I had such a delightful birthday. My family made me a lovely lunch of my summertime favorites. Then they gave me gifts; gifts of things I wanted, gifts of things I needed, I loved them all. They outdid themselves.

Then my last gift that I opened was something I didn’t know that I wanted, something that I didn’t know that I needed. My daughter gave me a package. First I opened an envelope. It contained a picture, a watercolor painted by her friend, that reminded me a little bit of my Grammie. I felt a little puzzled, but my daughter Annie, named for my grandmother Annie, ok, I could see something here.

There was more, though. Lots of silk rose petals, a lovely bookish necklace, a card, and a book. Two, actually, companion volumes that I had never seen before. A book, two books, written by my daughter. I was thunderstruck.

I have seen her other stories before publication, have known about them, have helped edit most of them.

I didn’t even know this was in the works.

She started it a year ago, just after my last birthday. It was a huge secret, kept faithfully by her friends, hidden from her family, so as not ro spoil the surprise. My daughter wrote her first novel to give to me on my birthday yesterday.

I was not surprised. I was stunned.

The picture is not my grandmother after all, but the one who is in the book. The Crazy Book Lady. The Wild Book Lady. The one who could be me, in about 40 years.

Just so you know, I was a good girl, I didn’t disappear for the rest of the day. I played a card game with the crew, then read a couple chapters. The whole family went swimming, then I read another chapter. We had dinner, cake and ice cream, watched a movie.

Then I stayed up until 3am finishing my book.


Here’s the link for the book; the only way to get the companion volume is to request it here, on her website.

Here is the e-book link, her dad bought his own copy here, the very first one in line: