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“Captures the romance and longing of one affectionate couple separated by the war.”  – Self-Publishing Review

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A love story for the ages.

Christmas Eve, 1946

All my love, my thoughts, my dreams, and my hopes are with you tonight, dearest. Could I but hop on a star and glide to where you are. If only for a moment—a moment of beauty and love that would cause all the separating miles and hours to pale and fade away. No stars for rent, sweetheart, but I’ll be around in my own special dream boat sometime between now and the dawn.

Lt. Donald Storey, United States Navy, to his wife, Margery


U.S. naval officer Donald Storey was not just fighting for his country in World War II—he was fighting to come home to his love, Margery. The letters the couple wrote to each other became their lifeline, providing comfort in a time of constant uncertainty. 

In Lisa Franco’s My Dearest Darling: Letters of Love in Wartime, Donald’s and Margery’s intimate correspondence not only offers a heartwarming account of their romance and personal sacrifices, but also shines a light on historical events as they unfolded overseas and at home. 


Franco stumbled upon the lost letters during a fateful stop at an antique shop. What started as a curiosity became, with each subsequent letter, an obsession with finding the couple’s family, learning their history, and ultimately, discovering what happened to them after the war. 

With their family’s help, as well as other historical resources, Franco maps the couple’s life during their five-year-long separation and ensures that no aspect of this enduring love story is left behind.

* * *

Lisa Franco

Lisa Franco has been telling people’s stories for more than four decades. As a writer/producer for the ABC television affiliate WTNH 8 in New Haven, Connecticut, she earned multiple Emmy nominations and journalism awards for her documentaries. She also served as public affairs director for the station before she became the state communications director for one of the largest nonprofit organizations in the country.

 While Lisa’s background includes marketing, media relations, and public relations, these days she is a freelance writer and owner of Over the Moon Vintage, an online collectibles shop

Lisa’s parents were members of the Greatest Generation, and her father, Nino Maurizi, was a World War II Army Air Corps veteran. She attributes this to her interest in the war and the loving relationships that developed during that period in our history.

Lisa and her husband, Joe, live in Connecticut and Cape Cod and are the proud parents of their sixth rescue dog, Maggie.

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Author Lisa Franco has a talent for seeing what others miss, which is why she discovers overlooked treasures in a church rummage sale or flea market. That is how she found the WWII letters that form the basis for My Dearest Darling. Franco devotes her well-honed skills as a journalist to bring this tender story of love and yearning to life. My Dearest Darling belongs on your bookshelf besides Tom Brokaw’s The Greatest  Generation.

— Diane Smith, NY Times best-selling author and journalist  
An endearing, passionate collection of real-life love letters between a WWII naval officer and his sweetheart, My Dearest Darling captures the romance and longing of one affectionate couple separated by the war. Author Franco, who discovered the writings at a Cape Cod antique shop, provides informative annotations that place the missives in a wider historical context for readers. Covering everything from mundane daily activities like watching films to world-changing events like dropping the atomic bomb, the correspondence is simultaneously sweet and sad, conveying an achingly human blend of the personal and the political that sheds new light on life during wartime.
— Self-Publishing Review
The love story we all wished we could live. Donald and Mardy’s letters, full of love, longing, and the minute details that made up their daily lives in the midst of war, not only chronicle their love story, but take us back to a time when a letter was an art form and a lifeline to those you loved.
— Eileen Broderick 

Upcoming Appearances

Saturday, April 15
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM, From the Pacific to Provincetown
ReRead Books, Watch Factory Shoppes, Cheshire, CT. How two Cheshire authors’ lives were changed through their Cape Cod discoveries of wartime love letters and writing in solitude. Featuring Lisa Franco and Allison Bass-Riccio. A benefit for ReRead Books. $10 suggested donation, $5 students.
Saturday, April 15
Monday, April 24
2:00 PM, Author Talk and Book Signing
Prospect Senior Center, 6 Center St, Prospect, CT.
Monday, April 24
Saturday, May 6
10:00 AM - 3:00 PM, Branford Author Trail
Main St., Branford, CT. Shop, eat and meet a variety of authors stationed throughout the area!
Saturday, May 6
Saturday, May 20 (Rain date Sunday, May 21)
11:00 AM - 3:00 PM, Meet the Author Event
Quarry Walk on Center Rock Green (300 Oxford Road, Oxford, CT) Meet a variety of authors, buy autographed books, shop and eat!
Saturday, May 20 (Rain date Sunday, May 21)
Tuesday, May 16
6:00 PM, Author Talk and Book Signing
Manross Memorial Library, 260 Central Street, Forestville, CT. Register on the library's website.
Tuesday, May 16


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