A Chat with Natalie #WednesdayWords

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As I’m sure you’re aware, my new novel, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, has just been released and is now available in paperback and eBook formats from Amazon, Smashwords, and other online retailers. Today, I sat down with Natalie, one of my main characters. AT sixteen years old, she learned from her grandmother that the man she thought was her biological dad wasn’t. Let’s see what she has to say.

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Me: Natalie, thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk to me today.

Natalie:  Sure. Whatever.

Me: What do you think about when you’re trying to fall asleep?

Natalie: Well, I guess I could say that although it was a shock, finding out about my real dad, I think how lucky I am to have two dads when some kids don’t even have one.

Me: That works. Do you have a hiding place?

Natalie: No, not really. The only thing I’ve ever hidden is the fact that I emailed my real dad after my grandmother told me about him and I told my parents I knew about him. But eventually, that came out. We’ve been keeping in touch ever since.

Me: Okay, if they make a movie about your life, what actor might play you?

Natalie: How about Britney Spears? I felt sorry for her when I heard that her dad controlled every aspect of her adult life and was glad when a judge took away his power of attorney or whatever it was. None of my dads would ever do that to me. If she were to play me in a movie, she could learn what it’s like to be in a loving family environment.

Me: That’s a good point. So, what’s the first possession you would save from a fire?

Natalie: My iPhone. I need to  be able to keep in touch with family and friends and especially my real dad.

Me: That’s nice. What’s one of the worst things you’ve ever done?

Natalie: That’s a no-brainer. Telling my parents I knew Grandma’s secret. I thought for sure that Daryl, the man I thought was my real dad, would divorce my mom for having a one-night stand with my biological dad. If only I hadn’t opened my big mouth.

Me: I know how you feel. Let’s not think about that now. Tell me. Do you envy anyone?

Natalie: No, not even Britney Spears. She’s had a hard life.

Me: I agree with that. Speaking of Britney, do you sing or dance when you’re by yourself?

Natalie: No, not really.

Me: Okay, what false impression might other people have about you?

Natalie: What kind of question is that? I don’t think anybody has a false impression of me.

Me: All right. I’m sorry. We’ll talk about something else. What’s a memory that you cherish like a treasure?

Natalie: Hmm, let’s see. Well, when I was little, Mom usually read to me at night before I went to sleep. I learned later that my favorite bedtime story was written by my biological dad.

Me: That’s interesting. Now, one last question. What’s something you usually lie about?

Natalie: Well, I don’t lie about anything anymore, but I used to lie about whether I did my homework or even having homework to do. But since I met my real dad, I decided I want to be a better person.

Me: Well, Natalie, thank you again for chatting with me today.

Natalie: You’re welcome. I wasn’t sure I wanted to do this interview, but it was kind of fun.

***

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

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A Teenager Wants Independence #It’sSix-Sentence-“Story-Thursday-Link-Up

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“Look, Natalie,” I told my daughter. “We made a deal last summer when your grades were so low, and you wanted to learn to drive then. Your mother and I told you that once your grades went up, we could get you a learner’s permit, and I’d teach you. Now, it looks like your grades are improving. So, maybe next summer, we can do that. It’s too dangerous to learn to drive in the snow, and it looks like we’re getting an early winter…”

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The above is an excerpt from my forthcoming novel, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, due out soon from DLD Books. Thanks to Girlie on the Edge for inspiring this with her six-sentence-story prompt for this week. Click here to participate in her blog hop.

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For those of you who use the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

***

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

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A Compelling Tale of Loss and Reconciliation #Friday Fun Reads

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The Return

by Nicholas Sparks

 

What Amazon Says

 

In the romantic tradition of Dear John, an injured Navy doctor meets two extremely important women whose secrets will change the course of his life in this #1 New York Times bestseller.

 

Trevor Benson never intended to move back to New Bern, North Carolina. But when a mortar blast outside the hospital where he worked sent him home from Afghanistan with devastating injuries, the dilapidated cabin he’d inherited from his grandfather seemed as good a place to regroup as any.

 

Tending to his grandfather’s beloved beehives, Trevor isn’t prepared to fall in love with a local . . . yet, from their very first encounter, Trevor feels a connection with deputy sheriff Natalie Masterson that he can’t ignore. But even as she seems to reciprocate his feelings, she remains frustratingly distant, making Trevor wonder what she’s hiding.

 

Further complicating his stay in New Bern is the presence of a sullen teenage girl, Callie, who lives in the trailer park down the road. Trevor hopes Callie can shed light on the mysterious circumstances of his grandfather’s death, but she offers few clues—until a crisis triggers a race to uncover the true nature of Callie’s past, one more intertwined with the elderly man’s passing than Trevor could ever have imagined.

 

In his quest to unravel Natalie and Callie’s secrets, Trevor will learn the true meaning of love and forgiveness . . . and that in life, to move forward, we must often return to the place where it all began.

 

My Thoughts

 

I’ve enjoyed several of this author’s books, and this one didn’t disappoint me. The myriad plot twists kept me engaged. At the end, I was afraid that one detail might be left to the reader’s imagination, but I was pleasantly surprised and relieved when it was unexpectedly resolved in the epilogue. I like how the prologue gives us an idea of how the book will end. If you like a feel-good story about loss and reconciliation, The Return is for you.

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By the way, for those of you who use the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Image contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

Books

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The Diary of Ashley Sawyer #Open Book Blog Hop #Wednesday Words

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Welcome to another edition of Open Book Blog Hop. This week’s prompt is: “Dear Diary. Write a diary entry or a letter from your character’s point of view.”

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Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

 

My name is Ashley Sawyer. I’m fifteen years old, and I live in Colorado Springs with my parents, my sister Julie, who is seventeen, and my brother Thomas, who just turned thirteen in June. In case you’re wondering, we do have a Tom Sawyer in the family. My dad, an English teacher at the Colorado State School for the Blind, and my mom, a bestselling author, named him after that character in the Mark Twain book. Tom also had an Aunt Polly and, I believe, a cousin Mary. Why my sister and me weren’t named after them is beyond me. Of course, my dad has a sister in California named Polly. So, having two people in the family named Polly would have been confusing.

Anyway, my friend Sylvia got this book called The Diary of Anne Frank for her birthday last week. She and I mostly like to read romances like what my mom writes, but when I slept over at her house last Saturday, we stayed up late, taking turns reading sections of it to each other out loud. It’s a fascinating and tragic story about a Jewish girl in Holland during World War II who keeps a diary while her family is in hiding from the Nazis.

Sylvia said I could borrow the book, but I wanted my own copy. So, I asked my grandpa, who runs a bookstore in Fowler, if he had it. He was surprised but glad I was broadening my horizons, so to speak. He said he would have to order it, but it would be there the next time we visited.

Meanwhile, I’ve decided to start my own diary, although my life isn’t nearly as interesting as that of Anne Frank. Then again, last summer was amazing! Mom reconnected with an old college roommate and a former best friend she hadn’t seen in years. Julie got a steady boyfriend, and I made a new friend in California. I also got to attend a Los Angeles Dodgers baseball game, where my new friend’s brother caught a ball for me. I gave it to Thomas, who was over the moon, being a Colorado Rockies fan.

Oh, gosh, I don’t have time to write any more now. Mom’s calling us all down to breakfast. Then, I’ll have to hurry, so I don’t miss the school bus. I’ll write more tomorrow. I promise.

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Want to know more. Read The Red Dress. If you’re a blogger and would like to participate in this week’s Open Book Blog Hop, click here.

***

By the way, for those of you who use the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Image contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

Books

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Working at the Ice Cream Shop #Tidbit Tuesday

Here’s Julie from The Red Dress to tell you about her summer career as a scooper. Take it away, Julie.

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I can see why my blind Aunt Polly wouldn’t want to work in a place like The Sugar Shack. Scooping ice cream is hard, even when you can see.

Once, my mom came into the shop with my brother and sister. Mom made me so nervous that I dropped a scoop of ice cream on the floor. Michelle, my boss, yelled at me in front of my family. I was mortified.

I told Mom never to come into the shop while I was working. It’s weird, but Dad never made me nervous.

Now, just when things are getting good, I have to quit my job because my family wants to drive to California. I get that it’s summer and we haven’t taken a vacation in years, since Mom has been so busy with her books. But I love this job. Michelle is planning to show me how to use the blender, so I can make milkshakes.

Of course, I’m planning to quit in the fall when I start my senior year of high school, but I’m not ready to quit yet. What’s more, Mom grounded me because she doesn’t like my attitude. What am I going to do?

***

By the way, from now until July 31st, you can download My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress absolutely free from Smashwords as part of its annual summer/winter sale. Click here to visit my Smashwords author page.

Also, for those of you who use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. Thank you for reading. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

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