Revere Beach Boulevard book image


Henry Holt Company, 1998
AJAR Contemporaries, 2011

Selected as one of the Top 100 Essential New England Books by The Boston Globe

A novel both literary and suspenseful, Revere Beach Boulevard tells the story of a family that rallies around an errant son, even as a long-hidden secret that has touched all their lives comes to the surface. Peter Imbesalacqua has bent the rules and battled a gambling addiction for most of his adult life. Now, his real-estate business in shambles and his life in danger because of an unpaid debt, he spins at the center of a hurricane of love and risk. His parents, sister, and friends, all carrying their own secrets, find themselves drawn into the terrifying storm, each trying to do for Peter what he must ultimately do—or fail to do—for himself. Revere Beach Boulevard is a rich and heartfelt novel that looks deeply into the secret places in men's and women's hearts, places only great fiction can reveal.


"I won't mince words about Revere Beach Boulevard. It's a great novel—ambitious, heartfelt, generous, and oh-so-skilled."

– Richard Russo

"Revere Beach Boulevard is that very thing one hopes for in fiction and rarely finds: a powerful story wedded to a unique voice set in a truly unforgettable landscape... A joy to read."

– Anita Shreve

"A book so full of heart that pages almost pulse with it. Roland Merullo creates a family of flesh and blood and deep feelings."

– Linda Crosson, Dallas Morning News

"The finest novel to come out of the gritty side streets and dangerous neighborhoods of urban American since William Kennedy's Ironweed... Revere Beach Boulevard is a beautifully written evocation of place, of family, and of love, by an extraordinarily talented novelist who deserves our most serious attention."

– Howard Frank Mosher

"Gripping and compassionate, daring and tender, written with the crisp assurance of an insider and the skill of a modern master. Roland Merullo has accomplished the near impossible—combining thrills and brilliant writing to produce this wonderfully satisfying tale of love in danger."

– Elinor Lipman

"Merullo invents a world that mirrors our world in all of its mystery. And he does it in language so happily inventive and precise and musical, and plots it so masterfully, that you are reluctant to emerge from his literary dream."

– Washington Post Book World