Saturday, August 6, 2011
SHADOWS ON THE SAND by Gayle Roper
Carrie Carter runs Carrie's Cafe with her sister, Lindsey, in Seaside, New Jersey. Greg Barnes is an ex-cop, now property manager, who comes into the cafe everyday to eat. He pretty much keeps to himself, still hurting from the loss of his wife and children three years ago. Carrie is very drawn to Greg but he doesn't seem to notice she exists. Then her dishwasher is found dead and her waitress disappears. Greg finds himself wanting to help her and in the process also notices how very attracted he is to her. Carrie has some real trust issues and Greg doesn't know if he can ever love again. Will they be able to confront their fears and find love or will it be too late?
This was a story that caught me by surprise. The cover and title led me to think this was a cozy-type mystery. But it was oh-so-much-more than that. It's written in a first person POV which I must admit is not my favorite viewpoint. However, I found myself really drawn into the story and caring about the characters. The main characters have moments of reflection which tell their background story. I felt like all the characters, villains included, were very well drawn and realistic. This author tackled the subjects of love, loss, child abuse, cults, murder, alcoholism, PTSD and second chances. The seriousness of the subjects was not at all what I expected when I began reading the book but it had a depth to it that really surprised me. The theme running throughout the story was 'there is a time for every purpose under heaven' and I think the author did a wonderful job playing that out. The story starts out at a somewhat slow pace but continues to build and culminates to an nail-biting conclusion. I have to add that though the story dealt with serious subjects there were plenty of humorous moments to break the tension. I thoroughly enjoyed Shadows on the Sand and would definitely recommend it to those who like a good romantic suspense. A thank you goes to the publisher and Librarything for providing this complimentary copy for my review.