Kenneth Zak

KenZak_headshot_lowresBook Cover_Low Res


Penju Publishing
October 5, 2015
Paperback $15.00
ebook, $7.99
349 pages
Fiction | Romance | Suspense

Book Trailer




Kenneth Zak (San Diego, CA)

Author of The Poet’s Secret


Elena Meredith | | 512-481-7096 | Twitter: @elenameredith



  • Kenneth Zak is an aquatic nomad of Bohemian-Polish ancestry.
  • Zak conceived of his debut novel, The Poet’s Secret, in a mountaintop village on the Greek isle of Crete while on a three-­year sabbatical from a successful career as an attorney.
  • An avid surfer and free diver, Zak continued to work on his manuscript and poetry in Bali, Mexico, Costa Rica, Thailand, Cambodia and South America.
  • The Poet’s Secret was selected as a Golden Heart® Award finalist in romantic suspense by Romance Writers of America.
  • Zak holds a Juris Doctor from The Ohio State University, and graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Business and special interest in Art History.
  • He serves as General Counsel for a large private brokerage company.
  • Penju Publishing is a member of 1% for the Planet. For every copy of The Poet’s Secret sold, $1 will be donated to The Surfrider Foundation.


In The Poet’s Secret, Elia Aloundra, a young lit student, sees the reclusive poet Cameron Beck recite a poem at a campus pub before he vanishes—for a second time. Ten years earlier, Beck had dropped from the public eye, leaving only an acclaimed collection of odes to an anonymous muse and a decade of speculation over his disappearance.

Elia sets off in search of Beck, longing to know the man whose words have moved her so, hoping perhaps the ghost poet will unveil the secret to eternal love. What she doesn’t know is that as her quest begins, Beck is perched atop a cliff on a remote Caribbean island and about to attempt suicide. As Elia faces off with Beck’s protective circle on the exotic island hideaway, the same island where decades earlier a Spanish shipwreck entombing mystical Aztec relics was found, she finds herself swept up in the mystery of the muse. What Elia cannot fathom is that Beck’s secret will change both their lives forever.


  • How to Take an Adult “Time-Out”: The story behind Ken’s 3-year sabbatical on the Greek isle of Crete
  • A Gentleman in the Midst: Breakthrough author and poet Kenneth Zak puts the “man” in romance writing
  • Not Another Lawyer’s Book: Bucking the tradition of Grisham, Kenneth Zak explores his outside-the-courtroom passions in debut novel
  • The Aquatic Nomad: Ken’s experiences surfing, swimming and free diving around the world (including a near-death surfing experience in Uluwatu)
  • The Art of Slow: Both the storyline and medium tie into the slow movement. (“I combine poetry with prose in an effort to slow the reader at the beginning of each chapter to contemplate and absorb the poetry, to be in that moment so to speak, before continuing on the narrative journey.”)
  • Ken’s commitment to conservation through 1% For the Planet and pledged donations to The Surfrider Foundation (“Perhaps only a poet would give away money before it is earned.”)
  • Breaking the Work/Life Barrier: Ken’s journey abroad and how he now manages to balance his legal career with life as an explorer, poet, and philosopher. (As he says, “Why can’t a Tuesday feel like a Saturday?”)
  • Locations in The Poet’s Secret: Set in a fictional Caribbean island in The West Indies, the author also pays homage to his alma mater, Ohio State University, in the early pages of the book.

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