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Name:  Sally Pyne Kennedy
Location:  Ann Arbor, MI
Date:  December 30, 2007

Every holiday I always have so much for which to be thankful--but his year I have a special thank you for having had the opportunity to meet you and to hear your exceptional lecture to our Waterman Alumnae Group.  Almost every day i am stopped in a store or on the street by people (some of whom I really don't know) to tell me what a special presentation you made.  Many have said that it was the best lecture to date! Thank you so much for being our Town Hall speaker this past November.

Name: Lisa Klossner
Location: East Amherst, NY
Date: Friday, December 21, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) We met during the summer at the performance of the play "Pope Joan" in Buffalo. My friend and I were sitting behind you discussing your novel. (I had lent my copy to a friend, never got it back, and you were gracious enough to sign and give me the one you were carrying.) Since your book is a favorite of our group, we have decided to reread it. If the above dates listed on the request form aren't good for, you please let me know and we'll reschedule. Thanks! Lisa

From: Sean Field
Location:  University of Vermont
Date: December 16, 2007

Here at the University of Vermont I have just been reading through 40 papers in which students offered comparative analyses of your novel with earlier treatments of Pope Joan (everything from 13th century Dominicans to Boccaccio to Caryl Churchill). Even though I didn't set up a chance for my students to chat with you this time around, they had a great discussion about your novel and continue to find it a great source and a great read.

I see the movie has hit some delays, but I'm still looking forward to it, and to your next book.

From: Eileen Kurtz
Location: St. Charles, Illinois
Date: December 15, 2007

I just feel compelled to thank you again for your time with our reading group today. It truly was a memorable evening.

Everyone will be purchasing and reading your next book and we all wish you much success with that.

You are an incredible person - a true role model for all of us. Thank you for sharing a piece of yourself with our book club.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Joyce Hershenson
Rancho Santa Fe Farms Book Club
Rancho Santa Fe, California
Date: Sunday, December 12, 2007

Thank you so very much for speaking to our book club yesterday.  Your book is wonderful and you are amazing.  We appreciated your call and will be talking about it for a long time to come.  I will sign up for news about "Pope Joan" and will naturally look forward to the movie (good luck).

Again, thank you for giving us the best book club meeting ever.

From Marianna Kirikian
Location:  Oyster Bay, new York
Date: Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Thank you so much for the stimulating conversation with our reading group. It was a pleasure to speak with you and we all wish you continued and growing success with Pope Joan as well as with your new endeavor. (which of course we plan on reading!)

Name: Beth Trafton
Location: Alamo, CA
Date: Sunday, December 02, 2007

Our book group really enjoyed our speakerphone chat with you on 11/29. THANK YOU so much for making the call and giving us such insight into the book. It was a thrilling evening for all of us!! You are a brilliant author. We look forward to your next book.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Pauline Druschel
Location: Brighton, Michigan
Date:  November 16, 2007

It was so nice to hear you speak at the Waterman Lecture in Ann Arbor--and to visit with you afterwards. All of our book group that was able to attend last Tuesday were so happy to meet you and really enjoyed the time spent with you. You are amazing and wonderful! Pauline Druschel

Name: Chris Kaczanowski
Location: Grosse Pointe Michigan
Groupname: ABC
Date: Tuesday, November 13, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) Our book group meets the fourth Monday of the month and the date I've entered on the request form is the only one we have available for the discusison. Rotating meeting and sponsor selects the book.

 Our group sponsor has heard from another person that Pope Joan is an excellent read. Hope we can schedule a speakerphone chat with you!

Name: Linda Kay
Location: Parsippany, NJ 07054
Date: Sunday, November 11, 2007

 (Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) We often read book reviews from the New York Times and one of our members had read about Pope Joan several years ago and kept it in mind and suggested it for us to read. We are a group of women with a liberal perspective, and this book is of great interest to us. We also read very favorable reader reviews of the book online. We only just discovered this opportunity to chat with the author by speakerphone. We are reading Pope Joan as our November book club selection, so we are hoping we are not too late making this request.

Name:  Jeanne C. Latour
Groupname: Peachtree City Library Book Club
Location: Peachtree City, Georgia
Date:  November 9, 2007

How can I possibly THANK YOU enough for the wonderful chat our book group had with you last night?!  Gaining such a wealth of insight directly from "the horse's mouth" added sooo much to our appreciation of your book. Prior to your call, our group discussion was lively, with a lot of give and take ~ proof positive that your book had aroused a lot of feelings, beliefs and skepticisms, mixed with a generous dose of controversy. By the time the phone rang, the group was ready and eager to meet the author!  We do have a few more questions, Donna.

  • In the years since the book was published, have you continued to seek more "evidence" of Pope Joan's existence . . .  or, are you now content with what you've uncovered?
  • When you were in Rome, did you see the street where Joan is purported to have delivered her baby?  In my own research, I found a picture of a small shrine on that spot, and I'm curious to know if it's still there?  If so, I would assume that it attracts tourists.
  • Your book has been translated into several languages and is an international bestseller. How many copies have been sold worldwide?
  • We're aware that you're working on a new novel about 17th century France. When can we expect that book to be published?  We'll be watching for it . . . eager to find out if the subject matter will arouse "controversy." 
It was a pleasure speaking with you, Donna.  We hope to see you on TV someday, being interviewed when the Pope Joan movie is filmed. The members of the Peachtree City Library Book Club say "Thank You" again, and we wish you continued success.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

From: Tanya Newgreen
Location:  Ottawa, Canada
Groupname:  Chicklit Chicas
Date: November 3, 2007

Now it's been over a week since you joined our bookclub chat by speakerphone and 2 more snow storms afterwards we've all had a chance to digest your information as well as share our exciting evening with a lot more people. Thanks so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to chat with a bunch of girls in Canada about Pope Joan. It was an eye-opening and unique experience and we all really appreciated hearing from 'the horse's mouth'. Your enthusiasm about this beautiful novel was apparent to all.

On behalf of the Chicklit Chicas thanks so much for your time (which is a precious commodity these days) and we look forward to hearing about your next book. I have passed on your website info to the book club as well.

Have a very merry Christmas and may your new year be filled with much health and happiness for you and your family and may the kindest and most pro-active of publishers come your way for your next novel!!!!!

Name: Alice Lazzarini
Location: Mendham, NJ
Date:  November 1, 2007

Our book group's speakerphone session with you went beautifully, and I thank you again for your generosity.The entire group caught your enthusiasm. I even observed how you won over the one or two members who started out somewhat critical of the book as they came to appreciate the literary choices you made.

I blind cc'd you on a request we sent to recordedbooks.com to make an audio version of Pope Joan. Do get back to me if there is any further way our group might support your efforts. Meanwhile, I signed up for your mailing list and I look forward to receiving your updates on the movie... and on your next novel!

Name: Mary Burke Mockler
Location: Mohegan Lake, New York
Date:  October 29, 2007

Thank you for an enjoyable three day read. I want more!

I so hope Pope Joan was real. I have a million writer questions--do you write from an outline? Do you still teach? Do you belong to a writer's group-did you?  Where is the next novel?

Thank you for reminding me I love historical fiction. How could I forget that????

Name: Diane Kane
Location: Clear Lake City, TX
Groupname: GI Book Study Club
Date:  October 29, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) We are a group of women (12-20 at present). During this fall we focussed on books about women and their use of power. We were most impressed with the humanity of Joan despite the brutality of the age.

Name: Dr. Kathryn Moore, RN
Location: Nashville, TN
Date:  October 22, 2007

I recall reading in your novel Pope Joan when a monk was cold, wet and injured a statement from Hippocrates said there was a deadly chill associated with trauma. I am trying to find a reference for that idea. I would like to include it as the final statement in an article I am writing about hypothermia in trauma.

Name: Tanya Novo-Verde
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Groupname: Chicklit
Date:  October 15, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) Each member of our reading group puts a book choice in our "can 'o books" and then we randomly pick one out.  Pope Joan was the last book left in the can. We're looking forward to the discussion.

Name: Graz Tinney
Location: Munich, Germany
Groupname: International Book group
Date:  October 14, 2007

Can you send me a list of suggested discussion topics for this book? We are a group of International women living in Germany. I chose Pope Joan because a past book club member who has since returned to the states thought that it might be a good book for us to discuss.  Thank you.

Name: Alice Lazzarini
Location: Mendham, NJ
Groupname: Oak Knoll Reading Group
Date:  October 14, 2007

My apologies for this long shot attempt. I am 'presenting' this book next Tuesday to a group of mostly Ivy-league educated readers and, in doing last minute research, I JUST found the Reading Group site! The book had been unanimously selected for reading by the group whose members would be thrilled to have the opportunity to discuss it with the author.

From:  Jeanne
Group: Peachtree City Library Book Club
Date:  October 9, 2007

How can I possibly THANK YOU enough for the wonderful chat our reading group had with you last night?! Gaining such a wealth of insight directly from "the horse's mouth" added sooo much to our appreciation of your book. Prior to your call, our group discussion was lively, with a lot of give and take ~ proof positive that your book had aroused a lot of feelings, beliefs and skepticisms, mixed with a generous dose of controversy. By the time the phone rang, the group was ready and eager to meet the author! We do have a few more questions, Donna.

* In the years since the book was published, have you continued to seek more "evidence" of Pope Joan's existence . . . or, are you now content with what you've uncovered?

* When you were in Rome, did you see the street where Joan is purported to have delivered her baby? In my own research, I found a picture of a small shrine on that spot, and I'm curious to know if it's still there? If so, I would assume that it attracts tourists.

* Your book has been translated into several languages and is an international bestseller. How many copies have been sold worldwide?

* We're aware that you're working on a new novel about 17th century France. When can we expect that book to be published? We'll be watching for it . . . eager to find out if the subject matter will arouse "controversy."

It was a pleasure speaking with you, Donna. We hope to see you on TV someday, being interviewed when the Pope Joan movie is filmed. The members of the Peachtree City Library Book Club say "Thank You" again, and we wish you continued success.

[Want to request a speakerphone chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Christina Grabowski
Location: Rochester Hills, MI
Date:  October 8, 2007

I am a member of two different book clubs. In the first group, your book was selected - and voted the best book read that year. So, I've selected Pope Joan for the other book club.

From:  Wilma Pitman
Date:  October 7, 2007
On behalf of our Book Group, I want to thank you for taking the time to call us last night to discuss Pope Joan. You are so knowledgeable and really relayed so much information to us about the  writing process, the period and the controversy of her existence. It was  very gracious of you to have this chat with us.  Thanks again and looking forward to the movie.

[Want to request a speakerphone chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

From: Betsy Maguire
West Simsbury, Connecticut
Date:  October 4, 2007

THANK YOU so much for the highly informative and entertaining speakerphone "chat" on October 18th. Our group could not stop raving about both your deep knowledge of the times, and the lighter "tidbits" you so humorously shared. We have each recommended _Pope Joan_ to many friends and family members and we greatly anticipate the movie. Best of luck with that challenging process.

Name: April Killins
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Date:  October 4, 2007

Pope Joan is the most inspiring and exciting book I have ever found. From the very first sentence I discovered for the first time in my life what it is like to be addicted to a book! Thank you for that experience; I have yet to find another book that I am so sad to have finished.

Name: Jeanne Latour
Location: Peachtree City, Georgia US
Date:  October 4, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) Ms. Cross, I regret that I'm unable to provide other dates, so I'll certainly understand if you're not able to meet with us by phone ~ but, we'd LOVE to hear from you! I heard about Pope Joan from 3 people, who all RAVED about it. Your book is fascinating... and as a Catholic myself, I found it VERY thought-provoking. My husband is reading and enjoying it now.

Name:     Rev. Paige Wolfanger
Location: Chicago, IL
Date:  September 30, 2007

I re-read Pope Joan again recently, and now as a pastor in the church, I have to say, "the more things
change, the more they stay the same."  Thanks for the reminder.

Name: Kim McGuiness
Location: Chesterfield MO
Groupname: Have a Life bookclub
Date:  September 30, 2007

My sister who lives in Minnesota is also in a bookclub. Whenever it is my turn to choose my book club's selection, I contact her to find out what they have enjoyed. This time she targeted Pope Joan, saying it provided a great discussion and was a great read. We hope that you can join us by speakerphone.

Name:     Zev Gross
Location: Jerusalem, Israel
Date:  September 27, 2007

Both my wife and I found the book an excellent read, without regard to the fiction/non-fiction controversy. It definitely gives one (I am not a historian, so this is subjective) a feeling for the period. There is however
one point that bothered me. On page 30 or thereabouts mention was made of a feast at which boiled corn was served. I am under the impression that corn came from the New World (i.e. the Americas) and did not exist in Europe at the time of the story. Is this an error?

Reply from the author, Donna Woolfolk Cross:

Many readers have been troubled by the use of the word "corn" in the novel.  But I took the description of this meal right off the pages of a ninth-century manuscript.   Here's where the problem arises:  "Corn" is an ancient word,  used generically to mean "grain" or seed".   What we call "corn" is actually "maize"--a New World crop, as Zev astutely points out.  Over time, the two words have become confused. 

So it's not a historical error.  But it was a poor choice on my part, for it's never a good idea to create confusion/doubt in the minds of readers.  If I had it to do over, I'd write "boiled barley" instead.

From: Nancy Hoover
Date:  September 27, 2007

Thank you again for chatting with THE BOOK CLUB from Westerville, Ohio last evening. After we completed the chat with you, we all kept remarking  about how much we learned from you. Your explanation about your research for POPE JOAN was very fascinating!  Believe me, when your new book is published, we will all buy copies. If you do phone chats for your new book, we will try to schedule another chat with you then. You are so interesting and fun. We really enjoyed meeting you by phone and learning more about POPE JOAN. Good luck with your new book and with the movie of  POPE JOAN!
Nancy Hoover

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Rosa DeSouza
Location: Florianópolis, SC, Brazil
Date:  September 23, 2007

I've just learned about your work, site and forthcoming movie about Pope Poan. I'm a Portuguese/american writer living in southern Brazil at the moment. Funny how life is. Next week I'm publishing a book in So Paulo, Brasil, entitled 'Testiculos Habet, et Bene Pendentes'. Its focus is the contradictions of our culture, where half of mankind is not allowed to use free will. In my book I use Pope Joan's story to illustrate the discrimination against women throughout history, revealing the true story of humanity and its possibilities. I am very pleased with the movie coming out on the subject, and if there's anything I can do to further this idea, I'm at your service. Can we talk?

Name:         Marianne McBeth
Location:     Bellaire, MI  49615
Date:  September 23, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I heard about Pope Joan from someone in the beauty parlor.  Everyone was talking about the book,  so our group chose this one to discuss.  I loved the book! I realize this is late but we meet tomorrow and I just found your web site and hope you
might call to chat with us by speakerphone.   Thanks.  Marianne

Name:         JUDY WYNDHAM
Date:  September 23, 2007

A friend recommended Pope Joan to me.  We have a newly formed book club, and
this will be our first book for reading and discussion - all based on my
review of the book.  Having the discussion questions in the book helps a lot
to guide the group.  Having you available to join us by speakerphone would be awesome.

Name: Dolf Hartsuiker
Location: Utrecht, Holland
Date:  September 23, 2007

I read the book Pope Joan in Dutch. Very interesting and exciting. As I'm doing research into the saint and hermit Anthony Abbot, I was very much intrigued by a a small paragraph about Anthony's feastday, when Joan blesses cattle with Holy Water.

What I'd like to know is where I can find the historical source of this occurrence, since it would prove that Anthony had already transformed from the ascetical hermit into the patron saint and protector of animals (and healer of people) in the 9th century, which would make this the first indication of when this happened, and perhaps even how.

If you could provide me with an answer on this, I'd be very grateful.

From: Marla
Date:  September 18, 2007
Our book club would love to read your book, Pope Joan, and chat with you by speakerphone for our March 2008 book club meeting.  We have been wanting to read your book for years and we are so thrilled that we have the opportunity of speaking with you, it must have been meant to be that we have not read Pope Joan yet.  We have read other historical fiction novels and we selected Pope Joan for our choice for this year and also for our Invite the Author book.
We are a small book club of mothers, the BBC, that started from a parenting organization, who we have out-lived.  The BBC has been in existence for 9 years.  We are very flexible and are very excited about reading and discussing your book, so please let us know what would be best for you.

Name:         Michelle Miller Bean
Location:     Rockville, MD
Groupname:    St. Mary's
Date:  September 17, 2007

We have about a dozen members in our reading group and everyone makes a suggestion
for the coming year.  Pope Joan was highly recommended by our Book Club
leader Glenda Ashkin. We hopefully look forward to meeting with you by speakerphone. Please accept this invitation to stop by and meet with
us.  Thanks!

From: Susan O'Connell
Subject: Pope Joan in San Diego, California
Date:  September 15, 2007

Our book group LOVED talking with you by speakerphone and discussing Pope Joan. It was sooo much fun. The best book club meeting we have had!!

You were so generous to discuss all our questions and share your ideas and preparations for writing such a great book. You pulled in the reader right from the start and we enjoyed your writing style throughout the book. And we also learned about that time era and what amazing things one woman can accomplish!

I love books that are exciting yet I can still learn from, they are my favorites!

The discussion time with you will truly keep Pope Joan on our "extra-special-book" list forever! You have such an intelligent and uplifting personality which made the phone call very engaging for us all.

Thank you, Thank you!!! We all look forward to your new book when it comes out!!!!

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Barbara Glacel
Location: Brussels, Belgium
Date:  September 15, 2007

Donna, Thanks so much for joining our NATO book discussion group this morning in Brussels. It added an extra dimension to hear your stories and experience you as a lovely person with a curious nature who brought the story of Joan alive. We are all eager for the movie to be made and await good news from you! All the best, Barbara Glacel

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

From: Marty Martin
Location:  Youngsville, NC
Georgetown Ladies Book Club
Saturday, September 15, 2007

Georgetown Ladies Book Club is waking up in Youngsville, rolling over and our first thought is, this is Donna Cross book club night! My second thought, get in the kitchen, got some cooking to do.

Anyway, this is your requested reminder about our speakerphone chat tonight We will be in place at 7:00 pm, Sister Mary Cosmopolitans balanced gracefully in our diamond laden slender fingers.... yeah, right, I forgot, this is Youngsville, NC.

Actually this is a smart, fun and educated group (as I suspect most book clubs are) and all of us have lived and traveled many places and just got together for our first meeting for The Devil in the White City, then came Time Traveler's Wife and now my favorite, Pope Joan.

Name: Diana Webb
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Groupname: Neighborhood Book Group

I'm requesting another speakerphone chat. We enjoyed chatting with you so much at my last book club that I wanted to share it with my book group in my new neighborhood!

Name: Jennifer Chort
Location: Hershey, Pennsylvania
Date: Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Our October Book club meeting will be our book club 5th anniversary. I have been searching for a book that will lead to interesting discussion and one deserving of the 5 year reading. Would really like to set up a speakerphone chat with the author.

Name: Ann Lyon
Location: Houston, Texas
Groupname: Bay Oaks CC Book Club
Date: Wednesday, September 12, 2007

A friend gave me your novel. I loved it! My book club meets monthly for discussion, and we are reading Pope Joan for November. Look forward to hearing from you about setting up a speakerphone chat.

From: Lynda Moore
Subject: RE: Pope Joan in Fort Lauderdale, Florida?
Date: Wed, 12 Sep 2007

Hi, Donna. Thank you so much for your response. Our book group is absolutely THRILLED that you are available to speak with us! I apologize for the delay in responding to you, but we wanted to pick a date that worked for the majority of our members. It seems that Wednesday, October 24 works for all of us.

If that date is still available, please put us in your calendar! Now that we are looking forward to speaking with you, some of us are reading Pope Joan for the second time!!! I believe I mentioned to you that at least half of our women are Catholic, so we found the book to be especially interesting. I know that I am not alone in recommending Pope Joan to others outside of our book club!

Thanks again, Donna. I am so looking forward to speaking with you!

Name: Betsy Maguire
Location: Simsbury, CT
Date: Tuesday, September 11, 2007

I asked my sister, who lives in PA, what her book group's favorite book has been and she answered Pope Joan! My reading group has been together for over 10 years, and I know they are just going to love this one!

From: M. Ratkin
Date: Tue, 11 Sep 2007
Subject: Re: Sept. 10 bookclub

Donna...thank you for a most interesting, enjoyable and FUN evening chatting with you by speakerphone! We greatly appreciated your time, expertise insights and good humor as well. And, we now look  forward to your next book, and, of course, the movie Pope Joan!

With warmest regards from our bookgroup (about 14 members)!

Name: Vivian Entous
Location: Sherman Oaks, California
Date: Monday, September 10, 2007

We are a group of 13 women who formed a book group 2 years ago as part of Brandeis University National Women's Committee. We meet once a month, and have chosen Pope Joan as our book for October. It was chosen by one of our members after she had read reviews online, as well as enthusiastic recommendations from other readers. Would love to arrange a speakerphone chat with the author.

Name: Rosemary Sergakis
Location: New Albany Ohio
Groupname: New Albany Women's Network
Date: Thursday, September 06, 2007

I saw a mention of the bookclubcookbook in a women's magazine. Found Pope Joan in there and thought our book group would give it a try.We LOVED Pope Joan! It would be splendid if Donna would chat with us by speakerphone.

Name: Lisa Ackerman
Location: Buffalo, NY
Date: Thursday, September 06, 2007

I recently took a course on the cultural and social history of the Middle Ages and found myself intrigued by the lengths women would go to in order to educate themselves. I needed to find out more and in my own research I came across Pope Joan. By far the story of Pope Joan took me by the most surprise. Having heard nothing of her legend during my Catholic upbringing was, however, not a surprise after seeing the great lengths the church goes to keep things hidden.

I wonder if you might suggest where I can look for more detailed information that goes beyond the basic story. I have had some success in my university library archives, but I would love to clear up some of the conflicting information I am finding. Any advice or help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you so much!

From: A S Dahl
Date: Tue, 04 Sep 2007
Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Lexington, Kentucky? THANK YOU!

Our book group really enjoyed our visit with you by speakerphone tonight! Thank you for taking the time to call us. It was a very special night for our little group.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Sue Warriner
Location: Flower Mound, TX
Date: Wednesday, August 29, 2007

I read Pope Joan several years ago while I was doing my teaching certification. I actually did an on-line chat with Donna for one of my education classes. Now I am the member of a book club that is made up primarily of English/Reading teachers. September is my month to pick a book, and I thought "GREAT!" It will give me an opportunity to re-read a wonderful book and to also introduce the book to other educators. Look forward to being able to "chat" with you!

Name: Jean Jennissen
Location: Brandon, Minnesota
Groupname: Novel Experience
Date: Monday, August 27, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I first heard about Pope Joan at a family gathering a few years ago after one of the major networks featured her on one of the shows. I didn't see the show but the topic was very controversial since my husband and I are both from very large traditional Catholic families. I read your book, loved it and picked it as my selection for our book club.

Name: Bernardo Teufel
Location: Guanajuato, Mexico
Date: Saturday, August 25, 2007

I just finished reading Pope Joan, and it has been one of the best books I ever read. I loved the story, and all the fascinating historical facts you included. I strongly believe in Pope's Joan existence, and I only hope the movie will be as good as the book.

Congratulations for your work.

Name: Judith Patterson
Location: San Diego, CA
Date: Saturday, August 25, 2007

Your book is wonderful. Thank you. I just finished it while in the bath.

Yes, the water had grown cold before I stepped out of the tub! I could not stop. I had to keep reading.

Please, though, fix this spelling error. I noticed it in two editions--your answer to the last question in the book. There is no "D" in the word "privilege." Thank you for fixing that error in the next edition. And my heartfelt thanks for creating this wonderful book.

From:  Linda
Subject: Thank you!
Date: Wed, 22 Aug 2007

Our PageTurners reading group in Olympia, Washington had a wonderful discussion of "Pope Joan" yesterday, and we want to send you a special thanks for being part of our meeting.

It was such a pleasure having you with us – even from afar!  We all thoroughly enjoyed your book and we sincerely look forward to your next literary work. You have gained many fans and supporters!

Thank you so much for being with us. We truly appreciated our time together!

Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Eden Prairie, Minnesota?

THANK YOU!! We loved chatting with you by speakerphone! Your enthusiasm for Joan and her story was remarkable.

Thank you for taking time out of your very hectic schedule. It was a highlight for our book reading group. We're all looking forward to your new book!

We'll be watching for your email updates! :)

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Nancy Hoover
Location: Westerville,Ohio 43081
Groupname: The Book Club
Date: August 08, 2007

I am constantly searching the web for other book clubs' list of recommended books. POPE JOAN kept appearing on several lists. I am so delighted that you will be able to have a speakerphone chat with our book club here in Westerville, Ohio! Yes, our group has read YOUR Pope Joan and we loved it. The night that we discussed the book, I remember that several members asked questions that started with "wonder what the author.....?"

I am so excited that you will be able to chat.  Again, thank you so much for taking the time from your schedule to talk with our group. It will be such a pleasure to hear from you about your wonderful book POPE JOAN.

Name: stacey graiziger
Location: Eden Prairie, MN
Date: August 06, 2007

HI Donna....it would be so fun for our book club to chat with you. This is a new club and they loved your book. I read Pope Joan about 6-7 years ago with another book club. We spent a lot of time discussing it and so I recommended the book again for this club. There are so many topics that come from this book. It was fun to see ABC did a special on it too! Would you be able to chat with us? Thank you for your consideration. There will be about 16 women present.

Name: Aleksandra Bogus
Location: Gdansk, Poland
Date: Saturday, July 14, 2007
Time: 10:37 AM

I am delighted by this book! I can't find the right words to describe how it affected my life, my thoughts, my outlook on life. I wish I were as strong and brave as Joan was. It is a touching book, which enriched my knowledge of life and helped me to look at some every-day problems from a different angle.

Name: Phyllis Harrison      
Location: Woodmere, NY
Groupname: Sons of Israel Sisterhood
Date: Wednesday, July 11, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) A teacher at my school recommended Pope Joan. I read the novel and LOVED it and suggested it to our book group.

Name: Andrea Perrier
Location: Vernon, BC, Canada
Date: Saturday, June 30, 2007

Hi, It's the 10th anniversary of my book club and we would be so excited to talk to Donna Woolfolk Cross about Pope Joan!! It would be really special. Thank you very much for considering our request for a speakerphone chat. Andrea Perrier

Name: lynn blakeway
Location: Minnetrista, MN
Groupname: Queens on Kings
Date: Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The first meeting of our book club began November 2006. During that meeting we suggested book titles/authors that we might be interested in reading and then we voted to determine the top 11 books to read for the year (we meet every month except December). I can't remember who recommended Pope Joan but someone in the group had read the book and highly recommended it. We would love to chat by speakerphone with the author!

Name: Kathleen Livingston/Barb Ritsema
Location: West Bloomfield MI
Groupname: Pine Lake
Date: Monday, June 25, 2007

We learned about Pope Joan as another book group read the novel and highly recommended it. That book group learned about it from the "The Book Club Cookbook". It was a fascinating read! The date we've requested for a speakerphone chat with the author is the only time our group has to review the book. If it is not possible for Donna to join us by then, we will not be able to do it.

From: Jeremy & Mary Beth Greenop
Subject: a huge thank you
Date: Sat, 23 Jun 2007

I cannot thank you enough for getting yourself up early and ready to chat to our book group last week. We got such a buzz out to talking to "the horse’s mouth" - we could have keep you on the line for hours. It adds a terrific dimension to put a personality behind an author and glean a little insight into the planning and execution of a book beyond what you can read on the internet.

We can’t wait for the next book and meanwhile we have ordered loads of copies of Pope Joan to give to our friends as presents! I’ll keep watching the website. You are not only a star to us all – but as a result our children think we are all pretty cool – no mean feat with teenagers!

Warm regards, Mary Beth & the Brussels NATO International Club Book Club
p.s. Those of our members who couldn’t be there were SO jealous!

From: gwen smith
Sent: Friday, June 22, 2007 12:50 AM
Subject: Re: Welcome!

Thank you for your time spent talking by speakerphone to our Book Club in Kitchener/Waterloo tonight. It was a great opportunity to get answers to things I wondered about whilst reading the book, such as herbs and spices and potions made from them, and of course, The Chair! I look forward to your next book and of course the movie too.

Thank you. Gwen Smith

Name: JoAnna Michaels
Location: Citrus Heights, Ca USA
Date: Monday, June 18, 2007
Time: 01:39 AM

Dear Donna,

I read Pope Joan, and I enjoyed it thoroughly. It is easy to believe that she did exist and that the church covered all of the historical tracks that it could.  I loved the story on another level, for I am now living my life as a gender I was not born to, and some in my family have also tried to cover any history of me.

Name: Trish Fullerton
Location: Mountain View, CA 94043
Date: Saturday, June 16, 2007
Time: 05:18 PM

Hi Donna! I met you at book group expo last Saturday. We had a wonderful conversation in French, talked about Dijon and the 1000 AD church there, and how one realizes that they are at once nothing and everything in the eyes of time. It was a thrilling moment for me to find a kindred spirit. After reading nightly for a week, I just finished Pope Joan and loved it! Formidable! Well done! And to think that she and others like her existed - even up to modern times. Now I am going to have to read your other books -especially how the media makes up your mind (or tries).

It was such a delight to meet you, and I look forward to your works in the future!

Subject: Request for telephone interview
Date: Fri, 15 Jun 2007
From: Christine Durling

The Ravenous Readers Book Group were very disappointed not to be able to chat with you by speakerphone; sorry our schedules didn't coincide. But I thought you would like to know that every one of my Ravenous Readers loved Pope Joan. Quite a feat since I have a wide range of readers both in levels and in interests!

Christine Durling, Media Specialist, Bordentown Regional High School

Name: angelica
Location: campobasso, italia
Date: Friday, June 15, 2007

I like very much the book. I learned a lot about that time, about the popes that I didn' t know. I love "Papessa Giovanna" and I fall in love with Gerardo


From: Pauline Druschel
Subject: Re: Oops!
Date: Tue, 12 Jun 2007

Donna, I want to tell you how much our book group enjoyed the speakerphone talk with you. They were very pleased with the information you offered, and we all gained a new perspective on historical fiction. You are wonderful to give this support to book groups and I am hoping it all comes back to you in bushels of success. We are hoping with the movie that your success is magnified. When you come to speak in Ann Arbor in November, we are hoping some of us get to see you.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Gail Park
Location: Tumwater, WA
Date: Monday, June 11, 2007
Time: 06:24 PM

Thanks so much for joining our Page Turners book group by speakerphone last week. I hadn't been able to tell the group in advance that you were participating (thanks for accommodating us on such short notice!), and everyone was thrilled and delighted when they found out. It was definitely the highlight of all our meetings to date!

Gail Park, Library Manager, Tumwater Timberland Library

From:  Mary D. Sullivan-Pondell
Date: Fri, 08 Jun 2007
Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Canadian Lakes, Michigan

Hi, Donna!  Thanks a lot for phoning the Lunch Bunch at my home this noon. The women, even those who became shy about speaking, were SO pleased to have the experience. We had talked for about an hour before the call, so I know that you did cover material that some of the other gals were planning to ask. For this group it was a totally new "literary trip". We all look forward to seeing the movie version. I hope that you'll have some input, as they work with your book.  I'll tell my 3 daughters to read "Pope Joan" --- perhaps the older granddaughters also. I'm a grandma of 10 who  gives many books as gifts. Then they will love seeing the movie in the future.

From: Eric F.
Subject: RE: Pope Joan in Lynbrook, New York
Date: Thu, 07 Jun 2007

Donna,  It was great discussing your wonderful book with you last night with our 1st Wednesday Reading Group. It was very exciting for all of us and your insights and thoughts were very enlightening.  I want to mention how much I enjoyed  Joan's response at the Synod in Chapter 27 regarding the argument of revering the wisdom of the ancients. Joan's response to that which starts off "Everything that is old was once new..." is a wonderfully succinct and eloquent rebuttal of an argument used since the commencement of civilization and continues to be trumpeted today in American politics. I am going to try to remember that for future use in my own discussions.

Once again thank you for sharing your valuable time with us and we wish you luck with your upcoming novel. We hope the movie issues are quickly resolved so Pope Joan can be brought to the big screen soon!

Sincerely,  Eric Fromme

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Susan Porter
Location: Charleston, SC
Groupname: The Charleston Reading Group

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) We learned about Pope Joan because of its excellent reviews, and a couple of our book club members had read it already and loved it!

From: Beth
Date: Fri, 1 Jun 2007
Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Thanks so much for the wonderful chat last night. We all enjoyed it so much!! Your book was fascinating and we look forward to your next one. We are all spreading the word about what a wonderful choice your book is for a book discussion. A friend in another book club is doing Pope Joan for their summer book and they also hope to set up a chat with you. It was fun, what a memorable experience. Again, many thanks. Beth

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

From: Dottie Shoemaker
Sent: Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Dear Donna,  It has taken all these years to be introduced to your fabulous book, Pope Joan the problem is all else now pales by comparison after this experience.... I have recommended it to at least 30-40 people since I finished it and hopefully they are buying the book !! Have recommended to the Easttown Library and Information Center in Berwyn,Pa. for the Fall reading list for the Book Club. Can't wait to see the movie.. although it simply can not be as good as my imagination. At several points during the read my heart was beating so fast I though it would jump out of my chest!!

You are brilliant and I am so grateful to have the good fortune to have the opportunity to absorb this gift.  God bless you.

Name: Rebecca
Location: Quincy,MA
Date: Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Time: 12:47 PM

I relished reading this book! I am part of a church book group in which we read only fiction with religious elements (plot, theme, character, place) I found your Pope Joan in the top 20 books recommended on a Spiritual Books web site. It is also my book choice for my other bookgroup, the First Friday Salon.  I have no reservations about Joan's authenticity. Women are resourceful andcreative when need be. Throughout the ages our sisters have been attaining goals beyond expectations in and out of disguise. Like the scribe who putJoan back into the church history, and the Pope who put her back into the lineage (Pope John XXI),you are putting her back into the present female psyche. May her bravery, determination, and humanity remind us of the greatness of womankind we all share. And would that the Catholic Church could embrace her history and honor her commitment and love for all that truely is the "church".

Name: Gail Park
Location: Tumwater, Wa
Groupname: Tumwater PageTurners
Date: Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Our PageTurner reading group meets monthly at the library. The meeting room is booked far in advance, which limits our available date to the one choice, June 6th. Pope Joan is a selection available to us as a kit, with several books, books on tape, large print and discussion guide. Each year we vote as a group on which titles from the kit selections we want to read. We have about 10 women in our group (it is open to men as well, but none have come so far!) As we can not supply a 2nd or 3rd date request, we understand if Donna is not available, but we sincerely hope she can accommodate us!

Name: Jennifer
Location: Edwardsville, IL
Date: Thursday, May 24, 2007
Time: 12:08 PM

Everyone,  I just wanted to add to the acclaim I see here on the website. What a wonderful journey (book)! I am a "historical fiction" fan(atic?), and always have been. I love it when ideas/legends/myths are put to the test, questioned, and then given a plausible background (i.e. story). I was so taken by this story that (though I know I'll never be able to do it) I'm more interested than ever in visiting St. Peter's Cathedral and Rome in general. I'm a bit of a history buff, in case it isn't obvious... Though I am not of the Catholic faith, all of the mysteries surrounding it are definitely interesting to the nth degree for me... Thank you for capturing my attention in such a way that I find myself disappointed now I have finished the book. What an accomplishment for any reader, and/or writer for that matter! I look forward to a new adventure Ms. Woolfolk will allow me to experience with her next novel.

Name: Eric Fromme
Location: Lynbrook, New York
Groupname: The Evening Book Club of Lynbrook
Date: Friday, May 18, 2007

The book was suggested by one of our members who had already read it. The book evoked the immediate interest of several members and was therefore chosen. It is too difficult to change the date  for our meeting so I have given you the date we will meet and crossing my fingers that you will be available. We commence our meetings at 7:30, so pursuant to your guidelines the call would be made at 8:00 PM or later. We would be happy to extend the meeting to 9:30 PM if you can make the call at 9:00 PM. Thank you for your consideration!

Name: Joan H
Location: London, England
Date: Sunday, May 13, 2007
Time: 11:33 AM

Dear Donna, This book is my 'bible'! Thank you very much indeed for telling Joan's history in such a marvellous book. Bravo! Well done! Pope Joan Anglicus is as much an inspiration as St Joan of Arc. God bless you! Keep up the good and brilliant work for women. I'm looking forward to the film as well as your next book. Donna, you and Pope Joan rock! Cheers!

From: Susan Porter
Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Charleston, South Carolina
Date: Thu, 10 May 2007

Thank you so much for your quick response to our book group request for a speakerphone chat with you. We are, of course, disappointed that you will be away on that date but hats off to the system you have created allowing you to speak to bookclub groups. The author of The Secret Life of Bees came and spoke to us and, of course, it allowed us to get a much greater perspective on the book. As we schedule our dates at the very beginning of the year, there was no wiggle room for a change. Perhaps we could schedule a chat with you for our first Fall meeting. I will be back in touch. Congratulations on such a great book!

From: Christine Durling
Subject: RE: Request for telephone interview
Date: Thu, 10 May 2007 08:35:59 -0400

Hi Donna!  Judy Gelman and Vicky Krupp selected our library reading group to be featured in their new book, The Kids Book Club Book. They asked me what book we were reading and when I told her it was your book Pope Joan, they forwarded your email address and suggested that we chat with you.  I will put together a couple of dates and make our request on the website form. Looking forward to our speakerphone chat!

PS: I loved your book--and I gather that most of our readers who have finished Pope Joan really enjoyed it!

From: Linda L. Cooper
Subject: Thank You!
Date: Tue, 8 May 2007 22:37:16 -0700

Just a quick note to let you know how much our reading group enjoyed our speakerphone discussion with you tonight.  Everyone was so impressed about your enthusiasm and knowledge and quick response to our questions. You have certainly taken our reading group to another level.

Name: Marian Pierre-Louis
Location: Medway, MA
Groupname: Medway Mavens
Date: Sunday, May 06, 2007

Every few months our book group sits around and discusses future book titles. One of our members had read Pope Joan and raved about it. The story seemed very interesting. To make a theme about women and gender roles we read Middlesex last month and are following it up with your novel this month. We would be very excited to actually discuss this with you by speakerphone!

From: Diana Webb
Location:  Salt Lake City
Date: May 7, 2007

Thank you so very much for the great chat you had by speakerphone with our book group Thursday evening. Everyone loved it so much! We all commented on how energetic and spirited you were as you shared your experiences with us. Cynthia, the one who wanted the 3 maps, has a sister in another state who was puzzling over what book to do with her book group. She (Cynthia) suggested Pope Joan and her sister is excited!

I told you that I hope you will chat with my other book club in October. I'll be getting back to you about that.

Thank you again for your time. We all loved the experience.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

From:  Mary Huebner
Location:  Cumberland, MD
Date:  May 1, 2007

On behalf of the Wellness Book Discussion Group of Allegany College of Maryland, I would like to thank you for joining our group last Wednesday, April 25, 2007, to discuss your book, "Pope Joan."

Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the book and the discussion. Thank you so much for being our guest and facilitating the discussion. It was most enjoyable. We'll keep our eyes and ears out for your new book, and hopefully 'meet' you again at another discussion!

Name: Melissa Voland
Location: Portsmouth, Ohio
Date: Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I am a history major at Shawnee State Univ. and am doing a paper on Pope Joan. other than your book could you tell me where you got some of you info on her?

From: Abbie Winskowicz
Location: Topsfield, Massachusetts
Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2007

I can't believe how accommodating you are. Thanks for agreeing to join our reading group discussion at such short notice! It will impress and surprise the heck out of my book group, who also loved your book by the way. I can't wait until you finish the book you are working on now..........The theme of strong women overcoming major societal obstacles has always been dear to my heart. My cousin's daughter dressed like a man 20 years ago so she could play semi-pro hockey...........so it's not that ancient a theme after all... I am in touch with several book clubs here and have already recommended "Pope Joan" to all of them and to my sister-in-law's book club in California........

So keep writing girl!!!

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Bonnie O'Shea
Location: East Longmeadow, MA
Groupname: The Readers Book Club
Date: Monday, April 23, 2007

The novel was recommended by a friend who loved it (as did I!). I know this is a late request but I'm hoping you will be available to chat with our group by speakerphone.. I stumbled across your website while looking for a reader's guide to use for discussion. We would be thrilled it you could lead us through the discussion!

Name: Abbie Winskowicz
Location: Topsfield, MA
Groupname: "The Persian Pickle Club"
Date: Saturday, April 21, 2007

I was doing research, trying to find a special book for our Book Club and I came across "Pope Joan". It was very difficult to put down! I'm a slow reader, but I read this book in 3 days. One of the best books I have ever read, quite honestly.

Name: Marty Martin
Location: Youngsville, North Carolina
Groupname: Georgetown Ladies Book Club
Date: Thursday, April 19, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) Pope Joan was suggested at my previous book club by a German friend, she said the book was huge in Europe and wanted to give it play in the U.S. Our discussion made for an amazing evening. This is my all time favorite book. The times, the history, exceptional writing and situations all make for lively discussion.

This is a book I will always keep and read again.

Name: Dania Kronick
Location: Boca Raton Florida
Date: Monday, April 16, 2007

I heard about Pope Joan from friends who had read it and thought it was GREAT! I hope you can join our book group discussion by speakerphone.

Name: Kristy Cameron
Location: Canada
Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I would just like to say that I loved Pope Joan! I had to pick a book for an ISU World History assignment, and your book has made the assignment so much more interesting. I really enjoyed the story and appreciated that the majority was historically accurate.

You are an amazing writer, can't wait for the next book.

From: Christine
Location: Kinnelon, New Jersey

I just wanted to thank you again for calling into our book club last night, especially at such short notice! It was so amazing to be able to talk directly to an author of a book we all loved so much, and to hear your insights and inspirations. We are looking forward to your next book and your next heroine!

Have a great weekend and thank you again -- we felt so honored!!

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: KLynn Miller
Location: Nampa, Idaho
Groupname: Nampa 4th Ward Relief Society
Date: Monday, April 16, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) My daughter read it in her book club and they had a speakerphone discussion with you. She loved it so much she recommended it to me. My husband read it and I just finished it, so I recommended it to our book club.

Name: Katherine Moberg-Botko
Location: Novato, CA 94945
Groupname: The Big No's
Date: Monday, April 16, 2007

We'd like to request a speakerphone chat with the author, based on a recommendation by another book club. They couldn't put it down!

Name: maria de la sierra
Location: macon, ga.
Groupname: literary lunatics
Date: Friday, April 13, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I've been surfing for historical fiction. Pope Joan has been on the reading list for our reading group for some time and it was just recently selected.  Fabulous book! We thought is would provoke stimulating discussion on various levels.

Name: Julia Peterson
Location: Marquette, Mi
Date: Saturday, April 07, 2007

I'm doing my senior seminar paper on Pope Joan. I am trying to find out where the idea that, "The size of a woman's brain and her uterus were believed to be inversely proportionate; the more a woman learned, the less likely she would ever bear children." It is a historiographical paper and would enhance my paper to be able to present.

Name: Peggy Jensen
Location: Salt Lake City , Utah
Date: Tuesday, April 03, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I was next to select a book for our book group so I called my daughter-in-law in Driggs, Idaho. She is in three book clubs...long cold winters! She read it in her Jackson book club and said it was the best discussion and everyone loved the book. She said it was their favorite book yet!

From: Kathy & Bob Gustafson
Location: Bolivia, North Carolina?
Date: Sat, 31 Mar 2007

My apologies for not getting back to you sooner ..... but we all really enjoyed our discussion with you on March 15th. It was great to be able to hear your perspective on our questions about Pope Joan. How you wove the story to create the links and make everything fit together made for very interesting reading.

We're singing your praises and recommending Pope Joan to all our friends.  Now we're waiting for the movie and your next book!

From: Raghda
Date: Sat, 31 Mar 2007
Subject: A Pleasant Valley Hello..

What an AWSOME and WONDERFUL treat it was to talk with you last night!  Everyone was delighted and appreciative for taking the time to chat with us.

Anyway, I can't wait for your next book, which I forgot to ask you about it. Please let me know when it will be completed ( a signed copy would be great).

I hope I get to meet you someday. You have inspired me to pursue writing (no matter how bad it might be) and thank you so much for your advise and willingness to help me. You're an amazing writer!

Thanks a million again!

From: sally andreozzi
Date: Thu, 22 Mar 2007

I just wanted to say thank you for your speakerphone conversation with our book group last night. It was awesome and everyone just had the best time talking with you. What a treat to speck to the author of such a powerful book. Our discussion continued long after your call and I can't recall a time where our group spent so much time on a book!

Looking forward to your next book and of course the movie of Pope Joan.

Thank you again for making our monthly meeting memorable.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Elaine Proulx
Location: Calgary, Alberta
Date: Wednesday, March 21, 2007

There was unanimous praise for "Pope Joan" at our book club meeting last evening. I think that we all want to believe that Pope Joan existed as we were transported back in time thanks to your impeccable research and gift of story telling. We eagerly anticipate the release of the movie, Pope Joan.

Much of our discussion dealt with equality for women and how the withholding of education is still practiced today in countries such as Afghanistan. We also talked about how Joan concealed her identity and found your explanation of Monk's robes believable. We did have difficulty, however, with how Joan would have been able to carry out her deception while using the, presumably communal, toilets. Not to be indelicate--do you know how this would have been handled in Joan's time?

Also, we would love to know a little more about your next book and when you anticipate publication.

Thank you for a wonderful literary experience--thumbs up from everyone in our book club.

From: Paula Dumouchel
Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2007

When I signed the guestbook for Pope Joan, I didn't expect a personal response from the author herself! I am surprised and thrilled to read a response from you! The student who passed it to me was a boy from my grade 8 Religion class. We were discussing ideas and he came up to me afterwards and suggested it to me. He even loaned me the book! Every now and then, he'd check in to see how I was doing in my reading and my response was always: "If I didn't have to work today, I'd still be reading it right now!".

I was absolutely mesmerized by Pope Joan. It is definitely one of my favourite books! I often read books for the story but mostly for author style. I always admire authors like yourself who can write in such an elegant, detailed yet understandable way. Rohinton Mistry was able to captivate me as a reader with A Fine Balance and you did as well with Pope Joan from the first sentence. I don't think I will ever stop thinking about her. Her determination, conviction and courage is inspirational. I will definitely buy a copy for myself and more to distribute to all the women in my life. What a great, great, great story! Congratulations on a work well done!

Thank you for responding to my email and for giving me an opportunity to congratulate you on the incredible task of telling this story. Any chance you will be coming to Ottawa, Ontario, Canada for a book signing, talk or workshop on the writing process?

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

From: Barbara Youel
Date: Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Thank you again for chatting with The Blue Heron Book Club by speakerphone. We thoroughly enjoyed our lively discussion! Debbie D'Andrea, the bookstore owner, was particularly curious about "the chair." She believes that she saw it when she was in Rome. Could you shed more light on this?

We all plan on going en masse to the movie (and to dinner too!) All the best in your next creative effort! Our group has talked to authors before via speakerphone, but none came even close to your level of energy and interest.

I am attaching a handout which I have produced for each of the more than 50 books we have read so far. I try to include a variety of sources if members wish to pursue more.

From: Mary Huebner
Date:  Monday, March 19, 2007

We are absolutely delighted that you will be able to join our reading group by speakerphone! I have already received a couple of responses from members who have finished reading the novel, and both have been very positive. I can't wait to read it!  We will be ready and waiting for  your call. Thanks again. This is really an honor!!

Name: Eileen Kalukin
Location: Medway, MA
Groupname: Medway Moms
Date: Friday, March 16, 2007

My husband read Pope Joan a while ago and enjoyed it very much. It kept coming up at our book club as a choice. It was my turn to pick and our group really likes historical fiction so I chose it. Also, I saw here on the website that we could set up a chat with the author and that was very exciting. Hope you can join us by speakerphone.

Name: Rebecca Kobsik
Location: Charlotte, NC
Groupname: Piper Glen Book Club
Date: Thursday, March 15, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I read Pope Joan in a book club 5 years ago and LOVED it. I want to share it with my new book club. Hope you can join us by speakerphone!

Name: Eileen Kurtz
Location: St. Charles, IL
Groupname: Kingswood Book Club
Date: Monday, March 12, 2007

(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) Our book group read very positive reviews about Pope Joan and also received first hand comments from friends and colleagues who have read it.

Great work!

From: sue car
Crystal Lake, Illinois
Date: Monday, March 12, 2007

I thought you might like to know that Alexa is the 14-year old daughter of one of our Book Club members. She is making her confirmation this month. After reading Pope Joan, she was so inspired by the story that she chose St. Catherine of Alexandria as her patron saint (just as Joan did) and the name "Catherine" as her confirmation name!

Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Centerville, Ohio
Date: Sat, 10 Mar 2007 17:41:02 -0500

well I will be the first person in line to see your movie! I think it is truly admirable of you to keep your readers updated and informed on Pope Joan. We had a very lively and interesting discussion on the aspects of women living in a man's world, and while we surely missed your input, we spoke at length about your prowess as a writer.

Congratulations on your success!

From: "sally andreozzi"
Subject: Re: Pope Joan in Hope Valley, Rhode Island?

Thank you for responding. The feedback from our reading group so far is that everyone loved the book. It should be a great Book Group discussion....sadly without you.

Best of luck with the movie version. I've already told the girls that it will definitely be a Book Group trip to the movies!

From: "Susanne Pari"
Subject: Re: Pope Joan at Book Group Expo?
Date: Saturday, March 10, 2007

So I knew I was going to love Pope Joan. I really don't have the time to read a good book right now, thank you very much, but you've got me neglecting even my own writing. (Woodly -- now that is a cool word.) If you can make it, we'd love to have you join us at Book Group Expo from June 8-10 in San Jose, CA. Let me know if you can come! And now, I return to my reading chair, thanks to you.

Name: Betsy Holland
Location: Downers Grove, IL
Date: Saturday, March 10, 2007

It was such fun having you on speaker phone for our bookclub meeting. What a treat! We so enjoyed hearing about the inception of the book and how you weaved the characters together. We LOVE your voice! You should definitely be reading the book for an audio version.

Thanx again for such a nice treat.

From: DCC
Date: Fri, 9 Mar 2007 09:15:05 EST

I cannot thank you enough for participating in the Mistwood book club discussion by speakerphone last night. Your insight was invaluable and added a great deal to our understanding and enjoyment of your book. We all look forward to your next work as well as the movie!

Name: Mary Huebner
Location: Cumberland, MD
Groupname: Wellness Book Discussion Group
Date: Thursday, March 08, 2007

Another reading group nearby had Pope Joan on their list, and a few of us read the reviews and thought it would be a good selection for our group. Thanks so much for considering our request for a speakerphone chat with the author!

Name: Paula
Location: Canada
Date: Sunday, March 04, 2007

Pope Joan was passed to me by one of my students. I haven't finished reading it, but I have adored every word of it so far. I was hooked from the beginning and look forward to following Joan's story. I was also very pleased to hear that a movie is being made. I can't wait for that!

Name: Dorothy Fuchsman
Location: Annandale, Virginia
Groupname: Friends Book Club
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2007

I asked my daughter-in-law, who is an avid reader for a suggestion for my book club. She said "Pope Joan" was the best book she has read, on par with "Kite Runner." I know this is last minute for a request to join us by speakerphone, but I just found this site. We are meeting at my house this coming Wednesday. We'd love to chat with the author!

Name: The Blue Heron Book Group
Location: Peninsula OH
Date: Saturday, March 03, 2007

Dear Donna, Thank you so much for chatting with our book group by speakerphone. Your contribution added SO much to our discussion. We look forward to seeing the movie and plan attending en masse.

Name: Virginia Purcell
Location: Houston, Texas
Date: Monday, February 26, 2007
(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I heard of Pope Joan from friends who had read it. It seemed a provocative subject, very interesting and one that would insure much discussion.

Name: Raghda Rabadi-Cahill
Location: Pleasant Valley, NY
Groupname: Wine, Women, and Ron
Date: Sunday, February 25, 2007

I came across the book by accident and read it 3 times and LOVED IT!!. I Recommended it to SO many people outside my club. I am in 2 book clubs, the first club LOVED IT and my second club is reading it now and they're LOVING IT! Can't wait for the movie...Can I be an extra? I'll have my people call your people. Looking forward to hearing from you about the possibility of a speakerphone chat with our group.

Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2007
From: Andrea Jasper
Subject: Thank you!

The book group event was a huge success! I'm kind of a newcomer to this reading group . This is a fairly serious group and it's not easy to convince them to read something new. It took me a year to get them to read "Pope Joan" and even though they were a little leery at first once they read it, everyone LOVED it! I was very lucky that you were able to call and join in by speakerphone. Now I'm finally feeling like I'm "one of the group!" So thank you for helping to make my efforts well-appreciated, and I'd like to send on everyone else's gratitude and appreciation for your wonderful chat with us!

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]

Name: Marsha Killian
Location: Marquette, MI
Date: Saturday, February 24, 2007
Time: 02:29 PM

Is there a Pope Joan movie in the making anytime in the near future? I think it would make a great movie. I could only imagine who would be in the cast. My suggestion would be Cate Blanchett as the grown up Pope Joan.

Name: beth mann
Location: centerville, ohio
Groupname: beth mann's book club
Date: Thursday, February 15, 2007

What a wonderful way to share your book, chatting with reading groups by speakerphone.. We all enjoyed Pope Joan so much; it came very highly recommended by one of our members. This is a brand new club, so we don't have any fun names or whatever. You are the second author we've read, and the reviews are raving. We're a very eclectic group- doctors, principals, teachers, lawyers from all around the world. We'd LOVE to talk to you; I hope we can! Take care and thank you

Name: Annica Isacson
Location: Sweden
Date: Wednesday, February 14, 2007

I have read Pope Joan and found it very interesting. I have a question about the hand calculating method that Joan learned and that she also is teaching the little girl when she is hiding. Bedes head calculating rule. Do you have any references to this method and where it could be learned?

From: Pamela Schofield
Date: Tue, 13 Feb 2007

What a wonderful time our book group had chatting with you yesterday. You were so generous with your time and we all appreciate that so very much. We will be singing your praises for a very long time! Your book was just loved by us all, and we hope to read another by you soon. In the mean time we are already planning a movie outing when Pope Joan hits the local cinema.

Many, many thanks, and please let us know if you ever visit our area, we would love to host you to lunch. You were just a delight. Perhaps Pope Joan will be featured at the famous West Palm Beach Film Festival.

Pam Schofield
Books & Bites
Jupiter, Florida

Name: Kayla
Location: Phx/Az
Date: Friday, February 09, 2007

Donna, I loved your book I couldn't put it down. It was so "WOW"! That's the best way I can describe it. I almost lost my A in math for skipping the assignment, but hey it was worth every page turn!

From: Andrea Jasper
Subject: RE: Pope Joan in Wellesley, Massachusetts?

Everyone in our book group loves the book! I was a little worried after I chose it for this month's discussion because people don't always have the same taste as I do. We are very excited to have the opportunity to speak with you. We are planning to have questions ready to ask. The person who's hosting the meeting has two speaker phones which we tried out yesterday and they worked perfectly. We look forward to speaking with you

Name: Barbara K. Youel
Location: Peninsula, Ohio USA
Groupname: The Blue Heron Book Club
Date: Monday, February 05, 2007

Our book group meets on the last Tuesday of most months, so we can only offer the single date for a possible speakerphone discussion with the author. We are looking forward to discussing this book and using it as a springboard to many interesting issues. Thank you for your consideration.

Name: Lauren Caslin
Location: Kennewick, WA
Groupname: Women's Book Club
Date: Sunday, February 04, 2007

I was given a signed copy of Pope Joan in 1999 by my Mother-in-Law, I chose the novel for our bookclub discussion this month for many reasons, one being that it highlights a very strong and motivated woman.


From: Dolores Bruzzi

Date: January 26, 2007


I just wanted to say that you thrilled our book group by chatting with us by speakerphone last night. You are a gifted as a speaker as well as a writer. You sparked a lively discussion that lasted long

after you hung up the phone. We decided your book was one of the best we have read since starting

our book group over a year ago. Thank you for a unique book club experience.

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]


From: Linda Weiss

Date: January 26, 2007


Just wanted you to know that at the end of the year, my Barnes & Noble book club goes through all the "scores" each participant gave to each book we read to determine the winner. Pope Joan came in 2nd as the book the group enjoyed the most. The first place winner was The Fool's Tale by Nicole Galland with a score

of 4.83 out of 5. Pope Joan got a score of 4.81, so you can see how close it was. But in my eyes, Pope Joan was a 5!!!!


From: Yamini

Date: January 25, 2007


Hi Donna,

Thank you for calling our book group and making our discussion so very interesting. It was such a unique experience for all of us!. We are definitely going to watch the movie, & we are also eagerly waiting for your next book. Yamini

[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]


From: "Andrea Jasper"

Location: Wellesley, Massachusetts

Date: January 25, 2007


I am quite excited that you will be able to chat with our reading

group. We are all avid readers and to get to actually speak with an author is very

exciting. I chose your book on my niece's recommendation. She is a

Bennington graduate and has met many authors through various workshops at

her school. So far everyone who has read Pope Joan absolutely loves it -

myself included!



Name: Greta Whelan

Location: Crystal, ND

Groupname: Valley Readers

Date: Wednesday, January 24, 2007


(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) The sister of a member of our reading group read this book in her book club in Grand Forks North Dakota and her group voted Pope Joan the best book they had read all year!




Name: Michal Naor Tanhum

Location: ISRAEL

Date: Tuesday, January 23, 2007


I read Pope Joan in Hebrew translation while on a trip to India. I couldn't enjoy the trip till I finished the book! To all strong women, I would like to believe that she really existed.



Name: Donna Coughlin

Location: Downers Grove,Il.

Groupname: Mistwood Book Club

Date: Monday, January 22, 2007


(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) I have several friends who have highly recommended Pope Joan, and I thought the novel would be very interesting and thought-provoking for our group to read.



Name: Alyssa Schmidt or Imogene Brunner (head librarian)

Location: Lamoni, IA

Groupname: Lamoni Public Library reading group

Date: Monday, January 22, 2007


(Posted on the book and school group chat request page.) Pope Joan was recommended to me by the head librarian at the Lamoni Public Library. I later included it on the reading list for our reading group. It is getting rave reviews!


Name: Kathy Gustafson

Location: Bolivia, North Carolina

Groupname: Cover to Cover Book Club

Date: Saturday, January 20, 2007


Pope Joan was recommended by the owner of our local book store. She said her book club had a wonderful conference call with you, and we were fascinated by the idea of such an opportunity! If one of our requested dates for a speakerphone chat doesn't work, we'll propose alternatives. Thank you!


From: Elizabeth Kent

Date: January 11, 2007


Our book group had a wonderful discussion of Pope Joan. Every single one of us completely enjoyed your book and the inspirational story of Joan. Our book club group is diverse in terms of religions (judaism, Christianity - Catholics, Presbyterians, Baptists, etc.), so we had a lively, interesting discussion.

We are anxiously awaiting your next book!! Take care and thanks for writing such great books which make us think and ponder the world beyond our familiar territory.


[Want to request a chat with the author for your group?  Link here.]


Name: BJ Ross

Location: Springfield, Illinois

Date: Monday, January 08, 2007


I enjoyed your book and have one particular question. Did you find a record that Anastasius held the office of papal librarian, and held it for over thirty years?

Congratulations on the movie!



Name: Marcie Humphries
Location: West Hartford, CT
Groupname: Queen Bees
Date: Thursday, January 18, 2007

I know it is last minute but I just found out that you do speakerphone chats with reading groups! Maybe you are available for tonight? I have heard of this book through different people who have read it and I also did some research on other book clubs and their suggestions. I think it is a wonderful book and will make for a great discussion!

Name: Beatrice Nistler
Location: America
Date: Sunday, January 14, 2007

I'm truly amazed at this story, I'm curious, is this in fact a true tale of a pope that was a women, or is the author writing a book on a subject like this to see how the Catholic church comments on it?

Date: Sat, 13 Jan 2007
From: Helga Stanley

Thank you for the wonderful evening of interaction on Jan10th. We were all in awe that you would take the time to chat with our reading group by speakerphone and share your ideas and thoughts with us. Unfortunately, we had some members missing (three physicians and a teacher) because of work schedules and they will be most upset that they missed the great conversation!

Those of us present will certainly pass on our opinions on this most wonderful novel and this most knowledgeable author.  Best wishes on your new novel. I am looking forward to 17th century France!!!!!

From: Elizabeth Kent
Date: 11 Jan 2007

Our book group had a wonderful discussion of Pope Joan. Every single one of us completely enjoyed your book and the inspirational story of Joan. Our book club group is diverse in terms of religions (judaism, Christianity - Catholics, Presbyterians, Baptists, etc.), so we had a lively, interesting discussion.

We are anxiously awaiting your next book!! Take care and thanks for writing such great books which make us think and ponder the world beyond our familiar territory.

Sincerely,  Elizabeth Kent

Name:         Laurie Beach
Location:     Bryn Mawr PA USA
Groupname:    Leslie's ladies of the library
Date:         Wednesday, January 10, 2007

A friend of mine in Colorado recommended Pope Joan, and I recommended it to our group.
We vote on what we read, and it was selected by at least 14 of 16 of our book group members!

Name:         Terra Oleson
Location:     Boise, Idaho, USA
Date:         Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Our reading group is about 8 to 12 moms who meet together each month to discuss a book.  Donna Palmer in our group suggested Pope Joan because her sister's book club had read it and had a speakerphone discussion with Donna Woolfolk Cross that they really enjoyed.  Some of us have already read the book and loved it and the rest of us can't wait to read it. We are all are very excited about this book selection and the possibility of discussing it with Donna Woolfolk Cross.

Name: katia libeau
Location: france
Date: Thursday, January 04, 2007
Time: 06:58 AM

I received your book as a Christmas present from my sister. How wonderful! It took me a few days to read it. I simply loved it! Congratulations for your work.


© 1997-2003 Donna Woolfolk Cross
All rights reserved.