For Sandra Brown, Suspense Writer, an Island of Calm


After eliminating almost all of the hallways — “I’m claustrophobic, so I hate hallways,” Ms. Brown said — Mr. Halliday and Mr. Greer were able to carve out a powder room and an additional bedroom, and to give the couple what they so desired, an aerie where almost every room is visible from the entry.

BY SAM HODGSON

BY SAM HODGSON

It helped that in Ms. Brown they had a client who was willing to make the ultimate square-footage sacrifice. “I am in no way, shape or form a cook, so I said, ‘Do we have to have a kitchen? It just takes up space.’ So we have a minimal kitchen,” she said, running her hand over the honed black granite counter.

BY SAM HODGSON

BY SAM HODGSON

“David and Andrew conspired with my son to get some family photos, because my family is very important to me,” Ms. Brown said. “So when we walked in for the first time after the apartment redo, the children and grandchildren were represented in frames stuck hither and yon. But the one I saw first was my favorite picture of my mother, who passed away 15 years ago. It was sitting on a console in the bedroom, and it just brought tears to my eyes and made me feel I lived here.”

BY SAM HODGSON

BY SAM HODGSON

Still, a large part of the pleasure she takes in the apartment is that it is so unlike her primary residence in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, which sits on three acres, much of it heavily wooded. In New York, she and her husband have excellent views of the Apple Bank Building and, happily, the Ansonia. “It’s like they put it there as part of our décor,” Ms. Brown said. - by  JOANNE KAUFMAN for the NY Times.