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March 16, 1997|DENNIS McLELLAN

Kirk and Sandy Moore have been featured on the cover of People magazine as part of a story on people who believe in the intervention of angels. They appeared on an NBC special, "Angels: The Mysterious Messengers." And they've discussed angelic realm on "Entertainment Tonight," "Inside Edition" and other television shows.

Now, Kirk Moore has written a book about the power and presence of angels in their lives since 1992 when their 15-year-old, angel-fascinated daughter, Tara, died in a van accident near their Laguna Niguel home.

"Tara's Angels: One Family's Extraordinary Journey of Courage and Healing" (H.J. Kramer; $16) is Moore's first-person account of his journey through grief.

Moore, just back from a book-signing trip to Chicago, says he wrote the book "to make sense of my daughter's death and to try and understand how to move through that, the healing process for me. The story actually covers a 35-year period. It's basically my journey through life and dealing with these experiences and trying to do something positive with such a negative experience."

But much of the book, he says, also has to do with the fact that "I truly believe the spirit or the soul never dies. There is still communication or a presence if we're open to that."

Three years ago, the Moores opened Tara's Angels, a shop in San Juan Capistrano that sells angel cards, jewelry and clothing. They now have a second shop in Redondo Beach.

Did Moore, a former mortgage broker, believe in angels before his daughter died?

"I never really gave it much thought, to be honest with you," he says. "I've always been a very spiritual person and believed in God, a higher power, and angels deliver the message of God to us."

Moore doesn't like the term "obsessed" in describing the fascination over angels that his daughter developed the last six months of her life.

He says, however, that "she really understood from reading and getting in touch with angels the presence, the healing power and the guidance that they give."

And since his daughter's death, he says, he has seen signs that the angelic realm exists.

"Yes," he says, "continually."

Moore will sign "Tara's Angels" at 7 p.m. Saturday at Borders Books and Music, 429 Associated Road, Brea.


Laguna Hills writer and speaker Diana L. James has compiled and edited a book of inspirational stories in "Bounce Back: 39 Heart-Lifting, Hope-Building True Stories" (Christian Publications/Horizon Books; $10.99)

Included is the story of Liz Curtis Higgs, a onetime popular Midwest radio personality who abused drugs and alcohol before becoming a Christian humorist.

"The theme of renewal and redemption has a special tug on me," says James, who also tells her own story in her book.

"I know so many people go through tough times in their life and many times they think that they're the only ones, that everybody else has it easy," James says. "Sometimes if they hear the stories of other people who went through difficult times, it's encouraging to them to know that those people did and that they can come out on top too.

"My real purpose is to give encouragement, to give hope."

James will sign her book at 11:30 a.m. Saturday at B. Dalton in the Laguna Hills Mall. She'll also sign at 2 p.m. Saturday at Barnes & Noble in Fashion Island, Newport Beach.

Also this week:

* Susan Clayleff, author of "Babe: The Life and Legend of Babe Didrikson Zaharias," will read at 1 p.m. today at Different Drummer Books, 1294 South Coast Highway, Laguna Beach.

* Don Altman, author of "The Digital Factor: Job & Opportunity," will speak and sign at 7 p.m. Friday at Borders Books and Music, 429 Associated Road, Brea.

Susan Goldstein will discuss "Healthy Dining in Orange County," a guide to 86 Orange County restaurants, at 1 p.m. Saturday, also at Borders.

* Martin J. Smith, author of "Time Release," will sign at 2 p.m. Saturday at Barnes & Noble, 901 South Coast Drive, Costa Mesa.

* Judith Handelsman will conduct a writing workshop series on "the inner game of writing" from 9:30 to 11 a.m. beginning today at Different Drummer Books, 1294 S. Coast Highway, Laguna Beach.

* Steve Simon, author of "Newport Beach California: Celebrating 90 Years," will speak and sign at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Barnes & Noble in Huntington Beach Mall, 7777 Edinger Ave., Huntington Beach.

Send information about book-related events at least 10 days before event to: Dennis McLellan, O.C. Books & Authors, Life & Style, The Times, 1375 Sunflower Ave., Costa Mesa, CA 92626.

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