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Susan Gregg Gilmore Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Looking for Salvation At the Dairy Queen (2008) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Improper Life of Bezellia Grove (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Funeral Dress (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Susan Gregg Gilmore is a noteworthy writer from the United States, who is popular for writing women’s fiction, historical fiction, chick lit, southern, young adult, romance, coming of age, fiction, and contemporary stories. She has written several widely successful standalone books in her career. Among her well known books, there is Funeral Dress, Looking for Salvation, and the Improper Life of Bezelia Grove. Author Gilmore says that she was very artistic from her childhood days and had interests in a number of art forms. Her mother tried to increase her interest in painting by gifting her color paints and easels when she was just 5 years old. However, Gilmore was more attracted towards storytelling and was encouraged by her father to practice it in the family.

As family storytelling had become a custom in author Gilmore’s house, it got her attention more than anything else and remained stuck with her for all her life. Author Gilmore was born in the year 1961 in Nashville, Tennessee, United States. She says she had realized at a very young age that she wanted to become a writer. But, she could not pursue the field of writing right away. Initially, she got involved in journalism and continued with this profession for several years. And then she decided to give up the job of journalist and focus on her dream of writing fiction stories. Gilmore studied at the Virginia University, and while she was there she used to write for the university’s student paper known as Cavalier Daily. She even worked as an intern at Nashville Burner.

However, by the time Gilmore completed her graduation, her interest had shifted towards museum work. So, she went on to take a secretarial post at Washington, D.C’s Smithsonian Institution. One year later, author Gilmore joined the Texas University in Austin for a graduate program. She earned a Masters of Arts degree in the subject of American Studies. At that time, Gilmore still had the interest in creating her own written work. She consulted one of her college professors about what she must do about her writing interests. Gilmore was told by the professor that she must not worry about her interests and must live her life first. Author Gilmore took the professor’s advice and put her dreams aside. She entered into marriage with her beloved husband named Dan and soon became the mother of 3 daughters. As Gilmore was involved in looking after her family, she could find time to work for making cupcakes, chairing book fairs, teaching at vacation school, etc., only. While doing all of these, author Gilmore was writing for several papers like Chattanooga News Free Press, L.A. Times, Christian Science Monitor, etc.

When Gilmore was working for Free Press, she had written a column based on parenting in South. For writing her first story, author Gilmore took the help of all her experiences of summer vacations that she spent with her grandparents. Gilmore’s grandfather was a revival bred preacher and used to take her along with her sister to Dairy Queen on Sundays after the church proceedings. The story turned out to be a fascinating one and attracted a large number of readers from across the world. Such a response helped the book in becoming a grand success. It sets the stage for the next books that followed in author Gilmore’s literary career. As of today, Gilmore lives a happy life with her family in Nashville. She is currently at work on her next novel and is expected to finish the writing part soon and then publish it for her eagerly waiting fans.

The debut book written by author Susan Gregg Gilmore is entitled ‘looking For Salvation at the Dairy Queen’. It was released by the Shaye Areheart publication in the year 2008. Author Gilmore has done the story’s setting in Ringgold, Georgia, United States. The main characters mentioned in the book include Catherine Grace Cline, Martha Anna, Gloria Jean, Eddie Franklin, Mrs. Gulbenk, Mr. Tucker, Miss Raines, Emma Sue, etc. At the start of the book’s story, it is shown that the time period is from the 1970s and the Ringgold town has a small population of people. Catherine Grace is introduced as the daughter of the 3rd generation preacher of Baptism in Ringgold. She is described as a witty, stubborn, and a beautiful girl, and full of dreams and aspirations.

Catherine Grace is very desperate to escape the small town life and make big achievements in her life in a big city. She visits the Dairy Queen every Saturday and eats Dilly Bars. Catherine uses her spare afternoon time to plot her escape to Atlanta. Finally, her dream turns into a reality with the assistance of a close friend. Catherine Grace packs her stuff and gets all set to leave her lover and her family. She appears ready for claiming the life she had always imagined. However, before Catherine Grace could even take the first step towards achieving a successful life in Atlanta, she learns about a tragedy at home and returns immediately. Following this, several extraordinary events take place, causing Catherine to have a change of perspective. Ringgold itself undergoes a lot of changes and makes Catherine Grace wonder if her real place is actually in her hometown. This novel looks to be a charming, utterly readable, and intelligent.

The second book of author Gilmore’s career is called ‘The Funeral Dress’. This book was published by the Broadway Books in 2013. The plot takes place in Tennesse, U.S., and features the lead characters as Emmalee Bullard, Leona Lane, Curtis, Kelly Faye, etc. At the beginning of the story of the book, it is depicted that Emmalee Bullard lives an independent life and cares for her newly born daughter all alone. She works at a local shirt-making factory as a collar maker. An old lady named Leona Lane also works at the same post at the factory and sits next to Emmalee. She insists Emmalee to come to her house and stay with her.

Emmalee considers the humble offer of Leona Lane and begins to prepare herself for escaping the tough life. But soon, Leona Lane dies tragically. Emmalee becomes grief-stricken and decides to make a burying dress for Leona. But, the people of the community think that being an unmarried mother, Emmalee should not design Leona’s funeral dress, who is a Christian lady. They also think that she should not be allowed to look after her daughter all by herself. Emmalee doesn’t care what the people think about her. She faces the struggle and makes the dress ready with the pure intention of honoring Leona Lane’s memory. The funeral director of the town and many seamstresses come out in support of Emmalee Bullard. This book explores the Southern spirit and tells a heart-touching tale about working women and their struggles.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Susan Gregg Gilmore