“Dylan Damien (8) and Charlie (6)… talked about ‘friends’ and that ‘it’s OK to be different.’
“I have told many friends about how much I like this book. However, these are the best critics as the story is for them. I bet this becomes a go-to, cuddle-up book on those long Winter nights.”
Stefan Steen took the photo above of his wife Stephanie, their 3 children and Paula.
Paula and Stefan go way back to his childhood, when he and her son Damien were close friends. Sadly, Damien died young, but Stefan remained close to Paula and her husband Bert.
Stefan and Stephanie named their first child for Damien. Damien was known for giving the greatest hugs, and Paula says she is delighted that the kids have learned to give her “Damien hugs” too.
They are the grandchildren of her heart, she says.
Today, Paula and Bert are close to all three children, who call them “Oma”, and “Opa” (Dutch for “grandma” and “grandpa”).
A retired librarian and cultural connoisseur, Paula has an eye for great stories. She was the first person outside our family to read the draft of Myrtle, and therefore was its first reviewer.
“Children will love, relate and respond favourably to the humour and that light, underlying silliness that is their everyday language. I was smiling as I read some of the lines, descriptions and Myrtle’s thoughts.
“There are many teaching moments and issues in this book and you present them in such a warm and lovable way. It is simple but not simplistic, ethical, tackling issues that we so need to tackle today but without being pedantic.”
I respect Paula a lot, so you can imagine how much her critique encouraged not just me, but our whole family. And now, we’re glad to know that she has read it to her ‘grandchildren’ too.
Thank you, Paula, Stefan and Stephanie — and special thanks to our young critics!
31 thoughts on “Oma Paula and ‘The Best Critics’”
Great comments, Cynthia 👍😃❤️
Thank you! and I talk about you to every single soul who asks the background to the story — your ears must ring! Actually, I’ll send you a radio interview link so you can hear me talking about your role in this.
WOW – Thank you, Cynthia, but you and Jo did all the hard work 😃❤️
This is a beautiful review of Myrtle, Cynthia! I enjoy reading about how well the book is doing. Keep the reviews coming!
Okay then, Lavinia. Since you insist! (smile)
Another fabulous review! Did I tell you I found and have Myrtle in my cart on Book Depository? ❤ 🙂
That’s good news! Yaay!
Wonderful review from a special lady.
It really is, Bernadette.
Wonderful! Hope there are many more minutes and reviews like this.
Thank you. Me too!
Fantastic review…congratulations, Cynthia!
Thank you, Jill. It really brightened us up to receive her review, which I have abbreviated here.
I’m so thankful for such reviews, Laurie. As you know!
Thank you, my friend. And for your support on this journey.
Great blog! Thanks for your like of my post.
Thank you. And you’re welcome!
It’s great to see all the good reviews and the enjoyment the kids are getting–not to mention the lessons.
Thank you. It warms my heart.
This is such a lovely review, Cynthia and what a loving ‘family’ too. I rejoice every time I read these updates. More please!
Ok, then. You twisted my arm! (big smile) Thank you.
Paula experienced the read of the book with children and her testimony is convincing
Thank you, Michel.
What great validation for your book so many are enjoying. Congrats again Cynthia. Maybe Myrtle needs a cousin now in a series. 🙂
That’s a great idea, my author friend. Thank you.
There’s nothing like a good librarian to make great insights and observations about a book, and she hits the nail on the head re: Myrtle.
I agree. Paula is one super-intelligent woman. And I love librarians!