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Fannie’s Tale: A Biography in Letters of Fannie Turk, by Judith Werner

Fannie’s remarkable journey begins with her birth into a religious Jewish family in Poland, followed by her immigration to New York City’s Lower East Side as a young girl. For forty-five years, she practiced dentistry in New York before retiring with her husband to Miami Beach. Despite retiring, Fannie’s enduring passion for communication led her to embrace a new role as a columnist for a small newspaper, building upon a lifetime of avid letter-writing.

Her remarkable journey is chronicled through a collection of papers left to her granddaughter, Judith, which include a fairy tale penned for Judith in childhood. Fannie’s life mirrored the adventures of her fairy-tale princess, spanning from a rural Polish village to becoming a dentist in New York during WWII and ultimately to her beloved role as an “old lady gossip columnist” in Miami Beach. Along the way, Fannie forged meaningful connections with people she encountered, from neighborhood children to renowned celebrities like Cassius Clay and Jackie Gleason.

Fannie’s Tale is both biography and memoir, recounting the extraordinary life of Judith Werner’s grandmother in her own words.

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