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  • ARC Review: Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia
  • ARC Review: The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver
  • Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • Review: Karmic Hearts by Jhing Bautista
  • Review: The Conspiration of the Universe by Kenneth Olanday

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Book Feature: Open Wounds by Joseph Lunievicz

Our second feature for this week is Joseph Lunievicz' Open Wounds. I've heard a lot of good things about Open Wounds and that its a "boy book". But I beg to differ, because I also heard that this is a book that BOTH boys and girls would like. I'd like to see it for myself.



Hardcover, eBook 352 pages
Young Adult/Historical Fiction (ages 14+)
Publisher: WestSide Books
Releases May 25, 2011
ISBN: 978-1934813515
Price: $16.95
Cid Wymann, a scrappy kid fighting to survive a harsh upbringing in Queens, NY, is almost a prisoner in his own home. His only escape is sneaking to Times Square to see Errol Flynn movies full of swordplay and duels. He's determined to become a great fencer, but after his family disintegrates, Cid spends five years at an orphanage until his injured war-veteran cousin “Lefty” arrives from England to claim him.

Lefty teaches Cid about acting and stage combat, especially fencing, and introduces Cid to Nikolai Varvarinski, a brilliant drunken Russian fencing master who trains Cid. By 16, Cid learns to channel his aggression through the harsh discipline of the blade, eventually taking on enemies old and new as he perfects his skills.

Evocative of The Book Thief with a dash of Gangs of New York, Open Wounds is the page-turning story of a lost boy's quest to become a man.


Joe Lunievicz has excelled in many areas over the years – as competitive fencer, public speaker, yoga instructor, and improvisational actor – but in his heart he always knew he was a writer. For years he wrote early in the morning before work and then, after his son was born, late into the night.
At 16, Joe began writing stories, essays, and poetry that illuminated the unique subcultures he’s been part of in his native home of New York. His work has explored the worlds of amateur rugby and fencing, fantasy and science fiction gaming, and stage combat and theatre. These experiences certainly inspired Joe’s debut novel, Open Wounds (WestSide Books, May 2011). His fiction and poetry have appeared in Smoke Magazine,, Rugby, Dragon Magazine, Another Chicago Magazine, and Mothering.
His honors and awards for writing include:
  • “Game Face,” Aberrations, Issue #20, 1994 – Honorable Mention: The Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror, 1995, Datlow and Windling
  • The Pell, a one-act play, selected to be performed at the OPAL One-ACT Play Pulse Ensemble Theatre Festival, January 2002
  • Old Chatham Fiction Workshop, Old Chatham, NY, Scholarship, 7/95
  • Ragdale Foundation Writers Retreat, Lake Forest, IL, Invited for two-week residences in 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2003
  • Wesleyan Writer’s Conference. Wesleyan University, CT, Jakobson Scholarship, 6/95
Joe is also a sought-after national speaker on diversity issues, drug treatment, team building, HIV/AIDS, and public speaking (despite being terrified of it as a child!).
A graduate of C.W. Post Long Island University, Joe attended both the City College of New York’s graduate creative writing program, (where he studied with William Matthews), and Stony Brook University’s continuing education program. He performed with the KLAATU improvisational comedy troupe for 4 years. In 2007, Joe earned his teaching certification from the Lotus School of Yoga in New York City and has been teaching ever since.
Joe started fencing 30 years a go. He was fascinated with the sport as a child after seeing Captain Blood and The Mark of Zorro. A lover of all sports, Joe played rugby for 16 years in the New York Metropolitan Rugby Union with the Long Island Rhinos Rugby Football club. He also served in the Peace Corp for 2 1/2 years in Honduras.
Joe lives in Queens, New York with his wife and son.
Follow Joseph on Twitter: @lunievicz


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