Marie Murphy Duess ...
History author, novelist, freelance writer, graphic artist, and marketing specialist 

Ashley Hall

Relive the events of the 1960s through the eyes of this assemblage, and learn about their regrets, their joys, and their capacity to love and accept even the most unlikely strangers.

There are many topics discussed in this novel: domestic violence, abortion, homosexuality, infidelity, prejudice...but because there are two issues I'm most passionate about, 10% of the proceeds of every book will go to A Woman's Place
(a haven to which  women and children living with domestic abuse can escape and receive the resources they need to live in peace and be safe). And the Legacy of Life  Foundation
(where women can explore ALL their choices).
Listen to my interview with Pat Farnack of CBS New York Radio about Ashley Hall:

Set in the 1960s, Ashley Hall unveils the secrets and sorrows of the residents who live in the apartments on one floor of a Queens, New York, apartment building.

Bridget Riordan, in 6A, is a newly-arrived Irish immigrant, running from a past for which she cannot forgive herself.

Germaine Sommer, in 6B, is a lonely, retired widow, abandoned by her family, and longing for the life she once had.

The impeccably dressed Eamon Williams, in 6C, is a confirmed bachelor who has a secret love that if ever uncovered could destroy him.

The young couple in 6D, Vera and Danny Allcock, fear that their recent marriage may not survive the rejection of both their families, their lack of money, and Vera’s insecurity.

In 6E, the middle-aged Joseph Kramer and his aloof wife, Martha, whose relationship has been forever changed by the loss of their only son during the Korean War, are struggling with the adjustments brought about by Joseph’s recent retirement—and his startling adulterous affair.

The mysterious divorcee, Frances LaCorte, in 6G, hasn’t known love since her shell-shocked husband returned from WWII a changed and empty man, until one day a freak accident brings a neighbor into her apartment and into her bed. 

And there is the Walsh family, Brendan, the good-hearted but tormented architect who becomes abusive when he drinks; his wife, Eleanor, the proud and educated career woman, who refuses to leave him; Paige, Eleanor’s daughter from a previous marriage, who bears the brunt of Brendan’s unhappiness; and Audra, the only child in Ashley Hall, who grows up in a decade as turbulent and unsettling as her family life.

I'd like to thank my content editor, Ann Lafarge, for her sage, gentle yet strong suggestions for changes in the manuscript. You make me look better than I am. I may cringe when I see whole paragraphs - even pages - crossed out, but you're always spot on! Thank God for you.

And to Emily DiBala, who is my excellent "one last look" copy editor. I appreciate your "eagle" eyes and excellent work.

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