Where There's Smoke, There's Dinner

Stories of a Seared Childhood
by Regi Carpenter

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Family: comfort food or a recipe for disaster? Award-winning storyteller and performer Regi Carpenter brings her humor and honesty to print in Where There’s Smoke, There’s Dinner.

Regi is the youngest daughter in a family that pulsates with contradictions: religious and raucous, tender but terrible, unfortunate yet irrepressible. These honest...

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Published By Familius

Format Paperback


Number Of Pages 182

Publication Date 09/06/2016

ISBN 9781942934400

Dimensions 6 inches x 9 inches

"I laughed, gasped, wept—sometimes all in the same paragraph—when reading Where There's Smoke, There's Dinner: Stories of a Seared Childhood by Regi Carpenter. Growing up as the youngest of the exuberant, notorious, and often destitute 'Carpenter kids' of Clayton, NY, Regi is resourceful against all the odds. This is a candid story of desperate measures, explosive humor, and, ultimately, the sanity behind seeming madness.  It teaches a new understanding of family love. Brilliant writing!"
Jo Radner, reviewer for the National Storytelling Network's magazine

"Giver of story, giver of light: Regi Carpenter takes lived experience and imagined choices and shapes them into what listeners—and now readers—need in their deepest hunger. To hear her tell is to live a way of seeing existence—becoming existence—in a world where it’s okay to ask questions about why we exist at all. To be in her presence is to know golden genius. And now this book can carry her spirit into minds and hearts allowing her in: welcome, readers seeking treasure, to this trove of tales that glow."
Katharyn Howd Machan, author of Redwing: Voices from 1888 and Wild Grapes: Poems of Fox

"I am a believer that the Lord works in wondrous ways and especially through the stories of Regi Carpenter in Where There's Smoke, There's Dinner: Stories of a Seared Childhood as I laughed and cried with the brilliant writer Carpenter!
Do yourself a favor and go get Where There’s Smoke, There’s Dinner at once! You'll be in for a literary treat if you do!"
Nancy Slonim Aronie, founder of The Chilmark Writing Workshop and former Harvard University professor

Praise for Regi Carpenter:

"Regi Carpenter's stories are pure joy. Exquisitely written, funny and deeply moving they are brimming with profound insight into the complex ways families love. I read them over and over and always find something new."
Noa Baum, author of A Land Twice Promised

“[Carpenter’s tales] are an unexpected gift that promises to leave us longing for more empathic vignettes from this comfortable, compelling voice.”
Booklist Review of CD Diving and Emerging

“While hearing Regi tell in Jonesborough, I scrawled in the margins of my program, ‘A Must Have!’ for our festival in Cape Girardeau. And after featuring her twice now on the banks of the Mississippi River, her delightfully eclectic performances and artful approach to storytelling have absolutely validated that initial assessment. There is such a sincere charm to her subtle—yet swiftly quite spirited and sly—telling. As she affectionately unrolls her tapestries of personal narrative drawn from generations along the St. Lawrence River in upstate New York I am thoroughly charmed by how seamlessly she weaves the threads of genuine reflection, baby boomer sensibilities and whimsical song. In a word, for me . . . captivating (OK, probably contagious too)."
Joel Rhodes, Director, Cape Girardeau Storytelling Festival, Missouri

“You don’t have to be a St. Lawrence ‘river rat’ to be mesmerized by Regi Carpenter’s work. It transcends time and space to embody the essence of storytelling, connection: with each other, with our histories, and with our own humanity—deceptively embedded in flat-out, full-tilt entertainment. She is among the very best of a talent-studded field.”
Caren Niele, Producer, Adventura Arts and Cultural Center, Adventura, Florida

 "Inventive, insightful, emotionally nuanced in the midst of lovely singing and deadpan humor, yes, these are characteristics of Regina's storytelling but more than that, here is a great, big-hearted embrace of the world that makes her a pleasure to work with and an inspiration to hear.”
Loren Niemi, Executive Director, Heart of the Beast Theater, Minneapolis, Minnesota