||Feb 6 2001
Cindy Cadelo Homepage
The Legacy is a story of hope, friendship and a love story, complete with an unlikely prince and just a pinch of providence that will make you wonder whether there are such things as mere coincidences in life.
What could a collection of crotchety, colorful senior citizens in a dilapidated apartment building in New York City, possible have in common with a 22-year-old orphan in Miami? Answer: Cassandra Claydon Evans. Long estranged from her only son, she unknowingly bequeaths the building to her sole living heir: the granddaughter she never knew she had. After her parents' tragic death, Maggie Claydon grows up in San Sebastian Children's Home. At 22, a shocking letter arrives notifying her of an inheritance. Maggie tearfully leaves behind Francine Everhart, the only mother she's ever known, to find her destiny. Maggie moves to New York, becoming landlord and caretaker of the building and it's nine senior tenants who revere the memory of her grandmother. They grow to believe Maggie's their guardian angel, just as the tenants become the famly Maggie's never had.
Enter Jake Murphy, depressed, shaggy recluse and ex-contractor, whose wife and children senselessly slain two years earlier, leaves Jake tortured, punishing himself. When inexperienced Maggie meets tormented Jake, a friendship is born that blossoms into love, but only after a roller coaster relationship ensues, thanks to two other admirers vying for Maggie's affections. Flashing forward to the day of Maggie's death at 76, we then flashback to her infancy and follow her through life in this heartwarming, full-circle story of a girl that had no one, but gave back so much and touched countless lives. The Legacy is the gift that keeps on giving hope, forgiveness, and inspiration that will surely touch your heart.
Flustered, Maggie answered, "You mean just up and quit my job? Fly off to where I don't know anybody, to a place I've never been and live who knows where, and pretend I know the first thing about running an apartment building?"
"Is your life so happy and meaningful, your job so rewarding, that it's unthinkable that there might be something better, more fulfilling than what you've got right now? You haven't got a single thing holding you here from where I'm sitting. Only memories, and you can take those with you wherever you go. Maybe it's time you got on with the rest of your life. You'll never forget the past, Maggie. You had no control over the circumstances. But only you can decide what you want to make of the future."
Maggie had been right in coming to see the woman she'd always loved and trusted. The old woman loved Maggie enough to unselfishly want her to make a new life, even if it meant leaving her behind.
by Christy Tillery French
FuneralAssociates.com Book Review- Captivating!, March 22, 2003
Reviewer: Christy Tillery French
If you have ever read a book that held your attention throughout, that you did not want to put down and, in fact, resented having to leave, that you wished would go on forever, then you understand what I mean by saying this book is captivating.
Maggie Claydon is a character the reader will quickly fall in love with: an innocent woman with a heart as big as gold. Even though Maggie grew up in an orphanage, she learned to appreciate what love means and generously shares herself and her love with a group of elderly tenants in an apartment building she inherited from the grandmother she never knew. Jake Murphy experienced a terrible tragedy when his wife and two children were murdered, and Jake functions in a deep depression until he meets Maggie. Maggie's generous nature and inner and outer beauty help Jake to understand that life goes on and he can love again.
This is one of the best books I have ever read. I laughed, I cried, I grew anxious wondering if Maggie and Jake were ever going to tell each other how they felt! A beautiful love story that is written in such a wonderful way. I was surprised this is the author's first book. Cadelo's eloquent writing style is the best. She has the unique ability to write a story that will enthrall the reader from start to finish and leave the reader anxiously awaiting the next book by this fantastic author.
If I could rate this more than five stars I would. I highly recommend this to everyone. A beautiful love story that will capture your heart, I promise!
by Laurel Johnson
Midwest Book Review - highly recommended, June 26, 2003
Reviewer: L.A. Johnson
Readers who appreciate decent, appealing characters living lives of tenderness and honesty, coming out winners against all odds will surely love The Legacy. If I had the contacts and the power to do so, this book would a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie. It deserves that and much more because this story demonstrates the finest of what we all would like America and Americans to be.
Maggie Claydon grew up in a Florida orphan's home with only the doting Francine Everhart as caregiver. At age eighteen she goes out into the world to make her own way, knowing Mrs. Everhart is nearby to provide loving support. When Maggie is twenty three, an official letter arrives from a New York City lawyer. She's inherited property from grandparents that she did not know existed. The property is run down, its residents all senior citizens with nowhere else to go. Maggie rolls up her sleeves and digs in, determined that this neglected old building will be brought up to code, will shine again and that its inhabitants will feel secure and loved.
Maggie is a thoroughly decent, compassionate girl. Her innocence and generous hearted turn makes every stranger want to be her friend. NYPD Officer Sean Murphy thinks Maggie and her building code dilemma might be just the thing to bring his younger brother Jake back to life. Jake's history is harrowing. On Christmas, more than three years ago, Jake came home from cutting down a Christmas tree to find his wife and two young children had been brutally murdered. Jake has comtemplated suicide, tried burying his horror in alcohol, and has withdrawn from everyone. He's finally learned to hide his misery away, but life means nothing to him. Sean urges him to help Maggie bring her tenement up to code. After seeing what Maggie is up against and meeting the elderly residents, Jake reluctantly decides to do ONE GOOD DEED. By book's end, everyone learns that good deeds - loving legacies - never die. Love is returned in kind through small and large acts down through the generations.
OK. That sets up the story and it's all I'm telling you. Read this book for yourself. Maggie, Jake, and everyone else in The Legacy represent positive old fashioned values in a contemporary settiing. I recommend this book to both teens and adults, despite some mild swearing and loving sexuality. Ms. Cadelo's second book is a contemporary psychodrama called Loyalties. If it's anything like her first, I want to be first in line to read it.
by Amy Mehta
MyShelf.com Book Review- Buy This Book!, 2002
Reviewer: Amy Mehta
The Legacy is a heartwarming tale about a twenty-something orphan's adventures in the Big Apple. Maggie Claydon's earliest memories are of the San Sebastian Children's Home in Florida where she grew up. She leaves the home at the age of 18 to strike out and make her own place in the world. Maggie works for a few years and lives simply until she receives a mysterious letter that convinces her to move to New York City and start a new life.
The introduction to the story is very cleverly done. When we are first introduced to Maggie, she is an old woman tending her garden when she becomes the victim of a sudden heart attack. The story then starts out from the beginning with an event that changes the course of her life forever before she is old enough to even realize what has happened. Later on, through her interactions with the kindly Mrs. Everhart, and Sean, the kind policeman she encounters in New York City, she is able to put her tragic past behind her, and move toward a future she can look forward to.
This book is a story about Maggie's search for family and how she finds one that becomes larger than she could have ever dreamed of. I loved the way the book was old-fashioned in parts, and very contemporary in others. Mrs. Cadelo has done a wonderful job of knitting together two very different writing styles into an entertaining and inspirational story that shows the reader that sometimes through helping others we are able to find the very things that elude us.
To paraphrase her own words, Cindy Cadelo graduated from a small high school in Detroit. She had formal training in both dance and music, and attended both Utah State University and Interlochen Music Academy. She personally participated in the teachings of such masters as Matteo, Leonard Bernstein, Van Cliburn, and William Huggins, while a student.
During this time, she lived for the times she could write. As Cindy now tells it, her father was “an excellent salesman, which meant we moved around a great deal (when she was younger). Finding it difficult to adapt to so many new places and schools, sadly losing new friends, I think might have been the impetus in my turning to writing at a young age. Writing allowed me to create an imaginary world of my own and gave me some semblance of control over these things while growing up!”
After she graduated from high school, her family moved to South Florida, which is also the setting for The Legacy. She majored in English in college, where she met her husband, who is, in her words, “an excellent salesman, which kept us moving around for the next thirty years.” They have now been married for 30 years and are the parents of three lovely daughters. Her interests include “reading, music, movies, gardening, and (their) two adorable and funny dogs, Bean and Cecil.”
Cindy’s book, “The Legacy”, is ‘an uplifting, poignant story with a dash of divine intervention that makes us wonder whether there are such things as coincidences in life. It's a story of hope, love, and friendship; the building blocks from which we draw the nourishment to dare to dream larger than life, to unselfishly sacrifice without thought of personal gain, and the spirit to share what we hold most dear.’
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Reader Reviews for "The Legacy"
|Reviewed by Christy French
|If you have ever read a book that held your attention throughout, that you did not want to put down and, in fact, resented having to leave, that you wished would go on forever, then you understand what I mean by saying this book is captivating. Maggie Claydon is a character the reader will quickly fall in love with: an innocent woman with a heart of gold. Even though Maggie grew up in an orphanage, she learned to appreciate what love means and generously shares herself and her love with a group of elderly tenants in an apartment building she inherited from the grandmother she never knew. Jake Murphy experienced a terrible tragedy when his wife and two children were murdered, and Jake functions in a deep depression until he meets Maggie. Maggie's generous nature and inner and outer beauty help Jake to understand that life goes on and he can love again. This is one of the best books I have ever read. I laughed, I cried, I grew anxious wondering if Maggie and Jake were ever going to tell each other how they felt! A beautiful love story that is written in such a wonderful way. I was surprised this is the author's first book. Cadelo's eloquent writing style is the best. She has the unique ability to write a story that will enthrall the reader from start to finish and leave the reader anxiously awaiting the next book by this fantastic author. If I could rate this more than five stars I would. I highly recommend this to everyone. A beautiful love story that will capture your heart, I promise!
|Reviewed by Victoria Murray
|Sounds like 'A Must Read' novel to me...I'm on my way to Amazon now!
Victoria Taylor Murray
(Author) 'The Lambert Series'
|Reviewed by Marie
|I haven't read a book that I enjoyed as much in a long time! I felt like I was right there with Maggie through the whole story- Ms. Cadelo's writing style evokes such vivid imagery. I have been recommending this book to EVERYONE. I even got my husband to read it and he doesn't normally read anything without "blood and guts". But he admitted that he enjoyed the purity and innocence of the story and that "everyone should read a book like this once in a while!" I am eagerly awaiting this author's next novel...|