Title: The Newcomer
Author: Robyn Carr
Opening lines: ‘…It was a warm, sunny afternoon in early April, a rarity on the Oregon coast at this time of the year…’
THE NEWCOMER is the second in the Thunder Point series and the first one I have read. I have long been a fan of her Virgin River series so really looked forwards to reading this new one. From the blurb on the back I expected the focus of the story to be on Mac and Gina and issues when his ex-wife shows up after 10 years or so. And this storyline is certainly there, however another couple Cooper and Sarah get equal time play and then the balance of the book focused on Gina’s teenage daughter Ashley and the fallout events that happen after she was dumped cruelly by her first love. So it was a bit of a mish-mash as far as the love focus went. Mac and Gina are at the point where they are ready to take the final step and get married when the world falls apart for Ashley, her best friend is Mac’s daughter who is going steady with Sarah’s young teenage brother so the inter family connections are already weaving through the plot. Mac’s ex-wife abandoned Mac and the 3 children when the youngest was still a baby and they have heard nothing from her for ten years. She turns up unannounced and demands custody of her children throwing another plot into the story. But wait there’s more – because both Sarah and Cooper also have drama’s to overcome before the book gets to its multiple happy ever after ending.
I really enjoyed the book; don’t get me wrong. The issues faced by Gina, Mac and Sarah (each bringing up teenage children) are those faced by parents and guardians around the world – online bullying, sexting, teenage depression, birth control, and drug use. Ashley’s story was positively gut-wrenching and very realistic. As a whole the story lines were managed very well indeed. There was a lot going on in THE NEWCOMER with its multiple main characters and an array of secondary characters helping to move the story line along. But I was hooked from page one as the various issues enveloped me and I settled in for the ride. The setting was vivid, the various plots were realistic and handled well without verging into lecture mode, each of the characters were true to what they represented and the endings were all perfect without being unbelievable. Robyn Carr is a comfort read and she didn’t let me down. My only problem? I couldn’t figure out who the newcomer was.
Rating: B – Great. I really enjoyed reading it and it is a book I will be recommending to all my friends who like this genre.
For more about the author – Click Here
With thanks to Harlequin (Australia) Mira and the author for my copy to read and review