February 25, 2013

Today is the official pub day of Return to Willow Lake. I’m so grateful to all the readers who helped make it a bestseller in hardcover. Now, paperback fans will find it in stores. You can also find the book in audio and digital formats, and in lots of different languages.

The hardcover edition was published during an exciting time in my life.

And I’m excited about the paperback, but for me, there’s something bittersweet about the publication of this particular book. When I first conceived the story, I knew I would be dealing with some big issues

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Just out in paperback

. However, I didn’t know how personal the central issue would become for me.

One of the storylines in the novel involves a young woman returning home to help her mother through the ordeal of breast cancer. Now, on the eve of the paperback publication, I’ve discovered that one of my best friends has just been diagnosed with cancer.
Loretta is a wife, a mom, a sister, a friend. She’s facing the fight of her life.

So in addition to the dedication in the printed book, I would like to unofficially dedicate the paperback edition to my beloved friend, Loretta. She’s sharing her journey on a blog, and I’m so proud of the courage and humor in her writing, and in the responses from her friends and family. Here’s a link to her most heart touching post. Keep the Kleenex handy. You’ve been warned.

  • Oh Susan,,, you are simply the best. So heartfelt and personal. Loretta has been a good friend to all who have the privilege to know her and now it is coming back to her over and over in so many kind ways. She cried when she told me about your dedication and now I’m crying too. You are one of the most generous people I know. Thank you.

  • Your friend will be in my prayers. My mother has recently fought her second battle with cancer and we just lost her mom at 98 to cancer.

  • Made me cry too…thanks Susan… as an avid reader of your books and one of my sisters best friends this means so much. It is comforting seeing the love and support she has from her friends since her siblings live so far away.

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