Friendly Elf Gives Gentle Lessons in Courage, Empowerment

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Magical world and its inhabitants come to life in richly illustrated new children’s book

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Fears do not need to be stifled but can be the impetus for change and self-empowerment

Fear can be the catalyst for positive change, and it’s never too early to teach children that facing their fears is an important part of growing up. Deftly imparting this practical advice using whimsy and lighthearted characters, The Adventures of Wizahickon (published by AuthorHouse), the new children’s book by Mary Russo, PhD, is an ideal resource for fostering a sense of empowerment in little ones.

Ideal for a read-aloud and simple enough for beginning readers to tackle on their own, The Adventures of Wizahickon transports its audience to the Lemon Grass Forest. The forest is filled with all the colors of the rainbow, and Wizahickon enjoys playing with a veritable menagerie of friends – rabbits, butterflies, squirrels, raccoons and foxes, to name a few.

Wizahickon has never seen another human, so imagine her surprise when she encounters a sobbing little girl, just about her size, but with blue eyes and blonde hair in contrast to the elf’s twig hair and brown eyes. “Why so glum?” Wizahickon asks, and the girl tearfully confesses that she’s lost her parents. The elf thinks for a moment and, cheering her new friend up, takes her in search of her mama and papa.

Girl and elf cross through the Pumpkin Grove, down Dandelion Path, around Caramel Lake and up Blueberry Hill, where Wizahickon leaves her human chum in a patch of mushrooms, knowing she’ll be safe there. Sure enough, before Wizahickon is even out of sight, the girl and her mother are joyfully reunited.

“Fears do not need to be stifled but can be the impetus for change and self-empowerment,” Russo writes. This positive message is gently conveyed through imaginative characters and settings, and Yelena Kasianova’s gorgeous illustrations bring the story to vibrant, pulsating life. Discover more in this enchanting new book.

About the Author
Mary Russo, PhD, is a psychologist who helps individuals enrich their sense of self through personal development. Believing that within each of us exists a yearning inner child, she wrote The Adventures of Wizahickon, her first published book, to encourage children of all ages to see themselves as strong and to have the courage to express their uniqueness. Mary lives in California with her husband and has two grown children and a grandchild to whom she often reads. Polka Dot Sue, a children’s book about self-esteem, is slated for publication in fall 2010.

About the Illustrator
Yelena Kasianova is a high school senior from the San Francisco Bay Area. Her artistic talent has been recognized with numerous awards. In illustrating works for children, she strives to delight them with bright colors and engaging images. Kasianova plans to attend college and continue to develop as both an artist and an illustrator. This is her first book illustration project.

AuthorHouse is the premier book publisher for emerging, self-published authors. For more information, please visit


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