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He’s black, Ivy League educated, from a prominent  family in Harlem. She’s white, homeless, from a subsistence farm in Kentucky. They are worlds apart but share a passion—music. 

For the past five years Mike Monroe has struggled toward an MBA, expecting to take over the family business. But within months of graduating realizes he just can’t do it, and drops out of NYU to pursue his dream as a musician/composer. Alienating his entire family with his decision, he ends up stuck in a dingy piano bar in Mid-Town Manhattan.

Finding solace in serving at a soup kitchen, Mike meets Sarah, a demure yet formidable homeless girl who, although suffering from poor health, is a gifted artist and singer. When reaching out to Sarah, Mike learns her extraordinary life story, inspiring his composing. Could their passion to make music lead to love, reconciliation with family and restored health? The Girl in the Yellow Scarf delves into the sacrifices involved in realizing a dream in gritty 1980’s New York.

The Girl in the Yellow Scarf

Published by TREEBONES, INC
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The Piano Man

Published by TREEBONES, INC
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At age twenty-five, Mike Monroe has reached a level of success few attain in a lifetime—record contracts, leader of a renowned band, and a hit musical on Broadway. However...something is missing.  

From his achievements of the past two years Mike Monroe should feel confident but when given the opportunity to compose a new musical he lacks inspiration and fears his debut hit, The Girl in the Yellow Scarf, was a fluke. With his reputation at stake, and a commitment to investors to produce a new composition, he had better figure something out…and quick.

However, there are demands from his family and the young musicians he’s mentoring at the YMCA plus the stress of negotiating his tenuous love life. Nonetheless his saving grace and path forward would lie within reach but something will have to give. Book Two of the Opus Series follows The Piano Man, Mike Monroe, along his rocky journey to redemption.

The Opus Series


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The Opus Cafe where the lost are found 

Published by TREEBONES, INC

Love can cause you to do crazy things....

Within a matter of days, musician/composer, Mike Monroe, still recovering from getting shot, turns his back on all he has accomplished in New York, becomes engaged and follows his cherished fiancée to a distant continent – so she can meet a commitment to set up a school for orphans.

But when unimaginable tragedy strikes, Mike returns home and struggles to assemble the scattered pieces of his former life – his career is in shambles and his prized students are all but lost. Could an aging bookshop in a tough neighborhood of Manhattan be the answer to the many challenges he faces? Whatever happens, he will not have to go it alone.


Fun Think

12 Tools for Creative Problem Solving

Published by BookSurge Publishing

Problem solving in the classroom is generally based on knowledge and information where there is only one correct answer, as in solving a math or physics problem or answering a history question. Creative Problem Solving draws not only on knowledge but involves the imagination that fosters original solutions. Applying creativity to problem solving is vital in developing innovative products for business or solving community issues like alternative power, health care, transportation, housing and education, to name a few.


Through using the 12 creativity tools in solving the FunThink challenges students learn to exercise their imagination and creative problem solving skills. These critical skills will enrich their personal, work and community life.


Creativity Skills for 21st Century Careers

Published by CreateSpace

Arthink explores the creative process by guiding the reader through a variety of challenge scenarios while applying essential creativity skills used by artists, inventors and designers in their development of works of art, inventions and new product concepts. Previous art experience is not necessary. Individuals work at their personal level of artistic competency (even stick figures) where original thinking and idea communication is what matters. Clear objectives and challenge-statements involve the reader in the idea generation process by using simple everyday materials. This method would be beneficial for anyone interested in: Entrepreneurship, Leadership, Engineering, Invention, Education or any area that requires an innovative approach to challenges. A basic understanding of the creative process can be gained by simply reading through the book or to truly engage and draw out your own creativity use the materials listed to go through the various challenges. The author draws on over 40 years experience with leading design and research and development groups, as well as from being an inventor, sculptor, product designer and creativity educator.

Books are available at: Amazon (see Order Books tab) and Hennepin County and Carver County Libraries