Think Bridget Jones’s Diary meets Eat, Pray, Love with a sprinkle of Jane Austen! THE LETTER DIARIES invite readers on a therapeutic journey in a refresh of their own lives, as the author restarts hers through the re-opening of time-gone-by letters she penned to her grandmother. If she knew then what she knows now, perhaps life might have taken her on a better path. Or, was this life meant all along?
Our story is based on 30 years of real-life letters and centered on the more downs than ups of a real-life serial singleton, Daniella Cracknell, who is stuck in a series of mishaps and seeks a way to course correct, to find resolve out of letters returned to her after the death of her beloved grandma, an inheritance of sorts.
The letters are the glue that held life together, much like a diary but with the guidance and wisdom of granny on the other end who lives overseas in the UK whereas Daniella has moved from their country of origin with her mother for an American life.
When letters are returned, a promise buried in one of the letters is unearthed, but only at death can the promise be fulfilled. Grandma had delivered on her end and now leaves Daniella to fulfill the rest. However, the letters are from all over the place so making sense of such an epistolary inheritance would take time.
Nonetheless, the letters are at Daniella’s doorstep ready to reopen. Perhaps her former self will reveal patterns of discourse and provide rationale on why things she had set up to go so right had gone so wrong.
Out of the returned letters, Daniella finds herself on a therapeutic path that takes readers on a bumpy road through quaint English villages and American big cities of New York and Los Angeles where letters are mailed and received.
As told through letters, Daniella juggles romantic disappointments and family dystunction that parallel her professional shakeups, setbacks, and start-overs. Her grandmother, painstakingly, bears witness.
Naturally, Daniella falls into the same television industry as her father, who earned early fame as a leading British actor on the BBC but lost the good life to a debilitating mental illness. So, Daniella questions if this will be her fate, too.
She has good girl qualities and supposedly did all things right. Yet, all things that can go wrong do go wrong in love and life, and on the job as a television publicity executive, as if she were destined for nothing but colossal mishap.
“There is something pleasantly, innocently voyeuristic about reading an epistolary novel," says Book Riot. Adding, "They give you the feeling of stumbling on a box of letters left in an attic, but there are no consequences or hurt feelings if you read them. Actually, the author prefers that you read them.”
So, stay tuned as more of our story unfolds into published form. In the meantime, we would love it if you, too, would be among our early reviewers. Simply share your email with us by clicking on HERE. Or, click on the book cover, where a sign-up will also appear. We can then alert you to our big reveal and to an early bird special on our wardrobe companion in The Spa Dress, a new trend in comfort wear that goes with a comfort book read. Plus, our go-to UK raincoats that allow us to breathe on rainy days!
“Cracknell emerges as a resilient, sprightly, and engaging character ... a dream read!”
—MARY, Test Reader, English Professor, Avid Book Clubber, NY—
Reopen a Letter ...
THE LETTER DIARIES is inspired by an earlier book of letters. The letters were written in the 18th century, an era made famous in many a novel by Jane Austen as the golden age of letter writing. Back then, letters were among the few allowable forms of written expression open to women, a topic that led Daniella and her grandmother to make a deadly promise, a pact cemented in a letter.
In Austen's Pride & Prejudice, a new day was not complete without the arrival of a letter or the anticipation of a reply. THE LETTER DIARIES similarly bridge time and distance but through modern-day misfortune -- and with a new generation of women in a daughter distanced from her father, a mother dismantled by two divorces, and a grandmother too young to be widowed.
The women travel together through the written word, here, there, and everywhere. Despite mishap, the women find hope in troubled times, insight amid chaos and feel-good energy that fuels the bounce-back power of resiliency. The first of letters are sent and received from an 18th-century English country estate, which sets the stage for a return to the golden age of letter writing.
The estate comes with a haunted tale that keeps Daniella emeshed in an 18th-century British idea of how life should go. Though, she comes of age in 20th-century America with her version of Austen’s Mr. Darcy. Chapters flow through the support of 200 real-life letters penned over a lifetime, 30 years to be exact, of which 75 of the letters are featured amongst lessons learned from one chapter to the next.
Please be advised THE LETTER DIARIES contain sensitive subject matter as the daughter explores adverse childhood experiences that derail her from the get-go, the mother faces an ill that challenges feminity, and the grandmother travels down the tunnel of light in a near-death experience thirteen years prior to her actual death. As a result, our story is for those who have had enough life experience to know better and now desire better out of the feminine experience.