Christian Reviewer Amy Drown: SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT is ‘expertly crafted arrow that shoots straight for the heart’


Christian writer, editor, and blogger Amy Drown reviewed Barbara J. Taylor’s SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT this week. As a fan of the historical fiction genre, she described her expectations of reading the novel and critiqued it based on whether it met those expectations, various elements of craft, originality, and whether it would be appropriate for fans of Christian fiction.

Drown said: “Reminiscent of classics such as How Green Was My Valley or, more recently, the Hallmark Channel’s original dramatic series When Calls the Heart, this book is a must-read for fans of character-driven, authentic historical fiction,” adding, “This is the most original story I have read in a long, long time.”

Read the complete review here



Prime Number Journal interviewed Barbara J. Taylor

Prime Number: A Journal of Distinctive Poetry and Prose in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, interviewed Barbara J. Taylor on her book SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT. Interviewer and author Curtis Smith (AN UNADORNED LIFE; SOUND AND NOISE and TRUTH OR SOMETHING LIKE IT) asked Taylor about the extensive research required to write her historical novel. Writing the book as a graduate student in the Wilkes University Low Residency MA/MFA in Creative Writing Program, she spent long hours at the Lackawanna Historical Society, Scranton Public Library, Anthracite Museum, and other historical venues to recreate the setting of the early 1900s. 


Graduation video from students in Wilkes University’s Creative Writing Program

Every graduating class in Wilkes University’s MA/MFA in Creative Writing Program produces their own satirical film as a way to celebrate their hard work and say goodbye to new friends. This year’s film, “The Pitch,” featured the June 2014 graduating class and nearly all of the dedicated faculty and staff. Enjoy below what has become the program’s tradition!


Author Cheryl Bazzoui reviewed Barbara J. Taylor’s SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT for Pennsylvania’s WPSU, a Penn State public access radio station. Bazzoui, the granddaughter of a coal miner who died of lung cancer at the age of 52, said the story helped her to reexamine her own family story by understanding what life had been like for her grandfather and other miners like him. She wrote in her review:

“I highly recommend this book. It gives a poignant look at what life might have been like for my coal-miner grandfather and shows how much daily life has changed over the last 100 years. And though the plot may sound bleak, ultimately it’s a story of hope and survival that will stay with the reader long after the book is done.”


A picture of an underground mine hospital. For other historical photographs related to the novel SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT, visit Barbara J. Taylor’s Facebook page.

Aviation blogger Colleen Mondor reviewed UNMENTIONABLES


Aviation journalist and author Colleen Mondor wrote a review of UNMENTIONABLES on her blog, “Chasing Ray.” Mondor enjoyed the novel and called it a “surprise,” explaining that:

I found a certain amount of “earthiness” to this novel–a perspective on life that reads very much about people most readers know and will recognize.  I think I especially liked the history here though, how Lowenstein so effectively weaves bits about milk inspection and disease and racism and education into the overall story. This is how we live, after all, with so much big and small going on around us.

A picture of the Chautauqua Assembly in Clarinda, Indiana circa 1908, courtesy of the Library of Congress, was posted with her review.

Akashic guest post about Hillary Rodham Clinton’s connection to SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT

Kaylie Jones Books author Barbara J. Taylor wrote a guest post for Akashic explaining what book first inspired her to be a writer and how Doc Rodham, one of the characters in her debut novel SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT, was the paternal great-uncle of Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Review of SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT: ‘Authenticity augments tale of grief’

The Columbus Dispatch newspaper in Ohio published a review of SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT by Barbara J. Taylor on July 6. Reviewer Margaret Quamm was complimentary of the novel:

“Handled less respectfully, the material could easily have turned melodramatic. Taylor’s careful attention to detail and her deep knowledge of the community and its people give the novel a welcome gravity.”


SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT featured on Denver bookstore’s blog

Between the Covers, the official blog for the Denver-based Tattered Cover Book Store, featured Barbara J. Taylor’s SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT on July 6, including a link to the book trailer and an excerpt of the summer review from Publishers Weekly.



The Pocono Record interviewed Barbara J. Taylor about Fourth of July tragedy

The Pocono Record interviewed Barbara J. Taylor about the haunting Fourth of July tragedy that inspired her debut novel SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT. Taylor, a 27-year Pocono Mountain English teacher, discussed how she incorporated the “Billy Sunday Snowstorm” into her story and how she intends on writing two sequels.


Taylor will be reading and signing books at the Lackawanna Historical Society in Scranton, Pennsylvania, on Wed., July 16 at 7 p.m. In the advertisement for the event, the historical society highlighted Billy Sunday, the evangelist who came to town and preached during one of Scranton’s worst blizzards. Above is a picture of the interior of the tabernacle built for the revival on the land where Prep now stands.

Kaylie Jones interviewed Barbara J. Taylor on her debut novel SING IN THE MORNING, CRY AT NIGHT

Sing in the Morning, Cry at Night by Barbara J. Taylor was released on July 1 by Kaylie Jones Books, an imprint of Akashic Books. This historical novel, named one of Publisher Weekly’s Best Summer Books of 2014, blends meticulous research of Pennsylvania coal mining communities in the early 20th century with a tragedy inspired by the author’s real family. Jones interviewed Taylor in celebration of the book’s release, discussing her inspiration, her writing process, and what keeps her going. Read the interview here.