My mom read me the first Great Brain book. We had a tradition of family reading. During the summer of my sixth grade year we went on a camping trip. While dad set up the tent or cooked, Mom read to us from a book she was given at a book fair. My brother and I loved it. That night my brother and I went to play by a drying creek bed. I couldn't get the story out of my mind.
As I stood staring into the receding water I kept thinking of my dad's childhood. He had grown up in Dixie Utah. The third boy in his family. As a family they lived on a farm, bailed hay, delivered milk, and ate delicious homemade bread. From a sixth graders point of view the stories were very similar.
Over the years my brother and I would re-read the Great Brain Series. One afternoon I read the back of one of the books it mentioned that John Dennis Fitzgerald had written a story about his parents, Papa Married a Mormon. I wanted to read more about this delightful family. Eager to find it Mom and I went searching. In the 1970's there were no Barnes and Noble, no Amazon, or internet. No bookshop had never heard of it. The two local libraries were the same. I assumed it would be the story I would never get to read. Thirty years later my luck changed. When my husband found it on a ebay auction.
I had hoped for a good story. I was not disappointed. What I hadn't expected was a fantastic research experience. So many discoveries, but one of the best was finding an unexpected link to my dad's hometown life.