"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.
I grew up in a small town in northwestern Pennsylvania, much like the one in Simple Riches. There were four of us kids, my two older brothers, me, and my younger sister--all of us born within 5 ½ years. There were no McDonalds in our town, no malls, no fancy movie theaters. I used to walk over a mile to school every day, (yes, I really did!) Time was filled with little things, everyday life; weeding the flower beds and garden by hand and getting snail guts under my nails, holding the flashlight while my brothers caught night crawlers, helping my mother bake bread or hang sheets on the line so they could 'catch the fresh air'. Huddling with my sister in bed on Easter Sunday before Mass and gorging on a milk chocolate baby doll, planting a maple tree-- my maple tree--with my father in our back yard, listening to my grandmother speak in broken English as she told stories of being a young girl in Italy and coming to America. Getting ready to go out on Saturday night and fighting over one shower and onehairdryer between the four of us...
Today, my brothers and sister and I live hundreds of miles away from that little town in Pennsylvania, but it is still part of us, it will always be part of us because that's where we learned the true meaning of family and friendship, and the importance of honoring your word.
And so, when I decided to write about a small town and its people with their traditions and values, I thought about life, as a child and as an adult, and this is the question that led to Simple Riches; What is real wealth? Is it a balanced stock portfolio and a seven-figure income? Or is it more elusive ... intangible...something perhaps that cannot be measured or identified or even...understood? Is real wealth that, which reaches out to us, touches our hearts, our souls, filling us yet leaving us longing for more? Is it a fall morning, crisp and clear, with the tip of frost covering green, ... a smile, full and honest, ... a tradition handed down, ... a string of memories planted with a maple tree...
"Isn't she beautiful?" Stella Androvich leaned over, whispered to Nick.
Beautiful, she was beautiful all right, but it was more than that. He kept his eyes on her, the slight tilt of her head, the sway of her hair, her bare arms, hips, legs. "Yes, she is." His voice sounded hoarse, unnatural, as though he'd pulled an all-nighter and then downed three shots of Jack Daniel's. But he'd done neither.
"She looks like an angel, doesn't she?" His mother clutched his forearm, squeezed. "Doesn't she, Nick?"
He nodded, watching the full pink lips move as she smiled.
"She's the perfect bride."
He tore his gaze away, stared down at his mother. "Bride?" What was she talking about?
"Marie, the bride, Nick." His mother frowned at him. "Who did you think I was talking about all this time?"
"Oh, right, Marie. Of course, I knew." He yanked at the collar of his shirt. It was getting damn hot in here. "She is beautiful, Mom. Kenny's a lucky guy."
His mother, the spy, was already scanning the floor, widening the perimeter where Marie stood. Her gaze stopped when it hit her target--Alex Chamberlain. She was standing a little to the left of the bride, talking with Gracie. She was wearing a pale pink sleeveless dress cut a few inches above the knees with pantyhose that shimmered when she walked, and, of course, pearls.
"Ah, I see."
"Nick." There she went with that patronizing voice. "I'm your mother." She smiled up at him, patted his arm. "You're smitten, admit it."
"Of all the ridiculous--"
"I knew it. Gracie thinks she's smitten with you, too." If her smile got any wider, her face would crack.
She did? Why would Gracie think that? Had Alex said something? He wanted to know, but he'd cut his tongue out before he'd ask his mother. She'd pester him to death, interrogate him, badger if necessary, and enlist accomplices to ferret out information. Anyway, so what if he admitted Alex Chamberlain was beautiful? It didn't mean anything, not a thing. So what if he'd called Edna Lubovich the last three days, asked about Chuck, and then, so very casually, inquired if Alex had returned from her trip yet?
"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.
Book Description CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform. Paperback. Book Condition: Good. Book shows minor use. Cover and Binding have minimal wear, and the pages have only minimal creases. Bookseller Inventory # G1490568719I3N00
Book Description CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2013. Book Condition: Good. 2nd Edition. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. Bookseller Inventory # GRP80384143