My father—affectionately known as Pere, thanks to the French part of our heritage—is the happy dad of two daughters. And, with both of us being in the entertainment biz one way or another, one might even say he’s the father of two Divas, though both my sister and I try to keep our drama on the stage, rather than anywhere else.
When did Pere find out he was a dad of divas? Was it when, at age three, I insisted on performing a show each evening on the hearth? (I thought it was a stage.) Was it when I came home, at age twelve, with the lead in “Cinderella in Flower land?” Was it when my sister landed the part of Millicent the Witch at age five? Maybe it didn’t dawn on him till I was performing at Lincoln Center and my sister was on Broadway. Or maybe he knew when we were in our cradles.
For Chris Lewis, this knowledge apparently came even before his second daughter was born. When he and his very clever wife were brainstorming what to call his new blog, she said, “You know you’re about to the dad of a second daughter, so you’ll be a dad of divas.” And the fabulously evocative and catchy name of his blog was born shortly before diva number two Herself arrived.
Chris actually has two blogs. He developed DadOfDivas.com to capture the experience of being a new father. How precious is that?! He’s created quite a community of young men who are experiencing this chapter of life.
But the other part of Chris’s life is that he’s an omnivorous reader, and a passionate reviewer. He gave my upcoming novel What the Heart Knows a glowing review, part of which reads, “The author has done a great job at building a mix of characters you will not forget….” I was gratified to discover he liked the book so much, even though it’s geared toward women. “I read all kinds of different genres,” he explained, “because I love reading and I share that love of reading with my girls, and with the world.” My Milford-Haven Novels are in the Women’s Fiction genre. So, if I write fiction for women, and his daughters are women-in-the-making, they’ll be part of my audience some day. “Men and women enjoy very different kinds of books,” Chris confirmed.
then there are those smart men who read women’s fiction to understand women better.
How soon should a person start reading? Chris and his wife started reading to their girls at birth. I shared with Chris that I got my first library card at age three, the youngest reader in town, according to my mother. Just discussing this with him, I began to remember how truly extraordinary it was to discover that just by opening a book, I could be transported to another world. Remember that sensation—whoosh!—of being swept up in a story, racing across the pages with the characters, caring about them as the became friends and companion? I know it’s because I’ve never lost that sense of wonder that I see life through the lens of story, and take such joy in sharing not only the stories themselves, but the notion that a story-lens can magnify truth and illuminate the soul.
It’s exciting to know that a young father like Chris is giving that great gift to his children, and that they’ll always know the wonder of a good book. And if you’d like to experience your next good book, try What the Heart Knows.
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