Claire Cook shares art of reinvention
Dianna Miceli, Pat Kennedy, Lisa Angelina, Barb Darbutt and Bani Bhattacharyya, all of Barrington, Cleverly Weitemeyer of Rhode Island, Author Claire Cook, Lee Miellis of the Lake Forest Book Store, Laura Morici and Mary Ehrhard of Cary and Wendy Levine of Hoffman Estates | Laura Pavin~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: July 29, 2012 6:46AM
The Barrington Area Library welcomed Claire Cook, the best-selling author of Must Love Dogs, to its Zimmerman Room June 6 to sign copies of her newest novel, Wallflower in Bloom, and discuss her literary journey and experiences with an intimate group of 13 fans and aspiring writers.
Guests and library staff members were excited for the opportunity to hear Cook speak. Many brought one of her nine books for autographs, and they came armed with questions about her life and successful reinvention.
“We are fortunate to have her here tonight because of our partnership with Lake Forest Book Store,” said Rose Faber, head of adult services at the library.
Lake Forest Book Store, the event’s co-sponsor, had been in touch with Cook after she and events coordinator Naomi McEneely met at BookExpo America in New York a few years ago. The library was included in Cook’s book tour because of its close relationship with the bookstore.
A book sale and signing followed Cook’s presentation.
“Wallflower in Bloom is my ninth novel, and it’s now a June Indie Next pick,” Cook said. “It’s also already in its second printing, so I’m very grateful for that.”
While Cook’s popularity spans across a wide range of demographics, the readers she seems to affect the most are women who are at a standstill and in need of some inspiration.
Perhaps the most inspiring story Cook has written is that of her life, which is posted on her blog at clairecook.com. Cook wrote her first novel more than a decade ago at 45 years old while waiting for her daughter’s swim practices to end; she walked the red carpet five years later at the 2005 Hollywood premiere of the movie adaptation of Must Love Dogs starring Diane Lane and John Cusack.
In Cook’s newest book, main character Deirdre Griffin is forced to reinvent herself in a unique way after a chain of unfortunate events lands her a spot as a contestant on “Dancing with the Stars.”
“I think if you look at all nine of my novels, there’s always a reinvention theme,” Cook said. “This is the story of my life, and I think so many of us face a point in several chapters of our lives where we say, ‘What’s next?’ ”
For more information about Cook and her books, visit clairecook.com.