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The Red Leather Diary    by Lily Koppel order for
Red Leather Diary
by Lily Koppel
Order:  USA  Can
Harper, 2009 (2008)
Hardcover, Softcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Young writer Lily Koppel came upon a treasure trove of steamer trunks on a New York City sidewalk. These trunks were to be disposed of, having been in a building's basement for many, many years. Koppel couldn't resist and dove into the trunks to discover what they held. One of the treasures she came upon was a red leather diary with a tarnished brass lock. Reading it dropped her into 1920s and 1930s New York.

The thoughts and dreams in that diary were those of Florence Wolfson. The diary was written with the pathos of a young girl beginning her teens, recounting all the wonderful experiences she saw in her future. Lily realized how exciting it would be to find Florence. To talk to the author. To see what she did after the five years the diary covered. What her life had been like. What she had accomplished. Had any of her dreams come true?

To Lily's delight, she found that Florence was still alive, in her nineties and living in Florida. Meeting Florence convinced Lily that there was a book in Florence's story. The Red Leather Diary is the result of an old lady's memories and a young woman's interest in a lifetime rich in experience.

The Red Leather Diary generates ooohs and aaahs as it is read. It reveals a lifetime of participating in events to the fullest possible. Poignant. Ups and downs. Joy and heartbreak. Love. Affairs and breakups. In essence, the story of a woman's life within the pages of a book - a woman who greets each day with expectation.

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