Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

AUTHORTIME with Merry Brennan


Tuesday, September 26, 2023. 6:30 pm

LIVE at the Belmar Public Library


When Hurt Happens, Can We Forgive Others — and Ourselves?

Pink Uggs… blue Top-Siders… old tan Timberlands…

Talented good girl Jewel Jacobs surveys the shoes on the other kids who tried to kill themselves, all slumped in the support group circle that Red Nikes mockingly calls “the Unalive Failures Club.” How did they each get here? How did she get here? A week ago, her biggest worry was making it into the legendary Teen Arts Show. Then she woke in a hospital bed with pain shooting up her arms and absolutely no memory of harming herself.

In a journey far deeper than the scars on her wrists, Jewel must weave together repressed secrets bubbling up in confusing pieces. As she struggles to understand her own shocking behavior, she learns friendship, love, and quirky humor can bring you back from the darkest places.

Mystery Scars is a timely YA novel about high school freshman Jewel Jacobs, whose repressed childhood trauma bubbles up after she wakes in a hospital with no memory of trying to harm herself. A caring therapist, along with friends old and new, help her puzzle together family secrets and accept her own shocking behavior.


About the Author:

As a kid, Merry Brennan dreamed of a grown-up life writing books
and making art. She got sidetracked for years, as a journalist, activist,
columnist, naturalist, communications consultant, adjunct professor, and
elected official. Now, she weaves all those experiences into her creative

Like so many people these days – no matter our age, background, or
beliefs – she’s searching for inner peace, outer connection, and just plain
happiness. Her writing, art, workshops and ceremonies, although
seemingly diverse, all grow from this same theme. Through story and
images, she invites others to savor nature, embrace inner peace, and
compassionately care for this gem we all call home.

Her latest book, Mystery Scars, is a contemporary young adult novel
offering hope and healing for those affected by today’s epidemic of teen
anxiety, depression, and suicide. Her info-packed travel memoir, Eye Rolls
and Awe: A National Park Road Trip with Teens, offers a front-row seat to
the treasures of family and nature, and her middle-grade historical novel,
Peace Pilgrim: Walking Her Talk Against Hate, introduces readers to the
remarkable woman who walked across the U.S. for 28 years with only the
clothes on her back to spread a message of peace.

Merry’s photographic and digital creations (
have been featured in many shows, shops, and publications. She’s also
created a growing collection of “Photoplay” – a flavoring of words on

The long-time Jersey Shore resident is always up for a good hike, sail or
paddle; never turns down time with family; and looks forward to full moon
meditations. She and her musician husband, Tom, have three terrific
children, Ciarán, Aislínn and Seán.

Learn more about Merry and her books at