Facing East – My New Novel Partially Set On The North Shore



The first suburb north of Chicago on Lake Michigan is Evanston, IL It is part of the North Shore. I was born in Chicago, but moved to Evanston in time to  celebrate my sixth birthday in a large Georgian home on Asbury Avenue, a house that was part of a Horatio Alger story in which my father stared. In writing Facing East, I relied heavily on memories of growing up in this wonderful place. There are scenes that include the immense elm trees along Asbury that presided over my growing up. These trees, with their canopy that formed a tunnel over the streets, succumbed to the Dutch Elm Disease in the 50’s. They left the stately homes along the way exposed and saddened.

Growing up, Evanston was a safe place where children rode their bikes everywhere, and no one worried. There were fireflies in the garden shrubs, front doors left unlocked. I was given a quarter to walk by myself to the corner to get the newspaper for my Dad, with change left over to buy an ice cream cone to eat on the way back. Nothing was more important to the experience of growing up in Evanston than Evanston Township High School. My graduating class of 729 eager students, went off to save the world. To this day members of the class meet, remember each other’s parents, and hold hands for a moment with their prom date. As I wrote the new novel, the spirit of these classmates was like a drop of Chanel behind each ear, an enduring fragrance left to me.


Evanston Township High School

Facing East, will be published in April 2015

About Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin grew up in Evanston, IL. and is a graduate of the University of Kentucky. She is an author of two novels: The Greening of a Heart and Facing East. She lives, writes and gardens in NC. Visit her: Stephenyhoughtlin.com
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1 Response to Facing East – My New Novel Partially Set On The North Shore

  1. noelleg44 says:

    Can’t wait, Stepheny! The freedom of your childhood I also experienced. Wonderful.

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