Friday, August 30, 2013

Aloha to Anna Campbell and A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS



Anna Campbell needs no introduction.   This award winning, fun loving, sizzling romance writer offers insight to her life Down Under and her new release, A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS ...

Kim:   Aloha from Baltimore! I am sad that I no longer share an ocean with you. I just reread your bio (link) ... you are a prolific writer with many projects in the past year! What is essential to your writing routine - Tim Tams? Vegemite Sandwiches? Shrimp on the Barbie? (I'm throwing in every preconceived notion that Americans have of Australians).

Anna:  Waving madly at you, Kim! Although I need a REALLY long arm for you to see me now! I was looking forward to visiting you in Hawaii – oh, well, I’ll just have to go to Baltimore instead! Although I’m not sure the surfing is as good. 

It’s been a really busy 12 months! A full-length book out and writing another. Three novellas, including DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES, the Sons of Sin one. And a top secret Christmas project that I’ll go public about in a little while. Phew! I’m advertising for writing elves to move into the basement. In fact, I’m advertising for a basement! They’re not usually part of Aussie houses which may surprise you. So far no replies to either ad!

Laughed at your selection of things to get me going! Tim Tams are way too tempting. Shrimps on the Barbie aren’t a bad idea. I’m positively un-Australian. I HATE Vegemite. Always have. The answer to what helps me pound away on the keyboard (apart from the electricity bill that arrives with annoying reliability!) is tea and music. I write to music, usually soundtracks or classical.

Hawaiian fruit tea

Kim:  Your bio is so funny. You wrote,

Even though my heart has always been with long juicy historicals. I finished seven short contemporary stories, all of which were rejected very nicely by Harlequin. By this stage, under the bed was more crowded than the center of Hong Kong at Chinese New Year. Then I worked on a pile of totally unmarketable historicals, some of which I finished, most of which I didn’t. More boxes for the dust bunnies to eat in the bedroom. You’ll notice housework never featured in my mixed-up career choices.

I, for one, am glad that you kept writing rather than start cleaning! Funny that now your fans could fill the center of Hong Kong! What have you learned from your fans that has influenced your writing?

Anna:  Oh, what a lovely thing to say. So glad the bio gave you a giggle. I think I’d had a glass of wine by that stage of writing it! Because I was unpublished for so long, it’s been slightly surreal and extremely wonderful to have people all over the world reading the stories at last. It really is a dream come true. I’m constantly touched by readers’ generosity. Nothing keeps me typing through an elf-less deadline like a lovely email from someone who’s loved something I’ve written. I’m also delighted that my readers seem to be pretty open to where I want to take the stories. That makes me feel brave as a writer and confident about exploring whatever theme takes my fancy. And I have it on very good authority that one of my readers actually calls upon my name when she’s clutching the plane armrest and bumping around in turbulent air high up in the sky! Now that’s real enthusiasm for a writer’s work! ;-)

A non traditional wedding dress

Kim:  You share the same name as a wedding designer in Australia, www.annacampbell.com.au. Have you exchanged emails? What kind of wedding dress would your historical heroines like to wear?

Anna:  Isn’t that hilarious? Anna Campbell the designer wasn’t active when I set up my website, but she’s developing a worldwide audience now for her beautiful, romantic dresses. Love that we’re kind of in the same business. We’ve never been in contact, but I’m sure she gets my Google alert messages the way I get hers. I should call in on her shop next time I’m in Melbourne!

You know, now you ask me about weddings, most of my girls do the quick, special license version of a wedding (there’s usually a scandal hovering) so they don’t get the chance for frou-frou on the big day. Clearly, I’ll have to change that. In Regency England, brides wore any color they liked – white weddings were a Victorian fashion. My heroines are women of taste and discernment so I’m sure whatever color it is, the dress will be beautiful and elegant. In fact, very like an Anna Campbell design!


Kim:  Speaking of heroines, tell us about Genevieve Barrett from your new release, A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS? And who is she kissing at midnight?

Anna:  She’s kissing someone she shouldn’t – that’s the whole point of a kiss from a rake at midnight! The funny thing with this book is I had the title before I had much else. A vivid scene popped into my mind of a girl swimming naked in a pond just before a handsome gold-haired man discovers her. They swapped a bit of prickly banter and then kissed. Which sounds great, except that while I knew the gold-haired man was Richard Harmsworth, I had no idea who the girl was. Or how these people found themselves smooching in the moonlight. The rest of the story sprang from my answers to those questions.

Richard had a fairly well established character in SEVEN NIGHTS IN A ROGUE’S BED, however short his appearance, and I asked myself who would be the last woman he’d choose to fall in love with. So I paired London’s most elegant gentleman and most accomplished flirt with a bookish virginal vicar’s daughter who has no time for frivolity. She’s also smart enough to see through his charm to the man beneath which he doesn’t like at all. Genevieve was based on a couple of famous female scholars in Regency England – it was difficult for a woman to establish an intellectual reputation but not impossible. She’s interested in her work, not in men determined to work their seductive wiles upon her, particularly when she’s already worked out that Richard has an ulterior motive for chasing her. As you can probably tell, I had great fun writing these two!

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Kim:  What's next for Anna Campbell? 

Anna:  Well, apart from the top secret Christmas project (if I tell, Santa won’t give me the gift-wrapped Richard Armitage I’ve asked for this year – hmm, and last year… Clearly that request got lost somewhere), I’m currently writing like a fiend on the third Sons of Sin book. It’s Cam’s story. He’s the mega-cool Duke of Sedgemoor who has all the answers in the other books. But when he falls in love with the last woman he ever imagined he would, Mr. Cool gets very hot under the collar and his perfectly arranged life goes south in a big way. The lovely people at Grand Central Publishing have contracted another Sons of Sin book which will feature James Fairbrother, the Marquess of Leath who is mentioned in A RAKE’S MIDNIGHT KISS and DAYS OF RAKES AND ROSES. That one’s a return to the gothic flavor of SEVEN NIGHTS – I always like stories with ruined castles and innocent heroines and heroes who have a touch of the sinister! I’ll start that in the new year and I’m already looking forward to it.

Thank you for having me as your guest today, Kim! Always love to visit! All the best in Baltimore!

File:Old bay seasoning.jpg
Public Domain from Wikipedia

Mahalo, Anna, for always making me laugh (your interviews) and cheer (your books).   I posted my five star review of A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS on Amazon (link) and Goodreads (link).  I am giving away a print copy of A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  What is a "specialty" food from your home town (reference question one).   Maryland is known for its blue crabs boiled in Old Bay seasoning.   

On that note, I asked my husband for suggestions to change my moniker from "Kim in Hawaii'.  He suggested "Crabby Kim".  I decided to go with "Kim in Baltimore".

2.  This giveaway is open to all readers.

3.  Comments are open through Saturday, September 7, 10 pm in Baltimore.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, September 8.

Mahalo,

Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

To learn more about Anna and her books, check out her website at annacampbell.info.




66 comments:

  1. Great and fun interview. Yes, Anna needs no introduction :) Pittsburgh has a famous sandwich by Primanti Brothers. It originally was made for truck drivers so they could eat on the run - it's huge and includes among other meats and cheeses, fries and coleslaw. It's quite tasty and a mouthful lol.

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    1. Wow, Catslady, that sounds like some sandwich! Sounds kinda yummy, actually! And clearly covers all the food groups!

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  2. I don't think we have any specialty foods here! They grow peaches and apples in the area, so I guess I could say that.

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    1. JM, I bet it's pretty around your way in the spring when the blossom is out. It's too hot for blossom trees here. It's a pity - I just love them.

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  3. So many talented Anna Campbells in Australia. We're known for pizza, hot dogs and bagels.

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    1. Pizza, hot dogs and bagels? Is that Chicago, Jane? I remember when I lived in London a Chicago deep pan pizza place opened near Trafalgar Square - yum, yum, yum. First time I ate onion rings! Sadly, not the last - well, sadly for my hips.

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  4. I'm from Southern California and the specialty food I miss is tamales at Christmas time. Usually we were able to snag some during the holidays as co-workers or their mom's always made a lot during the holidays.

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    1. Barbara, I ate such great food when I visited California. The stuff in restaurants was very like what's in a lot of Australian restaurants - a delicious fusion of Asian and European ingredients. Hope you get some tamales this year!

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  5. I was born and raised outside of Piladelphia. My grandparents on my Dad's side were called Pennsylvania Dutch. I LOVE Shoo-fly pie! There were, of course, other German dishes, but Shoo-fly pie always interests people and taste so good!

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    1. Betty, I had to look up shoo fly pie! It looks delicious, a little like a traditional English treacle tart which is wonderful with cream. I'd love to try it one day.

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  6. What a great interview, thank you!
    1) I'm from Southeastern Arizona, so we're generally known for our Mexican food. But more specifically, August/September is roasted Green Chile season! You can't go anywhere without the tantalizing scent of roasted Green Chile's making your stomach growl! :)

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    1. Arizona, I'd love to visit down your way one day. I visited Colorado a few years ago and just loved the landscape - and the warm welcome I received. Yum to the Mexican food! Thanks for saying you enjoyed the interview - I always love to visit Kim.

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  7. A great interview. I don't think is a local specialty food right here, but quite locally there are Strawberry gardens in the summertime!

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    1. Gypsy, where I grew up in Australia, it's our strawberry capital. We even had a Strawberry Festival - my brother did very well in the strawberry eating contest at one stage. Then he was sick all night, LOL! Sadly, I don't like strawberries so it was all wasted on me! ;-)

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  8. Kim, thank you for that lovely warm welcome and for that great review. So glad you enjoyed A RAKE'S MIDNIGHT KISS! In fact, I could give you a midnight kiss to thank you! All right, I'll just wave! ;-)

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  9. Hi, Kim!

    Enjoyed reading this feature on Anna Campbell!

    The specialty food of Iloilo City is batchoy, which is a noodle soup with pork cracklings and shredded meat and a LOT of garlic. The taste is somewhere between salty and something because there's a secret ingredient that batchoy houses here mix into the broth.

    Congratulations to Anna for the release of A Rake's Midnight Kiss!

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    1. Thanks so much for swinging by, Tin, and checking out the interview. Kim always asks such fun questions! Oh, man, that batchoy sounds absolutely delicious. I used to work in Chinatown in Sydney and some of the food there was magnificent, but I don't think I ever had that. Hmm, MUST visit! ;-)

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  10. Congrats on the release of A Rake's Midnight Kiss, Anna!

    Over here, we have a place called Salisbury House and we're known for the Salisbury Nips - it's a homey burger joint that has a ton of locations all over our city.

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    1. Ada, I love a great burger! That place sounds great. Thanks for swinging by and for the congrats!

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  11. My home town doesn't have a speciality food. My state has the most amazing fruit.

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    1. Mary, it does indeed! ;-) I love mango season in particular. Yum!

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  12. Since we are surrounded by sea (we live in an island and a bridge connects us to the next main cities), we have all the best and freshest sea foods! Most of the restaurants here serve sea food menus.

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    1. Lory, that sounds absolutely idyllic! I love sea food. I'm in a coastal place too and we've got a great local fish and chip place that runs their own trawlers. Amazingly fresh fish!

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  13. I live in Penang, Malaysia & my city is famous for it's hawker food. One of the main specialities is a sour, spicy, fruity & fragrant noodle dish called "assam laksa" that's been ranked in the top 10 yummiest food by CNN.

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    1. Linda, in Chinatown in Sydney there were quite a lot of Malaysian restaurants (it was basically an Asian food precinct!). I remember eating some absolutely delicious laksas there. Dribbled it all down my front usually but man, it was yummy!

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  14. Nothing much! I live in Canada... There's poutine, I supposed... But that's more in Quebec.... It's just French fries dipped in cheese sauce more or less...

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    1. May, French fries dipped in cheese sauce actually sounds pretty nice! One day I'm going to visit Belgium - apparently that's where you get the world's best French fries. Sadly, I LOVE French fries!

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  15. Here we just love our steak.

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    1. Debby, I must say I love a good steak too. In Australia we eat a lot of lamb - I've noticed that's not so popular in America. Roast leg of lamb? Food of the gods!

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  16. Congrats on the new release Anna. Here in Chicago, it's our Chicago Style Hot Dog and Deep Dish Pizza.

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    1. Danielle, I've always wanted to visit Chicago. I wish they'd have a RWA conference there! I've heard the food there is fabulous!

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  17. no specialty foods that I'm aware for this area though grew up in SW PA which has been known to make sandwiches that consist of the whole meal between the layers of bun or bread. Congrats on the release, looking forward to reading :)

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    1. Gamistress, thanks for the congrats. I've got to say these PA sandwiches sound pretty darn yummy!

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  18. Our specialty food here in Florida is, of course, oranges. Fresh squeezed Florida orange juice is amazing,and the oranges also taste great. In fact, on our way to visit our son in Tampa, we have to go on Route 60, and pass tons of orange orchards and also the main factory that makes the juice.

    Anna, thanks for being here today, and giving us a chance to win your latest book, "A Rake's Midnight Kiss". I love anything that you write, and would love to read Richard and Genevieve's story.

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    1. Diane, thanks for swinging by and for the good wishes for Rake! Good luck in the draw! Oh, fresh orange juice is the best, isn't it? My mother used to squeeze oranges. Really takes me back!

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  19. Hey Anna! Congrats on your release, and the interview. My hometown in Texas doesn't have a specialty food. But because of it being in the Piney Wood section of Texas (East Texas) I would have to say Pecan Pie, or Mexican food. Where I am in Florida now its a blend of Cuban/Nicaraguan/Jamaican food. The Nicaraguans make a desert called Pio Quinto that is delicious. The Cubans make this soup that is a mix of rib meat, yucca, and celery that is rich, but bland. The Jamaicans make a chicken called Jerked Chicken that is spicy but oh so good.

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    1. Wow, Angelic, I just looked up Pio Quinto! It looks AMAZING!!! Love anything custard - creme caramel/flan, bread and butter pudding, creme brulee, you name it. Eggs, milk and sugar? My idea of heaven! I remember eating quite a lot of Mexican food when I was in Dallas for RWA in 2007. Delicious. I was introduced to a quesadilla. Yum!

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  20. Living in Texas, I'd say BBQ brisket is a favorite, along with Tex-Mex and a whole host of other great items.

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    1. Karen, I remember going to a great barbecue place in Dallas, not far from the famous grassy knoll. Wow, delicious!

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  21. Living just north of the Mexican border, I'd say are specialty food is Mexican food. There are tons of Mexican food places around the city that serve great food!

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    1. Linda, it's always such a treat for me to visit different parts of the US. I remember the Mexican/Spanish influence in the food in Texas and Colorado! I went to a wonderful Mexican place in Boulder looking straight at the Flatirons - amazing sunset sight as I sat there slurping my margarita!

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  22. This was so much fun!! Thanks to you both... My state is best known for the breaded pork tenderloin.. a tenderloin pounded/flattened and then breaded & deep fried.. I didn't say it was healthy...

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    1. Wow, GGH, that sounds kinda...delish! Sort of like a pork schnitzel! Oh, now I'm hungry!

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  23. Hi, Anna! Congrats on your new release! I am looking forward to reading it. I also really enjoyed the interview. Kansas City is best known for its bar-be-que and steaks.

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    1. Cathy, I imagine Kansas as having great steaks! Love me a good steak. Best steak I ever ate was in New York City - you guys seems to age the meat better than we do here. Don't tell the other Aussies - we like to think we've got the world's best meat here! We should have a face-off, shouldn't we! Or perhaps we could call it a steak out! ;-)

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  24. Hello Anna and Kim, thanks for the wonderful blog post. I think the most unusual or specialty food for San Antonio would have to be Bunuelos. They're a wonderful, crispy, cinnamony sugary treat that were first popularized here back in '68 at HemisFair '68 the world exposition held downtown. They're yummy and if you're going to be here next year for the RWA conference I can take you to where you can buy the "Original HemisFair Bunuelos" as they are termed. They're sold only a few blocks from the Rivercenter & Riverwalk Marriott's where the conference is being held.

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    1. Hi Molly! Thanks for swinging by and saying you enjoyed the interview! Wow, those bunuelos sound absolutely delicious, like donuts on speed. Love cinnamon and sugar as a combo - they sound like exactly my thing!

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  25. No specialty food here in NW ON, unless you count pickerel or blueberries.

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    1. Chey, I had to look pickerel up. It's a fish, right? Never heard of it before!

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  26. Congrats to Anna on the new release! We are know for steak and corn ;)

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    1. Hi Erin! Ooh, steak and corn. That's a REAL meal! Thanks for the congrats!

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  27. HI Anna another great interview . I too now hate vegemite. I think I ate too much when I was little. Lamintons and choclate slice which thanks to your encouragement I am now making every couple of weeks and my husband thanks you.


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    1. Rosebuding, chocolate slice is a masterpiece, isn't it? It never goes astray when I make it. Lamingtons remind me of my mum - she used to make great ones!

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  28. Love your books! I'm pretty good at Ohio sheetcake

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    1. Hey, Molly, thanks for saying you love my books. Is Ohio sheetcake like American wedding cake? I love that! The Bandits bought me some when I was over for an RWA once. We have pyucky fruitcake for weddings here. Don't like fruitcake!

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  29. Hey, Kim, thanks for having me as your guest today. I've thoroughly enjoyed hearing about all these local specialties - even if it's made me VERY hungry! Thanks for everyone for swinging by and wishing me luck with Rake! Good luck in the draw!

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  30. I don't know about any specific food, but wine is the drink of choice here. I live in the Napa Valley in California. My daughter just got married at a winery and we had some fantastic wine that night.

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    1. Oh, wow, Ann, you're so lucky! I did a tour of the Napa and Sonoma Valleys when I visited San Francisco (I love wine too - clearly we need to visit!). Beautiful part of the world! Congratulations to your daughter!

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  31. Here in my city in Canada, we're right on the Red River so fish is pretty big - walleye, goldeye, catfish....those types! Congrats on your release, Anna! It's on my TBR pile :)

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    1. Hi Anita! I love fresh fish. My brother was a mad fisherman when he was a kid and there's nothing to match a freshly caught fish! Thanks for the congrats - hope you enjoy my Rake!

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  32. I am from PA. I would have to say pork and saurkraut and slippery pot pie. I do love my MD crabs, though.

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  33. Janice, I had the most wonderful crab omelettes when I was in San Francisco. Not sure if they were the same crabs, but they were SOOOO yummy! I had to look slippery pot pie up! I'm definitely increasing my recipe vocabulary with this post!

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  34. I live in a suburb of Philadelphia so Philly Cheesesteaks are the most well known item in our area.

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  35. Sweet tea and fried chicken here in the south!

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