Emilie Loring: My Mother’s Favorite Author

A high school English teacher introduced my mom to the books of Emilie Loring. Emilie Loring (and that teacher) started my mom on a life of reading. Mom didn’t keep a list of which books she read, but she believes she read about “a hundred” of them. Her librarian would always let her know when there was a new one. Eventually she read them all and she drifted off to other books.

Now my mom is in her late eighties and suffering from dementia. Life is different. She has forgotten many of her skills – knitting, sewing, quilting, baking, and she is too weak to take care of her roses. The good news is that she still has one skill left which gives her great pleasure: READING!!! Thank God for that.

She doesn’t remember any of the books from the last fifty years and isn’t pleased with some of the others we get for her. She talks with so much fondness of her high school favorites, Emilie Loring’s books, that I had to find them. I made it my mission to get them. I was surprised that it really wasn’t that hard. They are available at used book stores through Amazon and in packets on e-bay.

To get started I ordered three and they came quickly. Mom was thrilled. She read one within a couple of days and was able to talk clearly about it. However, with the evilness that is dementia, within a few days she didn’t remember that she had read that book and just started reading it again. I may not need to buy any more, except that having them sit right there for her gives her so much pleasure.

[I’m sure everyone who is reading this is also a lover of books. I hope you can see the hope in this story of my mom. I do. I pray that no matter what happens to me in the years ahead, just please let me be able to read. Get me my books!]

With Mom receiving so much pleasure from these books my curiosity was aroused. It drove me to read one of them. This is the second book Emilie Loring published in 1924.

Here Comes The Sun

Fleeing from the train that was to take her to her prospective but uninteresting fiance, golde-haired Julie Lorraine became caught in an unexpected sequence of events. Hours later, she found herself married to the handsome stranger who had followed her from the train.

Political intrigue and the threat of a deceitful woman threatened both their futures. Only Julie’s courage and questioning spirit saved them–and revealed the true instincts of her heart and the man who had always loved her.

Now I love a good romance novel, but this one was a little far-fetched for my taste. The book was way too clean. By that I mean it didn’t seem real. I find it hard to believe that men and women, even in the 1920’s, talked so pure. And, there is not one hint of sex in this book. Yes, way too clean for me.

Another problem for me was that the best and only possibility for a woman in this book was to become a homemaker. Ugh. However, all these things that I disliked about the book are irrelevant. It’s what makes it a gem in my mother’s eyes. And, that’s good. I didn’t buy the books for me. The books are all hers.

About the author:

Emilie Baker Loring (1864 – 1951) was the daughter of a playwright and publisher and the wife of an attorney. She was a homemaker until she began writing at the age of fifty. She kept on writing until her death. Within that thirty-seven-year writing career she wrote over fifty books. Twenty of those books were published after her death.

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26 Responses to Emilie Loring: My Mother’s Favorite Author

  1. Molly says:

    That is indeed a blessing that your mom still enjoys reading.

    I have not heard of this author before, but if she was instrumental in developing your mom into a lifetime reader, I will definitely want to check her out – I don’t mind “way too clean” 🙂

  2. How nice that you can still talk about books with your mom. Jim’s mom, who also is very into dementia, can also talk about books she read a long time ago. In fact, she is great with anything that happened at least 40 years ago! Forget the more recent stuff, however! (as you probably have noticed!)

  3. What a wonderful post! My dad is 90 and still enjoys reading, so there is hope for us. You made me laugh when you said the book is too clean for you!

  4. Margot — this is a beautiful post. What a wonderful thing you have done for your mother. I grew up in a reading family == it was (still is) as essential to life as eating and sleeping. Mom read as long as she lived (mid-nineties) and I too pray that I’ll be able to do that.

  5. Kristen says:

    My grandma (almost 90) has a lot of memory loss from small strokes and is failing these days but like your mother, she is still an avid reader. It is sad to me that she can’t remember the plots for very long but the fact that it is still appealing to her to escape into fictional worlds is lovely, I think.

  6. I have had the same fear – please don’t let me lose the ability to read. Dave’s mother has Alzheimers and words were one of the first things to go – she has trouble expressing herself and can’t read any more. However, she retained numbers – loves to play cards (Personally, I think math can go any time – just let me read!) Your story is so touching, and what a blessing that there is something you two can still share. And what a wonderful gift you have given her. God bless you both.

  7. BooksPlease says:

    I was very touched by your post today.

    Dave’s mum had vascular dementia, she lost all interest in reading, couldn’t follow TV programmes, but give her flowers and she hadn’t forgotten any of her flower arranging skills – she used to teach flower arranging. It is comforting to know that the things we like best stay with us even if we can’t remember it the next day. I just hope if it happens to me I’ll still want to read.

  8. cerrin says:

    Yes mom your killin me with the too clean for you…Now I know my mother likes a bit of smut in her books 😉

    Dont worry I will always keep you supplied in books…and if you cant see to read them I will find the best audio books for you. No worries this family loves to read too much for you to do without.

  9. Bumbles says:

    I’m sure those are a great comfort to her. How nice of you to find them for her. Be thankful you didn’t grow up in that generation for homemaker was the ultimate profession and sex was taboo ;0)

  10. Beth F says:

    LOL on the clean part! Yes be thankful she has the ability to read. The name of the author is familiar to me but I don’t think I’ve read any of her books.

  11. Once I got the tears out of my eyes I could finish reading the rest of your post. Dementia is such an evil thing. I’m glad that your mother is still able to enjoy reading and can talk about it clearly.

  12. your baby sister..Karen Emilie says:

    Well, I share this Mimi with Margo and I must add that our mom loves the books so much that they are now a decorating item on the organ bench. They are lined up and introduced as long lost friends, a special way for many of us to remember a few of our most treasured books! And, cheers if we can even “remember to forget” or was that “forgot to remember”?

  13. Kelley says:

    I can appreciate anyone with this type of relationship with their mothers. Thanks for sharing!

    Be sure to check out my new book as well!

  14. Joyce says:

    I love Emilie Loring, too. It’s great to hear that others do also. I’m glad that you and your mom can share books. That is such a great thing. Keep enjoying that connection.

  15. Nancy says:

    I and 65 and a retired piano teacher. I, too, was introduced to Emilie Loring’s books when I was in high school — my cousin had discovered her, and eventually I read all her books. My local small-town library had them. It was at a time when she was still writing, so when a new Emilie Loring book arrived, it was a great day! I still remember that the first one I read was “Fair Tomorrow.”

  16. Barbara says:

    I fell in love with Emilie Loring’s books ~ mainly because they are so positive. The main characters are full of life and inspiring. With Banners, High of Heart ~ these were just two of my favorites.

  17. Lois says:

    What a great story of your mother. I am sixty and remember a friend’s mother loaning her Emilie Loring’s to me three at a time when I was in high school. I moved on to other romances and then to Georgette Heyer and Elizabeth Cadell. Read all of Barbara Cartland. I know your mom was “just like me.” In our generation sex was not for unmarried women — remember the birth control pill had not been invented yet!– so of course our romances had to have the emotions expressed in ways other than the physical the authors can use today. Another thing I especially like about Loring’s books are their emphasis on patriotic themes. I think “Here Comes the Sun” is one of these. Again, thanks for sharing.

  18. gina says:

    I know this is an old post, but I just came across it because my sister took all of the Loring books and now I have to find another set! Also have been reading these since I was in high school – I’m 44 now – and love them. They might be clean, but the writing was so good, the descriptions, the hope, and the optimism in such bleak times. I’m also happy they aren’t hard to find today. I have a bid on Ebay right now for all 50. My mom also has dementia and lives with me, so I understand, and am glad your mom can still have happy moments in reading. Thanks for sharing!

  19. bonnie says:

    My mom has had Emilie Loring for as long as I’ve been alive and all three of us girls have read them ALL. In fact, I have them all sitting on my shelf here in Thailand — and they are literally falling apart! My faves are We Ride the Gale, A Candle in Her Heart, and Keepers of the Faith.

  20. alane says:

    I, also, read Emilie Loring books in my younger days. When I was in school I would take a flashlight to bed and read her books and Grace Livingston Hill’s books as well. I believe your mother would enjoy Grace Livingston Hill books. You can go to publicbookhelf.com and librivox.org and download some of her books which are free on these websites. I pray for your mother’s well being.

  21. Mary Beth says:

    Ok, so my sister and I poured through every Emilie Loring novel when we were growing up in the 70’s. We both loved them, but sadly, developed skewed visions of men, romance, et al. Anywho, I actually named my daughter “Paige” based on a character I loved in one of her novels, but I’ll be darned if I can figure out which one. Any suggestions? Thanks, MB

  22. Reina says:

    I’d rather having Loring’s “clean” books than so many of today’s that are full of gross smut and explicit details!

  23. Phyllis Shelton says:

    Margot, I was so touched by your post about your dear mother. It is a sad situation when our loved ones have to deal with dementia. I admire you for providing the Emilie Loring books for your mother to enjoy. My mother, too, had dementia. She was an avid reader and as you mentioned, she lost many of her previous skills, but still enjoyed reading. Because of the dementia, she would lose her place in the book and would read what she had read previously….but she didn’t realize it and was content. The true sadness was when she lost her sight due to wet-macular degeneration.

    I, too, read Emilie Loring when I was a young mother and so enjoyed her books, in fact, I think I will try to find a few at the library to enjoy again. Thanks so much for sharing your moving post with us.

  24. Cindy Post says:

    Margot, I stumbled upon your site. I was so touched about the story about your mom. My mother is gone, but the one thing she did well was encourage my passion for reading. I have an eye problem and was considered legally blind until about 6-7 years of age. In fifth grade I was “turned on” to reading and Emilie Loring was my chosen author. 45 years later I can still picture many of her characters. For some reason I believe she had 165 novels (when purchased my books were all numbered). I read 164 of her books, but lost them in my parents divorce. Her books bought me so much pleasure and escape. I thought I was unique until I googled her. Wow! Hope your mom is doing as well as can be expected. If she can’t read, read to her. God bless

  25. connie baker says:

    Read all her books in high school. Am retired after 36 yrs of teaching advanced biology in high school. Have dug them out and rereading them for 9 th of 10 th time. They may be oldfashioned but still present good story line and morals which our worldly needs today. I was wondering if they could be purchased for nook or kendall.

  26. Patti Bender says:

    Visit my new website and blog for unique information about Emilie Loring. With the support of the Loring family, I have researched Emilie’s life for two decades. Her biography is nearly finished, and there is much to share. I think you’ll be both surprised and charmed. For now: She wrote the first thirty novels but the remaining twenty-two were ghostwritten after her death and didn’t reach the same standard. Hers are copyrighted by 1951. http://pattibender.com

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