What Would Maisie Do?

Valerie Kaur


What Would Maisie Do? by Jaqueline Winspear

Date: Wednesday, March 16 at 9 am PST, Jacqueline Winspear (UK/USA)

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Cost: Suggested donation $10 US.
Should this be beyond your reach, we’re happy to offer it to you free.




Through seventeen books, the Maisie Dobbs series has had a resounding impact on fans. Readers have shared with author Jacqueline Winspear how Maisie’s stories have resonated with them or helped them through difficult times. Fans have been inspired by the heroine’s resilience and endurance, repurposing her strength in their own lives in a way perhaps best embodied by the phrase “What Would Maisie Do?”

Anchored by thirty of Maisie's most timeless quotes, coupled with Jacqueline Winspear’s inspiration for each nugget of wisdom, these reflections offer readers additional insight into the world of Maisie Dobbs and invite them to reflect on favorite moments and memories. Here are just a few:

On the value of respect: “Liking a person we are required to have dealings with is not of paramount importance. But respect is crucial, on both sides, as is tolerance and a depth of understanding of those influences that sculpt a character.”

On grieving: “Grief is a pilgrimage along a path that allows us to reflect upon the past from points of remembrance held in the soul. At times the way is filled with stones underfoot and we feel pained by our memories, yet on other days the shadows reflect our longing and those happiness's shared.”

On the importance of departure: “Leaving that which you love breaks your heart open. But you will find a jewel inside, and this precious jewel is the opening of your heart to all that is new and all that is different, and it will be the making of you—if you allow it to be.”

If you have read all seventeen of the Masie Dobbs series, you will be engrossed in this conversation.  If you haven't then you will be inspired to make Masie a part of your future reading. 

Valarie KaurJacqueline Winspear was born and raised in the county of Kent, England. Following higher education at the University of London’s Institute of Education, Jacqueline worked in academic publishing, in higher education and in marketing communications in the UK. She emigrated to the United States in 1990, and while working in business and as a personal/professional coach, Jacqueline embarked upon a life-long dream to be a writer—she subsequently became a regular contributor to journals covering international education and travel, and has published articles in the Washington PostHuffington PostThe Daily Beast and other publications. Her short stories have appeared in magazines internationally, and Jacqueline has recorded her essays for KQED radio in San Francisco. She has contributed to several anthologies of essays and short stories.

Eleven of Jacqueline's Masie Dobbs books have been New York Times best sellers and four National Bestselling novels. Her standalone novel, The Care and Management of Lies, was also a New York Times and National Bestseller, and a finalist for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

Cynthia SearsCynthia Sears is the host for Jaqueline Winspear's Global Read on "What Would Maisie Do?"

Cynthia Sears is a stellar example of successful community activism – a one-woman change-maker whose big heart is dwarfed only by her vision and her ability to bring others to the table with her. Her reach over years of philanthropy, political advocacy, and devotion to the arts, has resulted in abundant successes. With a smile, a handshake, and an unusual ability to listen and connect, Cynthia has given life to and helped develop projects that are humane, progressive and, in the case of the arts, inimitable.

A Southern California native, Cynthia began her lifelong avocation as an “influencer” many years before there was such a word. She was a donor and working partner for local, national, and worldwide humanitarian issues that touched her heart and her mind. With “Writers on Writing,” her own radio program on Los Angeles’s premier NPR station, Cynthia interviewed guests from a broad spectrum of authors, including Poet Laureate Billy Collins prior to his first published work. Her awareness of the plight of abused women led her to co-write and co-produce “Battered,” a lauded, 1978 television movie, starring Levar Burton, Mike Farrell, Karen Grassle, directed by Peter Werner. It concerned domestic violence in the lives of three disparate women – an issue that was at that time almost non-existent in the public conscience.

A transformative mid-life transition to beautiful Bainbridge Island, just a ferry ride from Seattle, found Cynthia and her husband Frank Buxton in just the right place for their “golden” decades. Frank brought his career as an actor, director, and writer to the theatre community and the community-at-large, innovating and creating vibrant entertainment. The Bainbridge Island Museum of Art, hailed as one of the U.S.’s best local museums, is a result of Cynthia’s inspiration, generous spirit, and stellar ability to put together teams of excellence in every aspect of its development.

Cynthia’s collections, the crown jewel of which is her well-regarded assemblage of Artists’ Books (works of art which take the form of a book), reflect her discerning eye, her love of beauty, and dedication to artists.

Cynthia also has an ability to find, mentor, and support fledgling projects and undiscovered artists (i.e., street artist Jimmy Tsutomu Mirikitani). The Port Townsend Film Festival is one of those projects which has flourished with Cynthia as a booster. Multiple films – including recent documentaries “This Changes Everything” and “The Bowmaker” (credited as “Executive Producer) – have been beneficiaries of Cynthia’s commitment and largesse.

These are mere highlights in the larger picture of Cynthia’s dedication and generosity. When Cynthia offers to help, it’s an unequivocal offer, and one she delivers with joy, unpretentiousness, and certainty.

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