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Monthly Archives: March 2013

Introducing Author Michael J. Sullivan’s Books

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Michael-John-Sullivan

Michael John Sullivan

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Michael John Sullivan, Author of two books and a novelette, was homeless at the age of 23 after watching his mother — his protector in a dysfunctional family — die from cancer. A year later his father asked him to leave. Riding a New York City subway train at night, his only companion was a green plastic bag of belongings. During these bleak days he began writing his most reflective and emotional childhood and adult memories now featured in two of his novels.
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Necessary-Heartbreak

Necessary Heartbreak

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Necessary Heartbreak

Michael Stewart has lost his faith and is overwhelmed by the demands of raising his precocious fourteen-year-old daughter Elizabeth. When he and Elizabeth find a cellar door in the floor of a church basement, they discover a tunnel that transports them back in time to Jerusalem during the tumultuous last week of Christ’s life. There they encounter numerous characters including Leah, a grieving widow; a menacing soldier who is determined to take Elizabeth as his own; Judas on the last night of his life; and a close-up of the man, Jesus. Trapped in the past, Michael comes face to face with some of his most limiting beliefs and realizes he must open himself up to the possibility of a deeper faith in people, himself, and love if he is to ever find his way home.

A captivating and spiritual tale, Necessary Heartbreak will leave readers moved and transported.

256 pages, $10.69  Amazon.com/dp/B0033DDIVY

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Everybodys-Daughter

Everybodys Daughter

 

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Everybody’s Daughter

What if you had a chance to ask a loved one for forgiveness – after they died? What would you say?
Would you give up your own lifetime of happiness for someone else?
Michael Stewart confronts these questions as he travels back in time through a mysterious tunnel in an old church when the Romans ruled with brutal violence and Jesus preached his peaceful message. 

His Teenage daughter Elizabeth soon follows Michael, but is surprised to discover that her father is nowhere to be found. Little does she know that Michael has returned safely to the present, leaving her to battle a vicious Roman soldier.

Separated by centuries, Michael is trapped to fight his own battles in the present day. Elizabeth’s disappearance, and the discovery of her blood in his car ignites a rush of judgment as the FBI focuses on him as a person of interest. Michael’s only hope for saving his daughter rests in the hands of his best friend – a local pastor with secrets of his own – and a mysterious old journal containing tales of miracles within the walls of the old church itself.

Thrilling and suspenseful, Everybody’s Daughter takes readers on a miraculous journey of their own, where salvation can be found in acts of sacrifice and hope remains forever eternal through the passage of a tunnel.

330 pages, $3.47  Amazon.com/dp/B007A2SQ8O

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An-Angel-Comes-Home

An Angel Comes Home

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Novelette “AN ANGEL COMES HOME”
Michael John Sullivan: “Over the past decade I’ve been working on a time-travel trilogy, occasionally reflecting back to my childhood and young adult experiences and incorporating it into the plot. While the hardships of spending nights riding a subway train were an emotional and sometimes physical burden for me, there’s been a wonderful conclusion to this period of time.”

“I’ve been able to heal while writing NECESSARY HEARTBREAK and EVERYBODY’S DAUGHTER . It’s also given me a chance to reflect upon the story and the characters and what they truly mean to me. I decided to write a prequel to EVERYBODY’S DAUGHTER, a novelette. I felt it important that the reader should know who George Farmer was in more detail and to bridge the gap between the two books.”

“There’s a twist, too, in showing the relationship between Pastor Dennis, Michael Stewart, and George Farmer. George was a man of strength, love, faith and hope. Perhaps someday you’ll run into someone like him. Or better yet, you already have.”

99c   Amazon.com/dp/B00B7FIJHI

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Enjoy Sullivan’s books as much as his many readers did:  “I’ve been truly blessed with the opportunity to review all these wonderful novels and if you haven’t read any of them, you are truly in for a treasure. ” and “Eagerly awaiting Sullivan’s next book. ”

Michael J. Sullivan can be reached on https://twitter.com/AuthorMSullivan
or Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Michael-J-Sullivan/237943096234593

 

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Posted by on March 30, 2013 in e-Books, New Books

 

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Amazon acquires Goodreads

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Boon or Bust for Small Publishers?

Just dreaming of a quiet Easter, when one after the other news message comes in:

Marketingpilgrim.com
“Goodreads now has 16 million members and a book rating and reviewing system that can’t be beat. In addition, there are genre specific social groups, groups for writers and hundreds of daily book giveaways. “Over just the past 90 days, members have added more than four books per second to the “want to read” shelves on Goodreads.”
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Amazon explains:
“Amazon and Goodreads share a passion for reinventing reading,” said Russ Grandinetti, Amazon Vice President, Kindle Content. “Goodreads has helped change how we discover and discuss books and, with Kindle, Amazon has helped expand reading around the world. In addition, both Amazon and Goodreads have helped thousands of authors reach a wider audience and make a better living at their craft. Together we intend to build many new ways to delight readers and authors alike.”
Goodreads says: 
“Our members have been asking us to bring the Goodreads experience to an e-reader for a long time. Now we’re looking forward to bringing Goodreads to the most popular e-reader in the world, Kindle, and further reinventing what reading can be.”

New York Daily News Blog writes:

Amazon now owns both Audiobook retailer Audible and Goodreads, as well as its own robust publishing arm. This should improve the Seattle-based giant’s position against competitors, which lack their own supporting social media networks. Barnes & Noble, in particular, is set for challenging times, with Nook sales are set to suffer even further.

“Out of all the commenting about books, Goodreads was the most powerful ecosystem for recommending what you read next and Amazon was a close second. Now it’s just Amazon… With the collapse of the Nook, [Barnes & Noble have] lost the online game and we just have to count out the final steps,” said Thad MacIlroy, a Vancouver-based publishing consultant, in an interview with Digital Book World.

Salon.com author Andrew Leonard writes:  “A shudder went through the entire world of publishing Thursday afternoon, after Amazon announced the purchase of the social reader site Goodreads. When people who normally eschew Hitler analogies compare an Amazon move to the Nazi invasion of Poland, it’s time to pay attention. Or as author Alex Irvine immediately tweeted,“Next, publishers will be required to dig own graves.  Goodreads, according to Salon’s own publishing maven, Laura Miller, “was the single major readers’ community independent of Amazon.” But maintaining that independence has not been easy.”

And now, they have been acquired by Amazon… More in news:

Exiting news about Goodreads

An emotional day for the co-founders of Goodreads
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Posted by on March 28, 2013 in Publishing News

 

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Reader Statistics: How to Use them for Your Book’s Success

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Did you know that the main driver of e-book purchases is “referral by a friend”.  Number two was Media (including Social Media) and number three of the answers was Goodreads – the world’s largest reader community – as well as the Goodreads Choice Awards
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Equally important for authors should be the follow-up question in this survey: “What do you want to do once you get to the end of a book?”
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83% wanted to see what else the author had written.
75% wanted to find more books similar to what they just read
69% wanted to discuss the book with friends
35% read other people’s reviews
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Why not give readers exactly what they are looking for?
How can you achieve this? Add a highly visible link to your upcoming e-book – and a link to your author page on Amazon, B&N, Kobo or wherever you sell your book, plus one to your website and your Goodreads page at the end of your first e-book!
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Equally important: link to your mailing list.
To be successful, you need to have a list of people who have signed up to hear about your new releases. You will benefit from more initial sales, which will boost your rank and push you higher on new releases lists, plus other genre lists on Amazon and in other retailers ranking.

To make sure, even people who browse only and read the “look inside” feature of the Amazon website, add these links at the beginning of your book as well.

Every time you publish a new e-book, update these front and back pages of your previous books, as well as your Author Central page on Amazon, and make sure that it is updated with every book.
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“What’s Going On With Readers Today?”

It was the title of the poll, which was introduced at the “Tools of Change Conference 2013” in New York last month. Interesting fact in these statistics: readers are about two times more likely to learn about a book on Goodreads, than on Amazon!

As you can see, this is exactly what Goodreads’ site offers to their 15 million book lovers / members:

  • browsing all the books of the author they read
  • finding similar books to what they liked
  • seeing what their friends read
  • reading other member’s reviews
  • deciding what to read next
  • discussing books in their numerous communities

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The best course of action for every author – if not already done – should be:

  1. Join Goodreads and invite / add as many friends as possible, which is very easy, just read a former blog post where we described it.
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  2. Don’t forget to add the “Top Readers”  and the “Top Reviewers”  on Goodreads to add as friends. Only friends can recommend your book to others, you can’t do it!
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  3. Fill your book shelves on Goodreads with lots of books from your friends, read, review and recommend these books to others (and let your friends know about it : ) Most likely they will return the favor.
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  4. Learn about and use the many free features on Goodreads, such as “events” for your book signings and KDP free days, join one or more of their book communities in your genre, create Listopia lists,  participate in “creative writing”, just to name a few fun activities on this site.
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  5. Make sure that each of your books is listed on Amazon, even upcoming ones are mentioned and that your author page is updated. Don’t forget all these other communities you might have joined, and update the list of your books there, e.g. in Amazon communities.
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  6. Add links for your next and all your already published books: on the first and the last page of your e-book, to send readers to your author sales pages of all online retailers your books are listed with, to your website / blog and to your Goodreads author page.
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  7. Try to get as many reviews on Goodreads as possible, do frequent giveaways, garnering reviews and recommendations.
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What an easy and totally free way of advertising! Yet, many authors are not using this small trick … Have you prepared your digital books already with links to your other books?

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If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book heavily promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only a “token” of $1 / day for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help: http://www.111Publishing.com/seminar

If you enjoyed this blog post, please feel free to check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 700 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Chime.in, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.

Thanks a lot for following:

@111publishing
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http://bit.ly/VmtVAS    111Publishing @ Google+

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What Should Writers Do: Begging or Selling?

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Dean-Wesley-Smith

Dean Wesley Smith

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Dean Wesley Smith wrote a great, although somewhat blunt post:

“If you follow an old model, you send your manuscript to either an editor or an agent: Imagine yourself standing at the door of a restaurant in ragged clothes, hat-in-hand, begging for some food. You have no bargaining power, no position to try to get a decent contract (meal). And if you are with a slush-reading agent, imagine that you now only get a part of what little bit of food they are willing to toss you.

If you follow the new, indie-publishing model: Imagine you own your own business. You have money coming in the door, have customers, and a growing list of products. A representative of a major corporation shows up in your store and asks to buy some of your product for their company. You know what the product is worth and you know you can get decent contract terms. They have come to you, into your business, and it is an even bargaining position for both of you, business to business. They want what you are selling. You can decide if the money and terms are worth for you, selling it.”
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He writes (in a nutshell):
“I have no idea

  • why any writer would spend so much time writing a book and then not allow that book to earn for them while it was being looked at by traditional publishers.
  • why any writer would send any manuscript into a traditional, old-style slush pile.
  • why anyone would even think of sticking with the old model of begging at a publisher’s door with a manuscript in a  slush pile.

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Just as we had to learn how to do cover letters and synopsis of novels that would help our books sell, the writers of today need to learn how to do covers and cover blurbs and tag lines that will help their books sell.”
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Read the whole story, in which he explains where the word “Slush pile” comes from and how publishing / author-publishing evolved in the last 70 years. Very interesting read for authors, new and established:  http://www.deanwesleysmith.com/?p=8787

Dean Wesley Smith is also the Author of The New World of Publishing  A Hard Look at the New World of Indie and Traditional Publishing among dozens of others in a variety of genres.

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3 TOP Reasons to Have Your Book on PINTEREST

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You might be addicted to Pinterest already. And I am the first to confess, it’s fun to browse their site and pin away… After all, it’s the third largest social network in North America. There are lots of reasons, not only female writers should be on Pinterest, just everyone who sells books or other items can benefit tremendously from joining Pinterest. Can it really help you sell more books? And how to sell your book via Pinterest?
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1. By showing your book on Pinterest
It means not only, to pin the cover image, but also illustrations and images representing the content of your book. Let’s assume you wrote a historical novel and the heroine lives in Scotland. It means you can show tons of images regarding to your story. Get them on free photo sites, use links we posted in former blogs. To find them, just type in free images into the search function at https://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com

Search on these free photo sites for landscape photos of Scotland, antique furniture, dresses from the period, recipes… the list goes on and on. Possible board topics at Pinterest could also include book quotes, books turned into movies or book inspired art. Create a separate page for each of these topics, and in no time you will have dozens or even hundreds of “pins”, which makes it interesting for your visitors to browse your books’ Pinterest page.
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2. By creating a direct link to your sales page
Pinterest drives more referral traffic than YouTube, Google+ and LinkedIn, combined. This means if you want people clicking through to the book page on your website or on Amazon, B&N or Kobo, Pinterest may be your best bet. Don’t post only your books. Treat it as a way to share things you love. Visitors to your page will be happy to “meet the author”.

And this is how your visitors can find – and buy your book:
Add a description of your book, the direct link to your sales page and add the price after the description with a $ sign. Example: $2.99. Pinterest will place the price in the upper left corner of the image. Pinterest will automatically link to your site or product when a person clicks on it. For example:  http://pinterest.com/pin/262053272040143005/
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3. By writing about your book & adding your book trailer
Your presence on Pinterest invites your readers into your life and gives them a reason to buy your books. Keep your presence welcoming. Have a dialogue and re-pin some of their images on your site as well. And if you are an established writer with several books, create separate Pinterest accounts and pages for each one of your books.

Writers who already have a personal account on Pinterest will be able to convert it to a business account. The process to open an author / business account with Pinterest is very easy and really fast. Visit their sample sites to learn more. Use Pinterest’s buttons and widgets to make it easier for people to pin items from your site, see what you’re doing on Pinterest, and follow you or your boards.

Unlike Facebook, Pinterest users don’t have to restrict their searches to information pinned on their friends’ walls. Users can choose to search the entire site. So while a user may not be following your profile, they can still look at and click your link even if they don’t re-pin the link, they will find your books’ sales page.

However, not only photos, also videos can be posted, which means you can add your book trailer (video) as well!
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Pinterest is the hottest social media tool right now. How do you make your Pinterest page work for your book business? Have a look at these pins: Maximize Pinterest for your Business!

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If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $159 for three months! Learn more about this individual book marketing help: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars
Or visit http://www.e-book-pr.com/book-promo/  to advertise your new book, specials, your KDP Select Free Days or the new Kindle Countdown Deals.

Please check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 980 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.
Thanks a lot for following:

@111publishing
http://www.111publishing.com
http://www.e-Book-PR.com/
http://www.international-ebooks.com/
http://bit.ly/VmtVAS 111Publishing @ Google+

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“Grace Unexpected”, a Romantic Comedy by Gale Martin

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Today we meet Gale Martin, the author of Grace Unexpected, the dating life of a 30-something: Grace has slogged through crummy jobs and dead-end relationships with men who would rather go bald than say “I do” …    
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How would you describe your book to someone who has not yet read it?
Grace Unexpected is a romantic comedy about a smart, fun-loving professional woman who blunders into an unexpected romantic triangle.

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Grace Unexpected by Gale Martin

Grace Unexpected by Gale Martin

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Grace Unexpected has a promotion on Sunday, March 24, and is available at all retailers for only $0.99.  So, readers can take advantage of this amazing offer and download chick-lit at its finest. Wit, drama and surprise fill every page. A 5- star read. 273 pages of fun!

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Is there a message in your book that you want your readers to grasp?
Love will find you, if you let it.
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How did you get the idea for the novel?
I don’t travel to the extent that a lot of people do, I suppose, so any trip I take makes a profound impression on me. When I visited Shaker Village in Canterbury, New Hampshire in 2005, I couldn’t stop thinking about the place. Everyone’s lives were so neat and ordered and prescribed. The idea of a place for everything (and everyone) and everything in its place is attractive, to a degree, until it becomes stifling.
So, when I learned men and women were expected to live in celibate community in Shaker Village during the 19th and most of the 20th centuries, it profoundly affected me. I am a better person for having found a wonderful, loving man for a life partner. The more I thought about it, the more severe it seemed to restrict an entire culture of women intimacy with the opposite sex while LIVING alongside men. I wrote a short story about Grace visiting Shaker Village that eventually evolved into a novel.

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Give us an excerpted quote from your favorite review of this book:
“I absolutely LOVED Gale Martin’s, Grace Unexpected and recommend it to anyone who loves chick lit. Grace Unexpected has it all: sexual frustration, great friendships, witty dialogue, hilarious scenes, and even a shocking twist thrown in that will shock you!  Do yourself a favor and read this great book, you won’t be disappointed!” — Candace Lybarger, Endless Days of Literary Ecstacy

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Are your characters based on real people?
My characters are inspired by real people because real people are hilarious and infuriating and endearing, alternately. In this novel Lacy is is several wretched annual fund directors rolled into one treacherous young woman. True was inspired by a very charismatic 60-something I met when I was 30-something, whose charm and physical appeal left an indelible impression on me.

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What inspired you to start writing?

After being a lifelong reader, I woke up one day in midlife and started writing a novel. It helped me deal with a lot of heart hurts I’d accumulated but hadn’t surfaced since my teenage years, and I found the writing to be actually pretty cathartic. So, I began writing at age 46 and haven’t stopped writing since.

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What would/could a reader or reviewer say about this book that shows they “get” you as an author?
Here’s an excerpt of a review from Barbara Bamberger Scott that shows she gets me as a storyteller: “Martin has taken a likable smart young woman and dropped her into what seems like an overwhelming series of landslides (relationship woes, job stress, sprained shoulder, car on the blink, enemy of the powerful) and then it seems, she watches with us as her character comes alive and digs herself out. We are all amazed at Grace.”
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If Oprah invited you onto her show to talk about your book, what would the theme of the show be? Today on Oprah we’re talking to women who fell in love with much younger men and women who fell for much older men. Can relationships with either (or both) can really work? In Gale Martin’s newest novel, her protagonist Grace Savage becomes involved with one of each–a young stud and a silver fox.
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Gale Martin

Gale Martin

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What scene or bit of dialogue in the book are you most proud of, and why?
Beginning on p. 171 — “If you’ve ever grown zucchini, you know they all ripen the same day. You wait all of June and July for zucchini. August rolls around, and one day—bam! You have more zucchini than you know what to do with. You start handing them out to your neighbors and friends at work because there’s no way any single person can handle all that zucchini. Not even if you’re smart and resourceful and have accumulated dozens of good recipes, not even a person who likes zucchini as much as I do.”
I love that passage because it shows how funny and literary Grace is, relying on an extended metaphor to carry the humor.
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Grace Unexpected can be found at Amazon
Grace Unexpected has a promotion on Sunday, March 24, and is available at all retailers for only $0.99.  So, readers can take advantage of this amazing offer and download chick-lit at its finest. Wit, drama and surprise fill every page. A 5-star read. 273 pages of fun!
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