With a Dream So Proud: The Life of Stephen Vincent Benet

Paperback – July 29, 2016

by Donnell Rubay

This young adult book portrays the Life of writer and poet, Stephen Vincent Benet. He lived from 1888 to 1943. During that time, he was well known especially for John Brown's Body and The Devil and Daniel Webster.

He lived as a young child in Benicia, California, where his father was a military leader. The author lives in Benicia and has captured his time in that town and the home where the Benet family lived in the beginning of the story. His education, family, and his frail health, as well as his financial struggles throughout his life are all part of the story.

A very patriotic person, Benet was unable to serve in the military because of his poor eyesight, he tried by memorizing the eye chart, but was caught and dismissed. In World War II, he wrote various articles for the war effort and was unwilling to take payment. When he did win a Pultizer Prize, it was in 1929. He invested it in the stock market, shortly before the crash.

With regrets, in 2018, we announced the death of  Donnell Rubay, the author of "With a Dream So Proud, the Life of Stephen Vincent Benet". She will indeed be missed.

The Long Blue Room

Paperback - Jan 31, 2014

by Joan Gelfand

"The Long Blue Room, is a splendid powerful collection of poems. Gelfand invites us to see things that we usually overlook... Her mature poetry inspires chuckles (the Parisian returning home to kiss his wife after having just enjoyed a cassoulet and a crisp Sancerre) and will resonate with contemplative souls in her poetic Sangha. After reading William Saroyan years ago, I wanted to meet him, shake his hand and drink a beer with him. I feel the same way about Joan Gelfand." Joel Fallon, Poet Laureate of Benicia, CA (Emeritus)

The Capital That Couldn't Stay Put, The Complete Book of California's Capitols Paperback – Original copyright 1983

by June Oxford 

The author, June Oxford, received the Award of Merit from the Conference of California Historical Societies for "The Capital That Couldn't Stay Put, The Complete Book of California's Capitols." The award states that this book, "...with a rich vein of newly discovered and rediscovered historical gems is written with verve, insight and narrative skill. This tome, with 68 rare illustrations covers the period from the Constitutional Convention through details of the monumental restoration of the present capitol building in Sacramento." The background information includes such tidbits as the report of Governor-Elect Leland Stanford and his inaugural party who were rowed to the capitol on January 10th, 1862. The city was in the throes of the worst flood in its flood-prone history.

Late Harvest Green…an Idaho Farm Family Through the 20th Century

Paperback - June 9, 2018

by Lois Requist

Late Harvest Green is the quiet, heartfelt story of life in a small town in Idaho over several generations of a farm family. It is an American story, a tale of open spaces, of men and women as rooted in the land, and as nourished by it, as the crops they grow. But war reaches them, and changes come, even in their peaceful valley.
There is a deep love of history here, a love of life, and a profound compassion for the human condition. The past informs the present: what people remember, what they forget and forgive, how experience forms them. At the center of the book is the mystery of connection—how people form attachments, and how fragile these become in the face of loss or trauma, how some people thrive despite great loss, while others crumble under it. The characters are deeply and finely wrought. I felt as if I knew them as real people. Like Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, Late Harvest Green conjures up a unique time and place. The unchanging mountains, the taste of a ripe peach, the scent and heft of the soil—all act as talismans to draw us deep into a vanished world whose riches are fleeting, and very real.


The Book of Joel, published by Benicia Literary Arts, recently received the Artists Embassy International gold seal, their highest literary award! The gold seal was awarded on September, 28th, during the Dancing Poetry Contest Celebration, an annual event held at the San Francisco Legion of Honor Museum. Don Peery, Benicia’s fifth poet laureate, who compiled the poems of Joel Fallon, Benicia’s first poet laureate, was there to receive the honor.

The book was a labor of love, and a group effort. Don Peery did the design and layout, and Editor in Chief Mary Eichbauer and Don worked together on the editing. Sherry Sheehan was the proof reader, and the cover was designed by Tom Stanton and Don.

Many thanks to Artists Embassy International for honoring The Book of Joel. We can’t wait to put their gold seal on copies of the book!

To purchase the book, go to Bookshop Benicia or buy it in our Benicia Literary Arts Online Store. 

Postcards From a Dream

Paperback – January 28, 2020
by Johanna Ely 

It's a stunning act of courage when Johanna Ely manipulates twenty-six letters and spells out a depth of pain, yearning, and everyday contemplations from the alphabet soup of her mind.

Her voice, attuned to brilliant imagery, is both subtle and striking as she wields her palette of pinks, greys, and metallic threads over each page of this collection. She's a language artist who travels through dappled sunlight and bleak shadows to bare her gifted essence.

Carquinez Review 2020

Writings from the Carquinez Strait shoreline communities

Stories by: Merrilee Cavenecia, Judea Cavoto, Grant Cooke, Tamar Enoch, Frances Fields, Nancy Freeman, Deborah Fruchey, Carol Gieg, Beth Grimm, Marty Malin, Bruce Moody, Aletheia Morden, Deborah Morrison, Carolyn Plath, Lois Requist, Rob Rogers, Nicky Ruxton, Irene Sardanis, Stephen Schelling, Marilyn Tavlin, Teresa Van Woy, Becky Bishop White

Edited by: Project Editor, James White; Editor-in-Chief, Mary Eichbauer; Editor and Author, Marty Malin; Editor and Author, Lois Requist.
Other contributors: Jan Malin, Book Design; Beth Grimm, Cover Photo and Author.
The submissions were blind-reviewed by a selection panel: Ann Kamoe, Ken MacLennan, Kristine Mietzner, Toni Morgan, Bob Stanley.

Her Visions Her Voices

"Her Visions Her Voices brings together the visual and verbal from a female perspective and with female energy. The ekphrastic poems personalize their accompanying visual objects with emotional subjectivity, giving life to the material and concreteness to the abstract.
Bruce's diverse and colorful poetics present common, daily experiences imbued with contemplative possibilities. We can enjoy reflective, meditative nuggets addressing desire, death, struggles, uncertainty. We chuckle at the playful politics, and we sigh at the traumatic events featured in several poems. We apprehend the personae's encounters, identify with the personae's sentience, and celebrate with the personae's resolutions. A collection we will visit repeatedly for renewed agency and inspiration."

Marjean D. Purinton, Ph.D. Affiliated Faculty, Women's Studies; Professor of English, Texas Tech University
This book can be purchased through ekphrasticexpressions.com or by contacting Suzanne Bruce: Scbruce@sbcglobal.net

Benicia First Tuesday Poets Anthologies

This book is also available at Bookshop Benicia

This is an Award-winning book that has earned acclaim from the prestigious Next Generation Indie Book Awards as a finalist in General Fiction/Novel (Under 80,000 words) and Ebook fiction."

This book is also available at Bookshop Benicia

The Book of Joel

Paperback - May 19, 2019

by Joel Fallon

A wonderful collection of Benicia poet laureate Joel Fallon's poetry compiled by Don Peery, Benicia's fifth poet laureate (2014-2016). Joel Fallon was Benicia's first poet laureate, and he died in 2016.

This book is available at Bookshop Benicia

This book is available on Random Lane Press 

After the Opera

by Mary Eichbauer

Mary Eichbauer’s After the Opera brings together her finest poems from her long and varied career as writer, teacher, mother, and community organizer. Mary’s poems confide in the reader, as she explores themes of family, friendship, love, loss, and travel in this carefully crafted collection. Random Lane is proud to include After the Opera in our poetry series!

Borders In Paradise

"Borders in Paradise charts the triumphs and travails of the Gaines family, Texas transplants living in Los Angeles but not quite fitting in there. The story takes place as America’s entry into WW II looms. It is told mainly from the viewpoint of the oldest son, Juno, but the story focuses on Charles (“Chassy”), Juno’s charming, roguish younger brother. The book begins with Chassy trying to get through law school in LA. He makes the mistake of getting married to his not-so-nice girlfriend and quickly runs afoul of her and her parents. Chassy escapes them by joining the border patrol, where he gets into all kinds of adventures chasing Mexicans trying to slip into the US while battling his own demons and bad decisions. Chassy eventually ends up in the army and involved with people and in a scheme that leads him into a dark and dangerous place. This book is extremely well-written, particularly the dialogue. And I found myself laughing at the interactions between the buttoned-down, responsible Juno and the carefree, self-absorbed Chassy, and also between Chassy, his bride, and her obnoxious friends. Droll Mama Gaines and buoyant little sister Anita (“Neet”) add splashes of humor and color that only made reading this book even more pleasurable. A good story that balances the dark and the light. I highly recommend Borders in Paradise."

Matt Bloom. Author of Salt of the Nation.

This book may be purchased here: Amazon and Adelaide Books

The Great Grandpa Chronicles cannot be assessed by its title. It contains humorous sarcastic stories about family reunions involving a father (Great Grandpa) whose business acumen and drive, coupled with his refusal to see women as equal human beings, and need to control things, all of which were peppered with his narcissistic qualities, caused his daughter to admire and loathe him at the same time. It was not until she could change her lens to Great Grandpa that she was able to overcome her ambivalence. As the book unfolded over a five-year period, she experienced an emotional metamorphosis. Once past journaling cathartic rants that released some anger and frustration, she made a conscious decision to try and overcome her ambivalence towards him. Her new perspective took shape, and the stories unrolled one by one. As she wrote about the reunions, the author discovers she’s in the middle of the tug of war between Great Grandpa who acts out to hold everyone’s attention and the great grandchildren who can’t be corralled. She captures the essence extending to both ends of the rope. The idea that Great Grandpa wants everyone to feed on Krispy Kreme donuts first thing in the morning, his “breakfast of champions”, and then wonders why the children won’t sit still as he outlines his plan for events of the day, is but one example of the push-pull that goes on in the stories. This book has made readers laugh, cry, get angry, and then soften and laugh again.

This book may be purchased on Amazon as well as the author’s website at bethgrimmcreativearts.com.


“This collection of poems, written over a span of thirty years, includes early poems showing the influence of dada, and surrealism and later poems of a more beat influence. They deal with the joys, pains, discoveries of an everyday life infused with Azure.”
“Azure floods me with excitement I can’t contain. I
fear tomorrow, when I become a chalk outline on
the sidewalk where I fell into the gulf of your blue eyes.”

Several poems in the collection have previously appeared in literary magazines and journals. Graphics in the book were supplied by the author....Kenneth Weichel

Buy this book on Amazon

Benicia First Tuesday Poets third Anthology available on Amazon

Benicia First Tuesday Poets second Anthology available on Amazon

Benicia First Tuesday Poets forth Anthology available on Amazon

Benicia First Tuesday Poets fifth Anthology available on Amazon

Benicia First Tuesday Poets sixth Anthology

Benicia First Tuesday Poets seventh Anthology

This book is also available at Bookshop Benicia