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With Love from Karen Library Binding – Dec 1 1993

38 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Library Binding: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Buccaneer Books; Reprint edition (Dec 1 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1568490992
  • ISBN-13: 978-1568490991
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 15.1 x 3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 544 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,162,474 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The house was spacious and shabby and it had that air of pitiful loneliness peculiar to neglected houses built almost a century ago. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

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By A Customer on March 8 2004
Format: Library Binding
If you are interested in information about what happened to Karen and her family over the years, a Yahoo group, Killilea_fans, has done a lot of research which you can find on Yahoo. You need to go to [...] then search for the group killilea_fans. You will need to sign up on Yahoo if you haven't already. Anyone can join the group.
Be sure and check out the Killilea_fans Description page, as it has a link to "Pertinent Postings" (the most important posts with family info) and a "Timeline" of the Killilea Family. The group has also posted a number of photos of the family as well as newspaper articles.
Marie and Jimmy did not divorce, however, "Little" Marie and her husband Ron Smiley did. On a very sad note, on 7/31/68, Gloria and Russ's two daughters, Mary De Lourdes and Evely Ann, as well as "Little" Marie's daughter, Michelle Smiley, died in a fire in the Lea's house. Gloria and her two sons escaped. Marie Killilea died on 10/23/91, Jimmy died on 7/25/94. Gloria died on 11/28/01 and Russ died on 2/15/02.
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By A Customer on Oct. 8 2001
Format: Library Binding
I thought my sister and I were the only ones who remembered these books! I am thrilled that it touched others as it touched me.
I first read these books about 27 years ago, when I was 11 years old. I discovered them in the library of my very small Catholic grade school. I was so deeply touched by these books, and Marie Killilea's deep faith and strength still impress upon me today, even though I haven't opened those books since 1974 or 1975.
As the mother of a disabled son (my son is autistic), I have often thought of Marie Killilea and remembered her and her family's strength, and wondered how in the world they were able to be so strong at a time when most disabled children were sent to institutions. There were no support groups then, and very little medical information about cp or brain injuries were available -- none, in fact, to laypersons. It's amazing that they were able to find the immense amount of support from their families and friends in the 40s and 50s.
I am so glad that these books are in print again. I plan to buy them for my 13 year old niece, and I hope that she is inspired by them as I was.
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By Judy McClure on May 25 2001
Format: Library Binding
I first discovered Karen in the abreviated Readers Digest series when I was probably around nine or ten years old. I obtained the books Karen and With Love from Karen shortly after and I have probably read and reread these two books at least once a year since then. They are the books which have had the most influence on me out of all of the books that I've read over the years. I can't begin to express how much Karen and her family have ment to me, giving me insight into the lives and experiences of the handicapped in a way that I would never otherwise have had. But more then that, their family life, and their religious beliefs and their joy of living and each other has been a great example of how life should be led. I too have wondered constantly how Karen and her family are doing and would love to have an update since the time of "With Love from Karen". I would like to hear from anyone who could let me know. And if by some chance a member of the Killilea family or extended family should read this then know that I send my love and best wishes to them and many thanks for the pleasure that Marie's stories about their family have given to me and continue to give me. God Bless. Love Judy.
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By A Customer on Oct. 31 2000
Format: Library Binding
I too read "Wren" when I was about 9 or 10 (28 years ago!)and then went on to read "Karen" and "With Love From Karen" shortly thereafter. Along life's way, I've re-read them--especially when I was feeling sorry for myself and needed a swift kick in the behind to put me on a more positive path.
Looking back, I recognize now that the books really shaped my character and my outlook on life. Even if our own lives do not compare, Marie Killilea's absolute dedication to her family, her relationship with her spouse, her strength of faith, and her absolute refusal to acknowledge defeat in the face of her daughter's condition are all benchmarks against which we can all draw strength, perspective and encouragement.
I'm buying the books now for my eleven year old daughter. I know that she will learn from these books from her own perspective, and that they will shape her character as well.
I note a common thread amongst almost all of the reviews--what happened to the family? The need to know has been compelling ever since I read the books so long ago and every time I've cracked them since. Gloria, Karen or Little Marie--we all wish you'd share.
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Format: Library Binding
This sequel, undoubtedly greeted with joy by all of us who loved "Karen," in one sense surpasses the first work. Karen, delightful and positive though she is, is depicted far more realistically than in the initial book, which tended to make her a bit of a picture book saint. Her struggles, decisions, and (in all honesty) unquestionable confusion with the expectations of her wonderful family are quite vividly portrayed. (As an example of the last - one wonders why Marie does not realise that much of Karen's dilemma over "walking vs wheelchair" undoubtedly stems from Marie's constant insistence on Karen's walking - she fought the idea of Karen's having a wheelchair at all earlier in the book.)
The Killilea family clearly had an unusual and blessed balance - tough-minded, persistent, deeply religious, but hospitable and joyous to the point where their home seemed a favourite stopping place for all whom they knew. Yet many new questions remained unanswered. "Karen," though it did not include many extended family members at length, mentioned a large family - in "With Love from Karen," even the most special occasions include many "honorary" family members but no blood relatives. One wonders if the opposition and "advice" which Jimmy and Marie received when they sought treatment for Karen had alienated them from their larger family circle. Reading of Karen's dislocation, which "could have been prevented if certain medical procedures had been followed" in her childhood, I wondered if this had bearing on why Dr. B, the first book's near-saviour, had mysteriously disappeared from mention.
The determination and cheerfulness of the Killilea's is all the more amazing, even inspiring, with "reading between the lines.
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