Koehler-crop copyThis Monday, December 16, 2013, at 7 pm,  the Blue Thread universe will celebrate the launch of The Ninth Day by zooming down to a single spot on the olam: 732 NW 19th Avenue, Portland, Oregon. JOIN US! It’s officially the Koehler House, named for the German family who first lived there, but for me the angular blue-gray structure is the real-world inspiration for Miriam Josefsohn’s home in Blue Thread, a companion novel to The Ninth Day. And it’s still filled with my imaginary friends.

In the 1912 portion of Blue Thread, Miriam spends about half of her time in the house on 19th and Johnson. She sews money into her petticoats in her bedroom and washes off biblical sand in the bathroom. She argues with her parents in the parlor and disappears from the kitchen to travel back thousands of years through time and space.

The Ninth Day picks up the story of Miriam’s granddaughter, Hope Friis, in 1964, before taking Hope back to 11th century Paris. Hope lives near the corner of Roosevelt Avenue and Channing Way in Berkeley, California, far from the Portland homestead. Miriam’s old house stays in the family, though, and you can read how in the free e-book Florrie Steinbacher wrote about the rest of Miriam’s life.

The Blue Thread universe circles back to Miriam’s house in Portland in the year 2059. That’s part of the setting (the rest is 16th century Istanbul) for a mostly-still-in-my-mind third book. Current working title: Book Three. (Doh!) Hope and her family return to the house shortly after an event in the San Francisco Bay area in 1989. If you guess what that is, you’ll have a hint about one of the happenings in Book Three.  Contact me and I’ll tell you if you are right.

Hmm…. so when we celebrate the launch of The Ninth Day in a couple of days, the grown-up Hope and her family will be there. Some of them will stay on until 2059, long after the party’s over.

The launch is brought to you by Ooligan Press, with the gracious permission of the current flesh-and-blood inhabitants of Miriam’s house, the law firm of Kilmer, Voorhees & Laurick. Thanks!





  1. Carrie Kirschner says:

    I was living in San Francisco in 1989….must be the Earthquake. Quite an experience! Were you there too? Can’t wait for “Book Three”.

    • Ruth says:

      Yes, it is the earthquake, Carrie. No, I wasn’t there, and I’m eager to hear about your experience. Let’s get together cyberly or in person, so you can tell me your story. Thanks!

  2. Teresa Klepinger says:

    I knew immediately it would be the earthquake. I grew up in Los Gatos, just south of San Francisco. My parents were still living there in 1989, and it was a nightmare for them for a couple of weeks. I know of some great details you might like to work in. I hope to see you Monday, and on January 7!

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