A Time of Transition

A Time of Transition

photo M. Reynolds

photo M. Reynolds

You see the title of this blog, right? Martha Reynolds……writes.
Yeah, only not so much these days.

I was considered prolific after releasing five books in two years. And I agree, it was indeed an accomplishment. I wrote nearly every day, and am proud of the novels I’ve written and published.

A few months ago, I accepted a per diem position at a local agency, and have been working generally two or three days a week. I love it – not only for a little extra income (what? you mean I haven’t hit the bestseller list yet?), but because it gets me out of the house and among people – really nice people. Writing is a solitary experience, sometimes too solitary.

But working outside the house means not writing. Can’t do both, and this work is important. When I arrive back home, I’m usually not able to find the time to write. So, the holiday-themed romantic comedy that I’d hoped to have ready by November may not be ready. And that’s okay. Really. Because if I’ve learned anything over these past two years, it’s that rushing a book to publication always means disaster.

Meanwhile, we pack up summer and welcome autumn. This is my favorite time of year, even with the shorter days. Socks, fleece, the smell of wood fires burning. Soups and stews and nesting. It seems that the days fly past, don’t they? Better make each one count.

Jubilee’s Journey – $100 BookBlast Giveaway

Jubilee’s Journey – $100 BookBlast Giveaway



 When tragedy strikes a West Virginia coal mining family, two children start out on a trek that they hope will lead them to a new life. Before a day passes, the children are separated and the boy is caught up in a robbery not of his making. If his sister can find him, she may be able to save him. The problem is she’s only seven years old, and who’s going to believe a kid?


Reviewer Praise:

An uplifting story of hope, love and the kindness of strangers. Rainy Day Ramblings

I was drawn in from the first page and held captive to the end. Jubilee’s Journey makes you believe in the power of the human spirit and the kindness of strangers. The Caffeinated Reviewer

Real both in circumstances and dialogue Jubilee’s Journey is a book that will have you up late to finish. It will make you believe that you can triumph over tragedy. Mrs. Mommy Booknerd

Crosby’s novels touch my heart big time, and Jubilee’s Journey is no exception. Even the Grinch would be hard-pressed to scowl at the Wyattsville Series books. They’ve got tension and suspense in their mysteries, Southern charm and lessons aplenty. Popcorn Reads


Purchase Your Copy

Amazon * Barnes & Noble * iTunes * Kobo


Excerpts – Popular Highlights:


” His death came as no surprise to anyone. He was one of the countless men forever lost to the mine. They were men loved and mourned by their families, but to the world they were faceless, nameless people, not worthy of mention in the Charleston Times.”


“When Jubilee said she was scared going to a place she didn’t know, I told her not to worry. I said it was a good thing ‘cause we was going to see an aunt we never even knew we had. Then she started smiling. The whole time I was telling her how good everything was gonna be, I was wishing I had someone to tell me the same thing.”


“I guess God looks past what you claim to want and gives you what you need.”


“We can plan ahead until we’re blue in the face, but regardless of what we do events will happen as they will. The truth is we don’t have a bean of say in the matter.”



BetteAuthor Bette Lee Crosby
Award-winning novelist Bette Lee Crosby brings the wit and wisdom of her Southern Mama to works of fiction—the result is a delightful blend of humor, mystery and romance along with a cast of quirky charters who will steal your heart away.

“Storytelling is in my blood,” Crosby laughingly admits, “My mom was not a writer, but she was a captivating storyteller, so I find myself using bits and pieces of her voice in most everything I write.”

Crosby’s work was first recognized in 2006 when she received The National League of American Pen Women Award for a then unpublished manuscript. Since then, she has gone on to win another fifteen literary awards, including the Royal Palm Literary Award, The Reviewer’s Choice Award, and the FPA President’s Book Award Gold Medal.

A third book in her Wyattsville Series is scheduled for release in January 2015 and the third book in the Serendipity Series will follow in the Spring of 2015.


Website * Twitter * Facebook * Instagram * Google+



BookBlast Giveaway

$100 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 10/3/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by Rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

Click on this link (below) to enter!

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The End of Summer (and the Summer Authors)

The End of Summer (and the Summer Authors)

Just a quick thank you – to the authors who agreed to be featured on this blog each Sunday for the past couple of months – I’m so grateful to you!

And to everyone who read and commented, and entered the Rafflecopter giveaways – thank you!

For this final drawing, I used Random

to choose a number – each entrant who provided an email address was listed on an Excel spreadsheet, then I entered the total number of entries into Random and let it pick one winner. That winner is….

Joe Greeley. Congratulations, Joe! All you need to do is send me a mailing address so I can send you your Sandisk Sansa Clip mp3 player!


I’ll be back in a few days with my usual ramblings.

Meet Author Nan Reinhardt

Meet Author Nan Reinhardt

Author Nan Reinhardt

Author Nan Reinhardt

For the final installment in my summer series of (some of) My Favorite Authors, say hello to Nan Reinhardt. Nan and I connected after I read her debut novel, Rule Number One. Loved it, love her! Nan writes “grown-up love stories,” proving that we’re never too old for romance. :-)

Hey Nan, welcome to my blog, and thanks for finishing out the summer with this feature! Of course, I have a few questions for you. First off, I’m going to ask you to cast ONCE MORE FROM THE TOP, your featured novel (and the book that you’re giving away at the end of this post):

NB: I’ve always seen Kimberly Williams Paisley in the role of Carrie Halligan. Jeff Bridges, 30 years ago, has always been my Liam Reilly. Yes, I know I’m showing my age, but hey, I’m going to be 61 next month and he’s still a hunk in my opinion. Besides, these books are geared to Baby Boomers–we all know Jeff Bridges is hot, right? Cameron Monaghan would be a good choice for their son, Jack. And I think perhaps Heather Locklear would do a good job as Carrie’s best friend, Julie Miles, who gets her own story in Book 2.












I can see that! Good choices, especially Heather Locklear – she’s perfect for Julie! So, Nan, tell us about the research you do for your novels.

NB: I use the Internet a lot when I research, but I made a trip to the Traverse City area when I wrote Once More from the Top – the setting for Willow Bay. The area around Interlochen Center for the Arts, where Jack goes to school, is one of my favorite parts of the country. Lake Michigan is where my heart is and so setting the stories in an imaginary town on the coast of the big lake. For book 3, I had to contact some experts about sunken treasure and salvage, and the folks I found to consult were helpful and excited to be helping me research.

Speaking of works-in-progress, tell us what’s new with your writing.

NB: I just finished Book 3 in the series and I’m starting Book 4 – another different kind of story about Sarah Everett, whom I introduced in Book 2. Her story is a little bit more intense as she is an abuse survivor. We’ll see where she takes me!


Nan Reinhardt is giving away a copy of Once More from the Top (ebook), the fabulous first book in The Women of Willow Bay series.

Carrie Halligan never regretted the choice she made sixteen years ago to raise her son Jack by herself in Willow Bay, Michigan. A successful photographer by day, at night Carrie satisfies her musical passions by playing piano at a hotel bar, maintaining a balance that works for her and Jack. Walking away from Maestro Liam Reilly without telling him she was pregnant with his child may have been the hardest thing she’d ever done, but it was definitely the right thing.
When Liam shows up in town to perform a benefit concert with the local symphony, however, Carrie’s carefully crafted life spins out of control. After sending Jack to summer camp, she realizes she can’t keep Liam in the dark forever. Telling the truth to the man she once loved more than life itself isn’t near as hard as spending time in his presence and realizing that the years haven’t diminished his power over her heart. Will her lie be too much to get past, or will the spark of passion between them overcome everything?

Don’t forget, everyone who has entered ANY of the Rafflecopter contests for ANY or ALL of the featured authors is eligible to be (randomly) selected for one final prize, which will be announced next week, when this Rafflecopter drawing closes. Good luck!


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Meet Author KC Wilder

Meet Author KC Wilder

Author kc wilder

Author KC Wilder

I really hope you’ve enjoyed meeting some of my favorite authors this summer (there’s one more after this!). No worries, next month it’ll be back to my errant posts :-) Today I’m featuring author KC Wilder, a fellow Rhode Islander and treasured friend.


Hi KC! Welcome to my blog. As you know, I have some pressing questions (!) for you….What do you think has been the most rewarding aspect of writing?

KCW: For me, the most rewarding thing about writing a book is the way it enables me to connect with people. I love when I get email from readers who found something in my stories that they could relate to, or that gave them a laugh or a break from something difficult going on in their life. It makes my day to be able to connect with people on that personal level.

Agree completely. And really, who cares about money? :-) What about writer’s block – have you ever experienced it?

KCW:  I’ve definitely dealt with writer’s block, and the trick that seems to work best is to make my characters move. Putting them into physical motion – having them get in the car and go for a drive, or go outside for a jog – really seems to get my writing moving as well. And if that fails, I get myself moving: I go for a run, get some fresh air, meet a friend for coffee. Sometimes you just have to accept that writing isn’t working right now, and stressing about it isn’t going to help. The best thing you can do is go back to it at another time, refreshed.

You’ve been writing for a while now. What advice would you offer to aspiring authors?

KCW:  I really have only one bit of advice for new and/or aspiring writers, and that’s to keep at it. It’s a practice like anything else. You have to work at it. You have to log the hours and slog away. Read ‘Outliers’ by Malcolm Gladwell and you’ll understand why. Anyone who’s ever succeeded at anything has done so because they put in the time. If you get lucky and your first novel is accepted by the first agent you send it to, and then is published by the first publisher they send it to, and then it hits the NYT Bestseller list immediately, God bless you. But I think you’ve got better odds of being struck by lightning. Twice. So roll up your sleeves, get working – and don’t let anything stop you.

Absolutely! That book isn’t going to write itself! KC Wilder has graciously offered a digital copy of her sassy and sexy 50 Ways to Leave your Husband. Join in the fun at the Rafflecopter link below and remember, all entries in this series are eligible for the grand prize (at the end of next week’s feature) – good luck!

50 Ways Cover FINAL

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Meet Author Tracie Banister

Meet Author Tracie Banister

Author Tracie Banister

Author Tracie Banister

Welcome to week 5 in Some of My Favorite Authors Series! Today I’m ecstatic to introduce Tracie Banister to you. I met Tracie online, through my favorite women’s writing group, and she has been a great friend for the past few years. I hope to meet her in person one day!

Welcome, Tracie! I have some questions for you:


What new(er) authors have you recently discovered? What about them do you like in particular?

TB:   Traci Andrighetti (Limoncello Yellow) and Jennie Marts (Another Saturday Night and I Ain’t Got No Body) are two authors I’ve discovered in recent months whose work has really delighted me. They write Chick Lit/Mystery series, and I’m a big fan of that hybrid genre. What both ladies do incredibly well is blend humor and romance with lots of surprises and suspense, and their characters are unique, colorful, and highly entertaining! I look forward to reading more from these talented authors!


How did you start your writing career? (planned, by accident, when, etc.)

TB:   I’ve been writing since I was in elementary school – plays, essays, short stories, etc. Writing just came naturally, and I enjoyed sharing my work with others. I dreamed of one day publishing a novel, but I also had dreams of marrying a prince and starring on a soap opera. None of those dreams seemed very likely to happen, so I did what sensible people do when they grow up and got a real job (administrative work.) I took a stab at writing a Historical Romance in my early twenties just to see if I could do it, but got distracted by real life and never finished it. For the next decade or so, I kept my creative juices flowing by penning a lot of genre fan fiction that was well-received online.

My “Aha!” moment came when I lost my job as a personal assistant after 12 years. My friends and family encouraged me to follow my bliss and devote myself full-time to writing a novel. The thought of chasing a dream was pretty scary, and I honestly didn’t know if I had what it took to not only complete a novel, but submit it to agents and editors. Rather than spend the rest of my life wondering, “What if?” I decided to commit myself 100% to getting my work published. I’m happy to say that despite a lot of ups and downs, it’s been a really rewarding experience and I’m proud of myself for going after what I wanted.


What can you tell us about your current project?

TB:   My next novel is a Chick Lit story about two sisters (identical twins!) who are polar opposites in every possible way (their careers, their personalities, their attitudes toward men.) I can’t say anything more without getting spoilery, but I can promise plenty of comedy, romance, cute guys, and even cuter dogs. I’m planning to release this book some time in the fall, so stay tuned for announcements about the title, cover art, etc.!  (This blogger can’t wait!)


Connect with Tracie here:

Blog: http://traciebanister.blogspot.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/traciebanister

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/tracie.banister


Tracie is offering a gift copy of her fabulous ebook, In Need of Therapy. I loved it, so will you.


Handling the problems of hysterical hypochondriacs, lovelorn neurotics, and compulsive man whores is all in a day’s work for super-shrink Pilar Alvarez. But can she deal with her crazy Cuban family, a trio of unsuitable suitors, and a threat to her practice without ending up on the couch herself?


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Meet Author Cat Lavoie

Author Cat Lavoie

Author Cat Lavoie

Welcome to the fourth installment of (some of) My Favorite Authors! Cat Lavoie is my (much younger) twin, in that we both published our début novels on the same day. And since we’ve both just celebrated our two-year anniversaries of that date, today is a very appropriate time to introduce you to my friend Cat.

Cat Lavoie lives in Montreal, Canada with her tempestuous cat, Abbie. Her début novel, Breaking the Rules, was published in August 2012 by Marching Ink. Her second book, Zoey & The Moment of Zen was published in October 2013. If Cat isn’t reading or writing, she’s most likely watching too much TV or daydreaming about her next trip to London.

To find out more about Cat and her books, please visit www.CatLavoie.com and follow @Catenabi on Twitter.

So Cat, welcome! And let me start with what might be a difficult question:What is the hardest thing about writing, based on your experience?

CL: The hardest thing about writing for me is actually sitting down to write. I’m easily distracted and prone to procrastination so I constantly have to fight the urge to check my email and Facebook and Twitter. (I don’t often win that battle.) I usually get more work done when I’m writing during my lunch break or before heading off to work in the morning… When my time is limited, I have no choice but to focus.
I get that. The distractions are endless and require a lot of discipline to turn them off. Conversely, what is the easiest thing about writing?
CL: I wouldn’t say it’s easy, but the part I enjoy the most is editing. Give me a finished first draft, a red pen, and some Post-its and I am happy. (Mostly because the hardest part–actually writing the first draft–is over!) I’m so looking forward to getting to that point in my current WIP!
Do you use beta readers and what valuable feedback have you received from them?
CL: My first two novels were beta-read by my best friend, Mary. She’s always very honest with me and isn’t worried about sparing my feelings when giving me feedback. In my second novel, there’s a scene where two best friends have a fight and, after reading the first draft, she told me “that’s totally NOT how this fight would go down.” So we recreated the fight (so much fun!) and I instantly knew she was right. Also, she’s not a chick lit fan… so if I can make her like a chick lit story, it feels like a victory.


Cat has offered to gift a digital copy of Breaking the Rules to one lucky reader. And remember, everyone who enters ANY of these weekly contests is automatically entered to win the big prize at the end!

Breaking the Rules Cover

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Meet Author Brea Brown

Meet Author Brea Brown

my mison scarfWelcome to the third installment of (some of) My Favorite Authors! Have you read any of Brea Brown’s books yet?  Yes? Well, then you’ll understand why I love her so much. No? Well, get started – she’s written nine of them. Yep, nine. Read her bio and you’ll see why I’m in awe of this talented, funny writer.

Brea Brown lives in Springfield, Missouri, with her husband and three sons, but her international support network stretches as far as Australia. She’s an administrative assistant at an environmental consulting firm for forty hours a week and  a writer all the other waking hours of the week not taken up by motherhood, wifedom, reading, and watching cheesy TV shows like Sleepy Hollow. (That leaves a surprisingly large number of hours, believe it or not.) Her published novels are Daydreamer, The Secret Keeper, The Secret Keeper Confined, The Secret Keeper Up All Night, The Secret Keeper Holds On, The Secret Keeper Lets Go, Plain Jayne, Quiet, Please! and Let’s Be Frank. Coming soon: The Secret Keeper Fulfilled, the sixth and final book in the series.

Yep, nine books. :-)

Welcome, Brea! So happy to have you here. So, who designs your fabulous book covers and how much input do you have in creating them?

BB: My best friend, Laura Sellars, designs my book covers. She’s mega-talented, so my input involves, “Hey, I need a cover. Do you think you could make one for me, please?” and…that’s it. I gave her some ideas for my cover for Let’s Be Frank, because she hadn’t read the book, so she needed a jumping-off point, but she ended up coming up with something completely different (and a thousand times better) than what I’d suggested. So, I stick to writing the books, and let her work the magic on the covers. It’s a beautiful thing.

Which authors inspire you?

BB: When I feel like, ‘I don’t know if I can do this anymore,’ and ‘All of my ideas seem to be the same,’ and ‘My writing is so flat,’ I pick up a book by Jennifer Weiner or Rainbow Rowell and I think, ‘YES! This is how you do it.’ They’re very inspirational to me, because their voices are so distinctive, and I admire that. Humble authors also inspire me. One of my favorites is Catherine Ryan Hyde. She’s unassuming and down-to-earth, in spite of being one of the most talented writers currently producing fiction. I don’t respect authors who project an air of entitlement. There’s a lot of that going around nowadays. Folks like Ryan Hyde help me keep the faith.

Authors sometimes are categorized as “plotters” or “pantsers.” How would you describe yourself as what goes into the creation of a new story?

BB: Well, I’m definitely a pantser. For sure. I often don’t know how a story is going to end, and I don’t know what’s going to happen between the beginning and the end, other than a few vague plot points. Sometimes not even that. I like to let the story take me where it’s going to take me. I write stories I’d like to read, so it’s like I’m reading them as I write them. That gets me trouble sometimes, but it’s just how my creative process works. I come up with a concept (usually by observing someone in real life – yeah, kind of creepy), then I build a whole world around that person. Sometimes I write vague character sketches to get a better idea of the backstories involved, but for the most part, I learn about them as I go. I often don’t even know what the main conflict is going to be or what the climax of the story will entail. It’s a lot of fun!


Brea has offered to gift a digital copy of The Secret Keeper to one lucky reader. Smart choice, Brea, because the reader will be hooked on the series from the very first book :-)

secret keeper cover art

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I’ve Been Tagged!

I’ve Been Tagged!

Slow Writer FTWA meme

I’m in the middle of promoting authors (you should be able to look back at Pauline’s and Jackie’s if you missed them), but I was just tagged by a fellow blogger, so I’d better answer the questions! I’m writing the answers on Sunday night, but Jackie’s post is due to go up by the end of the day, so I’ll schedule this post for Wednesday. By the way, thanks to Isabella Louise Anderson for tagging me. And at the end of this post, I’m supposed to tag three others. :-)

Here are the questions:

  • What are you working on? Well…since I started a part-time job last month, I’ve found it a challenge to find time to write. Typically I write in the morning, but now I’m up at 5:00 and at work by 7:00 two or three times a week. However, that doesn’t answer the question. I’ve begun writing what I hope will be a companion novella to Best Seller, tentatively titled Captured! It’s a Kitty Kelly-esque tell-all about Maryana Capture, the author featured in Best Seller. But as I’ve only written a couple thousand words so far, there’s a lot of work left.
  • What have you worked on recently? Marketing! A writer’s work doesn’t end with the publication of a new novel. I sent gift copies to book bloggers who have read some or all of my previous books, I established a “Review Crew” to get early reviews posted on Amazon, and I’ve booked five book readings/signings for the coming months. This is exciting – I’m thrilled to travel around our little state and meet new readers.
  • Why do you write what you do? I’m greatly inspired by some excellent authors – Elizabeth Strout, Wally Lamb, Anna Quindlen. Lamb especially has moved me with his books about hope and despair…and hope. When I say I write “Real True Fiction,” I mean that I hope to resonate with every reader, even if in very different ways. There is always an element of truth in my novels.
  • How does your writing process work? I’ve learned that plotting and outlining are good things! From the small kernel of truth that blossoms into a story, I do some rough plotting in a spiral notebook, usually in a quiet place. I have used spreadsheets to establish my characters’ traits. In my perfect world, three hours of non-stop writing every morning gets me where I want to be. I do write fast, but I edit slow.

And now I get to tag three people! Elizabeth Marx, Heather McCoubrey, and Laura Chapman, you’re all IT!

Meet Author Jackie Bouchard

Meet Author Jackie Bouchard

Jackie Bouchard and Rita

Jackie Bouchard and Rita

An author and her dog! Look at that face (I’m talking about Rita, of course). :-) I adored reading Rescue Me, Maybe and have Jackie’s first novel, What the Dog Ate, near the top of my to-be-read pile. You can win the book via a giveaway at the end of this post.

Jackie Bouchard was trapped in the hamster wheel of corporate America for longer than her sanity would say was good for her. She escaped and now writes Fido-friendly fiction. American Jackie, her Canadian husband, and her Mexican rescue mutt Rita form their own little United Nations. They live happily (hopefully ever after) in San Diego.

Welcome, Jackie! I have questions for you! To begin, who is your favorite author? If you have multiples, that’s fine. Tell me why you like them.

JB: I don’t tend to be the type of reader who enjoys a book by an author and then thinks, ‘Now I want to read everything else he/she wrote.’ (Although isn’t that what we hope for as authors?) I think it’s because I’m a slow reader and have amassed more books than I’ll probably ever be able to get through, so I like to jump around and read different works. I’m more inclined to have favorite books than favorite authors, but if I had to pick, it would be:

  • Jane Austen. I’ve read everything she ever wrote. She was a master of character development. She could take a small, quiet story, but make you care so much about the characters; you love this one, hate that one, and pity this other one. Love her.
  • Charles Dickens. Love that he was a great storyteller and could be quite funny. A Christmas Carol is my fave.
  • Ian McEwan. Total genius, and a master of the perfect ending. Love love love Atonement and Enduring Love. On Chesil Beach also was excellent.

How did you make the transition from working full-time outside the house to writing full-time?

JB: The transition was really easy for me. The last time I worked full-time in an office was in 2000 in Philadelphia. When we moved to San Diego, I started telecommuting to my old job in Philly. So, I worked from home for 10 years. Since I was an analyst and wrote our department’s monthly newsletter, I mainly spent my days at the computer doing research or writing. So it wasn’t that much different from researching and writing a novel.

I’m such an introvert that working from home suits me perfectly. I know extroverted writers who go stir-crazy and need to take their work out to a coffee shop, but I have no problem being home alone (with my trusty pooch) for days and days on end. I get out every morning for a long walk with the dog, but other than that, I’m a homebody!

Do you feel you must write every day? And at a certain time?

JB: My writing day in general is not super-structured. When I really get going on a project, I barely stop to get up for a drink of water. I become obsessed and get back and arm pain because I’m practically glued to my desk! (**Remembers she’s been sitting at desk for hours. Stops and stretches, as advised by acupuncturist.**) Because of that, I don’t write every day. I take the weekends off, and on weekdays, I do my chores and errands first, because once I start writing, it’s likely nothing else will get done. Also, I’m one of the odd writers who loves to revise! I find it hard to sit down and write new stuff, but give me something to revise and I’m happy to spend hours obsessing over it.


Jackie has offered to gift a digital copy of What the Dog Ate to one lucky winner. Just click on the link to the Rafflecopter giveaway at the bottom of this page.

Connect with Jackie:

Website: http://www.jackiebouchard.com (There’s a sign-up on the home page for her newsletter)

Blog: http://poochsmooches.blogspot.com

Facebook: http://www.Facebook.com/JackieBouchardWriter

Twitter: http://www.Twitter.com/jackiebouchard


What the Dog Ate

What the Dog Ate

When Maggie Baxter, a practical, rule-following accountant, finds out what her chocolate Lab ate, her world turns upside down. Maggie thought she had the rest of her life meticulously planned out, but now she needs to figure out Plan B. With her dog Kona as her guru, Maggie embarks on a funny, heartwarming quest to find tail-wagging joy.

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