On World MS Day, Author Celebrates What People with MS Can Do

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Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery, a romance novel released just in time for World MS Day – May 29 – features a mom who has multiple sclerosis. Mallery wanted to honor people with the disease by creating a character whose MS is something she lives with, not something that defines her as a person.

Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery

Just One Kiss, Fool's Gold romance 10

She’s more than MS - she's a businesswoman, a computer programmer, a mother, a grandmother, a friend. She’s smart, she’s loving. And she has a secret life that she’s been hiding from her daughter for months.

May 29, 2013 is World MS Day, and this week, bestselling romance author Susan Mallery has released Just One Kiss, a book that features a character with multiple sclerosis. In keeping with how people with MS live their lives, Mallery’s character focuses on what she can do rather than what she can’t. Mallery wanted to honor people with the neurological disorder by creating a character whose MS is something she lives with, not something that defines her as a person.

“Ava’s struggles with MS are very real,” Mallery says of the character, who is the mother of the heroine in Just One Kiss. “She has good days and bad days, but she isn’t defined by her disease. She’s more than MS - she's a businesswoman, a computer programmer, a mother, a grandmother, a friend. She’s smart, she’s loving. And she has a secret life that she’s been hiding from her daughter for months, a secret life that has nothing to do with multiple sclerosis.”

Mallery talks about her characters as if they’re real people. To her, they are – and to many readers, too. Mallery is known for her keen insight into human nature, and her ability to create compelling, flawed, yet likeable characters.

“In my research, I discovered that MS behaves inexplicably. It’s different for every person, and it’s different from day to day for each individual. I tried to capture that with Ava. Some days, her energy level was great. Other days, she needed help getting around,” Mallery says. “It must be frustrating not to know what you’ll be able to do from day to day. I didn’t want to hide any of that. I tried to capture what it’s really like for Ava and her family to live with MS, but without being dramatic about it. Just One Kiss is a Fool’s Gold romance, which means it’s funny and sexy and has a lot of heart.”

World MS Day is a global awareness raising campaign established in 2009 by the Multiple Sclerosis International Federation (MSIF) and its member MS societies. Learn more about it at http://www.worldmsday.org.

Just One Kiss, a Fool’s Gold romance, is available wherever books and e-books are sold, and a free excerpt is available at SusanMallery.com.

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