Our mission is to help authors bring their stories to light with professional editing, design, and good exposure to the marketplace. Through Belle Isle Books, we offer personal guidance and accessibility, encourage authors to actively participate in the publishing process, and produce high-quality books that exhibit editorial quality of the highest caliber.
We treat the publishing process as a partnership because when the book comes off the press, we want our authors to be confident and successful.
New & Upcoming Releases
The Grit and Joy of Being
ON SALE 12/3/2019!
by Anne Poarch
There is grit and joy in life.
You can eat a peach,
taste the soft silky sweetness of the fruit,
and still catch a flake of pit in your mouth.
I’ll take the unwelcome to get at the heart.
Come and visit the orchard with me;
We’ll shake the trees and give out bushels of joy.
(“Grit & Joy” by Anne Poarch)
PRAISE FOR THE GRIT AND JOY OF BEING:
"Within the interplay of nature and sensuality is where Anne's poetry soars. This collection, while steeped in the Southern tradition, is also about soulful transcendence." —Tembi Locke, actor, advocate, and author of From Scratch
From a Tree to a Chair
ON SALE 12/13/2019!
written by Roseanne McDonald
illustrated by Mary Barrows
Look around you. Do you see something made of wood? A chair or table, a toy or tool, perhaps
even the building you're in right now? Have you ever wondered where these items come from?
Prepare to find out! Beginning at a busy logging site deep in the woods, we'll follow the journey of a tree as it is harvested, processed into lumber, and carefully crafted into a beautiful set of chairs. With a deep respect for the trees, and for the useful things they give us, this book reveals all the hard work that goes into making the items we take for granted every day.
PRAISE FOR FROM A TREE TO A CHAIR:
"Rose McDonald takes an innovative look at how the trees we live under become the furniture we use. Readers will see just how much goes into the process, and may even be inspired to pursue one of the many careers described. From a Tree to a Chair is interesting and fun."
—Rob McCallum, social studies teacher and former newspaper reporter from timber country
The Power in Me
ON SALE 1/6/2020!
written by Meaghan Axel
illustrated by Michelle Simpson
Are your thoughts in a tizzy? Doubts making you dizzy? Tell those feelings to shoo, with the power in you! Young or old, we all have problems that weigh on our minds. Learn how to keep your cool and control your thoughts on even the toughest days with this delightful book about the power of breath.
PRAISE FOR THE POWER IN ME:
“The Power in Me offers an invaluable reminder to us all: to be still, to breathe, and to recognize the strength within us. This gentle reminder about mindfulness will find a home at story times and bedtimes.”
—Matthew C. Winner, school librarian and host of The Children’s Book Podcast
“We all have the power to manage our stress and anxious thoughts. This book will help children and adults remember to breathe through anxiety, knowing that every emotion eventually passes. An inspirational book to share with the children in our lives.”
—Connie Bowman, actress, yoga teacher, and author of Back to Happy, Beau’s Day Care Day, There’s an Elephant in my Bathtub, and Super Socks
“Written in lovely rhyme with adorable illustrations, The Power in Me is a fantastic book, empowering children through relatable language that is a joy to read and easy to understand. Schools and libraries need more books like this!”
—Elena Reznikova, author of Thank You, Me
“Through rhyming verse and colorful artwork, Ms. Axel invites her readers to find feelings of peace, calm, and well-being through the secret power of breath. Simple, interactive steps empower children to not only understand the nature of their thoughts and emotions, but to experience the transformative effects of short, guided breathing exercises. The Power in Me is sure to appeal to educators and caregivers searching for an accessible and kid-friendly introduction to mindfulness.”
—Paula Smith, school psychologist and certified dynamic mindfulness/transformative life skills trainer for Niroga Institute
“The Power in Me delivers the message which we all need to be reminded of again and again; be still and breathe. Lyrical rhymes coupled with simple, powerful concepts make this book meaningful as well as fun for children and adults alike.”
—Kira Willey, author of “Breathe Like a Bear,” children’s artist, kids’ yoga & mindfulness expert
Chester Chipmunk Will NOT Sleep
ON SALE 1/22/2020!
written by Kathleen George
illustrated by Louisa Mae
It’s bedtime in the nook of Cherry Hill, but Chester Chipmunk just can’t sleep! He’s had too much fun playing today, and he isn’t ready to stop now. Good thing Mom knows a trick or two to help change his mind! Join Mama Chipmunk and Chester on a whimsical journey to discover all the many adventures that await in his dreams!
PRAISE FOR CHESTER CHIPMUNK WILL NOT SLEEP:
“Chester Chipmunk Will NOT Sleep is a heartwarming story that celebrates the wonders of childhood. Through its title character and majestic illustrations, the reader is whisked away on an exciting journey through the imaginative world of dreams. This book is sure to delight and awaken the inner adventurer in all of us!”
—Stephanie Parwulski, author of Beatrice and the Sunflower Gift and Gloria’s Hope Tree
Before the Foundation of the World
ON SALE 2/28/2020!
written by Susan Weiner
Before the Foundation of the World examines the nature of good and evil in God’s creation. Using poetry and song lyrics, this collection offers a celebration of joy in response to God’s covenant with man. From Christmas poems to simple lullabies, the author paints a vivid picture of the incredible experience of wonder in a world of God’s design. An extended exchange in Appendix I with “The Father of Lies”(“Pater Mendaciorum”) and the promises of Christian faith reflects our reconciliation with God and explores the redemption of mankind in the face of radical evil. Journeying from the psychology of evil to the good news of the spirit, Before the Foundation of the World speaks to the ways of God, embodying gratitude and love as the foundation for mature Christian belief.
PRAISE FOR BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD:
“Before the Foundation of the World is poetry of the highest sort. It is a wonderful fusion of artistry and truth. It takes the reader to places where prose cannot go, into the mystery of the spirit where good and evil reside. Susan Weiner has created an enduring Christian testament that speaks to both believer and unbeliever. It is a triumph for her. I feel myself drawn back into her poetry again and again.”
—Curtis J. Young, senior pastor, Church of the Atonement, Silver Spring, MD
“Poetry challenges us to see things in a different way. Susan Weiner’s lovely poems lead us to meditate on God’s love and greatness, His Son’s birth and ultimate sacrifice, and of His mysterious workings in our lives and in the world around us. In these verses, biblical events come alive, urging us to see the stars and the stable, hear the thunder of the stormy seas, feel the sand beneath our feet, smell the spices, taste the honey—and marvel at what God has done for us.”
—Anne Morse, author (with Charles Colson) of Burden of Truth and (with Congressman Frank R. Wolf ) of Prisoner of Conscience
“Like fine cuisine, Susan Weiner’s Before the Foundation of the World is rich food for the soul not to be devoured hastily, but savored slowly and deliberately. Powerful images engage all the senses, transporting the reader back to biblical times, bringing to life the realities of good and evil and the ultimate victory God has given us in Christ. This is poetry for our time—a beautiful declaration of God's glory and His unfathomable love for His people.”
—Joanne Hamilton, former president, Associate Reformed Presbyterian Women’s Ministries
Verities: A Journey by Tracks
ON SALE 3/4/2020!
written by Randy White
“When it is dark enough, you can see the stars.” Take a ride down the train tracks in the small town of Verities, and you’ll see one young man’s quests for meaning in his troubled life. Follow Sam’s journey as he grows up facing ugly truths about love and loss on the wrong side of the tracks. Verities is a hopeful story of rising above one’s circumstances, even in the cruel face of social injustice.
PRAISE FOR VERITIES:
“What’s important in life? No, what’s really important? Is it material possessions; what others think of you? Or, what at the end of much searching leads you to real happiness and contentment? Through a tornadic life, Sam faces questions about family, friends, trust, love, and the price to be paid for securing his dream. Fast-paced, with unexpected but clever plot twists, Verities carries the reader along with its stand-out characters every inch of the way. It also spotlights, in an era of receiving information in short bursts, the enduring value of books that make you think and see things you might never have seen.”
—Rich Garon, author of Felling Big Trees and Lee Fitts
Impressions Beyond the Terminal Cancer Diagnosis
written by Norma Woody
In this collection, as in her first book, Impressions Behind the Pink Ribbon, Norma explores a range of emotions and trials only a woman facing her own death can experience. A true and rich testament that only the examined life is worth living, she probes the depths and meaning of honesty, hope, friendship, and faith, as well as her own fear, isolation, heartache, and failures. For Norma, life was a kaleidoscope of miracles and experiences she felt compelled to capture in her writing, and had she lived, she would have penned many more books. We regret that this is her final manifesto of life, love, and hope.
PRAISE FOR IMPRESSIONS BEYOND THE TERMINAL CANCER DIAGNOSIS and IMPRESSIONS BEHIND THE PINK RIBBON
“As a Community Manager for the American Cancer Society, I work with people who have and have not been diagnosed with cancer. Because I work in the field of cancer and experience loss so often, I find myself wondering how many people live their lives with life itself going unnoticed until the moment of diagnosis. I am deeply moved by and profoundly grateful for Norma Woody’s honest and enlightening account of what it is to face a Stage 4 cancer diagnosis and try to live in the dying, make sense of the senseless, and yet acknowledge all the good things there are in the midst of the daily struggle. These very sentiments are what inspire the human spirit to find the hope and faith that are necessary to sustain life. Impressions Behind the Pink Ribbon is a gift for everyone who is searching to express the inexpressible about what cancer steals from us. Truly, we are all terminal from the day we are born, but cancer brings fear and starts the life clock ticking, which steals peace from those who are diagnosed and from those
around them. This book faces the tough emotional issues head on and will make you cry, make you laugh, but most of all it will allow you to see the beauty of the human spirit in the midst of the storm.”
—Amy Swartz, community manager, American Cancer Society
“Wow. Norma Woody has written a grace-filled, unflinching, and even, at times, whimsical book about her battle with Stage IV, Grade 3 cancer. Norma writes, “If we trust in God’s love, no matter where we are in life and no matter how difficult it can be at times, He will still bring beautiful people and beautiful things into our lives when we need them the most.” Norma and her book will be the beautiful person and beautiful thing many will find when they need them the most in the midst of their own life struggles.”
—Lynne B. Einhaus, Ph.D., licensed clinical psychologist and collaborative coach
“Anyone who writes a book while living with a diagnosis of terminal cancer deserves to be read. Few get the chance to have the last word about their life. In this book, Norma Woody does just that. She has insured that her experience will survive as her legacy to all who are on the same journey.”
—Betty Booker, Boomer magazine columnist and former Richmond Times-Dispatch columnist
“Norma Woody takes an unflinching look at her life after she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Her book is filled with poetry, pain, reminiscences good and bad, apologies for being sick, an assessment that her life by her own standards has been ‘mediocre,’ and a hard look at cancer and ‘all the stigma and negativity and needing that comes with it.’ I recommend it highly to anyone interested in how one should confront his or her own life and death or the life and death of a family member or friend.”
—Randy Fitzgerald, Boomer magazine columnist, former college educator and newspaper columnist
Eleven Dollars and a Half Tank of Gas
written by Greg Drost
In this candid memoir of a classic American boyhood, Greg Drost—teacher, family man, and self-taught surfer—takes a moment to look back on the events that led him to where he is today. From summer hijinks and schoolboy woes, through hardship and heartbreak, and down the long and winding road to self-discovery, this delightful collection of anecdotes is more than the story of one man’s coming of age. It is an examination of all those moments, great and small, that shape us into the people we grow up to be.
The King of the Stars
written by Brandon Layne
In the land of Kama, the stars are magical and constellations determine the future. Stars can even grant a person the power of astromy, enabling them to manipulate elements of nature. However, only one person is destined to be king. But of course, not everyone believes in the stars, and dark forces lurk with their own plans for the world.
Brian, the teenage son of a legendary warrior, is fated to possess the gift of earth astromy, but he can barely lift a rock. With a villainous overlord ruling the town, Brian needs to develop his skills -- and quickly. But then a strange boy appears in the woods, and Brian has the feeling there's more to this kid than meets the eye. It's a race against evil and against the odds to rightfully throne the king of the stars.
PRAISE FOR THE KING OF THE STARS
“Brandon Layne has created an imaginative fantasy world that young readers will love.”
—Colleen R. Lee, school librarian
“Brandon’s book is a great read to stimulate the minds and imaginations of a technologically overloaded generation.”
—Amy Powroznik, art educator for grades K-5, Henrico County Gilman Award winner 2009