Of story and graciousness

Found a contact email address on Louise Penny’s website and wrote asking her assistant to let her know my friend with terminal cancer texted yesterday saying that reading the first of Penny’s books is helping her to forget her pain and sadness for a while: “I love the characters and the story. I want to BE Ruth.”

An excerpt from Ms. Penny’s response:

Please, call me Louise. You are right – there is no greater compliment to a writer – to a human – than that we have helped another person. Especially in times like your friend is in. Please give her a hug from me, and let her know that Armand, Reine-Marie, Gabri, Myrna et al are waiting for her in the bistro. They’ve saved a place with them by the fire. Even Ruth is there and we all know that she is FINE.

With embraces,



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