(review by Mary Jedlicka Humston)
What would you do if you found an anonymous letter of love and encouragement in your coat pocket after you left the subway? Or, if you found one in a library book, on the vacant chair at the dentist’s office, or on the table at your local coffee house? Can you imagine the feelings of discovering this special gift? Would it come “at just the right time” when you needed a lift?
This became a reality in Manhattan a few years ago when a new college graduate began leaving letters around the city. What began as a few letters tumbled into a new passion for Hannah Brencher, author of the new memoir, If You Find This Letter: My Journey to Find Purpose Through Hundreds of Letters to Strangers.
In her book Brencher shares her journey of personal growth as well as how she serendipitously created a new labor of love: to get letters of love to strangers who needed them. She decided to extend an offer to the Internet: a promise that if someone needed a letter in the mail, she would personally handwrite and mail one, no questions asked. Amazingly, her inbox was flooded with requests, some with heartbreaking stories of loneliness, insecurity, and some needing just a plain-old reminder of friendship.
Since writing her book and creating her website MoreLoveLetters.com, she has been featured in a variety of publications including O, The Oprah Magazine, Glamour, and The Wall Street Journal.
If you enjoy letter writing and want to learn about someone else who shares this passion, you simply must read If You Find This Letter. Both Marys loved the book and were delighted when Ms. Brencher agreed to endorse our upcoming Mary & Me: A Lasting Link Through Ink:
“This book is a pure tribute to friendship, letter writing and, most of all, love. The shared experiences of loss, faith, and letting go between Mary and Mary aren’t just inspiring– they’re enough to push you out of your own comfort zone to be a little braver today. No doubt, this is the sort of story that will make you want to try harder, love people better, hold the good ones in your life tighter, and leave no collection of words left unsaid. In short, this book captures the real stuff of life. The real stuff.” – Hannah Brencher