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I grew up in Colorado at the foot of the Rocky Mountains, then lived in Denmark and traveled throughout Europe before coming back to Colorado. I have two adult sons, whom I cherish. I started my writing career as a columnist and investigative reporter and eventually became the first woman editor of two different papers. Along the way, my team and I won numerous state and several national awards, including the National Journalism Award for Public Service. In 2011, I was awarded the Keeper of the Flame Lifetime Achievement Award for Journalism. Now I write historical romance and contemporary romantic suspense.

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Sunday, January 03, 2010

Kathleen Givens


Whatever I imagined the topic my first blog of 2010 might be, I hadn't imagined it would be this.

I spent the weekend out of town, ringing in the new year with friends, and was catching up on my Facebook posts and email when I learned that Kathleen Givens, whose books I cherish, died suddenly this past weekend.

I was just getting to know Kathleen on a personal level, but I've been a fan of her books since she was brought to my attention with a RITA win for Best Historical some years back. I love the depth of her historical research and her sympathetic characters. The quality of her writing was such that she quickly became one of my very favorites.




After reading On a Highland Shore, I emailed her to tell her I loved it (it is one of very few keepers on my shelves). When she wrote back, I reacted with a fangirl squeal worthy of a teenage girl at a Twilight screening. She and I wrote back and forth several times. Not long ago, I sent her a copy of Ride the Fire — I don't know if she read it — and told her that I would be reading Rivals for the Crown (also a keeper), which I did.

I'd been planning on running an interview with her about Rivals, which is sitting next to my computer, where I put it when I finished reading it a few weeks back. Now that will never happen.



Her family and close friends will miss her horribly and must be completely heartbroken. My deepest sympathies go out to them.

I will miss the person I was coming to know, and I, like her other readers, will miss the wonderful stories she will never write.

Life is short.

A new year has begun.

You owe it to yourself and those you love to live it well.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh Pamela, this is so sad! My interest perked up a while back about her book "On a Highland Shore," and I'm so sorry she's passed on so suddenly!:( This is one of my fears as I communicate on-line so often. When someone I've chatted with is gone abruptly . . . it's no less devastating in a friendship or bonding way!! You and Kathleen's family have all my heartfelt sympathies. I'm so glad she left her legacy in writing -- a special gift to the world as only writers can express forever and ever!
K.

Hi, K —

Yes, it's so sad, and it came as such a shock. And you're right about that element of having lots of online friends — we come to care very much for those people, and when something happens in their lives, it means as much as if they were our next door neighbors. We do have Kathleen's novels to remember her by. It's sad that there won't be more.

And thanks. I appreciate you stopping by to share your thoughts on this.

Linda A. said...

Pamela, I'm so sorry. It's tragic to think of the books Kathleen will never write, but there is some comfort in knowing she left her mark. You're right, we need to live each day like there's no tomorrow.

Debbie H said...

I am so sorry! I have seen her books and had yet to get one. She will be greatly missed.

lucy said...

Oh no! Such a tragedy so early in the year. I'm so sorry, Pamela. It must be awful for her family.

A real loss for the romance community.

Mary G said...

Hi Pamela
I did not know Kathleen & I haven't read her books but I was so touched by the tributes on the blog she shared with her fellow writers. She would have been just something else to know.

JennJ said...

OH my goodness I can't believe this horrible news. My thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends. She will be sorely missed. She will live on forever in our hearts and on our bookshelves.

Hi, Linda — I was thinking the night after I'd learned she'd died that authors and other kinds of artists (actors, musicians, architects, film directors, painters, etc.) leave behind a part of themselves in a way that others perhaps don't. I've told people in my family who flat-out refuse to read my stories that the very best of me is in those books and that they can't really know me if they don't read them. (They apparently don't care.) But my point here is that we have that part of Kathleen still, and that's something to be grateful for.

Hi, Debbie — I can't recommend her books highly enough. She was a fantastic storyteller and superbly gifted author.

Hi, Lucy — Her friends and family were blindsided by this. It must be so hard to cope with that kind of loss, especially near the holidays.

Hi, Mary G — She was very kind and very funny. I've seen some of the albums people are posting on Facebook, and the photos speak volumes.

Hi, Jenn — You are so right! I'm glad you're going to blog about it.

Amanda said...

Oh my goodness this is such sad news!
I just picked up On a Highland shore this weekend and was planning on starting it this week.
My thoughts and prayers go out to her friends and family.

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