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Books of Local Interest: From the War of 1812 to a steampunk adventure


“Waterways of War: The War of 1812,” has been published by Seaway Trail Inc.

The guidebook, by Steve Benson and Ron Toelke, describes forts, battlefields and historic sites along byways in New York and Pennsylvania. It highlights sites on two federally designated National Scenic Byways: the 518-mile Great Lakes Seaway Trail and the 225-mile Lakes to Locks passage along Lake Champlain and the Hudson River.

The 72-page colorful guidebook has 16 community-specific chapters highlighting the War of 1812 sites. It is written in vignette style, but the guidebook describes several events and has a timeline and tips for re-enactors. Chapters include “The First and Second Battles of Sackets Harbor,” “The Battle of Big Sandy and the Great Cable Carry” and “The Battle of Oswego.”

“Waterways of War” sells for $14.95 and is available at historic sites along the trails and through

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R.M. Doyon, an Ottawa resident who has a summer home on Howe Island across from Clayton, has self-published a follow-up to his 2010 novel “UpCountry.”

In “Thou Torturest Me,” Mr. Doyon focuses on Old Order Amish. The tale ranges from fictional Morgan County, N.Y., to Syracuse and the Tug Hill Plateau.

In Mr. Doyon’s new book, Hubie Schumacher’s clan has returned to Morgan County to celebrate a milestone in his life and to possibly bring closure to the events of nearly four years previous. “Immediately, we meet a couple of young lovers from completely disparate walks of life, spawning an affair that sets in motion a violent clash of cultures fueled by principle and prejudice,” Mr. Doyon writes in a synopsis.

Mr. Doyon has been a journalist, writer, publicist and entrepreneur for more than three decades. He began his career with the Ottawa Citizen before serving as a political reporter and Parliamentary bureau chief for United Press International. He has also served in senior roles in the Canadian government, writing speeches for two prime ministers and officials.

“Thou Torturest,” which sells for $15.69 in paperback and $5.99 in a Kindle edition, is available at Corbin’s River Heritage in Clayton, the BookStore Plus in Lake Placid and online through

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Hungry Bear Publishing, Saranac Lake, has released a print version of “New York’s Adirondack Park: A User’s Guide,” by Andy Flynn “and friends.”

A Kindle version was released on in February.

The book is designed to answer the question, “What is the Adirondack Park?”

Mr. Flynn drew upon his eight years of tourism industry experience as a public relations specialist for the Adirondack Park Agency’s visitor interpretive centers to compile the book, which was self-published through his Hungry Bear Publishing.

Officials from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the APA contributed to the book, along with members of the Adirondack Forest Preserve Education Partnership, the Adirondack Regional Tourism Council and other Adirondack-based groups.

The book sells for $8.95 and is available in Adirondack bookstores, at and online at

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“Unknown Museums of Upstate New York” by Chuck D’Imperio has been published by Syracuse University Press.

The guide focuses on 50 small, often overlooked, regional museums. It also offers tips for visitors.

There are six museums profiled in the Thousand Islands and Adirondack regions, including the North American Fiddlers Hall of Fame in Osceola, the Robert Louis Stevenson Memorial Cottage and Museum in Saranac Lake, the Antique Boat Museum in Clayton and the Safe Haven Museum and Education Center in Oswego.

Mr. D’Imperio, a native of Sidney, Delaware County, is a longtime Central New York radio broadcaster.

“Unknown Museums of Upstate New York” sells for $27.95 and is available at online bookstores or on the publisher’s website at

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Christopher Hopper, associate pastor at Watertown’s New Life Christian Church, has self-published, through CreateSpace, “The Sky Riders.” It’s his seventh novel and the first he has self-published.

“The Sky Riders” is a steampunk novel. Steampunk is a genre of science fiction that features steam-powered machinery and is usually set in the Victorian era.

Mr. Hopper’s story centers on Junar, a 17-year-old boy following in the footsteps of his Ace Pilot father, Leif, as a flyer in the Kili-Boranna Guild, better known as the Sky Riders. Junar sets his sights on competing in the Champions Race — a cross-world gauntlet whose winner is listed among the greatest “felrell” pilots in history. But behind the scenes, political factions and government conspiracies collide.

The book sells for $13.95, and $3.99 on Kindle. It is available at online bookstores and at Mr. Hopper’s website,

Compiled by Times staff writer Chris Brock.

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