CLOSER THAN YOU THINK

Milford-Haven – Book Two

Mara Purl

Artist Miranda Jones loves the life she’s been building in the picturesque coastal town of Milford-Haven. But while persistent dreams of a deep connection with a man haunt her, she’s unable to tell whether dashing Zack Calvin’s attentions are genuine. Sally is distracted from dishing up her home cooking by the reappearance of her high school sweetheart, Vietnam Veteran Tony Fiorentino. With the disappearance of reporter Chris Christian, Deputy Delmar Johnson digs for clues. Meanwhile the Doobie Brothers give a sold-out concert at the Central Coast Bowl against a web of complex relationships backstage, and Samantha Hugo’s private journal reveals her struggle to discover whether her long lost child is farther away than ever,

more …

Artist Miranda Jones loves the life she’s been building in the picturesque coastal town of Milford-Haven. But while persistent dreams of a deep connection with a man haunt her, she’s unable to tell whether dashing Zack Calvin’s attentions are genuine. Sally is distracted from dishing up her home cooking by the reappearance of her high school sweetheart, Vietnam Veteran Tony Fiorentino. With the disappearance of reporter Chris Christian, Deputy Delmar Johnson digs for clues. Meanwhile the Doobie Brothers give a sold-out concert at the Central Coast Bowl against a web of complex relationships backstage, and Samantha Hugo’s private journal reveals her struggle to discover whether her long lost child is farther away than ever, or closer than she thinks.

less …
  • Haven Books
  • Paperback
  • 2006
  • 157 Pages
  • 9781584360025

Buy the Book

$13.95

indies Bookstore indies Bookstore

About Mara Purl

Mara Purl’s first novel What the Heart Knows won a Silver Benjamin Franklin Award. It is Book One, and Closer Than You Think is Book Two in the twelve books that will comprise the Milford-Haven Novels. Her short story collection Christmas Angels won a CIPA Merit Book Award. Mara created Milford-Haven U.S.A., the first American radio drama broadcast by the BBC where it reached an audience of 4.5 million listeners in the U.K. and won the New York Festivals Finalist Award. She was named one of twelve Women of the Year 2002 by the Los Angeles County Commission for Women.

Praise

“…Mara Purl’s enchanting [first] novel What the Heart Knows…really draws the reader into the book. Purl skillfully tackles tough environmental issues. Detailed descriptions…eccentric characters and tantalizing storylines combine to make this book one that fans of romance will enjoy.” –Book Wire

 

“In Mara Purl’s books the writing is crisp and clean, the dialogue realistic, the scenes well described. I salute her ingenuity.”
Bob Johnson, former Managing Editor, The Associated Press

“Every reader who enjoys book series about small town life has a treat to anticipate in…Mara Purl’s Milford-Haven Novels.” Dee Ann Ray, The Clinton Daily News

Discussion Questions

Why do women stay in abusive relationships? Is there an essential difference between an emotionally abusive and a physically abusive relationship? Why did Sally get involved with Jack? Why does Stacey stay with Wilhelm?

What do men consider to be the basis of their power? What makes Jack feel powerful? Does he feel he’s above the law? Is Joseph calm and centered because of his wealth?

What is the relationship between a small town and a County law enforcement agency? Is Del considered an intrusive outsider? Or is he being accepted as a local? To what extent does his race influence public opinion of him?

What is mentoring? Is Samantha a mentor to Miranda? Does she succeed when she tries to mentor her assistant Susan? How does the effort to mentor reflect Samantha’s own issues back to her?

What makes some women capable of great friendships with other women? What is the basis for the friendship between Samantha and Miranda? Could Zelda and Cynthia be called friends? Does Sally have friends? If not, why not?

People tend to grow unevenly, with certain aspects of their characters reaching maturity before others. Which aspects of Samantha are mature and which are not? Which aspects of the town of Milford-Haven itself are mature and which are not? How do these mirror each other?

In the Pro-Growth/ No-Growth controversy in Milford-Haven, who are the spokespersons for each side? What are positive aspects of each stance? What are the negative? How do you feel about growth in your own home town?

In addition to being a writer, Mara Purl is also an actress, and her first involvement with soap opera was as a regular performer on Days of Our Lives. As an actress, Mara worked from the point of view of her character. As a writer, does Mara drive her novels by plot or by characters?

Why is the book titled Closer Than You Think? Does this phrase apply only to Samantha and the search for her missing child? Is the idea carried out in Miranda’s and Zack’s relationship? How does this apply to Sally? Is this a theme with aspects you can discover elsewhere in the book?