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Donna Morrissey Books In Order

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Publication Order of Sylvanus Now Books

Sylvanus Now (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
What They Wanted (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Fortunate Brother (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Kit's Law (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon
Downhill Chance (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Deception Of Livvy Higgs (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon
Rage the Night (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Children's Books

Cross Katie Kross (2012)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Memoirs

Donna Morrissey is a Canadian author that has won numerous awards for her books which are set in the coastal Newfoundland Communities. The author has been praised for writing real stories about real people dealing with real problems.


Donna was born in 1956 in Newfoundland, specifically at the beaches. The author grew up in a community whose economy is directly tied to cod fishing.

Donna was herself initially integrated into the fishing industry. And she was pretty satisfied spending her days putting worms on hooks. With a close family and a couple of kids eventually coming into the picture, Donna seemed set to continue her existence as a member of the coastal Newfoundland community.

Things changed when Donna got a little sick and decided to consult a local doctor. This was when she was in her early 30s. The doctor carried out a few tests, looked at her symptoms and basically decided that she had tetanus.

An East Indian fellow working a six-month stretch as an intern, the doctor gave Donna Morrissey mere months to live. Donna thinks he was driven to the diagnosis because India was struggling with tetanus at the time.

Donna’s father wasn’t convinced by the diagnosis, mostly because he was sure that Donna had received all her shots. The idea that she was going to die from tetanus seemed ridiculous. When the doctor called Donna sometime later, she expected him to reverse his diagnosis.

Instead, he went on to tell her all the symptoms she would suffer down the line. Even with the support of her parents, Donna could barely hold it together. And she had a good reason to be afraid. For one thing, the author had lost her brother in an accident not that long ago.

The event had left her traumatized, and the situation wasn’t improved when Donna Morrissey’s best friend passed away mere months after her brother’s funeral. That she would be the next one to perish following the death of two people she was so close to hit home for Donna.

She couldn’t bring herself to doubt the diagnosis. She had, even more, to worry about than most because Donna had young kids to think about.

The fatal diagnosis was eventually proven false. It turned out that Donna was just dealing with generalized anxiety. Despite the seemingly innocuous nature of the ailment, Donna’s situation was such that she had been forced to abandon her work at the fish plant for several months.

She never went back there, even after learning that she wasn’t going to die. Rather, Donna Morrissey was inspired to go forward and to pursue life with vigor. She especially determined to learn as much as she could about her condition.

As such, Donna enrolled at St. John’s Memorial University in Newfoundland. She acquired a Social Work Degree and an Adult Education Diploma. Donna tried to put her skills to good use. She worked as a Social Worker for more than a year before realizing that she didn’t really like it.

In fact, Donna Morrissey only pursued the Adult Education Diploma because she was tired of social work. Her divorce took place during those years. The Diploma was a godsend. The author met an instructor who recognized her abilities as a writer and encouraged her to pursue publishing.

Donna was uncertain. She thought social work might still be her calling. It took a lot of persuading and pushing for her instructor to get it through her head that she was meant to be a writer.

Once she sat down to write those first few sentences, Donna never looked back. The author accepts that the misdiagnosis changed her life. It led her down a path she might have never taken otherwise. At no point in her life had Donna Morrissey ever considered writing for a living.

It wasn’t even a dream or a consideration. The misdiagnosis changed all that. However, Donna doesn’t like to overly praise the misdiagnosis as some sort of heaven-sent gift. Donna has frequently stated in interviews that she was perfectly happy doing her fishing work.

The misdiagnosis didn’t save her from a hellish existence as some critics have been known to conclude. She was content spending her days putting worms on hooks. But she accepts that writing is a great career. She enjoys what she does.

The author’s books revolve around a family in Newfoundland that must overcome life’s many struggles in order to make sense of their lives. The books, which have won numerous awards and been translated into foreign languages like Japanese, are reminiscent of Donna’s own life.

The author hasn’t been afraid to use her own tragic past as source material for the stories she tells. Her stories do not always have a plot. But she has been commended for writing amazing female protagonists.

The one thing Donna Morrissey doesn’t like is being compared to Annie Proulx. Donna was never a fan of Annie’s books. In fact, she has admitted to completely detesting her work. She doesn’t appreciate the manner in which Proulx parodies Newfoundland.

+Kit’s Law

Kit Pitman is a fourteen-year-old girl that lives a life of isolation. From her ramshackle cottage, the only people she ever sees are the fishermen on the outer banks of Newfoundland.

Kit isn’t completely certain about her origins. After all, her family isn’t the most conventional, what with a retarded mother that is always running wild and a difficult grandmother that works hard to keep them all safe from the judgmental eyes of the community.

The death of Lizzie, the grandmother, leaves Kit and her in a precarious position. Kit isn’t sure how they will survive the harsh realities of life.

Donna Morrissey’s debut novel finds a mother and daughter facing considerable peril when the grandmother who protected them dies. With the town folk suddenly determined to send them away, Kit will need all the help she can get to protect her childlike mother.

+Sylvanus Now

Sylvanus Now isn’t a complicated man. He has his eyes set on Adelaide, one of the finest beauties Newfoundland has to offer. And to woo her, the fisherman is going to need a suit. But he must first catch enough fish to buy one, though he doesn’t know exactly how many fish he will need.

Adelaide doesn’t care for her fish-loving community or the sea. She just wants to get away from the troubles of her family. The result is a tale of love and loss in a floundering community.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Donna Morrissey

2 Responses to “Donna Morrissey”

  1. Linda Jennings: 7 months ago

    I so enjoyed this book, could not put it down.
    She is a great author, a sure sign is if an author can stir your emotions, which she did.

  2. Rowena Marshall: 8 months ago

    i am busy reading Kits law and i literally cannot put it down. what a wonderful book!!!


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