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July 22, 2015

"Readers For Life" Literacy Autographing, RWA Conference
Book Signing Open to Public
5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
New York Marriott Marquis, New York, NY

September 17, 2015

Guest Speaker, Upper St. Clair Fall Tea
Reservations Required
Upper St. Clair Library, Upper St. Clair, PA

HEA Blog

Madeline's posts "Romance Unlaced: The buzz about historical romance" on USA Today's Happy Ever After blog.


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News from Madeline


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Marie Sklodowsa Curie, the brilliant physicist and chemist, was the first woman to receive a Nobel Prize and the only woman to receive two. She also was the first woman in France to attain a PhD in Physics as well as the first one to teach at the Sorbonne.

Madame Curie’s 1903 Nobel Prize in Physics win was for her radiation research.  She won her second Nobel Prize in Chemistry for her discovery of new elements while studying uranium. She named the elements polonium (a nod to her Polish homeland) and radium.

During World War I, she established mobile radiology units to treat the million plus soldiers wounded in the battles. Her incredibly important work in radiation resulted in groundbreaking treatments for cancer.

But perhaps most notable is not only was Madame Curie a brilliant scientist, but she commanded the respect of her peers and was recognized for her own achievements even as she worked side-by-side with her husband. It was customary then for the husband to receive full credit for accomplishments like these.

She continues to be a role model for girls everywhere who aspire to a life committed to science.

Source: Association for Women in Science (AWIS)

I was looking for a good Women’s History Month quote when I noticed the name Lucille Ball appearing over and over. So I did some research.

We all know she was an amazing actor and comic. But I didn’t realize how much a pioneer she was in the early days of television.

Since I’m personally a fan and I suspect many of you are too, I made Lucille Ball’s legacy a part of my reading of Women’s History Month stories and I’d like to share a bit of what I learned about this incredibly funny and complex lady.

Black and whilte portrait of Lucile Ball


Lucille Desiree Ball was born August 6, 1911, in Jamestown, NY. She knew early in her life she wanted to act and she left school when she was just 15 to pursue her dream. In New York City, she enrolled in drama school where she studied theatre alongside Bette Davis. When she was repeatedly told she had no acting talent, she took the new name of Diane Belmont and moved on to be a model with some moderate, but inconsistent, success.

Which was a good thing, because one of her posters caught the attention of studios in Hollywood. She landed in Blood Money and Roman Scandals (both in 1933), Kid Millions (in 1934), and several others.

She decided to remain in Hollywood where she went after bigger and better roles in Carnival (1935), Room Service (1938), Five Came Back (1939), and other films.

Eventually, it was her starring role in Too Many Girls (1940) that saw the beginning of a romance and partnershp with Cuban bandleader, Desi Arnaz. For the next 10 years, he continued his musical career while she acted in minor comedies until she landed more important roles in The Big Street (1942), opposite Henry Fonda, and Sorrowful Jones (1949) and Fancy Pants (1950), opposite Bob Hope, and a host of others.

Black and white photo of Lucy and Desi


In 1950, she and Arnaz experimented with a program on the radio and formed Desilu Productions. In October 1951, Ball’s life would take a turn for the stardom she’d been seeking since she was a child. I Love Lucy, staring Ball and Arnaz, launched on television and became an overnight sensation.

Ball’s character Lucy was a fresh take on the American housewife and it showcased her brilliant timing and physical comedy. The show, which won five Emmys, became a model for sitcoms for decades for filming in front of a live studio audience, use of multiple cameras and other technological broadcasting innovations.

Reproduced set of the I Love Lucy kitchen


She and Arnaz also continued to star in features like The Long, Long Trailer (1954)–which is hilarious. Watch it, especially if you have an RV camper!

Desilu Productions continued to find success producing television shows like The Dick Van Dyke Show. Ball and Arnaz divorced in 1960 and two years later she became president of Desilu. This made her the only woman at the time to lead a major production studio in Hollywood. In 1967, she sold Desilu and founded Lucille Ball Productions.

For the next nearly 30 years, Ball continued to break barriers as she produced and starred in many television shows and films, almost until her death in 1989. Her influence and popularity continue.


Congratulations to Zara H!

Zara has been contacted and has confirmed her address. Her prize bundle is on the way. Thank you, Zara for participating!

Thank you to everyone! We will do this again.

To celebrate the release of Heiress in Red Silk on April 27, I’m doing a giveaway of a nice reader’s tote, some jewelry, and one of my books. In order to enter all you have to do is answer this question in the comments below: Do you enjoy marriage of convenience stories, and if so do you have a favorite?

The giveaway will run until midnight EST, May 7. Void where prohibited. US residents only (sorry!) Winner will be randomly chosen. I will contact the winner via email and winner will have 48 hours to respond. If no response is received I will pick another winner.


October 1-4, 2020

Romancing the Gold Coast, Waltz Back In Time
The Mansion at Glen Cove, Glen Cove, NY. Please see for details.


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