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New books explore personal and college histories

Hazel B. Simms, who just celebrated her 80th birthday, has published “Glance Back Look Ahead Seize the Moment.”
In the introduction, she writes, “Even the poor dream they will leave their mark in the sands of time. This book is about us.” It is a memoir of her life, combining major events with fond memories. Simms describes growing up with racism, poverty and the desire to rise above her modest means.
She writes about how her devotion to religion and family helped her endure difficult times and enjoy the good times. Wife of the late Rev. John Wesley Simms, they had five children, Sharon, Coleen, M.J. (Simms-Maddox, of Salisbury) Paulette and Jina.
She says in a press release, “I started writing this manuscript the year my husband was dying from cancer. During that time, I reflected on my life as a minister’s wife as well as on my entire life.”
The book is published by Dorrance Publishing in Pittsburgh, Pa., and costs $14. To order call 1-800-788-7654.
New book on Price
Dr. Lenwood G. Davis, a former resident of Salisbury, has recently published “Joseph Charles Price and Livingstone College and White Philanthropists.”
Davis, professor of English and foreign languages at Winston-Salem State University, teaches African-American culture.
Although many people know the African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church was the primary supporter of Livingstone, little is known about the early white philanthropists who contributed to the college in its formative years. Davis writes that Price’s “dynamic personality … was able to persuade these individuals to donate money to his school.”
Early white philanthropists included William E. Dodge, Stephen Ballard, Collis P. Huntington and Leland Stanford. Andrew Carnegie later gave money to build a library and Mary Reynolds Babcock donated money for a residence hall for girls.
The book includes other information, as well, such as photos, lists of Livingstone College’s faculty and more.
Davis is the author of 24 books.
Award-winning books
CHARLESTON, S.C ó Three Charleston authors won top awards in the Independent Publishers annual IPPY competition. Former Wall Street investment banker John Thompson won the gold for his thriller “Armageddon Conspiracy,” published by Charleston-based Joggling Board Press.
Post and Courier columnist Ken Burger won a silver medal for best regional fiction for his novel “Swallow Savannah.” David Cox, author of “Dirty Secrets, Dirty War,” won a silver for best history book. Both books were published by the Evening Post Publishing Co. in cooperation with Joggling Board Press. (The Evening Post Publishing Co. owns the Salisbury Post).
Emerging as the top mystery/thriller/suspense novel, Thompson’s debut book also was named a semi-finalist as the year’s best novel by the Southern Independent Book Alliance.
The second in the Bent Lucas Thriller series, “Hong Kong Deception,” will be released in hard cover this fall and the third, “Baghdad Vendetta,” in the fall of 2010.
“Dirty Secrets, Dirty War,” described by Publisher’s Weekly as “a riveting tale,” is about a newspaper family’s struggle to survive Argentina’s decade of brutal right-wing rule in the 1970s.
“Swallow Savannah,” which takes place under the shadow of the Savannah River nuke plant, is the story of a rural southern community caught between one man’s all-consuming ambition and the dawning reality of civil rights.
Organizers of the 13th annual Independent Publisher Book Awards, conducted to honor the year’s best independently published books, will honor the winners at the annual IPPY Awards celebration on May 29 during BookExpo America in New York.

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