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My thanks to the following people for their invaluable input:

For their excellent comments on the full manuscript (in the proverbial alphabetical order): Kathy Affeldt, Angie Boytner, Kate Dolan, Charles Gannon, K.D. Hays, Aly Parsons, and Kate Poole. To Aly's Writing Group for their insightful critique of scenes: Aly Parsons, with Al Carroll, Bob Chase, Charles Gannon, John Hemry, J.G. Huckenpöhler, Simcha Kuritzky, Michael LaViolette, Bud Sparhawk, and Connie Warner. I've been fortunate to work with a wonderful group of people at Baen Books (Simon & Schuster): to my publisher and editor, Toni Weisskopf; to Laura Haywood-Cory, Hank Davis, Marla Ainspan, Jim Minz, Danielle Turner, copyeditor Ruth Judkowitz, and all the other fine people who did such a great job making this book possible. My thanks to my excellent agent, Eleanor Wood, of Spectrum Literary Agency; and my publicist Binnie Braunstein for her enthusiasm and hard work on my behalf.

One of the pleasures of doing this book was the music CD that came out of it. I would like to thank Point Valid, the alternative rock band that collaborated with me to turn Diamond Star into a rock opera: Hayim Ani, lead vocals, lead guitar, and co-producer; Adam Leve, drums; and Max Vidaver, guitar. Hayim also wrote music for many of the songs, together with Point Valid, and lyrics for three. The lyrics for all our songs appear at the end of the book.

My thanks to the professionals who worked with us to make the CD a reality: none of it could have happened without Dave Nachodsky of Invisible Sound Studios, our co-producer, recording engineer, and mentor; also to Rebecca Ocampo, my incredible vocal coach, and everyone at the Laurel School of Music; photographers Stephen Baranovics, Miriam Ani, and Paul Cory; Stephen Baranovics also for the videos, and Ben Caruthers; Rick Purcell of MasurLaw for his advice and knowledge; guest artists Russell Wilson, Michael Belinkie, Dave NAchodsky, Joe Rinaolo, Miriam Ani, and Michael Williams; and for their concert work, the rock band Chasing Seraphim, with Michael Williams (drums), Joel Hinck (vocals and guitar), and Hunter Schafer (bass). To the many gifted young artists who also helped make it happen: Amber Dawn Butler, David Dalrymple, Dina Eagle, Sholom Dov Ber Eagle, Ayelet (Yelli) Lobel, Evan Margolis, Victoria McDaniel, David Michelson, and Reuven Weisberg. My thanks also to all the parents who were there giving encouragement and support.

A heart felt thanks to the shining lights in my life, my husband John Cannizzo, and my daughter Cathy, for their love and support.



Author's Note

The CD for the Diamond Star rock opera can be downloaded from iTunes or ordered from Starflight Music:

Starflight Music
9400 Snowden River Parkway, Suite 110
Columbia, Maryland 21045

Samples of the songs are available at the website.



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