“I’ve always had an appreciation for the constant balancing act between career and family and for women in the arts it can be a high wire act.”
Okimoto, who was born in 1942 in Cleveland, Ohio, knows of what she speaks. An acclaimed children’s author, playwright, retired psychotherapist, wife, mother, and grandmother, she has worn many hats since Putnam published her first book in 1978.
With The Love Ceiling, her eighteenth book and one she calls “my debut novel for my own age group,” Okimoto delivers a charming and poignant exploration of a long marriage and the conflicts that arise in both in retirement and in parenting adult children. The roles of a woman in her sixties: wife, mother, grandmother and artist are richly drawn with complexity and depth.
Many of the themes resonate for women across generations, but the author is especially passionate about reaching older women, a huge segment of the population which Okimoto feels has not been well served by large publishers. With rave reviews from early readers and endorsers such as Christiane Northrup, MD author and host of the PBS television special Mother-Daughter Wisdom, Okimoto’s debut adult novel is fast becoming a book club favorite.
The Love Ceiling won top honors in the 2009 Next Generation Indie Book Awards adding to the author’s numerous awards which include Smithsonian Notable Book, the American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults, the Washington Governor’s Award, the Green Earth Book Award, and the International Reading Association Readers Choice Award. Jean Davies Okimoto’s books and short stories have been translated into Japanese, Italian, Chinese, Turkish, German, and Hebrew. A resident of the Pacific Northwest since 1968, Jeanie Okimoto and her husband live on Vashon Island near Seattle.