Introducing How Was I Supposed to Know by Lorna Lee

It gives me great pleasure to introduce you to an author, former college Professor, humorist (my opinion), blogger and all around wonderful woman who I was lucky to find in my attempts at entering the blogsphere cyber world of networking. There was something about her site that drew me in. Once I started reading what she wrote, it was no wonder. When I saw she wrote a book, a memoir, How Was I Supposed to Know? The Adventures of a Girl Whose Name Means Lost, I wanted to read it. I finished the read yesterday and can’t stop thinking about it. It was one of the best, most well written, reads I’ve had the lucky pleasure to encounter of late. I hope everyone who sees this will take a minute to read what Lorna has to say below and my review. I’ll also include a link to her site so you can have a visit over there. It will not disappoint.

Lorna's cover

From Lorna:

Have you ever…

• …felt as if you never really got over your childhood?
• …looked at your life choices and asked, “What was I thinking?”
Me, too!
• …wondered if you would have made the same choices if you then what you know now?
• …had trouble establishing and maintaining healthy relationships?

Me, too!
• …been told that you are “too sensitive,” “the problem,” or “an alcoholic?”
• …been curious about how people who aren’t fictional face their fears?
• …wished you fretted less and laughed more when life throws you a curve ball?

Well, then, this book is for you!

Lorna is like everyone you’ve ever known. She is also like no one you’ll ever meet again. She’s just an ordinary person trying to make the best of the predicament du jour. What makes her different? The answers are revealed in this, her first, book. Here’s a hint: Lorna finds herself in more knotty predicaments than a novice knitter yet she tells her often grim life story with a grin.

Was Lorna born curious and insecure or did her father’s mysterious disappearance when she was four years old make her that way? Was she really a Good Girl or was she clever enough to be an adept actress? Why did she wait until she was fifty years old to start saying what was really on her mind?

Lorna’s story is one of decisions and their consequences born out of ignorance, or innocence. Information was withheld; secrets were kept. Looking back, she asks, “How was I supposed to know?” And then she laughs, because what else can she do?

This book explores Lorna’s adventure of not knowing what was around the next corner (or why she was even turning a corner) and the sometimes delightful, sometimes shocking, but always enlightening surprises that awaited her.

From the Author

I spent most of my professional career either doing sociological research or teaching sociology at the college level. After fifteen years of teaching as a full professor at a community college, I retired in 2006 prematurely due to the disabling neurological and physical effects of Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome–a disease which struck me in 2001.

Writing became my coping mechanism to deal with both the disease and having to retire from my professional career, which rewarded and challenged me. That illness turned my world upside down and inside out. I had to figure out how to live a normal life with an illness that prevented me from living life as a normal person.

And so I did. This book gives you some insight about my journey. It is a story about metamorphosis and also about the consequences of ignorance, mostly not knowing that I knew so little. Yet I tell my story with a healthy dollop of humor. I would much rather laugh than cry. Wouldn’t you?

About the Author

In her former life as a sociology professor, Lorna published many academic and research papers. Creative writing is a new path taken since her premature disability retirement due to Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome. In 2010, she was a finalist in the Memoir genre of the Writer’s Digest Annual Writing Contest with her short story, “Monkey Business.” This memoir is her first book-length publication. Somewhere in her mom’s closet is a single edition of original poems about a frog, a ghost, and a kitten. The booklet was illustrated by Lisa (her younger sister) and compiled for her mother’s birthday when Lorna was about seven years old. In case anyone is searching for it, the cover was made from green construction paper.

Lorna currently lives with the man of her dreams and the dog of her dreams in the home of her dreams: a cozy, finished, and decidedly unbroken home. She keeps herself busy writing, quilting, walking, and blogging. To find out more about Lorna and her current shenanigans, visit her blog,

My Review (5* as posted on Amazon)

Lorna Lee’s How Was I Supposed to Know is a remarkable read. There is so much talent in the writing and way the story of the author’s life is woven together that it was hard to put the book down. There were so many wonderful, poignant, heartbreaking, funny, delightful and sexy parts that take the reader into what it is to be human, without pretense; the raw open honest authentic facing of all that one is, is brilliantly expressed.

This is an intelligent read where Lee takes us into relationships with men, her son, family, dogs and a bird that resonate on a cellular level bringing out the readers emotions. We read her story and care; feel she is our sister, our mother, our Professor, our friend, our very own broken heart and soul as well as the phoenix from the ashes.

Around the time when you think you know where everything is going, this woman’s story, her life, take twists and turns of one unexpected surprise after another, as good as any mystery read or love story. This is a love story at its core, the finding of and accepting of self and all that one goes through to gain that to a most wonderful unexpected ending and outcome. I fell in love with this story, with her dogs, cats, bird, self-reflection, raw open honest emotional communication that most dare to only think, yet never utter. It is the courage of the outpouring and leaving nothing unsaid that makes this a compelling read. Highly recommend.

 Link to her site:


About The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap

The year 1895 was filled with memorable historical events: the Dreyfus Affair divided France; Booker T. Washington gave his Atlanta address; Richard Olney, United States Secretary of State, expanded the effects of the Monroe Doctrine in settling a boundary dispute between the United Kingdom and Venezuela; and Oscar Wilde was tried and convicted for "gross indecency" under Britian's recently passed law that made sex between males a criminal offense. When the news of Wilde's conviction went out over telegraphs worldwide, it threw a small Nevada town into chaos. This is the story of what happened when the lives of its citizens were impacted by the news of Oscar Wildes' imprisonment. It is chronicle of hatred and prejudice with all its unintended and devastating consequences, and how love and friendship bring strength and healing. Paulette Mahurin, the author, is a Nurse Practitioner who lives in Ojai, California with her husband Terry and their two dogs--- Max and Bella. She practices women's health in a rural clinic and writes in her spare time. All profits from her book are going to animal rescue, Santa Paula Animal Shelter, the first and only no-kill shelter in Ventura County, CA, where she lives. (see links below on Ventura County Star Article & Shelter) To find out more please go the The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap on facebook or Amazon or e-mail us at the gavatar addresses. Thank you. (photos: of Paulette, her family, and a reading at The Ojai Art Center, July 2012)
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33 Responses to Introducing How Was I Supposed to Know by Lorna Lee

  1. I love the picture on her book. I will check out her site.

  2. gita4elamats says:

    Another book for my Christmas list. 😀

  3. cindy knoke says:

    What an interesting woman & post!

  4. She really is and the read was fascinating, poignant, funny, and I couldn’t put it down. I think with your professional background, you’d love it. 🙂

  5. Paulette, thanks so much for your kind and eloquent words about my book. Your support of my work means a great deal to me.

    I laid my life open in the memoir because I wanted to connect to people honestly about issues that, on some level, we all face either directly or indirectly. Yet many of us feel that we are alone in our struggles or are the only ones who feel a certain way (usually a way that is unacceptable to say out loud). I was just crazy enough to say those things out loud, hoping that doing so would be a healing thing. Wrapping my story in humor softened some of it, but the message is still there: life is challenging, but what adventure worth taking isn’t?

    I’m delighted you enjoyed the book as much as you did. Thank you again for helping to give this creation of mine some wings! 🙂

    • My pleasure. I think the book is unmitigated genius in giving the reader permission to feel safe to speak their truth, let their shadow and all the rest of it enter daylight, and for me that is one of the most powerful and healing gifts an author can bestow on a reader. Not to mention how entertaining the read was. A really great read. I’m very happy you stopped by and commented here. I hope others who see this page do take a moment to check out your site and your book. Paulette

  6. Pingback: My Ears Are Ringing and my Heart is Thumping | Lorna's Voice

  7. Daniela says:

    I must say it sounds very interesting, but also intriguing. Thank you for providing insights into it!

  8. seeker says:

    Oh a me too read. I might find myself in her book. Another recommendation for the book club.

    • For me, the read was so much more than the description of the read. She has a natural gift for writing and interjecting humor (Erma Bombeck intelligent type humor). Plus the story of her life and the turns it took, the surprises right up to the end amazed me, and it was a memoir! As for finding oneself in a book…that I can’t speak to. No how tos on that one from me. 🙂

  9. FlaHam says:

    I look forward to reading this. Thanks, Bill

  10. petit4chocolatier says:

    If you say it is good, it must be really good! I have to place this on my must reads soon. I am planning a good library visit soon too, as well as Amazon and Barnes & Nobles.

  11. beebeesworld says:

    Thanks for reading my blog. Your blog is always very interesting beebeesworld

  12. Christy B says:

    I’ve had that too where I finish a book and cannot stop thinking about the read!

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