‘Water for Elephants’ author Sara Gruen desperately trying to sell 156 Hatchimals after spending $23K on resale plot The New York Times bestselling author behind “Water for Elephants” is corralling a new circus: $23,000 worth of Hatchimals. Sara Gruen bought 156 of the hot-ticket holiday toys on eBay around Black Friday, hoping to sell the already marked-up toys for even more. But after the online auction set a limit on how many Hatchimals the writer could peddle, she was left with a trove of pricey puppets — an a wave of fury from parents who have struggled to find the sold-out critters for their own kids. “I am having Hatchimal nightmares,” the North Carolina-based author wrote on Facebook, announcing her own website to sell her surplus. “I have a fortune invested, only one venue to offload them, and in only three weeks they will magically transform into useless pumpkins that will take up space in my office FOREVER, and have caused my financial ruin.” Gruen insisted that she stocked up on the toys not to make money for herself, but to help fund legal fees for an allegedly innocent man serving a life sentence. She’s currently working on a documentary about the case. Good luck finding Hatchimals, among this season’s hottest toys The writer bought 156 of the highly coveted toys on eBay the day after Black Friday. While the animated critters retail for just $59.99, the average auction price was already up to $151 — meaning Gruen dropped about $23,500 on her stash, she told PhillyVoice. “It never occurred to me that I’d have trouble getting rid of them,” she said. “I figured I could sell them at a profit and put a dent in the extremely hefty lawyers' fees.” But when she started reselling the Hatchimal stockpile on eBay, the auction site wrote to her with some bad news: Users can only sell three Hatchimals per week on the site. She tried other market place sites to no avail. Amazon won’t let vendors peddle the hot gifts without a note from the manufacturer, and Bonanza has barred newbie sellers without a history of hawking Hatchimals from starting during the holiday season, Gruen claimed. Black Friday Guide: Hottest toys, electronics, fashion and beyond With dozens of Hatchimals piled up in her office, Gruen said she was forced to set up her own online store. “I cringe and hang my head in shame and feel sick to my stomach — if you or anyone you know wants a Hatchimal, here is a link to my Shopify store front,” she wrote. The Hatchimals sold in the Gruen Zoo go for between $189 and $219. Each one comes with a signed copy of one of Gruen’s books. News of the shop has not gone over well with parents, many of whom hasn’t been able to get their hands on the animated toys ahead of the holidays. Toys ‘R’ Us shares top 15 toy list for holiday 2016 “You rob hundreds of parents of the opportunity to get one of these at a reasonable price for their kids, and now you're begging for them to come bail you out of your greed induced moment of stupidity?” someone wrote on Gruen’s Facebook announcement. “Um... no.” “This is what happens when you try and take advantage of desperate parents during Christmas,” another added. Some had even harsher words for the writer-turned-Hatchimal peddler: “Hope everyone boycott's anything you write.” Despite the criticism, the Hatchimals are selling. Two days after the store went live, Gruen said she had sold 40% of her inventory. Before the Hatchimal insanity, Gruen was best known for her 2006 book “Water for Elephants,” the story of a veterinarian student-turned-circus animal keeper. The novel spent three months on the New York Times Best Seller list and was alter turned into a movie starting Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nat...sperate-sell-156-hatchimals-article-1.2904597 @davids355 - hit up this author for your daughters... you'll probably get a great deal.