When I wrote my last letter, announcing an opportunity to win a copy of my novel, I was expecting to hear from a handful of you — curious people who hadn’t read it yet and hoped that with a little luck they might get a free book. Instead, as I sit here this St. Patrick’s Day morning, I’m feeling like the lucky one.
More than 130 of you asked to be entered in the drawing. As if this weren’t enough of a wonderful surprise, as I read through your comments I discovered that the vast majority of you had already read the book. You told me how it moved you, why you loved it, who you had shared it with.
I heard from Paris, Texas, London, Italy, Scotland, New York, Arizona, Chicago, Australia, Ohio, Ireland, Georgia, Massachusetts, Texas, Norway, and just down the street. I heard from booksellers and librarians, readers and book club members and writers. I heard from Alaskans, those of you who miss Alaska, and those who dream of visiting here someday.
Some of you asked for it to be inscribed to a friend, mother, daughter-in-law, grandchildren, or newborn child. Others confessed you wanted it entirely for yourself, and that made me smile.
One man wrote that he and his wife had read the novel and shared the original fairy tale with their young daughter, who now likes to pretend she sleeps in a bed of snow. Another wanted it inscribed in memory of his dear wife.
One of you described reading it on a beach in the Middle East. Another said she had wished for a longer train ride home from Glasgow, so she wouldn’t have to put it down.
You made me happy. You brought tears come to my eyes. You made me wish I could send each and every one of you an inscribed copy.
Choosing only two winners wasn’t easy. But I decided to enlist the assistance of my daughters. I asked each of them to pick a number between 1 and 136. My youngest, who just turned 5, chose her new favorite number: 5. My oldest, who at nearly 13 prides herself on being logical, randomly chose the number 90.
So, without further ado, the winners are the 5th and 90th entrants.
Drew, who wrote:
“I’d love a signed UK copy. Hope you enjoyed your time over here.”
And Amy, who wrote :
“Dear Mrs. Ivey,
I have just purchased a digital copy of your book and decided to investigate the web link. What a pleasant surprise I found. I have a friend who is intrigued by Alaska. If I were to be lucky, I would be very honored to receive a copy of your US edition and have it addressed to “Sharon”. Congratulations on the success of your first book. Kind Regards, Amy”
If each of you would please email me at email@example.com with your mailing address, I’ll get your copies in the mail right away.
And to every one of you, thank you. May all your dreams come true.