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Love Stories: Essential Reading

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To: You
From: Our Staff

Titles of our favorite love stories -- guaranteed to set your hearts aflutter!

Kathy Moran, Literary Reflections Editor, writes "One of my favorite books to both read and display is Love Letters: An Anthology of Passion, edited by Michelle Lovric, who conceived the idea for this collection while researching documents in the Manuscript Room of the British Library. Beautifully illustrated with Victorian pictures and lettering, the book is divided into sections such as admiration, declaration, obsessions and contains a collection of quotes and love letters written by a seemingly unending list of notables, including Mozart, Lord Byron, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Oscar Wilde, and Dylan Thomas. Some of the letters are facsimiles, tucked into tiny envelopes attached to the page. Unfolding the paper and seeing the writer's script adds to the charm of the book."

Amy S. Mercer, Blog Editor, insists on "Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier, a gripping tale of love, jealousy, betrayal and the power of secrets. A book I was thrilled to discover as an adult and unable to put down:"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again. It seemed to me I stood by the iron gate leading to the drive and for a while I could not enter, for the way was barred to me"."

Nicole Stellon O'Donnell, Columns Editor, shares "My favorite love story is Wild Iris, Louise Gl�ck's book of poems about banishment from the Garden of Eden. Some of the most her beautiful love poems come in the voices of the flowers acting as witnesses.

Caroline Grant, Senior Editor and Columnist, reveals "I really loved The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger, which tells about a couple -- Henry and Clare -- whose nonchronological love story takes place in and around Chicago whenever Henry can be in the same time with Clare. They're great characters (he's a librarian at the Newberry; she's an artist who makes paper and paper sculptures), and their relationship, despite its sci-fi obstacles, is compelling and real.

Rebecca Kaminsky, Reviews Editor and Columnist, nominates "The Passion, by Jeannette Winterson, a surrealistic romance set in Napoleon's Europe. I love her writing.

Kristina Riggle, Fiction Co-Editor, champions "Breathing Lessons, by Anne Tyler. The action of this Pulitzer Prize winning novel takes place on one Saturday, but through flashbacks the book ranges across the whole life of a marriage. It's a tender, warts-and-all story of couplehood as lived by Ira and Maggie Moran, whose lives hardly turned out the way they planned, yet their marriage endures."

Violeta Garcia-Mendoza, Literary Reflections Editor, divulges "Probably my all-time favorite love story is Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Love in the Time of Cholera. It begins with one of my favorite literary lines ever- "It was inevitable: the scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love" -- and unfolds an epic story of the persistence of love across the passing of time."

Susan Ito, Creative Non-Fiction Editor, declares "I'm going to vote for The Year of Magical Thinking, by Joan Didion, which speaks to long love."

Elrena Evans, Columnist and Marketing and Publicity Manager, reports "My current favorite "love story" is Skidamarink: The I Love You Song, as illustrated by Jacqueline East. My three-year-old daughter adores this picture book, which depicts a family of bears going through their day, set to the words of "Skidamarink." My absolute favorite picture is right near the end, where the mama bear is working on her laptop while baby bear plays nearby. Mama's got her eyes on the computer, but she's also zooming a paper airplane over to baby bear for baby to play with. I just love the message that even when she's busy working, mama still loves her little one very much!"

Suzanne Kamata, Fiction Editor, adds "My favorite is The Lover, by Marguerite Duras, which is about a doomed love affair between an impoverished young French expatriate and her wealthy Chinese lover. It's a disturbing and beautiful story."

C. Delia Scarpitti, Columns Co-Editor, offers "A fascinating novel (and favorite of mine) about love and relationships is the aptly titled Love, by Toni Morrison. In this novel, one man, Bill Cosey, becomes the fixation and central figure for a half dozen different women. But Bill has a secret love history all his own and an unforgettable woman who haunted him his entire life. This novel reveals the fine line between love and hate and is a riveting story by one of America's finest writers."

Sarah Raleigh Kilts is a proud member of the amazing Motherlode Writers Group (I love you guys!). Her writing has been published in Common Ties. Following her passions led her to discover a new career that’s tons of fun — as an elementary school music teacher to 220 fabulous 3rd 4th and 5th graders she gets to share her love of music and world culture with a captive — though often wiggly and giggly — audience. She lives with her family in the San Francisco Bay Area and can sometimes be found (even on school nights!) performing in local watering holes plucking the bass and singing with her hubby Thom in their Indie Rock duo, Diablo’s Dust. Three of their albums are currently available on iTunes.

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