My Books

Dear Suzie — The Ideal Book for Animal Lovers

Dear Suzie Book Cover

 

Do you love animals? Do you enjoy books? If so, I invite you to read the book I wrote in honor of my beloved Seeing Eye Dog Suzie.

A unique relationship between an exceptional guide dog and her human partner…
The deep, spiritual connection between them through the ethereal thread of LOVE.
This book will intrigue and amaze you… You’ll ponder, laugh and cry.

TITLE: Dear Suzie

AUTHOR: Grace Franchi

ISBN: 0-7414-2382-0 ©2005

PUBLISHER: Infinity Publishing

You can order from
Amazon.com

PUBLISHED: February 2005

Book Size: 5.5 x 8.5, 357 pages

Category/Subject: Pets/Dogs/General

The book can be found in major book stores (Borders and Barnes and Noble) and in the internet:
amazon.com

ABOUT THIS BOOK

This lively story is divided in three parts — letters from Suzie to a cat in the street and other epistles, fragments of e-mail messages about Suzie after her death and pieces of Mommy’s journal about her.

Due to its visages of fiction, such as a dog who writes letters, the book can be catalogued as fantasy. However, it’s based on our experiences together, real facts such as her life as a working dog and the pet of an animal lover mommy. Suzie and I have had a very close relationship and we were so tuned with each other that I have been able to translate her feelings and thoughts into words. For that reason I sincerely can state that Suzie and I wrote this book together. We began writing this story soon after I brought her home, full of hopes and plans for a future that I imagined endless. Life is unpredictable, my Suzie departed unexpectedly and I had to walk alone the rest of the road.

Suzie, a gorgeous and clever German Shepherd Seeing Eye Dog, writes letters to a cat in the street. In these letters she describes her life as an ingenious working dog as well as the adored pet of an animal lover mommy who stimulates her emotionally and intellectually. The reader also learns about the life of her friend Cat and her struggles to survive in a city that each day turns more hostile to animals due to the construction of new buildings and constant deforestation.

The core of this book is the extraordinary and unique love relationship between this dog and her human. Other topics present in this volume are animal rights, the exploitation of animals, vegetarianism, natural healing and the environment, as well as the void, sadness and loneliness of the author when her beloved dog passed away, the emotional support of other humans and the spiritual connection between Suzie and her mommy through the invisible silver cord called LOVE.

The book is witty, colorful, ingenious, sentimental… It makes you laugh and cry. This is a subject that animal lovers of all ages would enjoy reading. Besides being very entertaining, it also can be very helpful for people who have lost a dear animal.

This book is a written homage to my unforgettable beloved dog Suzie who is waiting for me at Rainbow Bridge.

 

 

Rivers of Light

Book cover - Rivers of Light

Rivers of Light

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My primary purpose in writing this book, was to share some useful material to assist in our spiritual progress. These poems, prayers, positive affirmations and mental exercises have a practical use, and are easy to perform. Although the time alone with God and ourselves is indispensable for our spiritual growth and the improvement of the communication with the Creator, we can also practice, read or listen to any part of this book while we are doing any other task. The Bible recommends us to pray unceasingly, and we can fill our minds with prayers of thanksgiving, appreciation, contrition and petition instead of leaving our thoughts roaming aimlessly.

Many of these poems can be used as prayers, or subject for meditation. To pray is not necessarily only to ask God for what we need as often we do. We pray praising our Creator just because He is a magnificent God and His creation is splendid. We pray thanking the Lord for the innumerable blessings that He constantly pours on us and our dear ones. Furthermore, as God is our creator, our father and our friend, and He cares for us, we can talk to Him about anything, anywhere and at any time.

A positive affirmation is a way of prayer. It’s praying with faith and thanksgiving. Faith that God listens to us and provides everything we need, and gratitude for the blessing we expect to receive. Positive affirmations help us fix constructive thoughts in our minds. If we are sick and suffer pain, we may tend to concentrate on the negative experience that we are living. A positive affirmation of health and vitality can counteract the situation that we are facing. A positive affirmation is an act of faith. If we are sick, we pray for healing. If we pray, we trust that God is listening to us and He will answer at His right time and in His right way. If we have faith, are we going to focus on the problem, or on the solution? To repeat a positive affirmation approximates us to the solution, while giving attention to the pain or the problem, locks us in the conflict.

The mental exercises are designed to obtain different results over the mind and body. Body and mind are intertwined; therefore, they influence each other. Mental imagery or visualization is an effective method that we can use on ourselves successfully. Using the power of imagination for healing, we can create vivid representations of our goals and desires. We can sooth symptoms, decrease stress and anxiety, improve self-confidence and produce positive changes in our life.

The role of imagination is undeniable. Everything must be imagined before being created, from a simple meal to a sophisticated skyscraper. How can we write a novel if we are unable to imagine a plot? How can we make plans for the future if we can’t envision it? So, if we feel threatened by any situation, we have the option to imagine a peaceful scenario where we find refuge, whether this is a garden, or an island, or a ray of light, or anything meaningful to us. If reality becomes difficult, to find solace in a mental picture can give us the necessary strength to keep going and reach our goals.

 

Annie’s Journal: Adventures of a Lovely Guide Dog

 

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Annie was my second Guide Dog. When I returned to school to train with her, I had many doubts and concerns. I even hesitated about having another dog because to lose Suzie, my first Guide, was catastrophic. I knew that dogs had a short life, but some how my mind tricked me to believe that she would live around twenty five years just because we loved each other and I took good care of her.

When Suzie passed away my sorrow reached a magnitude impossible for me to manage, and during several months the darkest night took over my life. Due to an important spiritual experience that I had some days after my beloved dog left, I was sure that I wanted another dog to enter my life. However, I didn’t know how to open the door to a new love.

In this state of mind I returned to school and completed the training between tears and smiles. Although Annie and I bonded soon, some part of me resisted connecting with her at a deep level, and this slowed down the process to develop the profound connection that must exist between two living beings in order to become a team, especially if they are a human and a guide dog. I sincerely regret if my resistance caused Annie any problem.

Each dog is an individual and as such, unique and distinctive to others. This difference is still more notable if we compare two dogs from different breeds. Suzie was a German Shepherd and Annie a Labrador and Golden Retriever mix. I found difficult to deal with this change, but I prayed, asking God to help me. Little by little I allowed my sweet puppy to teach me that love comes in different sizes, colors and shapes, and with Suzie in my heart, Annie and I continued our adventure through the multiple avenues of life.

Let’s read what Annie has to say, as she is the real author of this book. I hope these pages can help improve the relationship between humans and dogs, and be a solace for many people that cry the loss of a pet.

 

The Fruit Contest

The Fruit Contest

 

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The Fruit Contest is the story of various fruits, each one competing to be the best among them all. One sunny spring morning, little Renee overhears a conversation as she does her homework at the kitchen table. The talk is about which among the assorted fruits in the basket is the most important, tastiest, and most beautiful. Two canaries begin the discussion, and before long, a competition arises among the fruits for they all want to be the finest.

Each fruit speaks for itself in alphabetical order as they relate their wonderful characteristics and origin. After every fruit in the basket-from apple to zucchini-has given its speech, Renee finally intervenes, saying that each of them is a winner for they are all regarded as treasures given by Nature.

The Fruit Contest might appeal to children and adults who are interested in learning more about the nutritional qualities of fruits, their origins and peculiarities.

Are we fully aware of the important role that plants play in our lives? How much do we know about them? With over three hundred thousand species, ranging from the tiny green mosses to the giant trees, such as the sequoia that may weigh as much as two thousand five hundred tons, the plant kingdom is the second largest kingdom.

They keep many secrets worth to discover and learn. Did you know that plants communicate with insects and among themselves? For instance, When tobacco plants are attacked by caterpillars, they release a chemical into the air that attracts predatory bugs who like to eat caterpillars.

Plants are fundamental to every aspect of human existence. Without plants, life on Earth would not exist for the reason that practically all other living creatures depend on vegetation to survive. Through photosynthesis, plants convert energy from sunlight into food stored as carbohydrates. They also provide the oxygen humans and animals need to breathe because they use carbon dioxide for photosynthesis, and release oxygen into the atmosphere.

Plants provide nourishment for our bodies and souls. With the help of protists and fungi, they supply the oxygen we breathe and the food that sustains us — either directly or indirectly, by feeding other animals. Plants provide food, remedy, shade, ornament, clothing, material to manufacture different products, such as coal, rubber, soap, pigments, etcetera, and beauty and inspiration for poets and painters.

Unfortunately, many people don’t eat fruit, depriving themselves of a great source of vitamins and minerals. Usually we are familiar with a few fruits, such as banana, apple, orange, watermelon, and so on, but what do we know about other fruits like yangmei, ume, ilama or jujube?

Did you know that eggplants, tomatoes, peppers and zucchinis are fruits despite the fact that we treat them like vegetables? Botanically speaking, if it contains seeds, it’s a fruit.

The purpose of this book is to entertain and educate, awakening children’s curiosity toward trees and bushes, and the interest for gardening. I hope you can enjoy this book as much as I enjoyed writing it, and feel enticed to taste many fruits that you never tried before, discovering a new world of flavors and a rich well of nutrients.

 

Alphazoo — The Spelling Lesson

 

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This book has the intention to entertain, teach and provide information about animals. What do we know about these beings with whom we share the planet? Too often, we know nothing or very little. Many of us share our lives with dogs, cats or birds, and those living in the country, may be acquainted with hens, goats, horses, etcetera. However, ask anyone about aardwolfs, lemurs, quetzals, eagles, xue bao, or yaks, and most of people won’t know anything about them.

This story encloses an invitation to study zoology and learn about a few of the millions of the animals that accompany us. Each one is important and useful as God created each of them to accomplish a job. Let’s discover some of them in these pages.

 

The Hidden Path — Stories from Here and There

The path of life, brief or lengthy, straight or tortuous, bright or gloomy, glorious or disgraceful, wide or narrow, fruitful or arid, inexorably will take us to our destination. Do you know what’s yours?

Life is a multicolor tapestry where the visible and invisible intertwine constantly. The frontier between reality and fantasy blend in our daily life as our thoughts, words, actions, feelings, dreams and experiences sculpt our personality like a potter shapes a piece of clay.

Sometimes the absurd takes control of the reality and life becomes an incredible story, such as Verdict, when Caleb is accused of murder. Just Another Day and The Other Side Of Life are two other different examples that show that reality can be a subjective matter. Carla and Beth, as well as Nancy and Betty live in a world outside the limits of what is considered normal.

The internal dialogue is a constant ingredient in our lives. Some may interpret it as a discussion between our conscious and subconscious mind. For others this is a conversation with God, or a clear sign of insanity. In any case, this kind of dialogue can help us awaken and make positives changes. This is the case of Bryan in The Conversation. In other instances mysterious circumstances involves a dialogue, such in the cases of the woman and the young lady in Reencounter, or the person in Goodbye, or even the lost soul in Crossroads.

If you are fond of mystery, this is the right book for you. Riddles, incomprehensible circumstances, ancient secrets, blurred memories, strange dreams, rumors and words whose meaning we can’t grasp, are part of our daily life. Like pearls in a necklace, these tiny pieces sparkle in diverse shades, giving to the jewelry its unique value.

Secret realm that enigmatic forces guard from human curiosity because life is a conundrum in which we spend our entire lives trying to solve it. Riddles are everywhere waiting for our imagination to bloom and transport us to dimensions never explored before. Let’s spread out our wings and take off from the routine and to fly up to the hills of the impossible.

Have you ever seen a shadow waiting in a corner? Have you ever heard steps coming up the wooden stairs at midnight in a house without stairs? Perhaps you were dreaming, or maybe the echoes of one of these stories reverberated in your mind. Keep reading, and you will have another reason to wonder.

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