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I think that a good book of any kind should provide the reader with insights into human nature, no matter how profound or quotidian the subject matter.  Posts of a Mid-Century Kid by Ann Vigola Anderson gives the reader ample evidence of how interesting an ordinary life can be, of how observations as one simply goes along in life can provide universal insights.  The format is one of a series of Facebook postings and the time frame is the 1950s and ‘60s, the era of my own teens and twenties.  Anderson’s prose is clear and engaging, and the book’s subtitle sums up the author’s efforts and this reader’s reaction nicely:  “Doing my best.  Having fun.”

Jim Hoy, author of My Flint Hills

First and foremost, your book is brilliant!!!  I could have easily read it in one setting but, I purposely spaced it out over several days, so I could savor every word.  Your words evoke such vivid images that I could actually hear the raindrops falling and smell the cinnamon rolls baking.  I laughed and I cried and I felt immense gratitude that I grew up in Kansas during a beautiful, simple time.

This book was a wonderful gift, as I relived many of my own memories – pulling taffy with my Grandma, playing Barbie dolls for hours on end with my friend, Sharon, on the Christian Church steps, and sitting with my Mom as she lay unconscious in Hospice, holding her hand and singing. The sights, the smells, the tastes, the sounds, the emotions!!

Tonnie F.

I would stop and think, oh yeah, I had that same doll, shoes, music records.  You made me smile and grin so many times, plus, I wept with your memories that brought back mine.  It is wonderful and I look forward to having my very own copy signed by the author.  Plus, the recipes were a great addition.  I can’t wait to make Grandma Hubert’s summer lemon ice pick cake.

Rhonda L.

I think I can’t wait to hold it in my hands so it can fill my heart!

Rita M.

I love the format of your book.  It’s so refreshing to have each story compartmentalized that allowed me to experience emotions of humor, sadness, reflection, and ponder how I related to some of your experiences.  Mixing in quotes from other familiar authors and thinkers added to the intellectual authenticity of your work.  The composition is fun and inviting to read.  I am eager to make your book a part of my permanent library.

Robert H.

I thoroughly enjoyed Posts of a Mid-century Kid, a charming, heartwarming, emotional collection of memories that shows what growing up in the 1950s was like.  From Anderson’s childhood came a lifelong love of family, tennis, cats, and Kansas.  From her young friends, she learned the mysteries and misinformation of where babies come from and engaged in grooming experiments gone bad.  She struggled with her parents’ divorce and an absentee father, along with other losses.  However, Anderson found her way through both the happy and sad of life with her mother’s words to guide her: Do your best. Have fun.  It is a message for all of us.

Hazel H.

It’s an emotional rollercoaster in the best sense of the world.  Painful posts are side by side with joyful ones.  It is a beautiful book. I am putting this on my gift list.

Jill F.

I have read your entertaining book.  I enjoyed the format you used and the photos that were of the right number.  You truly have a gift of putting words together The little things from childhood that you mention-like the screen door slamming as you go outside-are things most readers can relate to.  Your memories can be triggers for the reader’s own memories.

Nancy K.

What a precious jewel, your book.  I’m limiiting my reading to 10 pages a day to make it a wonderful part of my daily routine.

This book is a precious jewel with more facets than the Hope diamond and should not be read in one sitting.  Reading as many as 10 pages or less allows one the feel, the texture of life for a mid-century kid.  I wanted more time to see your bright colors, hear the gravel crunch under your feet walking up the driveway, feel the sun on my face in the early spring, smell the roses and prairie aromas that only exist in middle American, more time to ponder your mother and grandmother’s sayings and quotes.

William C.

Posts of a Mid-century Kid is so part of my childhood and more.  You captured growing up in Kansas.  I cried and remembered and enjoyed it.  It was great.  It truly is a snapshot of mid-century life.

Pam S.

I like how you go from the past to the distant past and then back.  I like the small paragraphs that helps keep the reader engaged and better picture your moments.

Daryl G.

What a wonderful book.  It evoked so many feelings.  The posts about the prairie in the mornings and evenings, as you sit with your kitties on the catio-patio, feel like meditations that help slow down my brain and worrying.  Parts of the book are like an original comedy routine…offering your brother three $1.00 bills for his two $2.00 bills.  The Husband Book, Vann’s Christmas pig, and collecting rolly polleys so they make ice cream.  I have to say your mother was genius!

I am struck by the universal experiences of mid-century kids who grew up hundreds of miles west of Topeka…one-inch Avon lipsticks, transistor radios, bicycles with playing cards clipped to the spokes, playing outside with neighborhood friends until time for bed.

So many unbelievable experiences…seeing Muhammad Ali, eating dinner with Miss America, being robbed at the steak house.  All of it wrapped in nostalgia that makes your throat feel so tight and it makes tears squeeze out of your eyes.

Katy W.

I love the book and the memories are so much the same, songs, Kansas farm grandparents, KU in the early 70s and all!  The Mad Hatter!  I hadn’t thought about it in years.  And the bittersweet ache of having the love of your mother, then losing her.  I feel it in my heart. 

Carole J.

To have a peek into your life was delightful, to experience through the writings of someone who loves and finds solace in the prairie is a treat.  Your writing brings alive each vignette as if I were actually experiencing the joys and sorrows.

I can feel the dough as your grandmother kneads, smell their inviting smell as it bakes and savor every bite.

Through your writing, I can feel the prairie’s soft breeze hit my cheeks, watch as gigantic thunderstorms roll in and hear the refreshing rain heal my soul. You have done more than write, you have brought experiences alive, given them descriptions which allow the reader a wonderful experience and given a peek into your wonderful childhood.

Nancy J.

Your mom sounds like she should have been awarded “Mom of the Year Award” on an annual basis.  I wish I had known her, and yet, I feel like I do.

There is so much I can relate to, having grown up on a central Kansas farm, my mom’s parents within driving distance, as well as cousins.  I enjoy your descriptions of the Kansas prairie, and all of Mother Nature!  You are so tuned into your surroundings.

Jeanne B.

The German chocolate cake, vanilla homemade ice cream, Corbin Hall Christmas peanut brittle which my mom made every year, too. 

My brother and I put playing cards on our bike wheels and attached crepe paper streamers, too.  The telling of you getting a library card brought back the memory to me, too, as did catching lightening bugs.

I loved the trip down memory lane.

Carol K.

I can also relate to many of the other things you recall as a child and young adult.  It is fair to say that I enjoyed the read very much and will wait patiently for publication and for my autographed copy by the author.

Jeannine H.

Your book is WONDERFUL!! Reading the book brought laughter, tears, and a time of reconnecting with some of my childhood memories while reading your memories.  Your love for family, friends, and Kansas comes alive in your book.  Thank you for sharing your personal joys, sorrows, and the people and places that wove you into the beautiful person you are!  I look forward to reading the book again and again and again.

Your writing enables the reader to experience your memories not only visually, but at an emotional level.

Tina M.

I laughed and cried. I tasted, heard, smelled and saw all that you described. I related to circumstances and situations.  I relived the happiest memories. Your words paint pictures. 

Pat B.

Your stories are filled with important trigger words that send me into some sort of thought spiral…Crestview Pool, Gage Park and the zoo lions, the sights and smells of the prairie, Joe’s Donuts, Mass Street, Allen fieldhouse and C&W Market.

I especially appreciate the joyous times that you describe and it gives me that same feeling as when I faithfully watch “A Christmas Story” at every opportunity.  Your love for your wonderful mother and grandparents radiates out with great warmth.  You were so lucky to have those people in your life.  Your descriptions of the simple pleasures of our childhoods in those days makes me smile.  I wish my kids, or any kids today, could experience those simple pleasures.

You stir in so much optimism and joy, the book left me with a more comfortable and hopeful outlook.

John V.

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