real-life NYC locations from Not Like Paradise!

My trilogy Not Like Paradise takes place in my favorite city in the world, New York! While the characters and events of the books are fictional, I wanted to share some of the real-life locations featured in the series so you can imagine Jansen, Jason, Hersh, and Clint’s life a little more clearly! Hope you enjoy! Be sure to scroll all the way to the end…I saved the best for last. 🙂

Upper East Side

Jansen’s parents’ building at 71st and Lex:

The Auerbachs’ building at 78th and Park:

The Guggenheim, the site of Jansen’s 8th grade graduation:

The Metropolitan Museum of Art (the Met), where Jansen and her school friends smoke on the steps:

Lenox Hill Hospital, across Park Av from the Auerbachs’, where Jason, Hersh, and Clint carry Jansen after her OD:

Along 5th Av on the edge of Central Park, where Jansen and the boys walk every day between school, the park, and home:

The Museum of Moderm Art, or MoMA (not technically on the Upper East Side, but only 6 blocks south of it), where Corinne holds her birthday party in Pandora’s Box. The Sculpture Garden at the MoMA (2nd pic) is also the site of Corinne and Jacob’s 20th anniversary Adam and Eve party:

The Plaza Hotel, where Jansen and Summer sometimes go for drinks, and also the site of the Plaza prom, which takes place in the Terrace Room (2nd pic). The 2nd pic was taken from the balcony above the Terrace Room, where Corinne and Robert are standing in the photo Jansen and Jason find in Robert’s Paris apartment in Mirrors and Blue Smoke:

Central Park

Most of these pictures are random shots I’ve taken over the years. But the picture with all the people is of Sheep Meadow, where Jansen’s school friends always hang out. The picture with the path going under the bridge is on the west side of the park, near where Jansen and Jason’s special place is, away from Sheep Meadow and anyone they would know. 🙂

Hotel Thirty Thirty

At 30th and Madison, where Jansen and Jason always go on Jansen’s birthday. This hotel has since changed names, but I was lucky enough to get to stay there while it was still the Thirty Thirty:

Delacorte Theater

In Central Park, where Jansen and Jason go on New Year’s morning in Pandora’s Box:

NYU Arch

Jansen and Jason run under this arch after leaving Red Sulfur on Jansen’s 15th birthday, shortly before they are chased by a cab. Legend says anyone who runs under the arch will never graduate from NYU:

The Bowery

Home of Katalina and the infamous flophouse…

The Hamptons

Where Jansen, Summer, Tierney, and Taylan’s families have their summer houses:

Subway stations and trains

Jansen and Jason love the subway, especially a totally empty car going around a track into an abandoned station… 😉

East Village

Red Sulfur is fictional, but this is the stretch of Saint Marks Place just east of 3rd Av where it is described to be:

South Street Seaport

Pier 17, home of the fictional Opera on the Pier!

Broadway in SoHo

Where Hersh bought Jansen’s ring:

Townsend Building

At the northwest corner of 78th and Park, where the Circles meets (the building is real, but the name is fictional):

Roosevelt Island

Site of the Mirrors and Blue Smoke party 😀

View of Roosevelt Island and the East River from the Queensboro Bridge:

View of Queensboro Bridge with Manhattan in the background from Roosevelt Island:

Roosevelt Island tram along the Queensboro Bridge, the best way to get there from Manhattan if you aren’t taking cabs or hired cars like Jansen and her friends:

Although the East River Hospital for the Insane is fictional, Roosevelt Island did house an insane asylum for many decades, back when it was called Blackwell’s Island. These shot glasses can be purchased at the Roosevelt Island Visitor’s Center:

Le Château

As you may know from the books, Le Château is the name of the Auerbachs’ summer house in Vermont. One day I was walking around in NYC and randomly saw this! So even though this pic was taken in NYC, not Vermont, I had to include it! So cool when things like this happen 😀

Circles of 8

This picture is the absolute craziest, coolest thing that has happened in relation to Not Like Paradise. When writing the books, I randomly picked a location for the building where the Circles meets (the Townsend Building). I picked the northwest corner of 78th and Park. Later, after I had written drafts of all 3 books in the trilogy, I walked down Park Av to take pics of the buildings that would be the Townsend Building and the one across 78th Street where the Auerbachs live. And to my total shock, THIS WAS THE ADDRESS of the building where the Circles meets! 888 PARK AVENUE. What?!?!?!?! Best surprise EVER!!! 😀 😀 😀

Mirrors and Blue Smoke officially released! :D

My latest book, Mirrors and Blue Smoke, the conclusion to the Not Like Paradise trilogy, is officially released and available to order on Amazon! 😀

If you haven’t read the first two books in the trilogy, you can start with Urban Legends instead. Below is a description of the series, or you can check out my previous blog posts to learn more about the Not Like Paradise trilogy. 🙂

This trilogy has been one of my FAVORITES to write! I have had so much fun with it and with the characters. I hope you enjoy it! Stay tuned for blog posts featuring photos from real-life locations mentioned in the books!

Description of Not Like Paradise:

Cocktails in penthouses and bars. Cigarettes on the steps of the Met. Soccer in Central Park. Sex. A few lines of coke. A couple tablets of E. A secret society meeting. Just an average day for Jansen Montgomery, Jason Auerbach, Corbin Hershey, and Clint Everly, four best friends growing up on Manhattan’s über-wealthy Upper East Side. With loads of money, parents who are rarely around but would do anything to protect their family names, limitless access to alcohol and drugs, and houses in the Village, the Vineyard, and the Hamptons, there is almost nothing out of these four friends’ reach and even less they wouldn’t do to get what is. 

As Jansen, Jason, Hersh, and Clint spin in a tornado of first loves, harsh breakups, sky-high expectations, and the dangerous need for a high that requires more and more stimulation to attain, a chilling mystery begins to unravel, exposing devastating and mind-blowing secrets from their families’ pasts, as well as the past of the Circles of Eight, the secret society to which they belong.

Their need for answers will lead the four of them on a chase from the single-sex private schools of the Upper East Side to books on witchcraft hidden in a backwater South Carolina town, from a forgotten summer house in Vermont to a tiny apartment in Paris, from a nameless dance studio housed in a former Bowery flophouse to the secret lairs of New York City’s exclusive and elusive underground clubs and, finally, to the scene of the most stunning—and the most dangerous—deception and illusion they’ve ever concocted, one involving spells, ghosts, and smoke and mirrors.

Mirrors and Blue Smoke website is live!

The Mirrors and Blue Smoke website is officially launched! Visit it for teasers and hints, but don’t worry, NO spoilers! And if you haven’t read the first two books in Not Like Paradise, you can visit the Urban Legends website instead (that’s the first book in the trilogy).

One of my favorite parts of making my website for each book is always the character pages. I love sharing fun facts about the characters that readers may or may not know from the books (such as where everyone’s summer house is, because what’s more important on the Upper East Side?! [eye roll emoji…haha]), and giving some insight into each character’s life in his/her own words! Below are some screenshots from parts of a few characters’ pages…you can read the rest on the site! Note: If you haven’t read Urban Legends and Pandora’s Box, the pictures below may give some spoilers for those two books.

I had a blast creating these, so I hope you enjoy looking at them and learning more about the characters from Mirrors and Blue Smoke! 🙂

And just try to figure out who Hester is…or what happened to her. 😉

official cover for Mirrors and Blue Smoke! :D

The front and back covers for Mirrors and Blue Smoke look AWESOME, thanks to my incredible cover designer j bentz photography! 😀

Mirrors and Blue Smoke front cover
Mirrors and Blue Smoke back cover

Back cover text, so you don’t have to zoom in on the photo:

Only four other people (besides Robert) know of the existence of what I took from the Mistress Suite that day, and three of them are dead.

“…doesn’t know about Anabelle.”

“It is coming true.”

Words. Some written in a diary in 1973, others tidbits of whispered conversations. They’re the final puzzle pieces in the deeply hidden, never-recorded-in-the-Magic-8-Ball history of the Circles of Eight, a secret society whose current members may practically claw each other’s eyes out in their battle to reign as Master and Mistress, but whose past is built on witchcraft, betrayal, and murder. And those words are the only clues Jansen and Jason have.

Warned away from the Vermont house but issued a challenge involving the biggest deception and illusion to ever hit the Circles, Jansen and Jason embark on a chase for answers and inspiration. From a tiny apartment in Paris to a nameless dance studio housed in a former Bowery flophouse, from the secret rooms of some of New York’s oldest buildings to the city’s exclusive and elusive underground club scene, and, finally, from a long-abandoned subway station to a deserted insane asylum, they, along with Hersh, Clint, Kella, and Taylan, attempt to rewrite the past, present, and future of the Circles…using spells, ghosts, and the Circles’ founders…mysterious twins Jonathan and Anabelle Townsend, thought dead for decades.

In the aftermath, Jansen, Jason, and the others must come to terms with a new reality, test the boundaries of their friendships, and decide what the future holds. And Jansen and Jason must answer what could be the most defining question of their lives…what will Paradise look like now?


Coming in the next couple days…the Mirrors and Blue Smoke website launch! Stay tuned! 😀