Turkish edition, "The Kiss of the Fortune Teller," 2007

THE BLUE FARM, POEMS, Pub: Ginninderra Press


Good News! The Fortune Teller's Kiss in paperback is out! It can be ordered now from the publisher, or any bookstore, or Amazon, and it's also on Kindle.

THE FORTUNE TELLER'S KISS, on KINDLE, from AMAZON, or Hardback, University of Nebraska Press

AMERICAN LIVES: A READER (Nonfiction pieces)

American Lives: A Reader, issued by the University of Nebraska Press, and edited by Alicia Christensen and Tobias Woolf, "American Lives" series editor, has come out in paperback! My chapter, "Fortuna," from The Fortune Teller's Kiss, about my clairvoyant grandmother, is excerpted and part of this lovely anthology. I am in high-class writing company, with Floyd Skloot, and many others. Look for it on, or from the publisher, University of Nebraska Press, via Longleaf Distributors, at 1-800-848-6224.

I cherish comments and discussions from readers about writing or my works...There have been a flurry of them since March '09, and I thank you, Readers! So, please drop a line...In answer to many many emails and letters from readers of "The Fortune Teller's Kiss," I am finishing a memoir about WHAT HAPPENED in the 1980s...

You can read an excerpt from my new memoir, "WEDDING in PERU," if you CLICK on the "NEW EXCERPT" Heading above. And on the Discussion Page, please let me know what you think!

Comments, suggestions? (Comment on the Blog Page.)

General NEWS:

"The Fortune Teller's Kiss," translated into Turkish, was seen in a bookstore in Istanbul and sent to me by a loyal reader. Thank you! (See cover, left);

Back in the Bronx has published my piece, "The Grandest Concourse," in their Summer 2007 issue. To order the magazine, Bronx fans and Bronxites can go to, and tell 'em Brenda sent you!

Sheri Winston, in the Sun-Sentinel newspaper, Sunday, August 26, has generously quoted me as "a pro" in memoir-writing, and published some of my do's and don'ts for aspiring authors. You can read these by clicking on "MY WORKS" page.

Novel NEWS:

"Shoulder Girls," a short piece of narrative nonfiction, has been published in the journal SABAL. For a copy, click on the link at right.


of THE FORTUNE TELLER'S KISS are on the REVIEWS page; read the one that's in Kaleidoscope, #55, Summer/​Fall, 2007, by Sandra Lindow, in full.

In the Sun-Sentinel, Tara Kai writes: “The Fortune Teller's Kiss is an eloquent brief on the transformative powers of stories, giving us permission to enter a private territory and offering the limitless interpretations to which a good memoir lends itself…Serotte [has] thoughtful and perceptive observations on secrets—how they make stories possible and feed our imagination…”

"El Bezo de la Endevina" (The Fortune Teller's Kiss), is the Ladino title of an article about the memoir that appeared in El Amaneser, a popular Istanbul weekly paper, in conjunction with the Turkish translation of the memoir, out any day. (See below)

For all who can read Ladino (or Judeo-Spanish), email me (click at right), and I'll tell you how you can read it in the language of my ancestors.

"The Grandest Concourse," a feature article I wrote about growing up in the Bronx, will appear in the August issue of Back in the Bronx, that terrific publication we Bronxites love!

THE FORTUNE TELLER'S KISS continues to surprise: it has been selected for inclusion in Books for the Teen Age 2007, the New York Public Library's special publication that lists the books chosen and reviewed by librarians for young adults.

I do hope my younger reading audience out there will email me, or leave a comment on the discussion page, after reading the memoir!

Latest news in POETRY:

SAINTS OF HYSTERIA: A Half-Century of Collaborative American Poetry, edited by poetry greats, Denise Duhamel, Maureen Seaton, and David Trinidad, is just out from Soft Skull Press.

I'm lucky to have my collaborative poem, "Another Avenue," that I wrote with poet-friend Haya Pomrenze, in this landmark publication.

Ordering info for Saints of Hysteria, and to see the cover, click on "Poetry," above.

Please click on the EVENTS page for a listing of where I'm scheduled to appear for a reading, book talk, or conference, through June 2007.

To get a sampling of the comments from around the country, about the memoir, click on DISCUSSION. PLEASE leave me YOUR comment or question!

THE FORTUNE TELLER'S KISS has been selected as runner-up finalist for the 2006 National Jewish Book Award, Sephardic Culture category!

It has also been nominated for several other awards, including: the American Book Awards, Books for a Better Life Awards, the Koret Jewish Book Prize, the Barnes & Noble Discover Awards, and the Sophie Brody Medal.

The Turkish edition of THE FORTUNE TELLER'S KISS should be out momentarily in Turkey...The Turkish title is FALCININ ÖPÜCÜÐÜ, and I'm told it directly translates to the English title. The publisher is ALFA EVEREST.

I hope that all my Turkish friends, and my Sephardi friends who read Turkish, will enjoy the book as much as my American readers!

Read some reviews, below, under the cover photo, and to read an excerpt from The Fortune Teller's Kiss, just click on "Quck Links," upper right.

Thanks for stopping by! BRENDA

A reader devoted entirely to memoir and autobiography

Order it today: 1-800-848-6224

Jewish Book World calls “…Serotte’s memoir of her colorful and eccentric Turkish-Jewish family, and her courageous triumph over childhood polio, both a fascinating story with scenes of great humor and deep pathos, and a beautifully written account of a life-changing experience [that] speaks to the hope that lies within every heart, and gives this powerful book universal appeal.”

Roberta Gordenstein, in the Multicultural Review, writes: “Serotte’s poignant and profound memoir spoke to me on so many levels…sensitive and thought-provoking, The Fortune Teller’s Kiss combines tragedy with humor to create a compelling portrait of the effects of severe illness on immigrants and their children.”

Booklist calls The Fortune Teller’s Kiss “A joy to read…Serotte's memoir tells of her growing up in the Bronx in a Sephardic Jewish family among Ashkenazi neighbors. Serotte is a marvelous storyteller, and this book, one of the American Lives Series, is a profoundly moving memoir.”

In the Federation Star, Philip K. Jason writes: “Brenda Serotte’s engaging memoir opens doors to rooms that we rarely have a chance to enter, and we may be thankful for the opportunity…A colorful and moving series of expertly drawn narratives…a work of abundant, tonic good humor.”

Publishers Weekly says: “Poet Serotte relives a childhood cataclysm in this culture-rich, affecting memoir…Serotte earned high praise for her beauty, grace and belly dancing, grooming herself for the proverbial sultan's harem…The drama of [her] struggle to walk again, filtered through the tender emotion of youth, creates an aromatic narrative brew that reveals her destiny in riveting detail.”

Kirkus Reviews has called her story “An unquestionably heroic narrative that never sounds preening or self-satisfied…Serotte brilliantly recreates the sheer dread the very word ‘polio’ evoked in those pre–Jonas Salk days. Her description of her family's response to her illness is unflinching.”

(To read an excerpt from the memoir, or to order the book online, see "Quick Links," TOP, right.)

American Lives: A Reader, edited by Tobias Wolff

New Mobility Magazine
See link below
Growing up Turkish in the Bronx
Poetry about the value of family, poetry, the mystery of Peru, and more...

QUICK LINKS Read an Excerpt from The Fortune Teller's Kiss

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