Media Mint Publishing

News and Information

Just Published

The lastest Adventures of The Sizzling Six:
Operation Terrapin Rescue

Operation Terrapin Rescue favocon
Sample and Purchase

Follow BLOGS by Email

New Service:

Teacher Handout
Author Presentations

All books avaible for download:
Google eBooks
iBook Store
Diesel eBooks
Sony eBooks
Android Market

Screen Shot 2015-10-29 at 11.06.46 AM

Follow us:

Screen Shot 2013-04-17 at 2.47.49 PM Screen Shot 2013-04-25 at 10.38.58 AM

Follow author: Claire Datnow
Screen Shot 2013-04-25 at 10.35.32 AMScreen Shot 2013-04-25 at 10.38.58 AM

More about the Author
Visit my Author page on Facebook
Visit my Author Page on Amazon

10 February 2019
04 March 2018
25 February 2018
14 January 2018
08 October 2017
27 August 2017
30 July 2017
09 July 2017
18 June 2017
04 June 2017
14 May 2017
23 April 2017
22 January 2017
02 October 2016
25 September 2016
11 September 2016
28 August 2016
29 May 2016
24 April 2016
03 April 2016
06 March 2016
20 December 2015
29 November 2015
15 November 2015
01 November 2015
25 October 2015
18 October 2015
20 September 2015
06 September 2015
30 August 2015
09 August 2015
05 July 2015
14 June 2015
10 May 2015
19 April 2015
15 March 2015
01 March 2015
01 February 2015
25 January 2015
18 January 2015
11 January 2015
28 December 2014
14 December 2014
07 December 2014
09 November 2014
19 October 2014
12 October 2014
05 October 2014
24 August 2014
03 August 2014
27 July 2014
20 July 2014
08 June 2014
01 June 2014
18 May 2014
11 May 2014
27 April 2014
20 April 2014
06 April 2014
23 March 2014
16 March 2014
23 February 2014
15 December 2013
08 December 2013
01 December 2013
17 November 2013
03 November 2013
20 October 2013
13 October 2013
06 October 2013
29 September 2013
08 September 2013
25 August 2013
18 August 2013
04 August 2013
14 July 2013
07 July 2013
23 June 2013
16 June 2013
09 June 2013
12 May 2013
05 May 2013
28 April 2013
21 April 2013
14 April 2013
07 April 2013
31 March 2013
17 March 2013
10 March 2013
03 March 2013
13 January 2013
06 January 2013
30 December 2012
09 December 2012
02 December 2012
25 November 2012
11 November 2012
30 September 2012
23 September 2012
02 September 2012
19 August 2012
12 August 2012
29 July 2012
22 July 2012
01 July 2012
20 May 2012
13 May 2012
06 May 2012
22 April 2012
08 April 2012
25 March 2012
18 March 2012
04 March 2012
26 February 2012
19 February 2012
05 February 2012
29 January 2012
22 January 2012
15 January 2012
20 November 2011
06 November 2011
30 October 2011
16 October 2011
02 October 2011
25 September 2011
11 September 2011
14 August 2011
17 July 2011
10 July 2011
26 June 2011
05 June 2011
08 May 2011
03 April 2011
27 February 2011
13 February 2011
30 January 2011
09 January 2011
05 December 2010
21 November 2010
14 November 2010

YA Eco Mysteries, Memoirs, Novels & Travel

Claire Datnow

Travel Inspires Writing

“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.” – Maya Angelou

Travel Inspires Writers Claire Datnow

Writers have felt the creative benefits of travel. Ernest Hemingway, for example, drew inspiration from his time in Spain and France. Aldous Huxley, the author of
Brave New World, moved from the U.K. to the U.S. in his 40s. Mark Twain, after sailing around the Mediterranean in 1869, wrote in his travelogue Innocents Abroad that travel is “fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness. Read More...

Endangered Orange-Bellied Parrot

The Orange-Bellied Parrot Mystery
by Sophia R. Morris, Age 10
Vestavia Hills Elementary Central, Teacher Mrs. Fulkerson
Winning Entry in the Eco Mystery Writing Contest

parrot orange-bellied

Claire White reached for her cup of cold lemonade, her pale skin once covered in some light shadow, now glinting in the sunlight.

“This is the life isn’t it, girls,” nodding to the two girls beside her. “We can finally relax after solving that jewerly crime.” Maria Monday and Stacy Woods, the girls in lounges beside her murmured “Ya……..” Read More...

UAB Scientists Explore Antarctica

Margaret Amsler Antarctic Researcher

Claire: How fortunate for me to have attended two of your thought-provoking presentations in one week! Thank you for taking the time to share your work with us, Maggie. As the author of an Eco mystery series, I am fascinated by the intricate research you do to solve the Antarctic’s ecological mysteries. It’s my sincere hope that your work will inspire the next generation to follow in your footsteps. What first sparked your interest in Antartica?

Dr. Margaret Amsler at Palmer Station (photo credit: C. Amsler)

With a declared major of marine biology I was assigned an academic advisor who studied both freshwater and marine crustaceans.  Research on the latter was conducted in Antarctica.  I had to meet with her once a term to review coursework progress.  Each meeting she shared enthralling stories about the remarkable organisms of Antarctica and their various adaptations to the frigid south polar waters.  My junior year I volunteered in her laboratory on campus and during my senior year was asked to be a participant in her field work in Antarctica after I graduated.  Read More...

Alabama Butterfly Atlas Launch

Invitation to Participate in the Alabama Butterfly Atlas
It is my honor to interview Sara and Paulette about their plans to create an on-line
Alabama Butterfly Atlas. By good fortune, I meet Paulette at the Moss Ross Festival and she motivated me to add an eco mystery about butterflies to my on-going eco mystery series.
Sara Cunningham Bright is a professional photographer whose work has been featured in Canoe, Southern Living, Birder’s World, Outdoor Life, Geo, and Portico, and is on permanent display at McDonald’s Corporation, Alabama Power, Wachovia Bank, and the Birmingham Botanical Gardens.
Paulette Haywood Ogard has taught classes on wildflowers and native plants at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and conducted workshops throughout the southeast on wildlife habitats, butterflies, and butterfly gardening. Paulette and Sara are the co-authors of Alabama Butterflies: Glimpses into their Lives.

Blogger book cover
Glimpses into their Lives.

Rosenwald Film a Jewish Philanthropist

Rosenwald documentary Connects Julius Rosenwald and Booker T. Washington

After viewing Aviva Kempner’s documentary “Rosenwald,” currently showing at the Edge 12, Crestwood Festival Center, in Birmingham, Al, I was moved to write a review.

Historical novel Blog
Historic Alabama Theater, Birmingham (Boris Datnow)

Kempner begins her documentary by asking, “Who is the white man prominently framed on the wall of numerous black schools located throughout the American South?” Most viewers will not recognize the man in the photograph, and therefore will be astounded by the magnificent legacy of former Sears & Roebuck CEO Julius Rosenwald, high school dropout, brilliant entrepreneur, and inspired philanthropist. 

Discover and Solve an Ecological Mystery

Project and Problem Based  Eco Mystery Unit.

How can you inspire kids—of all ages—to embark on a lifelong adventure that will motivate them to become wise stewards of nature? In my presentation to Mrs. Geri Evan's fourth grade students at Bluff Park Elementary School, I began by inviting kids to hunt for ecological mysteries in their outdoor classroom.

Monarch Butterflies Kids make connections

Restoring Alabama’s Native Prairies

Limestone Park and Native Prairies

I’m standing at the edge of a flourishing prairie in
Limestone Park Prairie, Alabaster—practically on Birmingham’s doorstep. Butterflies flit through a colorful maize of wildflowers.

Buckeye, Limestone Prairie Park (Boris Datnow)

7 Best Places on the Iberian Peninsula

Galicia and Andalusia, Spain

1. The medieval towns of A Coruña (in Galician)/La Coruña, Betanzos, Vigo, and Baiona/Bayona are rich in the history and culture of this region.
Climb the Tower of Hercules, the lighthouse at the entrance to A Coruña, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Built in the second century, it is the oldest Greco-Roman lighthouse constantly in use and the oldest existing lighthouse in the world.

A Caruna 1

Women's Hall of Fame

Alabama Women's Hall of Fame
midsummer jaunt with friends of the Cosmos Club began with a visit to The Alabama Women's Hall of Fame in Marion, Alabama, located on the historic campus of Judson College.
Visit to Judson College
Visit to Judson College, Alabama

As we stepped into the beautifully restored A. Howard Bean Hall, rows of
gleaming bronze plaques, honoring Alabama’s most outstanding women, welcomed us in. Pausing before the inscriptions on the plaques, we discovered the significant contributions each one of them have made to our state and nation. Read More...

Traveling Rough and Ready

Basic Necessities: Toilets and Showers


It is my pleasure to introduce Rhoda Lurie, fearless traveler and treasure hunter par excellence, as my guest blogger. Over her long career, Rhoda traveled to 75 countries around the world, in particular under developed countries including Papua New Guinea, Africa, Vietnam, and South America to mention just a few. Once there she journeyed to remote villages to meet with artists in their studios and shops to see firsthand how they created beautiful traditional arts and crafts of the region.


Butterfly Awareness Botanical Gardens

Butterfly Education and Awareness Day

Monarch Butterfly (Poster created by Ellie Usadan)
Kids Enjoyed Coloring the Poster Created by Ellie Usdan

We were delighted to join the
Birmingham Botanical Gardens, on a perfect summer day, to celebrate Butterfly Education and Awareness Day, and also to share the newest book in the eco mystery series for middle grades, The Adventures of The Sizzling Six: Monarch Mysteries (book 6 in the series).

Peace and War

The Common Good and Common Destiny
by Carl Schinasi

It is a privilege and pleasure to share Carl Schinasi's talk with you. His thought-provoking speech about how each one us can contribute to making peace in the world is well worth reading.

Imam Um’Rani, congregants, guests, and friends, thank you for inviting me to speak here this evening.  I must admit it also comes as a surprise. When Imam asked me to speak, I immediately suggested he contact someone at Temple Emanu-El.  I explained to him that someone there could speak more knowledgeably about Judaism.  When Imam assured me he wanted me to speak, I was thrilled.  I was thrilled because I realized his invitation amounts to a great honor. Here I stand, a Jew from New York speaking in a Mosque at a pre-Ramadan banquet in the Deep South. 

Arab Street Mosque Singapore
Arab Street Mosque, Singapore (Boris Datnow)

Green Ribbon Schools Award

Alabama Green Ribbon Schools
On a day filled with sunshine, it was my pleasure and privilege to attend the celebration recognizing the three schools and a university as Alabama Green Ribbon Schools Award Winners for 2015.

Green Ribbon Shirely Farrell
Shirley Farrell, State Dept. of Education, with Liz Ellerson of E.A.T. South (Boris Datnow)

Congratulations to the winners:
Auburn University
Bluff Park Elementary School, Hoover City Schools 
Lincoln Elementary School, Talladega County Schools
Lincoln High School, Talladega County Schools

Environmental Project Based Learning

How to Launch Environmental Project Based Learning

1. LAUNCH PARTY. To arouse the students’ curiosity, plan the event to be novel and dramatic. Design a presentation that encourages students to generate questions that plunge them into an intriguing ecological mystery that they must solve in order to help save an endangered species. You could invite an author of eco mysteries or non-fiction books with environmental themes. For example, for my school presentation I dress up as Mrs. Margarita Mariposa, a character in The Adventures of The Sizzling Six: Monarch Mysteries (Book Six). I wear a striking mask with flowers and butterflies, and send
paper monarch butterflies into the air. 

Mexico in Birmingham

Alesund and Sunnmore

Ålesund & Sunnmøre Magical Highlights

For me, the most magical cruising experience is to wake early in the morning and find myself in enchanting, new surroundings. The spectacular setting of Ålesund is just such a place, nestling on small islands, surrounded by fjords, and framed by the high peaks of the Sunnmøre Alps.
Perched on a fishhook-shaped peninsula, its harbor shelters Norways largest cod-fishing fleet.

Alesund 3_tonemapped

Travel Agents Gifts

Books for Travel Agents to Give as Gifts

Travel agents know the value of rewarding clients with gifts. Thoughtful small mementos from a cruise, or tour, your clients book are always appreciated.Travel books, make excellent promotional gifts, bon voyage presents, or holiday remembrances.

Chair Obidos

Protect World Heritage and Biospheres

Help to Preserve the World’s Cultural and Natural Heritage

Following our passion for preserving wild places, Boris and I took the plunge and entered National Geographic's "Expedition Granted" contest for $50.000! Whether you’re a nature lover, a traveler, a teacher, an armchair explorer, you can participate in “Expedition Granted,” with one click. Here’s How:

NG PosterVersion 4

Birmingham Butterfly Awareness Day

Butterfly Gardening and Conservation

Butterfly on Boris

On a  perfect summer day, I was delighted to join the Birmingham Botanical Gardens to celebrate Butterfly Education and Awareness Day, and to share my newest book in the eco mystery series for middle grades, The Adventures of The Sizzling Six: Monarch Mysteries (book 6).


Butterfly Education and Awareness Day

Butterfly Education and Awareness Day
Birmingham Botanical Gardens, June 14, 2014, 10 - 2 p.m. Free

Ellie & Butterfly


Hiking The Tuskegee National Forest

Audubon Field Trip to Tuskegee National Forest
On a crisp early morning in April, a group of intrepid explorers from the Birmingham Audubon Society arrive at the Pleasant Hill Trailhead in the Tuskegee National Forest. Bird calls ring out high above, which our knowledgable birders identify for the novices as pine warblers, red-eyed vireos, brown thrashers, eastern towhees, northern cardinal, Carolina wrens and a variety of other birds. The blackened areas in the forest show the on going effort by the US Forest Service to restore the longleaf pines by controlled burning of undergrowth.This is because extensive timbering and replanting with loblolly pine during the settlement period of the nineteenth century increased the population of pine beetle and caused a sharp decline in longleafs—and with them the endangered Red-cockaded woodpecker that nests in mature longleaf pine forests with grassy undergrowth.
Pleasant HillTrail

How to Handle a Torah

When a Torah Tumbles to the Ground

I came across this article in the
Jewish Daily Forward, “When Torah’s Tumble to the Floor, What’s a Shul to Do?”  It immediately triggered a connection to a similar incident in which Leah Rosen, a tragic character in my historical novel, causes the Torah to drop to the floor:

“Leah shoved her way through the throng, unaware of heavy heels crushing her toes or sharp elbows jabbing into her ribs. When she reached her father, she tried to seize the Torah from him. With a strangled exclamation Hershel twisted sharply away from her outstretched hands, lost his grip on the Torah, and fell to his knees.” Read More...

Green Apps to Get Kids Outdoors

Let Your App Be Your Nature Guide
We've all heard about the problem of kids—and adults—spending too much time indoors playing video games and not enough time outside moving about. With new “green” apps, outside time and screen time do not have to be mutually exclusive. Instead of battling to keep kids away from gadgets, why not use technology to encourage kids to explore outdoors? My friends who are birding enthusiasts and environmental educators are already doing so, so why not join them. In this blog I suggest apps that will enhance kids’ experience outdoors—as well as our own. 

Technology That Connects Us To Nature

In Search of the Elusive Cerulean Warbler

When we venture outdoors, many of us try to unplug from electronic devices. I don’t appreciate a ringing cell phone while floating down a peaceful river, or the jarring sound of an ATV or motorcycle, drowning out bird calls. My recent outdoor adventures, however, have shown me that nature and technology need not be kept at a distance.  Read More...

Citizen Scientist Eco Mysteries

For many kids, science class means slogging through textbooks, memorizing the discoveries of others, and performing pretested experiments that come with preconceived answers. Citizen science projects can offer kids the chance to study and to participate science outside the confines of the classroom.


Protect Wildflowers

Easter Wildflower Hike with Fresh Air Family.

The spring weather was perfect for an invigorating hike despite the threat of showers. Verna Gates, Founder and Executive Director of Fresh Air Family, guided us on a delightful walk through the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Drawing form Biblical parables and old folk tales, Verna wove stories around the amazing variety of spring wildflowers, some of them only to be found in Alabama. Blazing yellow, red, and orange tulips, pansies, and poppies created a gorgeous contrast to the delicate blue, violet, and mauve trilliums, spiderworts, and wild geraniums, to name but a few. Read More...

Birds in The Everglades National Park

Boris and I wanted to share these photo taken an Everglades National Park. The birds were warming themselves in the sun after an unusually chilly night for South Florida.  No need for binoculars, the birds seemed to be posing for us as they thawed in the sun. Read More...