Saturday, January 14, 2017

99-Cent Sale by Merrillee Whren

This is my latest series of books. Each book can be read as a stand-alone, but reading them as a series gives the reader a chance to revisit characters from the previous book. The first three books are set in Massachusetts. The fourth book follows Amanda Reynolds, who appears as a secondary character in books 2 and 3, to Tennessee, where she hopes to find success as a singer and songwriter. I am still working on that book.

For Christmas my husband and I joined our daughter and her family as they returned to Boston, where our son-in-law grew up. Although the small Massachusetts towns in these stories are a product of my imagination, the characters like to make a trip into Boston for different festivities. While we were there I took photos of some of those places.

This is the Park Street Church across the street from the Boston Common. In A Place to Call Home the characters use this landmark as a reference point.

This is a photo of the outside of Fenway Park where the Boston Red Sox play baseball. In both A Place to Call Home and A Love to Call Mine, the story find the characters attending a baseball game there.
This is a picture of the duckling statues in Boston's Public Garden. The statues depict the ducklings in the book, Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey. The heroine of A Love to Call Mine has a heart-to-heart talk with her best friend as they sit on the bench across the walk from the statues. Notice how the little girl is riding the mother duck, decked out in her Christmas finery.

This is a view of the Frog Pond in the Boston Common. People stand in line for their chance to skate. In A Family to Call Ours, my characters take a spin on the ice here. They also see the Christmas light show at Quincy Market and the giant tree you see in the photo below.

It was fun to put myself in the shoes of my characters as I revisit these places. One of the fun things was discovering something I had missed the many times we had visited Quincy Market and Faneuil Hall, which is a National Historic Park. We had gone into the old building and the shops on the main floor. I had no idea we could venture upstairs in the building that was built in 1742. This is what we found when we climbed the stairs. I may have to write a story that includes this experience.

Do you like to encounter real places you have visited in books you read?

The first book in the series, A Place to Call Home, is now on sale for 99 cents. 

Be sure to pick up a copy. You can find buy links to all retailers here.

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Merrillee Whren is the winner of the 2003 Golden Heart Award presented by Romance Writers of American. She is married to her own personal hero, her husband of forty-plus years, and has two grown daughters. Connect with her on her Facebook page and sign up for her newsletter.



  1. Boston is definitely one of my favorite cities. And, because I'm always thinking about food...Legal Seafoods is one of my favorite restaurants!

    1. Josie, we ate at Legal Seafood while we were there. It was good!

  2. I have not been to Boston since I was in my teens and my uncle lived in Cambridge. But I do love to find familiar places in the books I read. It always brings a smile to my face when I recognize a location.

  3. What fun pictures and background info for the books. I've never been to Boston, but it looks like a lovely place with some beautiful landmarks!

    1. Melanie, if you ever get the chance, it is a fabulous city to visit. So much history.