I am excited to share this pre- promotional post about an upcoming novel titled, ‘Forever Violet,’ subtitled, ‘From Stony Hill to Broadway,’ by authors James Costa and Frances Schmidt. The book was inspired by my mother, Lillie (Tiny) Rosanna Sharon, who, in turn, was inspired after reading my first novel, ‘Fred,’ published in 2021.
Several years before her death, Tiny gradually lost the use of her physical senses, but not her wit nor her photographic memory. During that period, she managed to develop the bare bones of the novel, extracting a promise from me to faithfully reproduce the colorful language of young Violet, the eponymous heroine of the novel. Tiny spent the last two years of her life in and out of hospitals and, ultimately, hospice, where she passed away in 2022.
‘Forever Violet’ is the story of Violet Sheehan, a twelve-year old girl growing up during the Great Depression in Stony Hill, a poor neighborhood section of New London, Connecticut. Raised in a loveless home, she endures years of cruelty and indifference from an alcoholic father and a mentally unstable mother. Living the life of a gamine, Violet vows to escape the trappings of her bleak existence and fulfill her ambition to become a professional writer. However, her determination and self-discipline do not necessarily guarantee success. Her journey from Stony Hill to Broadway is fraught with several traumatic experiences and setbacks before the harrowing climax, which leaves open questions of life’s unpredictable twists, and the roles fate and destiny play in it.
The co-authors of this book are neither gullible nor superstitious, yet we believe ‘Forever Violet’ is not our creation. In some mysterious way, it is Tiny’s story inexplicably channeled through us. It is to her memory we dedicate this book and humbly propose it as her legacy.
Frances R. Schmidt,
Author of Fred: Buffalo Building of Dreams