About Stone Harbour Press
Stone Harbour Press is one of a growing number of small presses dedicated to the art of storytelling and good literature. With the knowledge that many great and influential books are the result of small presses, and that the independent press is an essential component of a free society, we look to the dissemination of new ideas, discoveries, and entertainment.
By Pamela Johnson
The year is 1989. Two decades have passed since the Summer of Love and the San Francisco of '67 seems a distant memory to a group of friends facing the challenges of sustained idealism after the Reagan years.
Kathleen Murray, now a criminal defense attorney in Berkeley, is passionate about the clients she defends. Among them is a young woman, trapped by mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines and facing nineteen years in prison as part of a cocaine conspiracy; her crime—accepting three phone calls from her boyfriend's contacts. Another of her clients is threatened with sixteen years for carrying drugs for a Mexican cartel; her choice—either become the mule or watch as her mother and young daughter are tortured. An older man from Texas drives a load of marijuana to California; arrested, he learns what it means to become ill in prison. A mother and father living in Humboldt County in California are targeted for the Cannabis seedlings they are growing as medicine for their autistic son; their proposed sentence compounded by the district attorney's ire with their political promotion of legalization for the sick.
Interwoven with the stories of Kathleen's clients are the twenty-year adventures of the Tribe, members of the old Haight-Ashbury commune. Over the years, they have traveled from the Bay Area to counties north of San Francisco, to Mexico and Nicaragua, to the Ecuadorian rainforest and war-torn Afghanistan. The once flower children are now experienced adults balancing families with sustainable businesses, higher education, and new political policies.
At its heart, In Violation of Human Rights speaks to the tragedy that has become the American criminal justice system--the young trapped in juvenile detention, men and women buried behind walls for non-violent offences, the lack of compassion for the aging and the sick, the for-profit prison system reaping billions from human misery. More, this is a story that explores the courage and desperate efforts of those who work to promote true justice.
In Violation of Human Rights picks up the Haight-Ashbury communards of Pamela Johnson's epic trilogy, A Nation of Mystics, and plops them, twenty years later, in the meat grinder of the War on Drugs. Equal parts legal thriller, social history and probing personal portraits, In Violation of Human Rights captures the inevitable destinations of Sixties idealism -- a sweeping, heartbreaking story that is at once timely and timeless. -- Joel Selvin, author Altamont: The Rolling Stones, the Hells Angeles, and the Inside Story of Rock's Darkest Day
A Nation of Mystics
In this epic trilogy of intimacy, metaphysical exploration, and coming of age, author Pamela Johnson deftly explores the youth subculture in San Francisco and Berkeley in the mid-1960s. Although set in the Sixties, A Nation of Mystics is strikingly relevant, examining the beginnings of ideas that have become the cornerstone of visionary culture and progressive politics.
"A sprawling, epic novel of classic dimensions that vividly recreates the psychedelic sixties."
--Joel Selvin, culture and music columnist, San Francisco Chronicle, and author of, The Haight: Love, Rock, and Revolution
By Pamela Johnson
1967. The Summer of Love. The Haight-Ashbury becomes home to characters arriving from around the world with all the initial goodwill and naiveté of youth ready to change the world. Forming a communal family, the story follows their growing commitment to the creation of a new culture, one based on social action, expanded awareness, new insights into the nature of mind, and the courage to make change.
Christian Brooks, haunted by a fiery riot in India, arrives in Berkeley after leaving the ministry, seeking a new path to God. Kathleen Murray hitches to San Francisco with best friend, Marcelle Arceneaux, and exchanges picket lines for a more direct method of altering consciousness. After an arrest for a small amount of marijuana, Myles Corbet must choose between prison and betraying his oldest friend. Seeking knowledge through science, brilliant young botany student Jerry Putnam discovers the shamanic calling. Lisa leaves the man she loves to enter an ashram to become a celibate, a bramachari, and study with a Hindu Master. Attorney Lance Bormann carefully walks between worlds to defend his young clients. Opposing them, drug agent Dolph Bremer vows to crush the counterculture movement through any means necessary.
Book One, Intentions significantly addresses contemporary issues of relevance—those conflicts between political idealism and the old order, violent police overreach, and the beginnings of America's failed War on Drugs.
"A Nation of Mystics sings with the sense of wonder and awe that inspired a generation to change the world--one atom and synapse at a time."
--Nicholas Schou, author of, Orange Sunshine: The Brotherhood of Eternal Love and Its Quest to Spread Peace, Love, and Acid to the World
Book Two: The Tribe
By Pamela Johnson
In Book Two of A Nation of Mystics, author Pamela Johnson resumes her skillful exploration of the late-1960s and the counterculture through the eyes of a communal family, following the strengthening relationships of the tribe as they search for enlightenment and work for political change.
Christian Brooks, now twenty-one years old, expands his underground activities by moving into Europe to acquire chemicals for his high-yielding LSD lab in Los Angeles. Kathleen Murray struggles to develop her own business in a male-dominated world, searching for a balance between spiritual enlightenment and money. Marcelle Arceneaux tries to find a way to create music and poetry while caring for the demands of family. Forced to leave the Bay Area, Myles Corbet becomes an undercover agent working for Interpol in Germany and Amsterdam. Using all the botanical talent of his young life, Jerry learns to produce the beautiful and vision-manifesting mushrooms of the Mazatec shamans of Oaxaca. Lisa moves to India, yet longs for a way to love again. Supervisor Dolph Bremer, more frustrated and therefore more ruthless, turns his police investigations on attorney Lance Bormann, as he contemplates a way to pay Bormann back for his successes in the courtroom.
The different threads of the family’s conflicts, acquired knowledge, and personal resolutions finally intersect in the building of a community park on university land in Berkeley. As the youth movement pits itself against the establishment, the conflicts ultimately explode in tear gas and gunfire over the idealism of People’s Park.
Book Two: The Tribe addresses questions that continue to resonate today—what constitutes true crime, police reaction to civil disobedience, and the nature of religious freedom.
"I would rank Pamela Johnson among the best of modern storytellers. She has the rare ability to combine valuable history lessons with highly entertaining portraits."
--Jim Ketchum, MD, author of, Chemical Warfare Secretes Almost Forgotten: A Personal Story of Medical Testing of Army Volunteers
Book Three: Journeys
By Pamela Johnson
In this final book of Pamela Johnson’s epic trilogy on the 1960s, the story of a communal family’s search for enlightenment continues. Although the social and political bruises of the Berkeley People’s Park riots begin to heal at the Woodstock Music Festival, the family soon faces new danger from both murderous competitors and law enforcement.
In Journeys, the decade draws to a close, and as time passes, members of the Tribe are forced into making difficult choices. Christian Brooks finds he must return to India to face his demons. Kathleen Murray searches for a way to continue to hold to her ideals, even though hard men take her innocence. Marcelle Arceneaux is crippled by the pain of loosing a loved one. Myles Corbet, now a full agent working in Europe and Asia for Interpol, must finally come to terms with the betrayal of his best friend. Narcotics Supervisor Dolph Bremer faces the case of his life where he will win all or lose all in his contest with attorney Lance Bormann.
Through its characters, A Nation of Mystics explores eternally relevant human questions—how to seek peace in the presence of evil, the life-altering implications of personal choices, the discovery of strength, and the fortitude to transform idealism into action.
Book 3: Journeys, ties together the important threads of America’s counterculture beliefs into a single knot, the ideas and actions of a generation poised on the threshold of a new decade, ready to stand the test of time.
"In her trilogy A Nation of Mystics, Pamela Johnson, with a remarkable eye for historical detail, masterfully charts the beginning, middle and end of this era."
--Peter Maguire, author of, Thai Stick: Surfers, Scammers and the Untold History of the Marijuana Trade
By Pamela Johnson
Jamaica, October, 1720. The pirate ship of Calico Jack Rackham is captured off the western coast of Jamaica. While most of the crew is too drunk to defend against the onslaught of the King's navy, two of the crewmembers stand to fight against overwhelming odds. When finally forced to surrender, the commander of the governor's ship is amazed to discover that the two who defend are women disguised as men--Anne Bonny and Mary Read.
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