Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Maryann Macdonald Shares the Secrets to Her Kindle Success with ODETTE'S SECRETS.

Odette's Secrets by Maryann Macdonald made it to the Kids' EBook Bestseller List on July 27th when it hit the number 3 spot in the Children's and Teen section of the Amazon Kindle store. This  historical novel for middle grade readers is written in verse, and Maryann joins us to tell about her path to e-book success with this unique book.

First, please share what your book is about.

Odette's Secrets is an historical novel based on the true story of a Jewish child who survives WWII in France by hiding in plain sight. Odette's father is a prisoner of war and her mother is in the Resistance, Like most of the tens of thousands of French Jewish children who saved themselves during this dangerous time, she must completely reinvent herself as a Christian child. Living with a foster family in the countryside and later under an assumed name with her mother, Odette becomes an expert at lying about who she is, with the inevitable effect of becoming confused about her identity. When she returns to Paris after the war, she must come to terms with who she really is.

How are people finding out about your book? Tell us about your marketing and use of social media.

Generous bloggers have really helped people find out about Odette's Secrets. Many have interviewed me and lots more have done reviews. I've also been interviewed on the radio. More than 100 readers have rated/reviewed the book on goodreads. I also have a website: If you visit the site, you can see a trailer I created for the book. I live in New York City, and have spoken at a number of libraries there, and have also signed books and spoken at several bookshops. I did my first Skype interview with a classroom in June.

What is your target audience, and how do you believe the e-format works for that audience and serves their needs?

My book is written for readers ten years old and up, but I have heard from readers as young as eight who are enjoying it. Many teachers and librarians have commented on the fact that it provides a "gentle" introduction to the holocaust for younger readers, but I have also been surprised by the number of adult readers who have written to me saying that they loved the book.

As you got into e-publishing, have you discovered unexpected things? Has anything happened that you wouldn’t have predicted?

I would never have predicted that Odette's Secrets would become an e-book bestseller, but it was certainly a happy surprise! The book is written in verse, as Odette wrote poetry in her later life, and I was trying to capture the childhood voice of a poet-to-be. I wasn't sure this would work in an e-book, but it's great to be proved wrong.

Do you think e-publishing will eventually take over print publishing? Why or why not? 

I love to flip back and forth in my books, and it frustrates me that I cannot do this easily with an e-reader. Until the e-reader makes this possible, I don't think it will take over. Having said that, I read more and faster with my e-reader, and also buy more books that way. However, I do not enjoy it as much. I suspect this may be the case with other adults and especially with children, who love to revisit and savor illustrations.
Find out more about Maryann and her books by visiting her website, her Goodreads page or her special Odette's Secrets Facebook page where you can read the first SIX chapters of the book for free!  

And stop back on Saturday when the Kids' EBook Bestseller List will be updated with all the latest top tens for children and young adults.