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Falling in Love with Reading Again!
I was scanning the library for something to read because the book I wanted wasn't in. I stumbled across your books! I checked out everyone that was there so I didn't miss out! :)
Plus I adore coffee!! I fell in love with it. I can't get enough of them. It is a change in pace in what I have been reading and I have shared with everyone that I come across.
I love to share all the tips you give in your books about coffee. Thank you for such a great collection!! My children have started reading more because they have seen me reading constantly!
Cleo's reply: Very happy you posted. Your last sentence literally choked me up. Having been a public school kid with working class parents, I know firsthand how important reading is for children and how many doors it can open. Kids who read do so much better in school. Writing and communicating is often naturally improved after routine exposure to language on a page, examples of English usage, expaned vocabulary, etc. There are so many more opportunities open to kids when that happens.
I'm so gratified to hear that my mysteries may have helped your kids along those lines (as you mentioned, by example of your reading). Of course, there are a lot of books in the literary sea and not every one of them is going to connect with every reader. I know my books aren't for everyone, but I sure am glad they worked for you! Thank you again for posting such a beautiful note. I hope you'll come back and post again.
In the meantime, I send my warmest wishes to you and your kids.
In thanks for stopping by my little *virtual* coffeehouse, enjoy this *virtual* little box of home baked biscotti and...
Eat with joy!
Super Summertime Surprise!
Because I teach school during the year, I don't get a chance to read as much as I would like. I try to make up for that during the summer vacation.
This summer, I found Espresso Shot at the library in large print. After checking it out, I read it non-stop! I enjoyed it thoroughly! What a fun book. I like to read the large print because I'm XXXX years old and can see it SO much easier.
Are your first books in large print? Our library is small and does not have the first ones in its collection. I would like to read every book in the Coffeehouse Mystery series. Thank you for sharing your talent with us. Your book was just what I needed this summer. And now it's off to school I go!
Cleo's reply: Wow, Sandy, you and I are the same age (lol). I am, as always, absolutely thrilled to hear from teachers. You are my heroes and always have been...
Large print editions do indeed exist for all of my titles (both Coffeehouse Mystery and Haunted Bookshop series). These large print editions are printed in limited numbers. They come out a few months after the original printing and are mostly purchased by libraries.
They can also be found for sale online. Barnes and Noble.com has some but not all. Click here to go to the B&N.com web site and PAGE THROUGH the Coffeehouse Mystery titles. You'll see the large print books mixed in with the other editions and e-books.
B&N has more Large Print editions on sale but Amazon.com has Espresso Shot still available...
Sandy, you should mention to your library that you'd like them to purchase the large prints of future Coffeehouse Mystery titles and they'll be able to order them as they come along. (You'll notice that on Barnes and Noble the price of a Murder Most Frothy large print edition is now astronomical--because no one can find any on the market.)
The next book in my series, by the way, is titled Holiday Grind (by Cleo Coyle) and it will be published November 3, 2009.
I hope that helps you, Sandy, and I wish you and your students the very best....
And because so many teachers wake up with a few cups o' joe, here's one on the *virtual* house!
Hey what about Mike!
Hey just wanted to know when we could see a Mike Quinn avatar. I can picture what he looks like based on your description, but to see his handsome form in living color would be a great gift to an emerging fan like me. Just wondering.
Shout-out to "Emerging Fan" AM.
I'm grinning at your post because NYPD Detective Mike Quinn (Clare's boyfriends) is next up on my avatar-creation list.
I love creating these avatars and writing their biographies, too. If anyone reading this doesn't know what I'm talking about, then just click here and scroll all the way down (past the recipes). You'll see that this site has a "Staff" page that spotlights the main characters in my Coffeehouse Mystery books.
Watch for Mike to appear on this page sometime this fall...
Thanks for dropping by AM! Here's a big *virtual* cookie to enjoy it with your next real cuppa joe. Come on back now, y'hear?!
Coffee and Reading.......two of my favorite past times combined
I was looking for something new to read for the summer after some heavy duty reads over the winter and spring. I happened to just browse the racks at our library and noticed "PrimeCrime Mysteries"
I saw the various themes and passed them all over until I saw the Coffehouse series. I picked up the first two books and read them in 2 days. I'm officially hooked. As the only one in my family designated as a coffee affecianado I appreciated the integration with my beloved cup of Java with a great mystery story.
My kitties...Cappa and Chino certainly love hearing about an equally pampered Java as well :)
Keep up the great writing and know that the series will now be added into my permanent libary as read-overs.
I just read your post out loud to my husband. Your words are so incredibly gratifying. Thank you.
Also...LOVE the names of your kitties. Clearly you weren't kidding about loving java (the coffee - not Clare's cat. lol.)
Come on back anytime to visit my *virtual* coffeehouse, Rachel. And I sincerely hope you'll keep reading my books for years to come...
Warmest java wishes,
note to Cleo
How can I get that Village Blend Coffee House flavor out of my regular coffee machine? I live far away from any coffee shops, but I absolutely love the books and the recipes. Any hints?
Hi Chris! Thanks for stopping by my little virtual coffeehouse. My next book HOLIDAY GRIND will have plenty of info that will help answer that question!
As a gift to my readers, I put together the largest Recipes and Tips section that I've ever added to one of my Coffeehouse Mysteries (about 80 pages). One reader already told me she pre-ordered several copies to give as gifts (thanks M)!!
The back section of Holiday Grind will include instructions on making espressos and lattes at home without an expensive machine. I also include many coffeehouse syrup recipes (caramel, chocolate - dark and milk - as well as fun holiday flavors like gingersnap syrup, apple-cider syrup, and many others). So be sure to pre-order the book or pick it up from your favorite bookseller. I think it will have what you are looking for...
In the meantime, here are some
basic takeaway tips for today:
* Once coffee beans are ground, their flavor deteriorates at a rapid rate. So, after you open a vacuum bag (or God forbid tin) of coffee, you need to use it fast, within the week. Oxygen, heat and humidity speed the process of deterioration so store your coffee in an airtight container. Keep it away from direct sunlight and keep it cool!
* Use good filtered water. Why? Coffee is 99 per cent water!
* Invest in a coffee grinder and buy whole beans. These are probably the most important things you can do at home to make your coffee drinking experience a thousand times better. What grinder? How do I grind them? Google these questions and you'll find a lot of good information. It would take too long to explain here...
* After you get your grinder, look for WHOLE BEAN coffee at your grocery (Peet’s Coffee is a great brand and it's in a lot of grocery stores now). If you can't find a good whole bean coffee at your store, then you can order it online to be delivered to you at home.
I recommend many online coffee vendors on this site (scroll down the right column). I’ve tried and enjoyed the Coffee Pick’s in my list and I’ve had good experiences with the online sales and delivery. These folks deliver quality beans at a reasonable price. Order several pounds at one time and they will all be shipped in one package so you’re shipping costs will be more reasonable.
Does all that seem like a lot of trouble?
Maybe. But as I wrote in ON WHAT GROUNDS...
“Perhaps T.S. Eliot was right: Some of us do measure out our lives in coffee spoons. All the more reason to pay attention to the quality of the bean.”
On What Grounds
Cheers to you, Chris. Thanks again for stopping by and thanks especially for reading my books.
A cat named Boo...
Re-posted from Cleo's e-mail (VillageBlend@aol.com) with permission...
Thanks for the newsletter. I do so love to go to your web site and check out all the info. I can't get over how much you know about coffee!! I am learning new things and love to share them with my husband.
I have pre-ordered your new book from Amazon [Holiday Grind] and I thank you so much for writing. Life can be so heavy and just plain hard at times. I hold the pleasure of reading my mysteries at night when everyone is asleep. It is my time and I look forward to it all day. Thank you soooo much!!
Could I send you a picture of my cat? Her name is Boo. She was in my husband's car engine when we found her crying! We can not figure out how she got up in there, but I believe with all my heart God sent her to us.
Thank you again
for your books!
Cleo's reply: Thank you, Adelia, not only for making me smile with your wondeful note but for introducing me to Boo! She is adorable and you are an angel for taking her in and making a home for her.
Hugs to a fellow stray cat owner.
Java joy to you always and I hope you'll remain a "customer" of my little coffeehouse series for years to come...
Thank you for giving me a wonderful place to grab some sanity and a good cup of joe.
Re-posted from e-mail with permission...
Thank you so much for getting me signed up for your newsletter but even more for your books.
So far I have only read the first 6 coffeehouse mysteries but "The Ghost and Mrs. McClure" is on my bookshelf just waiting to be read. I have also learned so much about coffee that I feel I am being cheated by my coffee maker everyday and am working to change that humdrum coffee life.
My new knowledge has also impressed my mother-in-law enough to convince her to read your series! This woman is a die hard reader of real life crime and serial killers so it was a feat.
I am a military wife and although I am married, I spend most of my life as a single parent as he is away so much. We have 2 children: a daughter 6 and a son 3. Books have helped me escape when I needed a respite from the world.
Great books like yours enable me to do that even when I don't have them in my hands. So thank you for giving me a wonderful place to grab some sanity and a good cup of joe.
Cresta, thank you for allowing me to re-post your beautiful e-mail here. I couldn't be more proud to have you as a reader.
I can't thank YOU enough for doing what you do every single day. As a military wife, you are sacrificing to allow your husband to serve this country and keep us safe. As a New Yorker who all-too vividly remembers the events of 9/11 in this city, I mean that from the heart; from a very real understanding of just how horrific an unsafe world is.
With two young children at home, you undoubtedly have very difficult days at times. If my books can give you a little laugh or take you away to a little mental "vacation" for a short time, then I can feel that my own job is a fraction as worthy as yours.
Finally, I have to tell you: My husband and I were both incredibly touched by the end of your note... "...books like yours enable me to do that even when I don't have them in my hands."
What a beautiful idea, Cresta. No one's ever put it quite like that. Thank you.
Come on back anytime to my virtual coffeehouse. I really hope you'll keep in touch.
Village Blend in Chicago
Where can I go to pretend I am at the Village Blend. I sent you an email, too. I'm a retired high school librarian and I love your books.
Sorry, I'll calm down now. I just love librarians and I'm always so happy to see a post like yours on my board. I wish I could tell you the perfect place to go in Chicago that's like my fictional Village Blend, but I haven't been to that wonderful city in quite a few years.
Perhaps another reader will see this and suggest some coffeehouses. I have never been there myself, but if I were in Chicago I would check out Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea. Why? Because Mike Phillips, a barista at one of the Intelligentsia shops, recently won first place in the US Barista Championships and he even placed 3rd overall in the World Championships.
Scroll back UP the RIGHT column of my site and you'll see the little item that I have on Mike. Click here to see a short video of Mike competing in the World Barista Championships in Atlanta earlier this year.
Last year, another barista from Intelligentsia also won the US barista title. So I'd say they know how to make a cup of joe there!
Can't promise anything else - atmosphere, friendliness, etc. - a GOOD coffee bar should make you feel welcome. I can only hope they do. If they don't, then do not go back!
No matter what, though, I really do think you'll get a cup of coffee that's one of the best in this country.
Click here to go to the page where their flagship location is (3123 North Broadway address - this is where champion Mike Phillips works). You'll notice other locations listed, too. Just click the links listed on the page to find the addresses (there's an Intelligentsia in the "Loop" area and another of their shops in the Millennium Park area.) As I said, I'm not familiar with Chicago, so you have to be the judge.
If you drop by, come on back and tell us what you think of the place. And if you find any other favorites in Chicago, let all of us know here that read the message board.
Warmest java wishes to you, Lois,
and thank you (no kidding) for reading and supporting my work. It means the world to me.
Hi everyone! Just wanted to thank you all again for your wonderful support for me and my daughter. She has been steady as she goes and in fact has shown signs of improvement; her trunk control is better which is a key step toward walking (she is not 100% to walk but we live in hope).
Thank you so much to all of you for your continued good wishes and prayers. No news tends to be good news from my house so we've had over a week of good news. That gives me a little "me" time to catch up on my reading (I really SHOULD catch up on my housework but somehow pushing a vaccuum cleaner doesn't mesh well with coffee drinking, the vice that got me into Cleo's series in the first place).
Thanks again to all of you
and to Cleo for her amazing support.
~Karen in Pennsylvania
Karen, I'm so happy to hear from you. Please continue to check in with us...there are a lot of people who read this board and are thinking of you and your daughter, pulling for you both, praying for you...Come on by anytime to let us know - good news, bad news, blow off steam...When you believe the world needs a wake up call, this can be your megaphone.
Greetings from Germany
It's great to see my favourite daily coffee is the pick of the month. Right now I'm sitting in my living room, enjoying my day-off with a big cup of Dallmayr Prodomo. For me it's best coffee and after reading your Pick of the month I feel privileged that I can buy it everywhere here in Germany.
I'm a big fan of your books and I can't wait for the next coffeeshop mystery. And I still hope that it will be published in German translation some day and you'll get more fans over here. Thanks for the great pick of the month and for your books.
Best wishes from Germany
Thanks again, Andrea (just echoing my good wishes from our e-mail conversation). I'm so happy you found my message board - and my books - across the sea, in that beautiful coffee-loving country of Germany!
Warmest java wishes,
"Hey, I haven't had my coffee yet!"
Re-posted from e-mail with permission...
I love the coffee house mysteries! Always wanted to be a coffee drinker ('cause it smells so darned good), but never really knew anything about it. I was intimidated by the big coffee shops, and couldn't brew my own to save myself. Then I started reading your books, and learned a thing or two, and ventured out into the big, wide world of coffee. Now I'm hooked. As an "older" mom of two teenagers, the common phrase coming out of my mouth whenever I have a "senior moment" is "Hey, I haven't had my coffee yet!" No other explanation is necessary. Thanks for the fun and education!
You had me laughing outloud, Sue! Thanks for the wonderful note!
Java joy to you always,
Murder Most Frothy
I picked up your book at the library, and am enjoying it tremendously. It makes my commute go so much faster, and despite the fact that I am a non-coffee drinker, your excellent descriptions make me want to indulge in an iced coffee very soon!!!
from Vancouver, BC
Cleo's reply: Great to hear from you, Pam! Murder Most Frothy is the best book of the series to read in the summer because Clare goes on vacation in a beautiful seaside area. Very atmospheric (especially when one is having a Stay-cation like me!)...
I hope you enjoy MMF enough to read the rest of the series, too.
Java cheers to you,
I'LL HAVE ANOTHER CUPPA
On Friday, while browsing the Mystery section of my local library, I found LATTE TROUBLE and MURDER MOST FROTHY. After quickly skimming one, I grabbed both and read them this weekend.
I hope there are more on the shelf when I return these, because although they are quick reads, they have some depth to them. I love the historical background about the Hamptons, and of course all the coffee lore. And the characters are great! I LOVE Madame! So...I'll have another cuppa, please. And Thank you.
Cleo's reply: Thank you, Merle! Sorry it took a few days to reply. I'm thrilled that you found "me" - via my books. And I hope you'll continue to read the series. (I love Madame, too. I want to be her when I grow up. LOL.)
Java joy to you always,
Haunted bookshop series
I love the characters in your Haunted Bookshop mysteries.
I am anxiously awaiting #6. I've also read all the coffee shop mysteries and enjoy those.
Hello, Debbie! Thank you for dropping by to let me know you're enjoying my books. Haunted Bookshop #6 has a title (still top secret for now) but it will be published next year and I'll tell you more about it as we get closer to publication. The Coffeehouse Mysteries has a new title this year - HOLIDAY GRIND - coming in November, but you probably know that already because it's announced all over this website - lol!
I hope you'll come back again and post on my board...this little coffeehouse depends on its "customers" to stay in business. And you're now an official member of the Village Blend family.
Warmest java wishes,
Excited in East Harlem
Honestly, I am a murder mystery fanatic and I am so glad I found this site and these books. I am so busy running a cafe I decided to take 45 minutes out of each morning after writing my to do list and read the first book of the series.
I grew up reading Agatha Christie books and watching the original Perry Mason episodes, Murder She Wrote, etc. Besides my mom I don't know any of my family or friends who are into murder mysteries (their lost) speak to you after book #1
Michelle! I'm so glad you let me know how "into" mysteries you are. I laughed out loud when I read your post, turned to my husband and said - I think Michelle IS Clare Cosi. I knew I'd find someone just like Clare in New York and I do believe that if you found a dead body in your cafe, you'd know JUST what to do. LOL!
Warmest java wishes to a hard-working New York cafe owner.
Yo! Site visitors and CM readers! If you happen to be in Manhattan, NYC, drop in to visit Michelle at the East Harlem Cafe - tell her Cleo Coyle sent you (and she'll actually know who you mean!)
corner of 104th Street
New York, NY 10029
Looking forward to meeting you, Michelle - in the not-too-distant future (translation - when my writing deadlines finally give me a break),
I share a coffee landmark
Hi again Cleo
I was just on Facebook and did a search that tells you what historical events you share your Bday with. I share the first planing of Coffee in Hawaii, happened in the 1800's on my bday. Must be warm there at Christmas time. Did you check out those song lyrics yet? they're pretty funny. We had a thunder and lightning show here on Saturday night and a huge downpour. unfortunatly it was a warm one so if anything it's hotter now than before!
PS I wonder if the Elvis coverage got as annoying as this Micheal Jackson coverage. ENOUGH ALREADY!
Hi again to my GF up North. I'd say the first planting of coffee in Hawaii is INDEED an important date in Java history. That and your birthday, of course, since you're a reader of my CM books. Lol! Haven't found the song lyrics. Tried a google search but couldn't find them. If you want to send a link, I'll click it...until then, stay cool...(literally - it's hot, isn't it?!)
I LOVE your books!
Everytime I "step" into one of your books I smell the coffee brewing and feel the cozy setting and immediately want to be there.
Books are a passion of mine and cozy mysteries are wonderful. I've read one of the coffeehouse mysteries and one of the haunted bookshop mysteries and am clamoring for more books and more time!
Thank you so much for taking the time and trouble to drop by and let me know that. It means a lot to me. I hope you'll continue with both series and drop back again to let me know what you think...
"Spirited" cheers to you from Jack, too,
Just found your site
Just discovered you and your books. Look forward to reading them and checking out all the good stuff on your site.
Cleo's reply: Merci! - which, I'm fairly sure, is French for: Much obliged, amigo!
Happy to Read
With life and the real world some times being a challenge, I so enjoy reading The Coffeehouse Mystery books. I always come away with a smile ane excited for the next read.
Hi Sandy! Thank you so much for that wonderful note. Of course it helps that I put an invisible, odorless, addictive substance on each page of my books - tiny little molecules of a top secret formula to make you come back again and again...(psych!).
Okay, I was going to say "tasteless" along with odorless but then I realized tasteless has another meaning! LOL! No kidding, thank you for reading AND for taking the time and trouble to drop on by my virtual joint.
Enjoy this *virtual* chocolate croissant with your next cuppa joe. (And do you know what the greatest thing is about my virtual coffeehouse treats? They're zero calories!)
Java cheers to you and may my books
always, always cheer you,
Now I REALLY Can't wait for Holiday Grind!
Went to the library the other day and picked up the latest in two series I read and one was TERRIBLE, it was that book in the series that if it was the first I picked up I never would have read it. The descriptions were in list for most of the time, eg: She went to the store, picked up some milk, went home. and the dialogue was script form at times there were pages of all "script" got confusing trying to keep straight who was talking now and who wasn't.
Now I'm looking forward to your next book to get the bitter taste of disappointment out of my mouth lol Hope that was just a one time lemon cause that's an otherwise good author. The other one I figured out who done it while the scene of the crime was being discribed by the way they discribed a boot print. I like to be kept guessing, your books always do that!.
BTW there's an author site I bet you'd find Funny, he wrote a song about what it's like for an author to try coming up with new ideas for their books while the publisher keeps calling asking for another lol. His name is Parnell Hall. Check it out for a laugh, the lyrics are listed under the song heading.
Melting here in BC
Cleo's reply: Short and sweet reply. You had me laughing because (as you'll see when you finally get your paws on Holiday Grind) - boot prints are involved! And that's all I'll say! You may be melting in BC but we're drowning down here in NYC - too much rain! (And I'll check out Parnell Hall, too - glad to know someone else has discovered the humor in publishing lol)
Java joy to my girlfriend
P.S. Think Cool...winter will be
here before U know it!
Thanks to all
I wrote about my daughter's medical issues on Saturday and since Cleo's response was posted, my daughter has made a remarkably quick recovery from her latest seizure. I am sure all the thoughts and prayers from all of the good people here made a difference; she has never rebounded so quickly and with so little loss of function.
Thanks to you all and thanks especially to Cleo for her amazing response. Your prayers were heard. Looking forward to Espresso Shot!
Cleo's reply: Oh, Karen, I'm so happy that you got in touch with me! (Am answering you privately over e-mail, too.) Also overjoyed to hear that your daughter is doing better! Please keep in touch. Post anytime you like, e-mail me anytime, and I really hope you enjoy Espresso Shot and Holiday Grind (you're getting both! LOL!)
Sending smiles, hugs,
and all-around good
Please, everyone, continue to keep
Karen and her daughter in your good
Cannoli are yum yum in their original form with bits of chocolate, pistachios, and candied cherries, oh my! But do what I do for a special -->me<-- treat:
Stir espresso powder into the ricotta filling add a few gratings of a mocha chocolate bar or chopped chocolate covered coffee beans then drizzle the top with chocolate syrup and I guarantee you will be in mocha cream coffee heaven.
Not suitable for eating while reading unless you are willing to lick the pages. I could eat up your books, but not literally.
in sunny Florida
SHOUT-OUT TO GEEKETTE!!
Where U been, girl?! And . . . are you INSANE????? I gained ten pounds just reading that recipe!
How am I supposed to seduce Wesley Snipes in my dreams with a chocolate drizzled cannoli on my hips? (The espresso powder IS inspired, I grant you that.)
P.S. Post again soon or I'll send Jack down to FLA to bother you. Not that he knows where the heck you are in that state! But, hey, he's a dead PI, and I hear the snowbird spirit world has loose beaks...
East Harlem Cafe
Hello Cleo, I just purchased your series #1 and #2. I own a cafe in East Harlem, NY and was wondering if you would consider a book signing here for your next book. Let me know what you think. www.eastharlem-cafe.com Look forward to hearing from you.
East Harlem Cafe
Click on pic to virtually visit
Hello Michelle! I am thrilled and honored to have you invite me for a book singing at your lovely cafe!
I think this is somthing we can plan for the future. I spoke with my husband (with whom I collaborate on our mysteries) and he's excited, too.
At the moment, we aren't planning any signings or appearances because of our fall deadlines—they're really killer—but we do think a signing next year in your cafe would be awesome!
I also think it would be a lot of fun to step out of our dark, lonely writing cave and meet you well before then. I can bring my digital camera up to East Harlem (along with my husband - lol!) and do a little feature on you and your cafe for my Web site.
In the meantime, if any of my readers want to visit Michelle at her cafe uptown, click the link below to learn more about it...
corner of 104th Street
New York, NY 10029
Re-Reading the Series
I've been having withdrawls from the coffeeshop so I've started re-reading the series. It's that or take up biting my nails. Glad to know that Espresso Shot in paperback comes out in October. Obviously, I can't wait. I like how you portray New York. So much so that I plan to take a short vacation there next year. Of course, the other reason is to check out NYU School of Nursing. Hey, some of us have alterior motives. Thanks for the great books.
—Christie of Florida,
future Nursing Student
Hello (soon to be) Nurse Christie! It's awesome that you're re-reading the CM series! If you take that trip to New York, send me a pic of your smiling face at a New York spot, and post it on my Home page! You can send a digital picture via e-mail to www.VillageBlend@aol.com
(I know I should link into all this social networking stuff to allow people to post pictures, etc., but the rebel in me just likes maintaining my own little piece of the planet right here, my way. For now, anyway! Lol!)
Wishing you java joy
& the very best of luck in your studies!
FYI - the ES paperback edition that Christie mentioned will be available in stores October 6 (maybe on some shelves a week earlier?). Anyway, you can pre-order from Amazon by clicking below...
Thanks for the break
My three-year-old daughter is handicapped and has global delays (she had a big seizure this morning, I have spent the whole day glued to the sofa with her) so I really, REALLY need the diversion of a good mystery.
You were there for me when she was in the NICU for 4 months; you were there when she had all of her operations (I lost count after 5). I even like reading the recipes. I collect cookbooks and read them as if they were novels (but I never actually make anything new).
My life took a bad turn I did not expect and many of the people I thought were my friends blew me off because they don't want me to think I can stick my daughter on their normal kids. Authors don't know (or probably mind) they are being read inside a hospital or in the aftermath of a seizure episode and the books don't run inside their house so they don't have to say "hi" to me.
Thank you for providing me with a few R&R moments; without you and your colleagues the stress would probably have killed me and there would be no one to care for my daughter.
First of all, I believe that prayers and good thoughts are an active and powerful force in this universe, and you and your daughter are now in mine. I ask anyone reading this to keep you and your daughter in their own good thoughts and prayers—if only for a few silent moments. It matters. It truly does.
I didn't grow up in a very pretty or easy world. I went to public school in a steel town outside of Pittsburgh, PA. My grandparents were dirt poor immigrants to this country, and I was lucky to grow up with more than them: indoor plumbing, a public education, no fear of going hungry.
My parents were good, hard-working people. But they were not educated. My dad was a steel worker, my late mother, who died of cancer and whom I still bitterly miss, was a telephone order clerk. Suffice it to say I was given no "entrée" into New York City when I came here twenty years ago: no money, no connections, no clue! Lol! One thing I did know. One thing I still know...
When life is not easy, when one is suffering daily, as you are... When one is an over-worked or worried mother... When one needs inspiration, a laugh, a mental escape to a place that doesn't worsen the pain and despair...
Those are the readers for whom I know I'm writing. And when I hear that what I'm doing is working, taking you away, giving you a break or a laugh or another world to escape to...I know I'm on the right track. It helps me to keep going, to keep writing.
So thank YOU, Karen, for your heartfelt words and for the courage and heroism you are displaying in your own life.
"If faith is scarce,
it is because there is too much selfishness in the world, too much egoism. Faith, in order to be authentic, has to be generous and giving. Love and faith go hand in hand."
~Mother Teresa from her book -
In My Own Words
Thank you, Karen, for the example of love and faith and sacrifice that you are showing to your daughter and all of us. Thank you for taking the time and trouble to post that amazing, heartfelt note.
It's not much to offer, but I would really like to give you the gift of my new book. If you privately e-mail me, we can work out the details. Please, please do. It would make ME so happy to give you something back!
My e-mail: VillageBlend@aol.com
May God bless you
and especially your daughter,