I never thought I would ever be here sitting in my bed room on the first night of Thanksgiving Break writing an email to my favorite author. I can hardly remember when I first started reading the Alice series; probably around 5th or 6th grade. I was intrigued by the first book and Alice’s life, growing up without a mom. Ever since reading Starting With Alice i was hooked. As soon as i finished the next book in the series i was hungry for more. The hilarious moments with Alice at the dinner table with Lester and her Dad talking about periods, to her first perm, to the overnight train ride to Chicago with Pamela and Elizabeth i remember it all. Even while i was waiting for the new books i re read all the others. I can proudly say that i’ve read every book in the series at least twice; certain ones even more. I love that fact that i feel as though i can relate to Alice even though we are different in many ways and how i feel as though i know her personally; maybe even better then i know myself. I’ve read about all her highs and lows, sharing in embarrassing moments and reading as she grew from an adolescent, to a teen, into a young lady and grandmother. I especially love how the book took place in SIlver Spring, Maryland which is where I am from and now live in Upper Marlboro. I knew exactly the roads you were talking about such as Takoma Park, East-West Highway, Norbeck, and all the restaurants in College Park by the University of Maryland. So now I am a junior in high school and just finished Now I’ll Tell You Everything, which was bitter sweet. I have been excitedly waiting for this book since Alice on Board. It was sad to think that this would be the end of such an amazing series because i really see Alice as being a part of my childhood. Reading these books really helped me get through hard times and in a way allowed me to escape from the real world. So after finishing the last Alice book, I feel as though i’ve just entered a new chapter in my life and that i have so much to look forward to later in life- both happy and sad moments. As i was reading i laughed, smiled, and actually cried for the first time ever while reading a book (when Alice’s dad passed away, she read the letter from the time capsule, and she and Patrick met in the airport). I especially died laughing when Patrick reacted to Patricia’s raccoon eyeliner and mascara and Lester’s typical good sense of humor. It’s bitter sweet to know that we all grow old and watch everyone around us die, but at the same time see ourselves surrounded by the people we love experiencing happiness. I just wanted to thank you Phyllis Reynolds Naylor for the Alice Series, for the laughs, and tears, and smiles that you provided me with over the years and for someone as good of a person as Alice who has taught me so much through her experiences. Although the series is over, Alice will forever be in my heart and i will always re read the book. Thanks again for your books and I hope theres more to come. I don’t know if you’ll actually ever read but if you do and respond my life will be complete.
(p.s- oh wait I lied, i actually cried when Mark died in Intensely Alice so this would make it the second time I cried while reading a book)
Yes, I actually do read and respond to all the letters that come to me by email. Thank you so much for taking the time to write a long, and very welcome, letter. It’s wonderful to know that my 28 years of work have meant so much to you.