Helen and the Masters: A Portrait of a California Mystic
"A fascinating look at one family's history in the Delta, through flood, fire, earthquake and more," said one reader. "Compelling messages from Masters that I can apply to my life today," said another. This book blends biography, regional history, and an exploration of spiritualism and channeling.
Born a wealthy, cultured daughter of an East Coast publisher, and raised with family guests such as Walt Whitman and Louis Comfort Tiffany, young Helen Ellsworth came West with her husband in 1905 to ranch in the Sacramento River Delta. While raising seven children and authoring a children's book, she began an unusual practice of automatic writing - what we might call channeling today - and communicating beyond the veil. For this, she nearly wound up institutionalized.
How real were the voices she channeled? Helen's "Masters" (entities who were much like school teachers of different subjects) helped her to heal from an incurable illness, and gave startlingly accurate business advice. Along with vivid descriptions of her life in turn-of-the-century Oakland, the Delta, and the Sierra Nevada, this book explores Helen's writing process and includes passages that she channeled. You can buy it in paperback on Amazon.com.
I am Helen's first of twenty-three great-grandchildren. My impressions of our encounters were vivid, wonderful, and unforgettable. I discovered some of her writings in my father's bookshelf when I was about ten, and have felt a deep connection with and interest in her ever since then. Helen and her husband Maurits were heroes among their families and pillars of their Sacramento River Delta community; in fact, she helped to establish the church in Courtland. This book, I believe, will serve to make their story even richer.
Readers are saying Lisa Francesca takes the reader on a journey into early 20th century rural California in this captivating layering of history, storytelling, and speculation. It's an unforgettable portrayal of a woman who broke many molds. -- Kate Evans, author of Call It Wonder
I will enjoy reading it again and again. And I'll share it with friends. When reading your book I was impressed with how the lessons of 100 years ago are still relevant today. -- J. Stephen, San Jose, CA
I have such a sensory perception of what it was like to be at Esperanza and the Grove and now at Vorden. . . I have driven along the Delta on those levees many times and you have completely captured it. -- J. Clendenen, Capitola, CA
It is really an elegant book. -- L. Whitman-Raymond, Blackstone, MA
This is much more than a family book. It is a piece of literature. It is one of my favorite books. -- J. Dederer, Campbell, CA
Author event! Get ready for the 8th anniversary of LocalLit! Join us virtually on Sunday, December 6, 2020, from 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM, for a celebration of local authors and their books. Registration detail and a full list of authors available on our event page.
Contact Information I am available for author readings (solo and group) and panel discussions. Bookstore owners, please reach out for consignment copies. email: lisafrancesca (at) gmail.com facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lisafrancescawriter