Marie’s Writing Fuels Road Trip For Two ‘Sissys’
Marie’s vivid and descriptive writing and ‘her’ island of Block Island fueled two women to drive from their home state of Michigan to catch the ferry to the New England tourist attraction. And for that, and all the laughs they shared and wonderful experiences they’ve had, Amanda and Dawn Marie are eternally grateful.
You may have seen Amanda Domin Brown and her sister-in-law Dawn Marie Domin, who’s married to Amanda’s brother, Tim, on the Quantum Reader Group on Facebook (it’s not the only Marie group of which they’re members). The pair met more than 25 years ago, when Dawn was introduced to the family. Amanda was a teenager. They’ve been both family and best friends (they call themselves sisters) for a very long time. It was Dawn, a penny pincher according to Amanda, who downloaded Maid for Love because it was free. She shared the first book in the Gansett Island series with Amanda, who brought the rest of Marie’s books. And then one day last September Amanda called Dawn and told her she’d booked a room for them at the Surf Hotel in Block Island. She surprised Dawn, she said, because she knew her frugal sister-in-law would have said no to the expense if asked.
So on Friday, July 8th, after Amanda got off work as a retail manager at a beauty supply business, the two got in the car and headed east, driving overnight to avoid traffic. Then they got a little “sidetracked” by New York City, where Amanda lists the stores they visited and Dawn talks about the ‘other’ sights, such as Central Park and the Empire State Building. They visited the city for about two hours and got back on their way. They caught the ferry to Block Island, took a quick nap and explored the island for a week. Marie’s list of things to do in Block Island from her website gave them plenty of suggestions about what to see and do. They did a lot of shopping, eating out, going to the beach and sightseeing all while imagining the places from their favorite Gansett scenes.
They said they also enjoyed meeting the real life residents of the island. For instance, one of the other guests at the Surf has been coming there for two weeks every July for 33 years. He’s jokingly earned a nickname of porch pig for spending so much time on its porch, enjoying the beautiful scenery. He gave Amanda and Dawn tips about what to do and see. One of the things they wanted to do, they said with a chuckle, was to look for tomatoes (from Amanda’s favorite Gansett scene in Meant for Love).
They also loved that there are so many students from other countries working on the island who shared their stories and love of Block Island.
Neither Amanda nor Dawn—who was a stay at home mom to her son and later helped Amanda, a single mom, raise her son and two daughters before taking a part-time job—had ever been to the east coast before this trek.
“It’s very exciting for us and there are breathtaking views,” Amanda says.
Amanda wants to make sure Marie knows how thankful they are for her sharing her stories and her island. If her writing weren’t so wonderful and detailed, they agree, they probably wouldn’t have come to visit the island.
Have you visited Block Island (aka Gansett Island) because of Marie’s books? If so, we want to hear from you! Contact Cheryl at Cheryl@marieforce.com to share your story!
By: Cheryl Serra, director of publicity for Marie Force