Book launch

SURFACING, IF BRIEFLY!

Sorry, friends! I’ve been a bad girl — not posting or visiting much. 

Books and family are keeping me busier than a one-armed paper-hanger! (And you may recall only one of my arms works really well, so an apt descriptor there …)

Blog Photo - Book Launch Myrtle and Twigs - LRG and CR

The double-launch went very well indeed — a full house, great readings, excellent questions from the audience, all at Toronto’s iconic bookstore, A Different Booklist.

The following photos were taken by the ADB team. It’s great when a prominent bookstore team is so obviously thrilled to host a launch!

Blog Photo - Book Launch at ADB2

Blog Photo - Book Launch at ADB 3

Blog Photo - Book Launch at ADS - Books

Blog Photo - Book Launch at ADB with ML

Then there’s the Festival of the Arts, happening this weekend in lakeside Cobourg, Ontario. My family and I are privileged to both support and take part in this wonderful event. And yes, our books and I will be there!

2019_SOTH_Festival_Brochure_rev2.indd

All this while we await first grandbaby ‘with baited breath’, and also support family and friends, some going through tough times right now.

Thanks for being there, and for your many messages of support. Be kind to yourself and others, please. I’ll be in touch again when I come up for air!

Love,

Cynthia.

 

Book Blessing and Launch, Book launch

Double Book Launch Day!

Hello, Friends!

I’m not blogging as often as I should, but I have good reasons!

We’re in the busy period of launching not just one, but two books: Twigs in My Hair and the third in the Myrtle the Purple Turtle series, Myrtle Makes a New Friend.

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Myrtle Makes a New Friend - Cover Front 3 Sept 2019

This evening, the Toronto launch is being hosted by A Different Booklist, the iconic bookstore and cultural centre that carries exciting books from around the world.  Owners Itah Sadu and Miguel  San Vicente and their team have sold our books for years, and I am always glad to visit with them and their customers.

Blog Photo - Myrtle and Friends at A Different Booklist

All of this is happening as younger daughter Lauren Reyes-Grange, co-author of the Myrtle books, and her husband Dan, are expecting their first child this month.

So we’re all hoping Baby holds off a bit longer so it won’t be a triple launch tonight! 

Twigs photographer Hamlin Grange, Lauren and I started out a few weeks ago in the most special way: our church, St. Thomas’ Anglican, held a double blessing for the books and us.

Blog Photo - Book blessing and launch

Our priest Canon Claire (above left),  and Corinne Sargent, head of the Women’s Reflection Group and the team of volunteers, and dozens of enthusiastic parishioners made it a wonderful breakfast event in the parish hall.

Blog Photo - Book blessing and launch 2019 - Lydia & Francois and Rosie

Blog Photo - Book Blessing and Launch 2019 - Myrtle poster

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Blog Photo - Book Blessing - Muriel and Cynthia and Joanne

Every detail was a celebration of the books and their key messages.

Blog Photo - Book Blessing and Launch 2019 - Rudbeckia

Even the hymn “All Things Bright and Beautiful”, was slightly altered to include a purple turtle!

Blog Photo - Book Blessing and Launch 2019 - Hymn

As always, Canon Claire’s prayer made us feel blessed and supported.

Tonight, at A Different Booklist, we will celebrate with a whole other set of friends and acquaintances (some of whom we haven’t seen in way too long), and meet new people who love books. 

Blog Photo - Twigs & Myrtle - Toronto Launch

Hamlin, whose beautiful pictures grace the pages of Twigs in My Hair, will play a slide show he has created for this purpose. Lauren and I will read short excerpts from the books and perhaps make a few remarks.

Writing is a lonely activity. But I am lucky to have a truly caring and professional team: Lauren and Hamlin as key creative partners, fabulous illustrators (Jo Robinson on the Myrtle books, and Les Lawrence who did the humorous sketches for Twigs), excellent beta readers, proficient editors, proofreaders, and our book designer Clif.

So it’s a double celebration this evening. And we hope the biggest celebration of all — a brand new baby in our family — holds off just a little.

Blog Photo - Book Blessing and Launch 2019 - Hamlin & Cynthia and Lauren

I’ll keep you updated. Meanwhile, please wish us well!

~~

Photos of the St. Thomas’ Church event were taken by Joanne Schuetzl.

Thank you, Joanne!

A Good Home, An Honest House, Book Blessing and Launch, Book launch, Book lovers, Canadian Authors, Canadian Books, Canadian Homes, Canadian life

Book Blessed and Launched

Last weekend, my book was blessed and launched.

By our priest, Rev. Canon Claire Wade at St. Thomas’ Anglican in the village of Brooklin, Ontario

Book Photo at Launch Rev Canon Claire

And our church community, family and friends

Book Photo at Launch with Reader D

At 9.a.m in the morning of a long weekend, no less!

Book Photo at Launch Cynthia Reading

It was a full house. The food was great, the speeches were short, and I didn’t stutter or cry while reading.

Book Photo at Launch Small Group 4

Book Photos at Launch small group smiles

Book Photo at Launch Group applauds

Book Photo At Launch with Jane .JPG

Thanks to Hamlin for the photos and to publisher Don Bastian for his beautiful speech below:

Book Photo at Launch Don B
Publisher Don Bastian

“I’ve attended many book launches, but this is the first book blessing I’ve ever heard of.  I think there should be more of them!

In my experience as an editor and reader, memoir writers fall into one of two camps.

In one camp are those who create a book. Their book falls somewhere on the spectrum from boring waste of space to keen insight into a life well spent. But in the end, all they have created is a book.

Book Photo at Launch Small Group 3

 

In the other camp, and this camp is less populous, are those who create a book, of course, but who also create a world. In some mysterious way, in telling the story of their own life, they tell the story of their readers’ lives, as well.

I think you know into which camp Cynthia Reyes has pitched her tent.

Book Photo at Launch 2

Opening the pages of AN HONEST HOUSE is like opening a colourful gift. Yes, we do grapple with the pain we are subject to, having messed things up in the Garden of Eden. But we do get closer to the border of that wonderful garden. We are drawn into Cynthia and Hamlin’s literal garden and into their big-hearted marriage and church relationships and extensive set of friendships. And we are so much the better for it.

And so I am honoured to congratulate Cynthia on her new book. To congratulate her for displaying:

  • great skill as the writer of a book;
  • supreme artistry as the creator of a world;
  • and amazing grace to confer on us, her readers, honorary citizenship in that world.”

~~

Thank you, Don, Hamlin, Rev. Canon Claire, Sharon and everyone who took part.

 

 

 

A Good Home, Book launch

A Different Kind of Book Launch at St. Thomas’

 

Everyone who’s read my book knows about St. Thomas’ Anglican in Brooklin, Ontario – the tiny, old, white board-and-batten church with the fascinating history and the big heart.

Just how big a heart, our family found out in the years after the car accident that changed our lives. Soup, prayers,  encouragement – and a helping hand up the steps – are just some of the ways the people of this parish showed us their love and support.

And when the stories I’d been writing about “home” for 20+ years were turned into a book, that same little church (by now a bigger church) came out swinging on my behalf yet again.Book launch Cynthia reads - audience listens Yes, the good people at St. Thomas’ Anglican threw a fabulous launch for my book at an elegant event that drew nearly 80 people on the Saturday morning of a long weekend.

I was nervous! These are people who’ve helped me through some very rough times, and I didn’t want to embarrass them in what would be my first appearance since the release of the book.Book launch standing ovation

Was it rough in parts? Oh, yes. If you’ve read my book, you may already know why speaking in public scares me, and if you haven’t yet, I won’t spoil the book for you. But the St. Thomas’ audience couldn’t have been more supportive and responsive.Book launch Cynthia reads and smiles closeup

Parts of the book are very funny, and the audience howled with laughter, repeatedly.  When I said my faith gets shaky at times, no-one threw anything at me (smile) – in fact, some people nodded encouragingly. And when I broke down in tears, they quietly waited me out.  Then, the next morning, several people turned up in church with very red eyes – turned out they stayed awake all night reading the book. I  blurted: “I’m so sorry!” And then realized: what a compliment! Every author loves to hear that their readers “just couldn’t put down the book.”

My editor and publisher Don Bastion, of BPS Books had such kind words for me. He was patient and supportive throughout  the process; from manuscript to book.

Huge thanks go to Rev. Claire Wade, the event organizers and the entire congregation of St. Thomas’ for their great support. You’re remarkable people who live your faith through your actions, and I love you.

Book launch - stack of books

Book launch Don spekas and rev claire and CR look on

Book launch cynthia and rev claire

Book launch signing with Joanne and Tony