Glowing 4-Star Review for Punch Line on Amazon!


Reviewed in Canada on by Ruby Densmore on June 18, 2020


Excellent read. I couldn’t put it down.

Nice love story between two people who didn’t believe they were worthy of love.

Tall People Are NOT Smarter!

By Kathleen Jones, The Quirky Novelist. Please sign up for free updates at ‪ 

According to a 2006 study by researchers from Princeton University (see taller people earn more money because, presumably, they’re smarter.

I think the Princeton researchers were wrong.

On the surface, the researchers’ conclusions, based on their research, seem convincing. But they could still be wrong! The world is full of smart, accomplished people who are short on inches but not on brains. For some reason, the Princeton study conveniently ignores them.

Scientists Aren’t Always Right!

The scientific community has been proven wrong before. In 1959, Canadian regulators approved the drug Thalidomide for pregnant women, but it was later found to cause birth defects ( Also, at one time, scientists believed—wrongly, as it turned out—that the size of the universe had always been the same size and that it would never change (

Just like the rest of us, scientists can be influenced by biases, in this case, by height bias. It’s not unreasonable to assume that these scientists could have concluded—perhaps unconsciously—that shorter people are less intelligent and capable because they look a lot less imposing than their taller counterparts. Such a bias could very well have influenced the information the scientists were looking for and the way they interpreted it.

Far too many people think that scientists are infallible. And what’s most disheartening about the results of this study is the fact that nobody challenged the Princeton researchers. Height bias is so widespread in our society that many people are not really aware of it.

The reality is that height has nothing to do with intelligence, as these 20 famous short smarties prove:


Dr. Joyce Brothers (1927-2013), 5’, was called “the mother of television psychology” by the Washington Post. A very popular psychologist and television personality, she wrote a daily newspaper advice column from 1960 to 2013.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 5’, is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. She is the second female justice to be confirmed to the Court, after Sandra Day O’Connor.

Judge Judy (Judith Sheindlin), 5’1”, an American lawyer, former judge, television personality, producer, and author, has been the star of her own successful Daytime Emmy-Award winning reality courtroom series, Judge Judy, since 1996.

Chrystia Freeland, 5’2”, an award-winning journalist and politician, is the Deputy Prime Minister of Canada.

Rachel Notley, 5’2”, is a Canadian politician and the former Premier of Alberta. She’s also a lawyer and a graduate of the venerable Osgoode Hall Law School.

Joan Rivers (1933-2014), 5’2”, a ground breaking female comedian, launched her phenomenally successful career in the 1950’s, a time when female stand-up acts were rare.

Tori Amos, 5’2”, is an accomplished American singer-songwriter, pianist, and composer. She is also a classically-trained musician who won a full scholarship to the Peabody Institute at Johns Hopkins University at the age of five.

Bette Davis (1908-1989), 5’2.5”, is widely regarded as one of the greatest actresses in Hollywood history. A two-time Academy Award winner for Best Actress, she was the first person to earn ten Academy Award nominations for acting.

Carole King, 5’3.5”, an American composer and singer-songwriter, wrote or co-wrote 118 pop hits on the Billboard Hot 100 chart between 1955 and 1999.

Margaret Atwood, 5’4”, is a celebrated Canadian poet, novelist, literary critic, and environmental activist. She has won the Booker Prize, Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the Prince of Asturias Award for Literature.


Robert Reich, 4’10”, a distinguished American professor and author, served in the administrations of Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter and was Secretary of Labor under President Bill Clinton.

Martin Scorsese, 5’3”, an Oscar-winning director, is widely regarded as one of the most significant and influential filmmakers in movie history.

Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948), 5’4”, lead India’s independence from British rule. Famous for employing nonviolent civil disobedience, he inspired movements for civil rights and freedoms around the world.

Pablo Picasso (1881-1973), 5’4”, is considered one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. He is known for developing a wide range of artistic styles, including Cubism and collage.

Charlie Chaplin (1889-1977), 5’4”, an English comedian, filmmaker, and composer, was one of the most important figures in movie making history. His career lasted an impressive 75 years.

Dr. David Suzuki, 5’4”, is a Canadian science broadcaster, academic, and environmental activist. He was a professor in the genetics department at the University of British Columbia from 1963 until his retirement in 2001. He is also a Companion of the Order of Canada.

Dick Cavett, 5’6.5”, an American television personality and former talk show host, was known for his intelligent conversational style and in-depth discussions.

Albert Einstein, (1879-1955), 5’7”, a brilliant German-born theoretical physicist, developed the theory of relativity, one of the two pillars (with quantum mechanics) of modern physics.

Paul Krugman, 5’7”, is an American economist who won the 2008 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. He is currently a Distinguished Professor of Economics at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and a columnist for the New York Times.

Martin Luther King, Jr. (1929-1968), 5’7”, an American Baptist minister and activist, was the most visible spokesperson and leader in the Civil Rights Movement. In 1964, he won the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolent resistance.

photo credit: Scott McLeod Troublemaker via photopin (license)


Kathleen Jones is a moderately short (5’2.5”) author. Her first novel, Love Is the Punch Line, a midlife romance set in the world of stand-up comedy, is available NOW, in trade paperback and ebook from ( and Indigo Books and Music ( Visit the Love Is the Punch LineMedia Room at

The Green Novelist: Rescuing a Beloved Hat

photo credit: Neal3K Handle With Care via photopin (license)

A series of posts by a Toronto-based novelist who’s trying to reduce her carbon footprint by making more thoughtful choices in her daily life.

Around 2009, I purchased—for the reasonable sum of $70—a gorgeous winter hat from upscale retailer Holt Renfrew (then known for its great assortment of hats) in downtown Toronto. The hat, made in Italy for Holts, was a 1920’s-style cloche that perfectly suited my vintage aesthetic: chocolate brown wool felt adorned in front with a cluster of satin roses in shades of beige, camel, and taupe, mixed with a couple of roses in deep brown velvet.

Every year or two, I dropped off my hat at The Hatter (a Toronto store that sells men’s hats) for a thorough cleaning. But by the spring of 2019, the brim, subjected to years of wear and tear, was badly misshapen. The Hatter cleaned the hat but they were unable to restore its original shape. I considered replacing the hat . . . but I didn’t really want to. I love this unique hat, I know I’ll never find another one to replace it, and above all, I didn’t want to create more waste by throwing it out.

Donating it to a second-hand shop wasn’t an option because—to be frank—who is going to buy a misshapen hat?

So I set out on a quest to rescue my hat. After a brief online search, I found a shop that restores the shape of women’s hats: David Dunkley Fine Millinery at 974 Bathurst St., just north of Bloor ( This charming shop, which sells its own exquisite women’s hats, replaced the worn-out wire from the brim of my cloche and magically restored its shape! I wound up with a hat that looks just as beautiful as it did on the day I purchased it, at a price (approximately $45) that was much lower than the cost of a comparable new hat.

Best of all, I was able to avoid adding more junk to the planet!

Visit Kathleen Jones, The Quirky Novelist, online at or on Twitter at and sign up for free updates at ‪  Kathleen’s first novel, Love Is the Punch Line, a midlife romance set in the world of stand-up comedy, is available NOW, in trade paperback and ebook from ( and Indigo Books and Music ( Visit the Love Is the Punch Line Media Room at







Chamein Canton’s New 4-Star Rave Review for Love Is the Punch Line

Posted by Chamein Canton on on April 18, 2020:


Very enjoyable romance with a fresh perspective

I was lucky enough to become aware of Love Is The Punch Line. I found it to be funny with romance in all the right places. I appreciated the perspective of comedy in romance and not in a formulaic rom-com way. As a reader, I enjoyed the deft way the author handles comedic and romantic elements of the story to an enjoyable conclusion.

New 4-Star Rave Review for Love Is the Punch Line from Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews!

Posted on Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews on March 30, 2020: (

Witty and intense

Jones pens a unique and raw story in Love Is the Punch Line. I haven’t read anything from this author before, and I really enjoyed this story. The characters were raw and very real. Reader, enter the world of comedy clubs and an adventure in romance. The author’s writing style is smart and while balancing romance with the raw lifestyle of comedy and fame (or fall of fame). The author brings Josh and Holly’s story to life. There is a great chemistry between the characters, and a depth that makes them realistic and flawed. Josh and Holly’s connection is not forced. A very well-written story, and I enjoyed it. The author’s technique of intense and believable characters and great plotlines is a gift. I look forward to reading more by this author. This book is a definite recommendation by Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews.

I received this book free in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. ~Amy’s Bookshelf Reviews


How Not to Get Reviews for Your Book

By Kathleen Jones, The Quirky Novelist. Please sign up for free updates at ‪ 

First-time authors who are looking for book reviews, beware! There are a number of dicey schemes out there that will waste your precious time and money. I pursued several of them after I published my first novel, a quirky midlife romance (Love Is the Punch Line) in 2018. Here’s a couple that weren’t worth the effort:

  • Ebook Contests and Giveaways: I did a number of ebook giveaways on Goodreads, LibraryThing, and various fan sites catering to fans of romance novels. I also sponsored a contest, offering the winner a $25 gift card on Amazon. Even though dozens of people responded to these offers, I got exactly ONE review! And the giveaways were a huge drain on my time, as I had to send my ebook to dozens of people, then follow up with them a few months later.
  • BookCrossing: BookCrossing promises to give authors greater exposure for their books. The author registers their book online, gives a copy of the book to another person (usually, a stranger), and asks that person to review the book, pass it along to someone else, then record their actions on BookCrossing’s site. I gave my book to a woman who promised to do all of these things; however, one year later, the copy I donated has vanished from the face of the earth. Once again, no reviews!


photo credit: JavaJoba Smyrna Library Private Room via photopin (license)

Kathleen Jones’ first novel, Love Is the Punch Line, a midlife romance set in the world of stand-up comedy, is available NOW, in trade paperback and ebook from and the Love Is the Punch Line Media Room at

A Comedian’s 5-Star Review of Love Is the Punch Line!

Posted by Ward Anderson on Goodreads on December 2, 2019 (

This is a truly heartwarming, romantic, and engaging read. And it’s also a pretty good look at the life (and Love-life) of those in the comedy world. Jones manages to understand the industry, and the people involved in it, without resorting to old cliches about comedians or their relationships. Mostly, it’s a very enjoyable read, with fun and engaging characters. There’s a lot of heart and a lot of fun to be had here. Give it a read; you’ll enjoy it.

Glowing Review for Punch Line!

Posted by Carol Perkes on Goodreads, October 20, 2019:

It is unusual for me to read a book in two days but I just wanted to find out what finally happened after all the ups and downs in Holly and Josh’s relationship. I couldn’t see what Holly saw in Josh but wanted their relationship to succeed anyway. Lots of laughs but moments of pity and sadness for the characters too. This book would make a great screenplay, Kathleen. Very original storytelling!


Author Kathleen Jones will be signing copies of her novel Love Is the Punch Line at two locations:

IndigoSpirit: First Canadian Place, 100 King Street West (King and Bay), Toronto

When: Tuesday, February 4, 2020, 12:00 noon to 2:30 p.m.

Indigo: Yorkdale Mall, 3401 Dufferin St., Toronto

When: Saturday, February 8, 2020, 12:00 noon to 4:00 p.m.

Petite Women Are STILL No Longer Welcome at the Eaton Centre’s Department Stores in Toronto!!!

By Kathleen Jones, The Quirky Novelist. Please sign up for free updates at ‪ 

This a revised version of a post originally published on October 1, 2019 at

 As I observed in my earlier post, which was originally published online on October 1, 2018, petite women in Toronto are no longer welcome at the Eaton Centre’s department stores in downtown Toronto. The three department stores in and around Toronto’s Eaton Centre mall—Saks, Nordstrom, and Hudson’s Bay—still offer almost no clothing for petite women. And this situation had not improved at all when I visited these stores again in the fall of 2019.

Every woman, regardless of her shape or size or height, should be able to find chic and flattering clothes that fit. If only the fashion world felt that way.

Most women’s clothing is sized to fit a woman of about 5’5” and won’t fit shorter women properly. Just shortening a garment won’t make it fit; it needs to be entirely re-proportioned so that the neckline, waistline, pockets, and hem all sit at the appropriate place on the body.

The fashion industry offers clothing in petite sizes for women who are 5’4” and under. The average woman’s height in North America is around 5’3”. Clearly, petite women are far from rare, yet they’re offered limited choices, mostly basic styles in shoddy fabrics. And those choices, which were never extensive in the first place, have been shrinking over the last ten years, as department stores closed their petite departments.

Let’s take a closer look at the three culprits: in the Eaton Centre:


Saks continues to ignore the petite woman. No petite-sized clothing is available from their U.S. website; even worse, when I sent an email to Saks asking about their plans (if any) to carry petite-sized clothing, I did not receive a response.

Consequently, I haven’t updated my entry on Saks (below) from last year. There’s  nothing to update:

In early 2016, Saks Fifth Avenue, an American department store known for its high-end fashion offerings, opened its first store in Canada. The local media gushed about the luxurious store’s first location in Toronto’s Eaton Centre mall, noting its extensive line of exclusive designer clothing. About fifteen years ago, I used to shop at Saks when I visited the U.S. Their store in Denver’s Cherry Creek Mall had an impressive petite department—I’m 5’2.5”—with a wide range of beautiful clothing. I remember buying a petite-sized Ellen Tracy denim jacket there; it had gorgeous ivory top stitching and a blouson shape. I decided to visit the Toronto Saks store to see what all of the fuss was about. I wasn’t impressed.

The Toronto store doesn’t offer a single item—not one single item—in petite sizes. The store’s website doesn’t, either. When I emailed the store to ask about their petite sized offerings, a representative told me that (1) Saks does offer petites in some of their stores, (2) I wouldn’t be able to find petite sizes on their website (no kidding!), and (3) if I wanted to find petite clothing, I would need to contact individual stores in the U.S. Apparently, Saks abandoned its petite department in 2006 for reasons that remain unclear to this very day. When their petite-sized customers complained, the store brought back its petite department, but it seems to have disappeared again. In the meantime, they’ve expanded their plus-sized clothing department and now offer pieces by such high end labels as Eileen Fisher and Lafayette 148. Come to think of it, Lafayette 148 also makes glorious clothing in petite sizes, but you can’t buy it at Saks, or (apparently) anywhere else in Toronto, even though there are probably a lot of petite-sized Toronto women who could afford it.

Toronto’s fashion media might be in love with Saks, but I refuse to shop there, not even if I suddenly become rich, not even when their clothing goes on sale, not ever. Because I, the customer, shouldn’t have to do the work of contacting individual stores to find something, anything in my size. Obviously, the people running Saks don’t value people with bodies my size, so why on earth should I give them my hard-earned money?

The upshot: Saks obviously doesn’t want petite women to buy their clothing; they don’t even know that we exist! Don’t bother with them.

What you can do: Nothing. The people who run Saks are living on another planet.


Nordstrom prides itself on the “size inclusivity” of its women’s clothing. That may (or may not) be true for Nordstrom’s U.S. stores (which I admit I haven’t visited for several years), but that’s not at all true for its Canadian stores, not by a long shot.

In October 2018, Brandon Gross, the manager for Nordstrom’s Eaton Centre location in Toronto, told me that his store planned to add petite-sized clothing by the fall of 2019. But when I re-visited that location in October 2019, I discovered that it only carried two brands—Eileen Fisher and Halogen—in petites.

When I contacted Mr. Gross to ask about Nordstrom’s plans to expand its petite offerings, he put me in touch with Whitney Buczkowski, the Divisional Retail Merchandiser, Women’s Apparel, for Nordstrom Canada. Ms. Buczkowski acknowledged the Canadian stores’ limited offerings in petites, and she told me that she does share customer feedback with the store’s merchant teams in Seattle to expand its extended size (including petite) offerings.

The upshot: Nordstrom has not, to date, lived up to its reputation as a “size inclusive” shopping destination for petite women. Of course, petite women can still order clothing online from Nordstrom’s U.S. website, but they shouldn’t have to do this! They—like taller women—need to be able to try on clothing in the store, and they shouldn’t have to bear the extra cost of having clothing shipped from the U.S. In other words, why should women be financially penalized for being short?

 What you can do: Email Whitney Buczkowski (, and tell her that you want Nordstrom’s Canadian locations to expand its offerings in petite sizes. Also, let her know which petite-sized brands you would like to see in Nordstrom’s Canadian locations (refer to Nordstrom’s website at

Hudson’s Bay

Last fall, my visit to the Hudson’s Bay location in the Eaton Centre was a dispiriting experience.

Believe it or not, this year’s visit, in October 2019, was even worse.

Last year, the store offered a few stray pieces in petite sizes. Now, it has nothing—and I mean NOTHING—in petites.

The Bay’s online petite offerings have also gotten worse. Once upon a time (just a year or two ago), you could buy Lauren Ralph Lauren clothing in petite sizes from the Bay, not only online but also in many of its stores. Not anymore. The Bay has removed all RLR petites from its website and stores, but continues to offer RLR clothing in Misses and Plus sizes! And (of course), the store does not offer any other designer petite brands (save for a few pieces from Eileen Fisher).

I emailed Richard Montgomery, Vice-President and General Manager, to ask him about the lack of petite clothing at the Bay’s Eaton Centre store. Mr. Montgomery forwarded my email to the store’s Senior Vice-President for Ladies’ Wear; he promised to pass on her comments. To date, I have not heard back from him.

The upshot: Petite women who are unwilling to settle for unsophisticated, poorly made, and (mostly) synthetic clothing should look elsewhere.

What you can do: Email Richard Montgomery, Vice-President and General Manager ( and ask him about the lack of petite clothing at the Bay’s Eaton Centre store and about the absence of quality petite clothing on the store’s website.

Petite women, it’s all about self-respect. Don’t shop at the Eaton Centre’s department stores (Saks, Nordstrom, and Hudson’s Bay) until they start to offer a decent selection of quality petite-sized clothing, and don’t shop at any other store that refuses to carry clothing in your size range.

 If you want to purchase good quality clothing that actually fits you, try Neiman Marcus (online), Talbots, or my personal favourite, Brooks Brothers, which carries some of the fashion-forward items from its Zak Posen line in petite sizes. A lot of the clothing from Brooks’ regular-sized Red Fleece line fits petites well, too. Custom-made clothing (from a dressmaker or tailor) is another option.

Please share your experiences. Did you contact Saks, Nordstrom, and Hudson’s Bay? If so, how did they respond?

Visit Kathleen Jones, The Quirky Novelist, online at or on Twitter at and sign up for free updates at ‪  Kathleen’s first novel, Love Is the Punch Line, a midlife romance set in the world of stand-up comedy, is available NOW, in trade paperback and ebook from ( and Indigo Books and Music ( Visit the Love Is the Punch Line Media Room at


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