Donna Seaman, in her Booklist review of the essay collection A Narrative Compass: Stories That Guide Women’s Lives, wrote: “In each elegant interpretation, the author traces the ripple effects of a story that thrilled or provoked her, a story that became a catalyst for a lifelong passion, and a story that became a virtual home, to return to for clarification.”
If that sounds like a journey worthy of taking yourself, head on over to the book’s new supplemental Web site. Not only can you read samples of each essay (try skimming the first page of Pam Riney-Kehrberg’s “Her Story and History: Journeys with Laura Ingalls Wilder” without feeling an urgent need to read the rest), but you can post your own thoughts on the works of literature that have guided your life. Though the book limited itself to the reflections of female scholars, everyone is welcome online. Esteemed author Betsy Hearne, not content to co-edit and contribute to the book, is now adding “message-board moderator” to her list of titles.
(And if that’s not enough Hearne for you, head over to Poetry in Common, where she has begun the admirable process of getting her “poems off the bookshelf and into everyday living.” Need a recommendation to get started? Try “Fans.”)