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The Beauty and the Beast of New York City – With K A Linde

  • Submitted: 12th June 2024

The Wren in the Holly Library

A tour around The Beauty and the Beast of New York City – With K A Linde

Standing inside The Feast of San Gennaro festival in Little Italy, I found myself caught in my own book. A chase scene that I’d written in The Wren in the Holly Library takes place in the midst of the festival as the heroine is running for her life. And I was standing in the middle of the street at my sister’s bachelorette weekend as it occurred all around me. It was so accurate that when my sister read the book, she said, “You put in the festival!” But it had been in there from the start.

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

The Wren in the Holly Library K A Linde

That’s the transformation that I want to take you through in this book. So that you too can feel like you have lived the story on the New York City streets with my main character Kierse as she navigates a monster infested city, a heist, and a bargain for her life.

The hero’s brownstone: 108 W 75th St on the Upper West Side

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

After I completed The Wren in the Holly Library, my husband and I went to New York for a week. I walked every single location in the book. I took the subway where Kierse would take it and took photographs and videos where she walked. Then I came home and edited the whole story again with that feeling close to heart.

Which is how I ended up on the brownstone on the Upper West Side on W 75th Street for the hero’s home. At the beginning of the novel, Kierse breaks into the brownstone to steal something from his library, but after engaging in a bargain, she ends up living here as well.

Madame Colette’s: Orchard & Delancey in the Lower East Side

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

The home that the heroine, Kierse, and her two best friends, Gen and Ethan, live in is the attic of a brothel where Gen was raised by her mother, the brothel owner, Colette. During the Monster War, much of New York was destroyed and is only just now being rebuilt. In the meantime, gangs and monsters have claimed parts of the city and any kind of work has cropped up including sex work.

Street Festival: Mulberry & Hester in Little Italy

 

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

With the signing of the Monster Treaty, the war is finally over and the world is trying to right itself. People are going out after dark and that includes street festivals, which are commonplace in New York. Kierse and her friends are chased through the festival by enemies and are forced to flee.

Five Points: 289 10th Ave in Chelsea

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

When they need a place to run to, I created a night club run by a notorious werewolf gang and a close personal friend, Nate O’Connor. It’s based on a night club in Chelsea, which is the territory of his pack, the Dreadlords.

Coraline LeMort Statue – Metropolitan Museum of Art

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

The start of the Monster War, Coraline LaMort, a vampire visionary was killed in cold blood by a werewolf rival. Her death sparked the ten year bloody war. And after the Treaty was signed, a statue was erected in her honor in front of the historic museum.

The heroine, Kierse, goes here to think and eat babka from her favorite bakery which is inspired by William Greenberg’s on the Upper East Side

Central Park Lake & Bethesda Fountain

 

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

A fun way to show that the world has been turned upside down by monsters was the addition of mermaids in Central Park. These aren’t the fun loving ones of your youth. Rather the deadly sirens of their historic roots that can lure people to their deaths in the depths.

Times Square

 

Map of locations in the Wren in the Holly Library

Another important part of the story is undisputed territory. Monsters who are still commanding areas that humans fear, but that are slowly regaining their popularity with the public and even some tourists. Times Square is one such place that was captured by monsters. Kierse avoids it for that reason, the traffic, and the tourists. But you absolutely shouldn’t!

Track 61 – Beneath the Waldorf Astoria

 

One of my favorite research tidbits for this book was the discovery of Track 61, a secret underground tunnel that connects to Grand Central Station. It was built for President Franklin D. Roosevelt and used at one point by the president. I’ve fashioned the warehouse and connected subway as a monster underworld. Not a place for unsuspecting humans, but a delightfully dangerous location for monsters tired of the Treaty and hoping for more human killing days.

 

BookTrail Boarding Pass: The Wren in the Holly Library

Twitter:@authorkalinde   Insta: @authorkalinde

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