Eastwood’s “American Sniper” reminds us all of the true cost of war

by Lawrence Knorr

CAMP HILL, PA — As the film ended, after nearly 2 1/2 hours, the credits ran and no one stood.  No one spoke.  No one reached for their phone.  As the last credit rolled, all quietly stood — a room of over 300 movie patrons who were total strangers to one another.  Quietly and politely, as if at a solemn funeral, each exited their rowMV5BMTkxNzI3ODI4Nl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwMjkwMjY4MjE@._V1_SX214_AL_ and walked to the door.  Some spoke only in hushed tones as we emptied out.  To say “American Sniper” had an impact on the audience would be an understatement.  It was the most powerful reaction to a film I have ever witnessed.

Why this reaction?  Since there were no exchanges with the patrons, I can only imagine they were thinking similarly to me.  Eastwood’s movie had struck an inner chord of human nature — a deep sense of loss coupled with the sincere respect for Chris Kyle, the Navy Seal played by Bradley Cooper.  But, that’s not the only thing.  In fact, the overriding realization is the cost of war — whether it is the mental anguish a soldier faces, or the horrors the populace in a war zone encounters, or the early deaths of so many on both sides, or the toll on the families back home — during and after the conflict.

This was not a film that glorified war — or the SEALs — or our country’s invasion of  Iraq.  It was not NRA propaganda or a recruiting tool for sniper training.  Those that are trying to make more out of it than an honest appraisal of the human price paid in such conflicts are completely off base.

If nothing else, regardless of our beliefs and all of the disagreements we have among us as Americans, we must rally behind our veterans — especially those that served in battle zones, and especially those that carry the scars, whether physical or mental.  These men and women served our country.  Whether or not you are proud of the results or agreed with the circumstances, I urge you to please support them.

If you haven’t seen the film and are unsure about how you feel about our veterans, the $9.50 per ticket to see “American Sniper” is worth every penny.

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“Pit Bulls” top Christmas gift! — Sunbury Press bestsellers for December 2014

MECHANICSBURG, Pa.Sunbury Press has released the bestsellers list for December, 2014. Tony Julian’s compilation of historic photos Pit Bulls was #1.

About Pit Bulls

Pit Bulls

Pit Bulls

Vintage Photographs of Pit Bulls and the People Who Loved Them.

Author Anthony Julian opens a time capsule for us concerning the history of the oft-maligned Pit Bull.  Through old photographs and personal anecdotes, Julian paints a history of the breed very different from the contemporary misconceptions flamed by the popular media fear machine. He focuses on the history of the Pit Bull in American society, including acting as sentry over dead Civil War soldiers and co-star on “The Little Rascals.”  This book is lavishly illustrated with vintage photographs.

This is the first in a series of books showcasing vintage photographs of people with their beloved pit bulls. $1 from the sale of each book goes to pit bull rescues !

SUNBURY PRESS – Bestsellers for December, 2014 (by Revenue)
Rank Last Month Title Author Category
1 13 Pit Bulls Anthony Julian History
2 Geology of the Mahanoy, Mahantongo and Lykens Valleys Steve Troutman Earth History
3 9 Visions of Teaoga Jim Remsen YA Fiction
4 5 As the Paint Dries Carrie Wissler-Thomas Art History
5 A Pennsylvania Mennonite and the California Gold Rush Lawrence Knorr History
6 The Relations of Dwight D Eisenhower Lawrence Knorr Genealogy
7 NEW Forts, Forests, and Flintlocks John L. Moore History
8 15 A Brother’s Cold Case Dennis Herrick Thriller Fiction
9 12 Call Sign Dracula Joe Fair War Memoir
10 8 Poor Will’s Almanack 2015 Bill Felker Almanac
11 10 Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last Mike Campbell History
12 The Relations of Isaac F Stiely: Minister of the Mahantongo Valley Lawrence Knorr Local History
13 11 Head Over Wheels Ken Mercurio Sports Memoir
14 The Complete Story of the Worldwide Invasion of the Orange Orbs Terry Ray Paranormal
15 The Hackman Story Knorr & Grace Family History
16 16 Keystone Tombstones Civil War Farrell, Farley & Knorr War Biography
17 General John Fulton Reynolds Knorr, Riley & Watson Biography
18 Winter of the Metal People Dennis Herrick Historical Fiction
19 Modern Realism According to Fritz Lawrence Knorr Art History
20 The Relations of Milton Snavely Hershey Lawrence Knorr Genealogy

Sunbury Press had its best fourth quarter ever, up nearly 50% from the 4th quarter of 2013. For the month, sales were up 45% as compared to the same month last year. Year-to-date, sales are up over 20% overall. Simply put, the company had its best year ever. Trade paperback sales soared 24% in 2014. Hardcover sales since June have rocketed past eBook sales, which were down over 15% for the year. There appears to have been no Christmas rebound for eBooks.

gotmmalv_fcTony Julian’s Pit Bulls, available in both trade paperback and hardcover, led the pack thanks to achieving consistently-high Amazon category rankings and due to the $1 per book donation pledge by the publisher. Steve Troutman’s Geology of the Mahanoy, Mahantongo and Lykens Valleys grabbed #2 thanks to author activities. Jim Remsen’s Visions of Teaga moved up to #3 as a result of ongoing author promotions. As the Paint Dries, Carrie Wissler-Thomas’s history of the Art Association of Harrisburg, co-authored by Michael Barton, notched up to #4 due to bookstore sales in Harrisburg and Christmas sales at the Association. Lawrence Knorr grabbed seven spots in the top 20 due to multiple television and radio appearances: #5 A Pennsylvania Mennonite and the California Gold Rush, #6The Relations of Dwight D. Eisenhower, #12 The Relations of Isaac F. Stiely: Minister of the Mahantongo Valley, #15 The Hackman Story, with the late Dorothy Grace, #16 with Joe Farrell and Joe Farley Keystone Tombstones Civil War, #17 General John Fulton Reynolds co-authored with Michael Riley and Diane Watson, #19 Modern Realism According to Fritz, and #20 The Relations of Milton Snavely Hershey. John L. Moore’s latest in the Frontier Pennsylvania Series, Forts, Forests, and Flintlocks debuted at #7 due to sales at regional retail outlets. A Brother’s Cold Case, by Dennis Herrick, moved up to #8 thanks to author activities. He also nabbed #18 with Winter of the Metal People. Joe Fair’s Vietnam memoir Call Sign Dracula climbed the rankings to #9 thanks to author appearances. Bill Felker’s Poor Will’s Almanack 2015 slipped a bit to #10 thanks to sales from the author’s annual buyers. Mike Campbell’s Amelia Earhart: The Truth at Last held at #11 due to national media attention for the search for the aviatrix’s plane. Head Over Wheels, Ken Mercurio’s cycling memoir slipped to #13, It continues to receive strong interest from cycling enthusiasts. Terry Ray’s The Complete Story of the Worldwide Invasion of the Orange Orbs returned to the rankings at #14 due to attention from MUFON.

The company released eight new titles during the month of December:

SUNBURY PRESS – New Releases for December, 2014
Pioneers, Prisoners, and Peace Pipes John L. Moore History
Forts, Forests, and Flintlocks John L. Moore History
Rivers, Raiders, and Renegades John L. Moore History
Cannons, Cattle, and Campfires John L. Moore History
Settlers, Soldiers, and Scalps John L. Moore History
Warriors, Wampum, and Wolves John L. Moore History
Pink Flamingos All Around (hardcover) Matthew Anderson Childrens Fiction
Flying Pants Lola James Childrens Fiction

For a list of Sunbury’s best-sellers, please see the Sunbury Press web site:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/BESTSELLERS_c3.htm
For a complete list of recent and upcoming releases, please see:
http://www.sunburypressstore.com/COMING-SOON_c47.htm