Reading and Watching  #TuesdayTidbit #Jottings #Inspiration

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In the 1970’s when I was in high school, I read Ice Castles by Leonore Fleischer, a novel about a teenaged girl who becomes a famous ice skater, then goes blind. Being visually impaired but not into skating, I was nevertheless inspired by this character’s determination in the face of adversity.

Before I had a chance to finish the book, I saw the movie. I was just as spell-bound by this ice skater’s story on screen. Because I found it intriguing, although I knew how it ended, I decided to finish the book. I wanted to know if the book’s conclusion was just as satisfying as that of the movie, and it was. This was one of those movies that did the book justice.

Several years ago, I saw the movie,   Philomena, after it first came out. I hadn’t yet read the book. I was captivated by this true story of a woman in Ireland, forced to give up her illegitimate son, who, years later, tries to find him with the help of British journalist Martin Sixsmith.

Once I’ve seen a movie, I usually don’t read the book, but curiosity got the better of me. I was amazed at how much material Sixsmith provided that wasn’t in the movie. Granted, there is only so much time for a film to tell a story, but this movie didn’t even scratch the surface.

How about you? I’d love to hear about a movie you saw that is based on a book you read. Do you think the movie does the book justice?


New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?



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Through the Eyes of Love #Monday Musical Memories

As a teen-ager, when I saw the movie, Ice Castles, and read the book, I was fascinated by the story of a young figure skater who loses all her vision in an accident but returns to the ice. What blew me away was this girl was the same age as me at the time, sixteen, when she started training.

I couldn’t roller skate without holding onto somebody because I was terrified of falling. I’d tried downhill skiing and landed flat on my back. So, I wasn’t about to start ice skating lessons, and I don’t think this had anything to do with my own visual impairment. But it didn’t stop me from enjoying this compelling tale of achieving one’s dream, losing it, then getting back in the game.

In 2005, a month after my late husband Bill, living in Fowler, Colorado, while I was here in Sheridan, Wyoming, proposed to me, this movie’s theme was on a cassette of love songs he sent me for Valentine’s Day. He didn’t know about the impact the book and movie had on me, but I’m pretty sure I told him. The song developed a new significance for me. I’ve always found it amazing that although Bill had no vision, he saw me through the eyes of love.




New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.


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