Monday, June 29, 2009

Wesley the Owl paperback is #10 in LA Times Bestseller List!

Wesley the Owl, the paperback, has just debuted in the LA Times' Bestseller List at #10! THANK YOU ALL for contributing to this by buying the book! Now I hope we can find more readers in the East Coast and get on the NY Times bestseller list again! Thank you ALL for your lovely letters and for buying the book! I feel awed and humbled by all of this!



Rose Leal said...

Congratulations Stacey!!! I am happy for you!
Rose Leal

Amy said...

I just finished reading Wesley the Owl last night and I think I have recommended it to about 10 people already today! I am so moved by your story.



Karen said...

I don't know about the East Coast, but this Texan certainly loved it. :-)

Several passages were just too good to keep to myself, so I read them aloud to my husband who then laughed with me. I'm not surprised to hear so many others have loved it also.

Thank you for telling your story and giving me a chance to learn about an animal I knew so little about prior to this reading.

And as one commentator said, congratulations!

Barbara Ingle Landy said...

I am one of your east coast readers wildly impressed by your dedication and your multiple talents, not to mention Wesley's.

I too have a chronic illness with pain and fatigue so can relate to the immense courage it had to take for you to live with it to take care of Wesley. I hope you are fully in charge of it now, and that a new little Wesley is learning to love.


Barbara Landy,

Kitty said...

Hi Stacey,

I stayed up til 1am today finishing Wesley, and just wanted to thank you for writing such an incredible book. Your commitment and dedication to caring for Wesley are truly inspiring. I was weeping like a baby by the end but your and Wesley's story is so uplifting and life-affirming, it will stay with me for a very long time.

Thank you!

Angie Matney said...

I wanted to thank you for sharing Wesley's and your story. The part about telepathic communication really resonated with me. I have the great pleasure of sharing my life with two dogs: my current Seeing Eye dog, a female German Shepherd named Yani; and my retired guide, a yellow Lab female named Glaze. In the summer of 2007, Glaze began to tell me she was ready to retire from guidework. She was getting older, I was moving around a lot for work and school, and she was having a harder time with the summer heat. I was in law school (just finished, and Wesley was a wonderful distraction from studying for the Bar), and I was working for two law-related employers that summer. I talked to Glaze and asked her to give me just a few more months. I told her that in January, she would be able to stop working. She didn't really understand "January," but I do believe she understood what I was telling her. After that, her work improved. Before, she'd seemed to be burning out; after that, she was more focused on her work. A good friend of mine noticed this, too. Things weren't perfect from that point on out, but She did work with me for six more months, and I got the feeling that she really could see the light at the end of the tunnel. She now enjoys her retirement. I am absolutely convinced that she understood when I told her she would get to retire soon. I have heard of some guide dogs who find it hard to live at home when the new dog comes, but Glaze seems happy that we are still together. Yani is wonderful, too, but this comment is long enough. Thank you again for sharing Wesley with all of us.

DianeinCA said...

Hi Stacey,

Thanks so much for your wonderful book about your life with Wes! I just finished it today as I was siting in my yard listening to the baby wrens that are getting ready to leave their nest. There are a few great horned owls here too and I love hearing them talk to each other in the evening. I just found your website and was a little bummed that I missed you in Danville, but hopefully you will be back to the East Bay again soon. You must have read Merle's Door by Ted Kerasote, haven't you? If not, I know you would truly enjoy it. He had a very similar relationship with his dog, as you had with Wes.

Keep on writing. You are a wonderful writer!

A sister biologist,

Diane Beaulaurier
Placerville, CA

belpartin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
belpartin said...

Very happy for you! The book certainly does deserve to be a NY Times bestseller. I live in New Hampshire and will have my book club read it. Plus, I'm sending copies out as gifts for birthdays and the holidays.
I have a high degree of respect for you that you kept Wesley safe and well-loved for 19 years! It must have been INCREDIBLY tough not to shout to the world "I have the most amazing being in my life - let me tell you what he did today!"

I also can attest to the difficulty of being seriously ill and having a animal dependent on you. I know I told myself "I can't die yet, my dog needs me." He slept by my side 22+ hours a day for 3 months. And he would snuggle up to whichever part of body hurt the worst! Turns out, I needed him also.

Wesley was blessed to have you and you he. Thank you for sharing him and yourself with me.

Ellen E. said...

Folks from Massachusetts enjoyed your book too, Stacey. Despite having owned numerous gerbils, mice, and guinea pigs, I read "Wesley the Owl" with great interest--laughing aloud at bits, reading aloud to my husband and sons, and crying at the end. (I plan to buy copies of it for my niece and my husband's aunt for Christmas.) Feeling sad after I finished it, I sat down to watch the movie "Atonement" with my husband afterward; lo and behold! There was a barn owl in the movie. Return of the repressed!

What struck me while reading your book was not just your dedication to this wild creature and your sensitivity to his needs but your description of Caltech culture and the sacrifices other biologists make for their profession (ex. the guy blithely resigned to his parasites, inc. what sounds like a--yecch!--guinea worm) and the difficulties that female biologists might have with dating (sufficiently worthy) members of the human species. The pickings were slim. Like you, I think I would have preferred Wesley and the challenges of taking care of him to entering into a monogamous relationship with Black Widow Spider guy.

Anyway, congratulations on writing a fascinating and uplifting book! Ellen

pollyr67 said...

Greetings from Australia! I have just finished reading Wesley (and sobbing over his death) and want to say thank you for sharing his wonderful story with me. It reminds me how good life is when I find a book that will stay with me forever. It was such a warm, tender, joyous celebration of a unique and special creature! I love the irony that in life you kept him a secret from all but a few to protect him but in death you have shared him with millions and in doing so, may well have helped protect many more owls as people now appreciate just what special creatures they are! Congratulations Stacey. This is one book I will share and recommend widely. Pauline

mithu said...

hey, i wanted to share that there was a special on the travel channel called "discovering the real world of harry potter." in it there was a bit on owls. VERY DISAPPOINTING!!! i was shocked that the idiot owl trainer who was interviewed had the gall to say that owls aren't all that bright. i read Wesley the Owl and though i never met him, there was no question in my mind about his inteeligence. i love wesley!! i wish more people knew how amazing they were.
the owl trainer obviously doesn't belong in that profession if he is going to speak disparagingly about them. i was really enjoying the show until HE came along.

Stacey said...

From one Stacey to another......

I just finished reading Wesley last night, and though I cried my eyes out when he passed, I took comfort in knowing that you gave him such a wonderful, wonderful life.

The timing of me seeing your book in the bookstore and buying it could not have been better, as my neighbor two houses up from me has a family of barn owls living in their palm tree. Three little babies are up in the tree in plain sight. I have taken wonderful photos and videos of them. It is great for me to be able to reference some of what you wrote when telling my neighbors about their "house mates".

My daughter and I are trying to get on as volunteers at the California Raptor Center in Davis. It would be quite a drive for us, but we both would love to be surrounded by such awesome creatures.

I digress.....Bless you for pouring your heart out into the book. It touched the very inner parts of my own heart.

Best wishes,
~Stacey M., California~

YGB said...

suLooking for something else on a shelf in the library this past Monday (in Monsey, NY), I saw your book, picked up, was intrigued, and just finished it. It is truly phenomenal. An amazing, edifying, uplifting and inspiring work!

Tosh said...

You deserve it! So does Wesley and all God's creatures

Leslie said...

Dear Stacey-

Well, here is another avid East Coast fan of Wesley the Owl & Stacey O'Brien! Just finished the book this morning--thanks for the warning about the final chapters. I put off reading them as long as I could.

Thank you for sharing your amazing story! I am recommending the book to friends & family & purchasing several for gifts.

I live in Vermont, and had one awesome encounter with a barn owl (I think it was a barn owl). I was returning from class at night to my apartment, and there, perched on the crest of my neighbor's side door roof was a barn owl. This owl was simply beautiful--(perhaps a cousin of Wesley's)--he was directly across from me. I did not want to disturb him, so I just sat quietly in my car with the lights off and watched him for about 10-15 minutes. It was a beautiful moment.

My parents, who live in Northern CT, one day had an early morning visit from a Great White Owl. It truly is an honor to be visited by an owl. As you said in your book, encounters with owls, even brief ones, have strong spiritual elements to them.

Thank you again for your wonderful book, and may you continue to thrive & enjoy good health.


Brenda said...

Hello Stacey. I loved reading about Wesley. I laughed and I cried. The connection that you and he had was truly unique. I learnt lots about owls as well - I had no idea they were such complex creatures. Wesley was absolutely gorgeous and you were both lucky to have found each other. Thanks for your story, it goes into my collection of 'best ever' animal stories.
Brenda from Australia