’s fate. It is a call for justice for Kristin Morris, who did the
right thing and was punished unjustly for it.
Sign our petition here at Change.org and call for a full investigation of those
responsible for the mismanagement of the Jamarr Cruz case, from Joyce A. Thomas,
NY/NJ Regional Administrator of the Administration for Children & Families.
Petitioning Joyce.Thomas@acf.hhs.gov
https://goo.gl/YKWzUq
www.wisdomhousebooks.com • 919-883-4669 • Clara@wisdomhousebooks.com
Wisdom House Books
www.jamarrspromise.com
Paperback: $12.95 U.S. $18.95 CAN ISBN: 978-0-9983799-0-6
E-book: $2.99 ISBN: 978-0-9983799-2-0
TRUE CRIME / Murder / General
Wisdom House Books

REVIEW COMING SOON!
         

Saturday, August 12, 2017

COMING AUGUST 23RD, Crazy Love by by Rachael Tamayo

MEET AUTHOR RACHAEL TAMAYO



Rachael Tamayo has written Romance, paranormal, and now this best selling author is trying her hand at thrillers. "I've discovered that I love writing thrillers and believe I've found my genre. I doubt I'll be returning to contemporary romance anytime soon, but everything I write will always have some element of romance." When she's not writing, you can usually find her with her family. Mom of a four year old son and infant daughter, and wife of thirteen years. Her full time profession as a 911/police dispatcher in the Houston area gives her an interesting perspective into people that others might not have. Rachael was born and raised in Southeast Texas, where she lives with her family.

Celestial Caring Enterprise, LLC announces the Bestselling Author, Rachael
Tamayo’s continuance in the mental illness charity initiative. Tamayo has an upcoming new Psychological Thriller,
“Crazy Love” releasing on August 23, 2017 on Amazon. Pre-orders starting on August 16, 2017 will be available.
15% of all the book proceeds will be given to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. She is using Thunderclap to
bring awareness to her charity campaign. Tamayo’s goal is to reach 100 people to share their support via their social
media sites.
“Mental illness is a serious problem that touches everyone, and even something like this can help. Sharing online
can reach thousands of people all over the world to bringing awareness to the organization,” said Tamayo.




I love Emily. I know she loves me too, I just need to show her. One day, we will be together forever, I’ll
make sure of that. She’s only with this guy she’s been hanging around with to test me, see if I’ll stand
true. Emily wants me to fight for her, to see if I can win her. Of course, I will. Once she sees how I’ve
been caring for her, all the plans I’ve made, and the lengths I’ve gone to in order to be with her, she will
be so proud of me. If only she would stop pretending so I could stop hiding in her attic.
Reach deep into the mind of mentally ill millionaire, Noah Burrell as he turns Emily’s world upside down.
His deranged love just might be her undoing.
Emily is happy with her quiet life. A young pharmacist in a Houston area CVS, single and living on her
own. Noah, a middle-aged millionaire, comes in to see her daily. Emily chalks it up to a man with a
crush on a younger woman, assuming that it’s harmless, although mildly annoyed by his daily visits.
Later in the evening, while Emily is busy attending her close friend’s engagement party, Noah heads to Emily’s home.
Knowing where she keeps her hidden keys, he lets himself in and make himself at home, as he has been for months.
Noah takes some clothing and checks her computer, but avoids spending the night in the attic like he often does,
watching her though holes.
During the party, Emily runs into Isaiah, a previous one night stand. Overcoming her slight embarrassment after
remembering how she left months before, the two strikes up a conversation and hit it off. Before leaving, while
chatting in the driveway, Emily spots a strange vehicle and happens to mention it to Isaiah, who is a detective with
the Katy Police Department. After a quick phone call, they discover that the vehicle belongs to none other than Noah.



Review coming soon!








Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Henry & Me by Sasha Clinton

     Max always wanted to be an actress. She was certain she'd be accepting awards in the near future. Life has a way of popping those huge ego balloons. When Max's pops, it makes a mess of her whole life. With nowhere to go, Max moves in with her brother and his wife. Now if she can only straighten out this mess she calls her life. Fate had one more surprise for Max and it was a mixed blessing.

     Well written and fully developed characters are what you'll find in the pages of this book. It's an easy read and you'll enjoy it. At times you'll root for Max and other times you'll just shake your head. It's nice to see the other side of Hollywood. 

     I did find an issue. This book is almost too easy to read. By that, I mean there aren't any real conflicts. I'd like to have seen some bumps along the road for Max and for Henry.  While the story is believable and relate-able, there isn't any real substance.

     I gave this one 3 cheers out of 5 because of the issue listed.  

Friday, June 16, 2017

George the Orphan Crow and the Creatures of Blossom Valley by Helen Fox

     George and his parents were enjoying their day when suddenly hunters appeared. George decides to look for a safer place. When he returns, his world comes crashing down around him. With the help of Plato the owl, George is sent to a safe place. George is sad, but is amazed at Blossom Valley. He's even more amazed at how friendly and helpful everyone is. He wonders if Blossom Valley will remain peaceful. Only time will tell.

     Well written and delightful characters make this book an enjoyable read. This book is an easy read and your children will love it. I applaud the messages of team work and helping others that the author wove into the story. It's easy to get lost in the story and almost feel like you are in Blossom Valley. This book would be perfect for a television series. It would be a huge hit with the kids. I look forward to reading more of Helen Fox's work.

     I didn't find any issues.

     I gave this one  5 cheers out of 5 because it has a great story and teaching moments.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Introducing Author Helen Fox





George the Orphan Crow and the Creatures of Blossom Valley: Real-Life Crow Inspires Enchanting, Uplifting New Book for older Children Teenagers & Adults 

 Helen Fox’s ‘George the Orphan Crow and the Creatures of Blossom Valley’ marks the dawn of a bold, powerful and unforgettable new children’s book – all inspired by a real-world crow the author got to “know” during her daily walks at her local park. But this is so much more than just a story, giving the animal world a voice and teaching children the importance of harmonizing with nature and preserving its beauty. One critic recently hailed the volume, “A beautifully written and original story of friendship and courage”. Contact: Helen Fox Email: helen.eleni.fox@gmail.com 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

United Kingdom While children’s and young adult literature is currently more popular than ever, many adults are becoming disenchanted with the genre’s propensity to succumb to gaudy humour, vampires and epic battles of good and evil. However, Helen Fox is stepping up to the plate with gusto, bucking all trends with a moral-rich new book that harks back to a traditional era of storytelling. 

George the Orphan Crow and the Creatures of Blossom Valley’ is an adventurous and humanity-rich peek story inside the animal world; proof that courage, friendship and love are the qualities of any true maverick. 

“I wanted to write something different,” explains Helen. “Something with a good deal of heart that would foster respect and keen interest among children for the natural world. That’s why this innocent little adventure, packs a powerful punch that will stay with readers young and old, for many long years. Stories are living things and ‘George the Orphan Crow...’ is one of them. I used to see two adult crows and their young one, every single day in the same spot at my local park. But one day, only the young one was there, and my imagination began spinning as to where his parents had gone and how he’d cope alone in the world. Abandoned animals face the same predicament – and so this story was born. 

Reviews have been overwhelmingly positive. For example, Gillian comments, “A beautifully written and original story of friendship and courage. Will be loved by older children, teenagers and adults who enjoy fantasy stories and nature. We've read this to our young daughter also and we all found it engaging and charming. Highly recommended. Would make an excellent Christmas gift too.” 

Ken Scott adds, “Not normally one to read children's books I decided to give it a go. What a pleasant surprise it was to find yourself immersed in a book along with the creatures of Blossom Valley. A fabulous read with drama and suspense right to the end of the book. Beautifully dreamed up characters and an author with a fantastic imagination. Highly recommended.” 

‘George the Orphan Crow and the Creatures of Blossom Valley,’ is available from all major online retailers, as well as ordered in your local bookstore or library.  

About the Author:   


For thirty plus years, Helen Fox has lived close to a beautiful park in London, where she can often be found feeding the birds and squirrels. She loves all birds, but always finds herself drawn to crows in particular, for though they are the least loved of all birds, they are very intelligent and charismatic. During her visits, she found that three crows would be at the same spot each time and before long, she discovered they favoured meaty foods over seeds, so she tried her best to oblige. When one would fly off the grass, the other two would follow suit so she gathered they must be a family; father, mother and  perhaps their son?

One afternoon, the crows weren’t there and as she sat on the bench and waited, the smallest of the three appeared, landing on the grass, trotting anxiously around. A minute later, he took to the air cawing his little throat out. Was he calling his parents? Were his carks cries of fear and despair, had his parents abandoned him or even worse, been killed?

It was this very scene that inspired Helen to write ‘George the Orphan Crow and the Creatures of Blossom Valley.’ The story is mainly told by George the orphan crow, as well as other key characters in the community of Blossom Valley, but the enemies who threaten to ruin their harmonious life and take over their land are also given a voice.

Review will be posted in just a bit, but go ahead and get your copy of the book today! Share something new and special with your children or grandchildren.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Penny: Hands I Passed Through...Things I saw...Stories I Can Tell! by Peter Davidson

     Penny's life might be more colorful and active than you think. He travels all over the world with the help of random people. I'm certain you have met Penny. You probably did give him much thought. Penny is special. 

     Humorous, interesting and a fresh take on a subject that most people wouldn't think of. Well written, this book is an easy read. You'll be surprised at all the wonderful and scary things that happen to Penny. I love this book. 
      I especially liked the part of the story about Allan claiming Penny.You described my son to a  T!  You even included the fact he wears sunglasses. You also included where I lived growing up. Reading it, I felt like you picked things right from my life. *smile*

     I didn't find any issues.

     I gave this one 5 cheers out of 5 because this book is refreshing.                                

Sunday, June 4, 2017

If You Were Me and Lived in....the Mayan Empire by Carole P. Roman

     We're on our way to the Mayan Empire. This trip is going to be amazing. The Yucatan Peninsula was the home of the Mayans. The Mayans were very advanced. They kept a record of their history. They lived simply and were very happy. Did you know at age fifteen you were considered an adult? The Mayans also made many contributions to the world.

     Well written and so fun to read. This series will give your child a look at the world. It engages their imagination and it gives you a chance to spend quality time with your children. You can't go wrong with a Carole P Roman book.

     I found no issues.

I gave this one 5 cheers out of 5.