Mar 012018
 

Death & the Viking’s Daughter (An Auction Block Mystery)
Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting – Missouri
Midnight Ink (February 8, 2018)
Paperback: 288 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0738752372
Kindle ASIN: B0711WYDCR

 

 

Next on Wren and Death’s Appraisal List:

Item #1: An Old Family Feud.

Item #2: A Missing Woman.

Item #3: A Body in the Rosebushes of their Dream House

Auctioneer Wren Morgan and her private eye fiancé Death (pronounced “Deeth”) Bogart are ready to meet each other’s parents and settle down together. But their sleuthing days are far from over. While Death and Wren are helping prepare auction items at an old supper club, a Viking reenactor nearly dies at the historical settlement next door. The cause? Seeing the ghost of his daughter, who went missing twenty years ago.

As Wren looks into what happened to the Viking’s daughter, Death is hired to investigate the theft of historical items that have high sentimental value. When their respective investigations turn out to be connected, the couple gets caught in a deadly conflict.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

Wren and Death (pronounced “Deeth”) are stepping up their relationship and are looking to buy a house together. Wren thinks she has found the perfect place. Just a little problem, there’s a body buried beneath the rose bushes and everyone knows it’s there. Wren is also helping to organize an auction at an old supper club, situated right next to a Viking reenactment settlement. One of the participants almost dies when he thinks he sees his daughter’s ghost. She went missing 20 years ago, it is still an open police case but with no new leads. Wren decides to try to help him with her own investigation. Death is working on his own case of a theft from a museum.  It is not long before all these things start to connect. But solving all the mysteries could have deathly consequences.

Loretta Ross has created such rich characters for this series and you need to read this series from the beginning to appreciate their growth. Death and Wren have come so far since they first met, but there are still obstacles in the path forward. Obstacles they know they can work through together. Death’s PTSD is a huge hurdle but Wren loves and supports him in every way she can. Her parents finally meet him in this story and her mother especially has several concerns. The ebb and flow of this part of the story touched me as both a mom and a daughter.

I really enjoyed that all the mysteries in this series started from events in the past, 20 years ago, 40 years ago and more. Solved with newly found evidence, research, perseverance and a hastily formed plan. The author has her readers along for a fascinating ride.  I was on the edge of my seat for the exciting ending which is exactly what I have come to expect from this author.

The setting of this one and the history of the supper club and how it was created in the image of an actual place was compelling. I also like the background of the Viking Settlement historic site.

I love this author’s writing style. She takes on some stirring topics but injects humor in all the right places. Her characters draw you in and the mysteries hold you tight. I read the book all in one sitting. Another thing I have come to expect from this author.

A great series and a perfect escape!

Your Great Escapes Travel Agent

LORETTA

About The Author

Loretta Ross is a writer and historian who lives and works in rural Missouri. She is an alumna of Cottey College and holds a BA in archaeology from the University of Missouri – Columbia. She has loved mysteries since she first learned to read. Death and the Redheaded Woman will be her first published novel.

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Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US  mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End March 15, 2018, at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Feb 082017
 


I am so happy to welcome Loretta Ross to Escape With Dollycas!
Her new book was just released today!

The first thing I’d like to say is thank you, to Lori Caswell, for inviting me to write a guest post for her blog.

Last September, a little over a month after my fiftieth birthday, I did something I’d never done before and, indeed, something I had never imagined I’d ever do.

I rode on an airplane.

I’m a wild woman, I know.

As mystery readers, you may be aware of Bouchercon, also known as the World Mystery Convention. It’s held in a different city every autumn. In 2015 I attended my first ever B-Con (as it’s affectionately known) in Raleigh, North Carolina. To get there, I drove by myself for two days. On the way down I had to pass through the Great Smoky Mountains, which are absolutely gorgeous and scared the ever-loving hell out of me.

I love mountains when they’re on a jigsaw puzzle or a picture postcard. When they’re climbing under the wheels of my car, at sixty-five miles an hour, with a mini-van crowding me  to my left, tractor-trailers boxing me in, and fiery death  a few feet off the right shoulder and several hundred yards straight down–not so much. It turns out that, under certain circumstances, I’m moderately afraid of heights.

I’m also moderately claustrophobic, which made it a really unpleasant surprise when I finally came down out of the mountains and there were tunnels. And then more mountains. And then more tunnels.

On my way back I was determined to miss the whole “oh-my-God-I’m-going-to-fall-off-the-mountain-oh-my-God-the-mountain’s-going-to-fall-on-me” experience.

It turns out Google maps isn’t so hot at showing elevation. Also, not all those roads are as clearly marked as you’d expect them to be. I wound up lost in the Appalachians.

And there was a tunnel, too. Under Tennessee.

So this year, I was determined not to drive, even though I still wanted to go.

When I was a girl, growing up in the middle of nowhere and spending most of my summers alone with my imaginary literary friends, I used to lie in the field beside my house and look up at the sky. I’d watch the planes going over and wonder about the people in them, but it had never seemed possible that that privileged class of adventurers could someday include me.

My initial plan was to take the train to NOLA. I’ve never been on a train either and it seemed romantic and less likely to fall out of the sky. Unfortunately, from where I live in west-central Missouri, the most direct train route to New Orleans goes through Chicago, takes almost an entire 24-hour day, and involves a 4AM bus transfer in St. Louis. So I womanned up and booked plane tickets both ways.

The first thing people told me about flying was to be early. Be really early. Figure out what early is, and then get there well before that. Expect long lines and delays and hassles at security. So naturally, I planned carefully and then procrastinated so much that I was still packing at midnight the night before I was supposed to leave.

The time on my boarding pass said 10:05 AM and I live a good two-and-a-half hours from the airport so I set my alarm for 4 AM and finally went to sleep.

For a given value of sleep. I tossed. I turned. I worried and fretted and I didn’t actually fall asleep until about 3:45. When the alarm went off, I was so exhausted I couldn’t keep my eyes open and convinced myself I could sleep for just another half hour and I’d be fine.

By the time I finally got up it was almost six. I kissed the cats, made sure they had plenty of food and water, and headed out. I made it as far as Clinton, the town nearest me, before I got light-headed. I’d been so fixated on the coming trip that I’d forgotten to eat the day before.

So, I stopped for a quick breakfast, then topped off the gas tank, and then finally hit the highway. By this point it was nearly seven.

Yeah, I wasn’t at all freaking out by this point. (I might be lying.) Also, did I mention the rain? And the fog?

By the time I got to Kansas City, it was pouring rain, fog was rising off the pavement, and I had managed to land right in the middle of the morning rush hour. And then I took the wrong exit. And then I got caught in a construction zone. And then I couldn’t find the place I’d reserved parking.

At a quarter to ten I was driving around in circles in front of the terminal, lost and frantic and practically hysterical. At 9:57 I stumbled across economy parking.

A shuttle appeared as if by magic, I was the last passenger they picked up, and they took me directly to my terminal. There was no line at security and I had time to buy a bottle of water and sit down before they called my flight.

And I flew. I climbed in a big, metal box with a bunch of strangers, packed in like pomegranate seeds, and the ground dropped away beneath us and we sailed off through the sky to New Orleans. And, perhaps it’s silly, but I looked out the window at the countryside passing by and I thought of a little girl in a field.

And I cried a little.

~Loretta

What a great story!! I am so glad you made it right on time! Thank you so much for visiting today! 

Death & the Gravedigger’s Angel
(An Auction Block Mystery)

Cozy Mystery
3rd in Series
Setting – Missouri
Midnight Ink (February 8, 2017)
Paperback: 264 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0738750415
Kindle ASIN: B01FOR0YXQ
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Death & Wren Bid on Answers to the Mysteries of Love and War

When former army medic Tony Dozier is accused of killing a member of the hate group that disrupted his wife’s funeral, the prosecution charges premeditated murder and the defense claims temporary insanity. Former marine Death Bogart and auctioneer Wren Morgan think there’s more to the story.

They’re both led to the long-abandoned Hadleigh House, where Wren begins preparing the contents for auction but ends up ap- praising the story behind an antique sketchbook. As Wren uncovers the century-old tale of a World War I soldier and his angel, Death finds a set of truths that will change…or end…their lives.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

I love this series! Morgan is working at Hadleigh House, an old abandoned mansion, to inventory the furnishings and other contents for auction. She finds an old sketchbook that is truly a treasure. It seems to tell a story from World War I about a soldier and his angel. Meanwhile Tony Dozier, an army vet is arrested for killing a man that was protesting his wife’s funeral. Wren and Death (Dee-th) “it’s a family name” Bogart meet the man and know right away he didn’t kill anyone. Death also has PTSD and knows that is what the vet is dealing with. Maybe the sketchbook can help explain the vet’s confusion and lead them to the real killer.

Three books and we are still peeling back the layers on these characters. They continue to grow closer and deal with each other’s battles. They are falling in love but still have barriers up so as to not cause each other pain, both physically and emotionally. The author seems to understand that their healing is a process, not something that can be fleshed out in a hurry but revealed over time. For me as a reader that draws me to these characters in a major way.

The setting this time was quite interesting. A big old house, a cemetery, and a camp for wounded veterans are all located close together but getting to the house is difficult because there is only a walking path until a bridge car be rebuilt for vehicles. The picture on the cover depicts things very well.

The theme of the story is very current, there is a group, the Church of the Army of Christ (CAC), a militant hate group, they protest around the area. This group disrupted the Dozier funeral because Tony’s wife was a Muslim. She and Tony were the only survivors of an attack in Afghanistan only to get back to the states and have her killed by a drunk driver. Tony dealing with the tragedy he witnessed overseas as a medic combined with his wife’s tragic death has left him just a shell of a man. The author wrote this book long before the current administration was sworn in but she clearly saw the degree of hatred during the election and she tackled that and the plight of veterans so well in this story.

As for the mystery, it wasn’t exactly complex but it wasn’t straight forward either. I knew who didn’t do it, just as Morgan and Death did, so I was really tuned in to all the others I viewed as suspects. I just had a feeling and surprisingly I turned out to be right, but it played out in a really scary, edge of your seat way.

The topics may seem heavy for a cozy mystery but Ms. Ross adds the humor, romance and character building in a way to keep it all balanced. I was very happy with the last chapter set up to take us into the next Death and Morgan story. It is going to be hard to wait a year to have it in my hands.

If this is a new series for you I really recommend you start with Death & the Redheaded Woman, then Death & the Brewmaster’s Widow, before you read this story. These are rich characters you will enjoy more if you meet them from the beginning. 

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

LORETTA

About The Author

Loretta Ross is a writer and historian who lives and works in rural Missouri. She is an alumna of Cottey College and holds a BA in archaeology from the University of Missouri – Columbia. She has loved mysteries since she first learned to read. Death and the Redheaded Woman will be her first published novel.

Website         Blog           Facebook
GoodReads         Twitter

Thanks to the publisher I have 1 copy to give away!
Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US  mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Click the Like Button at the top of this post for a Bonus Entry.

Leave a comment for Loretta for 5 Bonus Entries.

Add this book to your WANT TO READ shelf on GoodReads for 3 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 22, 2017 at 11:59 PM CST
Winner Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winner Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

Click Here For Entry Form

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Feb 092016
 

SHHH….I am barging in on this Great Escapes Tour…so read quietly 🙂

DEATH AND THE BREWMASTERS large banner640

Death & The Brewmaster’s Widow
by Loretta Ross

DEATH AND THE BREWMASTERS WIDOW
Death & the Brewmaster’s Widow
(An Auction Block Mystery)

2nd in Series
Cozy Mystery
Setting – Missouri
Publisher: Midnight Ink (February 8, 2016)
Paperback: 264 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0738747057
E-Book ASIN: B019KKTWU4
goodreads-badge-add-plus

 
 
 

Synopsis

They call it “the Brewmaster’s Widow”; the abandoned brewery where Death Bogart’s brother died in an arson fire.

With his girlfriend, Wren Morgan, Death goes home to St. Louis to take on a deeply personal mystery. When Randy Bogart went into the Einstadt Brewery, he left his broken badge behind at the firehouse. So why did the coroner find one on his body? Every answer leads to more questions. Why did the phony badge have the wrong number? Who set the brewery fire? What is the connection between Randy’s death and the mysterious Cherokee Caves, where the opulent playground of 19th century beer barons falls into slow decay?

Not understanding how and why he lost his brother is breaking the ex-Marine’s heart. But the Brewmaster’s Widow is jealous of her secrets. Prying them loose could cost Death and Wren both their lives.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

The first book in this series made my Best Reads of 2015 list. I couldn’t wait for this book to be released because we were given a bit of a cliffhanger at the end of the last one.

Wren Morgan and Death (Dee-th) “it’s a family name” Bogart are in St. Louis to wrap up affairs after Death’s brother is killed in an arson fire. But there is a mystery surrounding his death because he was found wearing a badge with the wrong number. His correct badge had a broken clasp and was left back at the fire station. Could this badge mix up have something to do with the fire? Wren and Death take us deep into The Brewmaster’s Widow and her secrets to find out.

I am going to say this up front. This book can be read as a stand alone but you really need to read Death and the Redheaded Woman to get to know this amazing couple. Wren Morgan is an assistant auctioneer and Death is a a private eye/bounty hunter. They meet and their relationship just grows and grows. He is a vet with not only PTSD, but physical disabilities too. Her life hasn’t been easy and she needs someone to lean on. They are just better together. These character are written so beautifully.

In this story Death’s brother Randy died while Death was still deployed. Randy thought Death had been killed in the war. As Death tries to wrap up Randy’s life there seem to be more questions than  answers.  Before Death can move on he needs to know why his didn’t get out of that building alive. He and Wren go to great lengths to find the answers.

I read this book quickly in an afternoon. I had a little suspicion about where we were headed but it was a wild ride to get there. I am so impressed with this author’s writing. She builds the story with intrigue, romance, and humor in a way that deflects your mind from everything around you and holds your attention fully.  Both my dad and my husband were firefighters. I lived the fear of someone getting hurt at a scene. Dying at one would be unfathomable. Randy’s death effected not only his brother, but his chief, his fellow firefighters and so many others that knew him. Ross wrote this in an a way that we knew what everyone was feeling but it didn’t take away from the enjoyment of the story as a whole. All her characters and their reactions and demeanor in the story were very believable.

The setting in the old brewery was so interesting. I enjoyed learning the history of the structure closed down at the start of prohibition in the 1920’s. It was quite a place. A perfect place for a mystery.

I love where Loretta Ross has taken us and these characters, and the little teaser she gave us at the end of this story tells us we are headed on another mysterious adventure soon. Just like the last time, I can’t wait!

Just a little spoiler alert – We finally learn Death D. Bogart’s middle name and it’s a doozy.

perfect 2016

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

LORETTA

About The Author

Loretta Ross is a writer and historian who lives and works in rural Missouri. She is an alumna of Cottey College and holds a BA in archaeology from the University of Missouri – Columbia. She has loved mysteries since she first learned to read. Death and the Redheaded Woman will be her first published novel.

Website         Blog           Facebook        
GoodReads         Twitter

 
 

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Tour Participants

February 8 – Back Porchervations – Review
February 9 – Laura’s Interests – Review
February 10 – Mallory Heart’s Cozies – Review
February 10 – Christa Reads and Writes – Guest Post
February 11 – The Bookwyrm’s Hoard  – Review
February 12 – Moonlight Rendezvous – Review
February 13 – Cassidy Salem Reads & Writes – Review
February 14 – Jane Reads – Review, Guest Post
February 15 – The Ninja Librarian – Review
February 16 – Island Confidential – Interview
February 17 – LibriAmoriMiei – Review
February 17 – 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy,  &, Sissy, Too ! – Spotlight

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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Feb 062015
 

great escape tour banner large death and the red headed woman640I was set to review this book later in the month but today’s blogger has disappeared from the internet so I popped myself in as a replacement. I was originally just going to post a spotlight but I squeezed the book into my reading schedule and boy I am so glad I did!

Death and the Redheaded Woman
Death and the Redheaded Woman
(An Auction Block Mystery)

Mystery
Setting – Missouri
Publisher: MIDNIGHT INK (February 8, 2015)
Paperback: 264 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0738743936
E-Book ASIN: B00S1MTLCW
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Next Up for Auction: Murder

When auctioneer Wren Morgan begins cataloging the contents of the Campbell mansion, she’s unprepared to find something that can’t be appraised—a dead man. After the body turns out to be a criminal with ties to a recent jewel heist, Wren comes face-to-face with Death Bogart. A private eye and part-time bounty hunter, Death is searching for the stolen jewels needed to convict a murderer.

Death finds a friend and willing ally in Wren, but they aren’t the only ones searching for treasure. Two ruthless men are also on the hunt, and they will do anything to eliminate the competition. To survive, Death and Wren must solve two mysteries spanning a century and a half and outwit a pair of cold-blooded killers.

Dollycas’s Thoughts

This book is just amazing! When a book starts out with

He was gorgeous and he was naked but, unfortunately, he was dead.

you sit up and pay attention because you have not idea where this story is going to take you. But I quickly knew this was going to be an extremely entertaining read.

Wren Morgan is an assistant auctioneer. She arrived at the Campbell Victorian to start an inventory of the oldest house in the county for an upcoming auction. Barely in the door she finds the dead body, something tells her this auction won’t be taking place anytime soon.

Death (Dee-th) “it’s a family name” Bogart, a private eye/bounty hunter has just arrived in town chasing down a bail jumper. Death is also a veteran, who had to leave the military for health reasons. The government is taking its good sweet time processing his military benefits so he is presently living in his Jeep Grand Cherokee. He arrives at the police station to drop off his detainee and sees Wren across the room and is immediately captivated.

The relationship that has begun between Death and Wren was a pleasure to read as they quickly grew comfortable with each other. Death has been through so much and Wren opens her heart to him. Like many war vets he not only has a physical disability, he also suffers with PTSD.  His self esteem is pretty darn low and he has a hard time accepting help. Wren knows to tread lightly and allow Death to share things with her at his own pace. She too has a bit of drama in her past and he knows she needs someone to help her get on with her life and someone she can trust. Ross was written both characters in a way that you become engaged into their lives and what they are feeling pretty rapidly.

The main mystery plot of the story is excellent. We are not only following clues to solve a murder but there are some valuable items that have gone missing and there may be a tie in to some objects that disappeared back during the Civil War. The “aha moment” was absolutely priceless and something I never saw coming.

Loretta Ross has a fantastic sense of humor and liberally injects into this story. I was smiling and giggling throughout.

The author also knows how to tempt us readers. As this story wraps up she give us just a bit of a tease of the next Auction Block Mystery.

To learn this is Loretta Ross’ debut novel just blows my mind. I don’t need an appraisal to tell you this is an author we need to watch! She is going places! I am completely SOLD!!

paradise5 STARFISH5 STARFISH

Dollycas

Your Escape With A Good Book Travel Agent

 

 

Author Photo

 

About This Author

Loretta Ross is a writer and historian who lives and works in rural Missouri. She is an alumna of Cottey College and holds a BA in archaeology from the University of Missouri – Columbia. She has loved mysteries since she first learned to read. Death and the Redheaded Woman will be her first published novel.

My Website is at http://www.lorettasueross.com.

My blog is connected to my website at http://lorettasueross.com/blog/

My Facebook page is at https://www.facebook.com/lorettasueross

My author page at Goodreads is at https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/236665.Loretta_Ross

I’m on Twitter as @lorettasueross and my profile page is at https://twitter.com/lorettasueross

Other Purchase Links: B&N Book Depository

a Rafflecopter giveaway

In addition to the Rafflecopter above I also have
1 Print Copy of this fantastic book to giveaway!

Contest is open to anyone over 18 years old
with a US mailing address.

Duplicate entries will be deleted. Void where prohibited.

You do not have to be a follower to enter but I hope you will find
something you like here and become a follower.

Followers Will Receive 2 Bonus Entries For Each Way They Follow.
Plus 2 Bonus Entries For Liking My Facebook Fan Page.

Following the new Google+ Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book Fan Page will earn you 3 Bonus Entries.

Leave a comment for Loretta for 5 Bonus Entries.

Pin this giveaway to Pinterest for 3 Bonus Entries.

If you publicize the giveaway on Twitter or Facebook or anywhere you will receive
5 Bonus Entries For Each Link.

Contest Will End February 20, 2015 at 11:59 PM CST
Winners Will Be Chosen By Random.org
Winners Will Be Notified By Email
and Will Be Posted Here In The Sidebar.

CLICK HERE FOR ENTRY FORM

 

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Tour Participants

February 1 – Cozy Up With Kathy – Interview

February 2 – Shelley’s Book Case – Review, Guest Post, Giveaway

February 3 – The Ninja Librarian – Review

February 4 – readalot – Review

February 5 – Kelly P’s Blog – Guest Post

February 6 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – Spotlight, Giveaway

February 7 – LibriAmoriMiei – Review, Giveaway

February 8 – Jane Reads – Review, Giveaway

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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