Urban Renewal: Mercedes Montague's Journey Home

From the desk of Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy.....


I’ve come a long way from the blue collar neighborhood of my birth in both years and distance but as I once wrote in a poem, although I’ve left it, I will never leave it because it goes along with me, baggage of my soul.  Although I don’t live in my hometown of St. Joseph, Missouri, a piece of me remains there.  Someday I may decide to return home but even if I don’t, it has a special place in my heart.

Coming home is a common theme in literature.  And the idea behind my upcoming release on March 3 from Champagne Books, Urban Renewal, deals with the idea of returning to your roots.  Although it’s just being released, the basic premise of the story is one of my oldest ideas, one I had long before I made the leap from would-be writer to romance author.  Over the years, the idea evolved into a complex love story and one woman’s journey back home to find who she is within.


Here’s the blurb:

Movie star Mercedes Montague has it all – the fame, the fortune, and the glittering celebrity lifestyle.  But she lost herself somewhere along the way. On a publicity tour for her next movie she realizes she’s just fifty miles from her hometown.  Mercedes – real name Marie Dillard – decides to bolt and go home to see if she can find what’s left of herself.   Hiding away in her grandparents’ old home in a working class neighborhood she’s haunted by memories and reminders of her first and only love, Joe Shelby.

 Marie’s stunned when Joe shows up at her door.  Passion kindles between them from the first moment their eyes meet but she won’t let it consume her unless it’s going to include a lasting love. As they renew their relationship, Marie and Joe face many struggles.

Can a movie star return to reality or is love just a distant dream?

You’ll find Marie’s hometown is mine.  Although the story is fiction, there’s more than a little fact.  Marie’s grandparents’ house, well, it happens to be my grandparents’ home.  They did their share of raising me, too.   The places described in the novel are all real.  I shared an excerpt with some other folks from my hometown and one said I’d taken her home.  That says it all.  The parks, the restaurants, the stores and more are all based on actual places. 

I’m looking forward to the day Urban Renewal hits the eBook shelves and next week, I’ll share an excerpt or two from the title!

Until then, you can find me:

Twitter: leeannwriter

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