Book Review: An Invisible Thread

Looking for a good holiday read? An Invisible Thread, which accounts the unlikely friendship between Long Island native Laura Schroff, a successful ad exec, and Maurice Maczyk, an 11-year old panhandler, is one of this season’s most heart-warming stories.

The book’s title comes from an ancient Chinese proverb, which deems an invisible thread “connects those who are destined to meet, regardless of time, place and circumstance.” Laura and Maurice’s thread was connected one afternoon back in 1986, when young Maurice, who had not eaten for a day and a half, asked Laura, then 35, for spare change on the street outside her Manhattan apartment. When he explained that he was hungry, she took him for lunch at McDonald’s, and afterwards, for a walk through Central Park. The two shared meals, conversations, and small celebrations for the next 25 years.

Readers will cheer on this pair from vastly different worlds who agree to come together weekly for food and friendship. Maurice’s life reads like a modern-day Dickens tale. He barely knew his father and his mother was a drug addict. He grew up in some of New York City’s toughest housing projects and welfare hotels in the worst neighborhoods. Until he met Laura, he had never known anyone with a job. Knowing Maurice, meanwhile, allowed Laura to satisfy a maternal desire that remained unfulfilled despite two marriages (she writes in the book’s afterward, “Maurice was and is the child I always wanted and dreamed of having”). Weaved between Maurice’s heartbreaking hardships are Laura’s recollections of a suburban LI childhood that was happy on the surface but darkened by an alcoholic father’s abusive rages. She knew first-hand that Maurice, trying to make sense of a chaotic world with unpredictable adults, needed a sense of stability and reliability, and in their weekly meetings, she was happy to provide that to him.

An Invisible Thread is a quick read. Rachael Ray, who welcomed the pair on her show when the book debuted in early November, declared she finished it in one sitting; after seeing Laura and Maurice speak with co-author Alex Tresniowski at Huntington’s Book Revue, I purchased and read the entire book in a weekend (and I’ve got two kids in diapers!)

Chris Gardner, bestselling author of The Pursuit of Happyness says “An Invisible Thread is a story about the power each of us has to elevate some else’s life…” Indeed, busy parents will surely be inspired by this book, refreshed by its message of hope and grateful for its gentle reminder of what an honor and privilege it is to care for children.

Laura Schroff and Maurice Maczyk at Book Revue in Huntington

Meet Kim Biello Sarrosick

Kim Biello Sarrosick has written 5 post in this blog.

Kim Biello Sarrosick was born and raised on Long Island and currently lives with her husband and children in Nassau County. She is the proud mother of two boys born 51 weeks apart: Andrew, 18 months, and Alex, 6 months. A graduate of Vassar College and Columbia University, Kim has worked as a teacher and tutor to middle and high school students for the past ten years.


  1. Bob Biello says:

    Great Review! I will definitely be reading “An Invisible Thread” soon.

  2. I’m proud to say Laura Schroff was a colleague of mine when I worked at In Style magazine. I had no idea about her relationship with Maurice.

    I bought the book 2 days ago and can’t put it down. I’ve been telling everyone who will listen about it! It’s a terrific story that everyone would love! I highly recommend this book and hope it will be made into a movie soon :)

    Congrats to Laura and Maurice

  3. This book proves how one small act of kindness can be a life changer. Truly heartwarming and inspirational, a book that will affect your outlook on life

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