Posted by: jeannineatkins | February 14, 2009

Kids Heart Authors at the Odyssey Bookshop

Happy Valentine’s Day! My lovely one started when I went down to the kitchen and found a pitcher of tulips and a heart arranged from chocolate-covered sunflower seeds atop my (closed) computer. Thanks, honey! Then I went to the Odyssey Bookshop in South Hadley, MA, where Emily and Rebecca had everything so well organized, to celebrate Kids Heart Authors It was great to be part of something celebrated today by over independent bookstores in New England, and organized by Mitali Perkins and Deborah Sloan. From me on the right you can see Crissa-Jean Chappel crissachappell, Diane deGroat, Dina Friedman
<lj user="d_dina_friedman" and Richard Michelson.

and Richard Michelson on the left. (I’m having some weird technical problem getting the names in decently, sorry! )

One awesome dad brought out his two girls for some reading. Here’s the youngest, when the dad was getting ready to purchase. When one author offered to bring the two darling girls home, he said fine, but the offer is for 48 hours or nothing. She said never mind.

Here’s Diane reading from Roses are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink:

Dina is reading from Playing Dad’s Song. She borrowed the sari I’d brought to put over her son who played oboe, and is here showing how the main character in the book reveres Paganini, who composed while covered-up.

And a student from last semester came by to deliver this pretty valentine. The sweet message inside: I miss having your Monday evening classes to look forward to… but don’t worry, I’m still trying to make time for the books that truly have a special place in my heart!” This from a hard-working college junior. Thanks, Reesha!



  1. What a lovely Valentine from your student! And that offer (48 hours or nothing) is sheer genius.
    I’m glad you had such a lovely day!!

  2. Thanks for sharing these photos and stories Jeannine. Made me feel like I was there (and believe me, I would have loved to be at all the stores and met all the authors and families!). Looks like it was a very happy Valentine’s Day indeed.
    — Deborah Sloan,

  3. Yes, that valentine was a sweet surprise. Hope you are enjoying your 24 flowers! Wow!

  4. It was a great day. Thanks to all who made it happen. And we’re so glad that Crissa wore red, because the rest of us forgot to.

  5. Sounds like a fabulous time, Jeannine. You must love that valentine from your student!

  6. Oh, yes, that valentine is on the fridge!

  7. Crissa wore red and brought sweets! So cool. Yes, a lot of people worked to make this happen and I”m thankful. As always, it’s fun to hear you read from a book I first saw in manuscript.

  8. Looks like a great morning! What a wonderful line-up of authors!!!!! Our’s wasn’t as wonderfully orchestrated, but fun anyway! See you Wednesday!

  9. It was a nice lineup, and I left with Rich Michelson’s pb As Good as Anybody and Crissa Chappell’s novel — looking forward to reading both soon (well the pb in all reality sooner!) What fun to have signed copies!
    That will be great to see you Wed! Peg was orchestrating a birthday party on Sat, but still found time to show up with her daughter Sarah Sat morning for hugs. What a sweetheart. Ellen won’t make it as they’ll be driving back from Ohio — didn’t think she would, but she hopes to make it some other time.

  10. Thank YOU, Deborah! Yes, there was lots of love there!

  11. I love your “behind the scenes” pictures and words! It was sooo fun.

  12. It was fun reading your blog entry, too! I’m looking forward to reading your novel soon.

  13. Photo number 2–that dad is already raising a reader! I love the 48-hour limit! 🙂

  14. Sounds like a fabulous day–thanks for sharing it with us. Roses Are Pink was one of our favorites when my kids were littler. Might have to dig it out for a trip down memory lane.
    And what a sweet Valentine’s card!

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