Joann C. Odenwelder
Writing because she has to...

    Joann C. Odenwelder was a small child when her family moved to Texas. Though not native, she feels Texan through and through. 

    Joann's writing draws on her relationships with the fascinating women she has known over the years. Some were strong, others vulnerable, and none thought of themselves as particularly fascinating. They often lived in difficult times that were extremely challenging for women. They all have a story.

    When she isn’t writing or working with clients in her real estate business, Joann indulges in one of her other pastimes: running, cycling, flying Hopper Chopper (the experimental helicopter her husband and she built) gardening, or simply observing the natural world right outside her study window.

     Annie Capelli, the main character in her first novel THIRTEEN BUTTONHOLES, is based on her mother who told many stories of being young and in love during World War II and working in a Navy uniform mill.

 THIRTEEN BUTTONHOLES is World War II Historical Fiction.

Read review at the Art Institute of Pittsburg: 

Read review at Book Cove Reviews

Read more reviews on and Barnes&

Joann sent Thirteen Buttonholes to Laura Bush in January 2009 as thanks her for service to our country, and received a very gracious letter from the Former First Lady in return.



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Watching Annie move her family away from her beloved home in Pennsylvania to her newly adopted state of Texas is difficult, at best, but becomes even harder as her world begins to fall apart. The writing is insightful and the story riveting.
S. Morton, Minneapolis, Minn. (6/08)

“Thirteen Buttonholes” is an incredible story about one woman’s life and how she overcame adversity…Annie had no idea how strong she could be, until she found herself without any choices…This story is written so vividly, and with a great deal of emotion. The details of the times and places were very realistic…more like an autobiography than a fictional story. (Annie’s) relationship issues were timeless. Most women will be able to relate to her story…“Thirteen Buttonholes” is a great story…a wonderful selection for women’s reader groups.  Reader Views (3/08)


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