Diet Coke promotion gives a taste of books

February 04, 1999

Book photos courtesy of

It started last week. Excerpts of newly released and soon-to-be-released works by six best-selling authors will be included in 35 million 12- and 24-packs of diet Coke and Caffeine Free diet Coke. The excerpted titles are:

A Sudden Change of Heart    Be Cool    Chicken Soup

* "A Sudden Change of Heart," by Barbara Taylor Bradford. Bradford's first novel, "A Woman of Substance" was published in 1979. That and 13 other novels have sold more than 59 million copies worldwide. [Read more!]

* "Be Cool," by Elmore Leonard, author of 35 novels. Leonard penned bestsellers "Cuba Libre," "Out of Sight" and "Maximum Bob." His latest work reprises the character Chili Palmer from "Get Shorty." [Read more!]


* "Chicken Soup for the Couple's Soul" is a collection of stories about how real people found "true love with the person of their dreams." [Read more!]

* "River's End," by Nora Roberts, author of the No. 1 New York Times best-sellers "The Reef" and "Homeport." [Read more!]

* "Tara Road," by Maeve Binchy, who wrote "Circle of Friends." "Tara Road" is her first full-length novel since "The Glass Lake." [Read more!]

* "Mistaken Identity" by Lisa Scottoline, former trial lawyer and author of "Rough Justice." [Read more!]

River's End    Tara Road    Mistaken Identity

Giving diet Coke drinkers a taste of the new books along with the soft drink is part of the beverage maker's national promotion - "The Story Begins with Diet Coke."

"When we asked diet Coke drinkers, they told us that 'living life to the fullest' often means taking time out to enjoy the simple pleasures of life, like reading," according to Frank P. Bifulco, Coca-Cola USA's vice president, marketing, in a press release.

The campaign also includes a contest. Entrants' 500-word stories about "living life to the fullest" will be judged by the six authors. The winner will receive a three-day "literary" vacation in New York City, including tours of publishing houses, critiques of his or her writing and dinner with one of the authors. The winning story, along with those of 24 other finalists, will be published in a "virtual book" on the diet Coke Web site.

For information, visit

- Kate Coleman

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