Skip to content

Gifts from readers

I recently cleaned out my attic and in the process found letters from readers dating back to the 1970s, when I started writing for newspapers and magazines. Each one had felt like an unexpected gift so I never threw away any of them, not even the occasional furious screed. Once email became a way of life, the paper mail dwindled to a trickle, but thanks to the ease of electronic communication, the volume increased. It’s always a good day when I find reader mail in my in-box.

Sometimes, usually when I’m on the road, I am given all kinds of gifts, some clever, some thoughtful, some funny, and some even edible. A few favorites:

boysThe pin came from a reader in Sandwich, MA who said that when she saw it in an antique shop, it reminded her of the episode in The Boston Girl when the family loses two little boys during the flu epidemic of 1918. “That scene tore my heart out and I felt the pin would remind you of those wonderful characters you created.”

 

 

The Boston Girl earrings, created by Annette Blazon, were a gift from jewelry store owner and maven Donna Soodalter-Toman.The Boston Girl earrings, created by Annette Blazon, were a gift from jewelry store owner and maven Donna Soodalter-Toman.

 

 The paper tent was a table centerpiece at National Council of Jewish Women’s luncheon in Cleveland. It’s made out of a copy of The Red Tent -- about eleven inches tall including the tassel. Some friends have objected to the “destruction” of a book, but I love it.
The paper tent was a table centerpiece at National Council of Jewish Women’s luncheon in Cleveland. It’s made out of a copy of The Red Tent — about eleven inches tall including the tassel. Some friends have objected to the “destruction” of a book, but I love it.

 

enamel tent]

The framed tent – four inches tall – by artist Teresa Moorehouse is made of cast resin and was given to me by the documentarian who made a film about the red tent movement.

 

 

 

dioramaThe Boston Girl shoebox diorama came from the Nantucket Book Festival. Originally a window display, it featured a Marshmallow Peep perched on a cork, mimicking the cover image. The Peep disintegrated, but the background seascape remains beautiful.

 

 

 

takemyhand

The three-dimensional collage is the work of my friend, the artist Joel Moskowitz. He took the words from a lyric I wrote for a tune by another friend, pianist/composer Bert Seager. It has a place of pride on my desk.

 

 

cookies

The Boston Girl cookies (delicious!) were from the organizers of a reading at the Atlanta Jewish Community Center.

4 Comments

  1. Jennifer Rice on March 13, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    I love the creativity that people have shown it is inspiring. I am wondering what the inscription is on the piece by Joel Moskowitz? The piece is beautiful. I fell in love with your writing through a book group I belonged to in Plymouth , Ma and when I returned to Canada I gave your book The Red Tent to friends, my child’s teachers and collegues. Keep writing so I can loose myself once in awhile. Thanks for many hours of enjoyment!

  2. Fran Carr on March 22, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    I wrote to you once about “The Last Days of Dogtown,” and you wrote back! Thank you, Anita.

  3. Lucinda Studley on March 29, 2016 at 8:15 pm

    I have been a member of a wonderful book club for almost fourteen years. One of our first books that we read as a book club was The Red Tent. We immediately fell in love with the book, and the strength of Dinah and the other women. We lovingly nicknamed ourselves “The Tent”. We also enjoyed reading Good Harbor a few years later.
    For our meeting on April 8th, I chose The Boston Girl. I really enjoyed everything about the book from the Boston setting to the memorable characters. I can’t wait to discuss this book with my friends.
    Thank you for providing us with these wonderful novels with such memorable characters. We would love to learn about any speaking engagements you might have scheduled in the Boston area. We live about twenty miles south of Boston. Until then we will look forward to your next novel.

  4. Rich Powell on April 29, 2016 at 1:00 am

    My library book club is reading your book Zthe Boston Girl. I loved this book and I could not put it down. I loved the characters and your writing style. Addie and Aaron are my heroes and being a sentimental idiot I had tears in my eyes when Aaron died. I can’t wait to go to my book club and discuss this book. Thank you for writing it. From a new fan Rich

Leave a Comment