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Author Interview,  Giveaway,  Hope-filled Fiction

Douglas J. Lanzo: Bears, Military Suspense, Nature, a Giveaway & More

Please welcome Douglas J. Lanzo to the blog this week. Doug and I had a great conversation about his writing journey, including his debut novel The Year of the Bear. He’s offering a paperback of the book for a US winner, or an ebook for an international winner, as a giveaway. Comment below by March 21 for a chance to win!

Comment on this Zoom author interview with @douglanzo by March 21 for a chance to win his coming of age novel The Year of the Bear. #giveaway #amreading #adventure


Join the conversation. Does Doug’s book sound like one you’d like to read or recommend to a teen in your life? What elements of the story do you believe kids today most need to hear? What questions or comments do you have for Doug?

Be sure to comment below by March 21 for a chance to win a copy of Doug’s book! Paperback for a US winner or an ebook for an international winner. (Keep scrolling to find the comment section)

Book Cover

The Year of the Bear by Douglas J. Lanzo

Click the book cover for purchase link

Thirteen-year-old Jason is on the cusp of manhood, striving to find his place at school and at home-especially after his mother has abandoned them and his father is left to deal with his own anger. When Jason and his father encounter a bear while out hunting, they shoot and kill it, not realizing that they have left a cub without its mother. When Sasquot of the Penobscot Tribe, a part of the Bear Family, discovers what they have done, he decides that Jason needs a lesson in caring for God’s creatures. Thus begins a year that Jason will never forget as he begins to care and train the cub in order for it to survive. As Jason forms a bond with the bear, he, in turn, learns valuable lessons for life.

An award-winning novelist and poet, Doug loves to share his passion for writing with readers around the world, endeavoring to uplift and inspire with a wide range of poetry as well as with his short stories and his newly released, debut novel, The Year of the Bear

This powerful coming of age novel has been nominated for the John Newbery Medal and endorsed by a New York Times bestselling author, placing 2nd in the Firebird Award’s Coming of Age Category.  It has also been warmly received and recommended by 100% of reviewers to date across all online retail platforms.

Doug resides in Chevy Chase, Maryland with his wife and twin sons, award-winning haiku poets in their own right, enjoying nature, tennis, snorkeling, fishing and chess. Doug is also the author of an upcoming novella, entitled I Have Lived, that will be released by Ambassador International later this year as well as a poet who has published 299 poems in 58 literary journals and 7 poetry anthologies in the US, Canada, Caribbean, England, Wales, Austria, Mauritius, India, Japan and Australia.

Connect with Doug: Website / Linkedin / Instagram / Facebook / Twitter

Douglas J. Lanzo head shot

Please share Doug’s interview on social media to help spread the word about his book.

If you missed my recent posts, check out these interviews with Allen Steadham, Jessica R. Patch, and Toni Shiloh.

As a Jesus girl for more than thirty years, Deena Adams understands how important hope is to daily life, which fuels her passion to inspire others through hope-filled fiction based on true to life stories. She is represented by Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency and is a multi-award-winning writer, an active ACFW member, and ACFW Virginia president. Connect with Deena through her website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


    • Douglas J. Lanzo

      Thanks, Danielle, for your comment. My twin sons, then 12-years old, loved The Year of the Bear and motivated me to publish it. I’ve received a great deal of positive feedback from parents of boys who have read it to date and hope your sons enjoy it as well. Good luck with the free drawing!

  • Lynn Moore

    Doug…..I’ve always wanted to visit Maine…. the lakes and shorelines I’ve seen on tv are so beautiful! Sounds like I could have a great “visit” through your book! Thanks for sharing! 📚

    Deena….another great interview! Thanks for sharing with us each week! ✍️

    • Douglas J. Lanzo

      Thanks so much, Lynn for your insightful comment. Yes, Maine is truly a beautiful and majestic state and the mountain lake environs of Mount Katahdin and Moosehead Lake provide a spectacular backdrop for my adventure novel. If you enjoy nature and adventure in a New England setting, you’re especially appreciate The Year of the Bear.

      • Douglas J. Lanzo

        Thanks, Heidi, appreciate your comment and yes, it has received glowing reviews from kids as well as adults. Two 9 year-old kids in Hong Kong called it the best book they had ever read, which was really cute and great to hear. One friend read it to his 1st grader and she loved it – There are some scenes more suited for teenagers, so I’d encourage you to read chapters in advance and decide which ones you think are best suited to any reader who is not at least in middle school. Good look with the drawing!

  • Lual Krautter

    Looks like an interesting, intriguing story, one I’d sure want to read! Would love to win a print copy, especially since Doug Lanzo is a new-to-me author, plus, when I’m done reading it, I’ll plan on passing it on to our local library. . . Thanks, again, for an opportunity to enter a wonderful giveaway! God bless! Lual Krautter

    • Deena Adams

      Hi, Lual. It’s great when readers pass along the books they’ve read to the local library so many more can enjoy them. Good luck in the giveaway!

    • Douglas J. Lanzo

      Thanks so much, Lual for your kind comments and interest in The Year of the Bear and for your thoughtful plan to donate a copy after you’ve read it to your local library. I do hope that it takes you on an enthralling adventure that inspires you and warms your heart along the way. Thanks so much again and good luck with the book giveaway!

    • Douglas J. Lanzo

      Thanks, Kera, really appreciate your interest in The Year of the Bear and support of my debut novel. If you enjoy poetry, please also check out my author’s website at featuring hundreds of internationally published poems by twin sons, Alex and Gregory, and me, that hopefully will provide some inspiration and enjoyment to readers.

    • Douglas J. Lanzo

      Congratulations, Kera! My publisher, Ambassador International, will be directly mailing you a paperback copy of The Year of the Bear! Hope you really enjoy it – It comes with a triple emotion guarantee – that it’ll make you smile, laugh or cry, and if you’re not careful, all three by the time you conclude its powerful ending. If you enjoy it and experience the triple emotion guarantee, pls share a review on Amazon, Goodreads or AI said it should be arriving by April 4th if not before.


      • Douglas J. Lanzo

        Thanks for your kind words, Heather. I appreciate it and hope that you really enjoy it. As I like to tell prospective readers, it comes with a triple emotion guarantee – that you’ll laugh, smile and/or cry, and if you’re not careful, all three by the end of this heart-warming and heart-rending adventure. Ultimately, I hope you find it inspirational!

      • Douglas J. Lanzo

        Thanks for your question, Traci. No, the novel does not have any anti-hunting theme and Kyle, Jason’s father, is an avid hunter and fisherman who teaches his son how to hunt deer and how to fish for bass in the novel. If you love the outdoors and appreciate nature, I think you’ll really enjoy it! I carefully researched all of the hunting scenes to make them realistic.