Sunday, September 28, 2008
Reviewing: "Point Surrender" by Anne Carter
On the run from a collapsed relationship, Amy Winslow, heads for her brother, Brian. They have always been close and right now she has no one else to turn to. He lives in San Francisco in a small apartment and works as a member of the Coast Guard. Amy has a lot of decisions to make about the future and needs someone to talk to. Those decisions won't be quick or easy. Brian has news of his own.
Nearby is the lighthouse known as Point Surrender. The Coast Guard is selling it and Brian is going to be the lucky new owner. Brian is enthusiastic even though the over 150 year old lighthouse needs extensive work. Amy would love to share her brothers' enthusiasm, but there is something about the old lighthouse that really unnerves her. She doesn't know why she feels both drawn to it and disturbed by it at the same time.
Amy Winslow isn't the only one with painful secrets and on the run. A vetenarian, Casey McKenna, is on the run as well but he is doing it by sea. He manages to hole his boat the "Fancy Dream" nearby and after some quick action limps into port at Newburg Harbor. The accident happened shortly after he saw a man fling himself off the bluff at the Point Surrender lighthouse. No body was found and the local police don't really believe him. With his boat needing repairs he will be forced to remain in the area and near the mysterious lighthouse.
A lighthouse with a painful legacy of its own. A lighthouse where ghosts seem to appear at different times and seem to draw certain personalities to it. A lighthouse where out of the cold ashes of the past, a new romance could be born. A lighthouse that will bring Casey and Amy together.
Utterly predictable from start to finish without a single surprise twist, this novel still works well as it tells a romantic cozy style mystery tale. Despite the utter predictability throughout the novel, what Anne Carter does very well is to make her characters human and alive for readers. Whether it is the lovely Amy Winslow with an uncertain future and betrayed painfully by her previous lover or the hard edged and handsome Casey McKenna (prefers "Case") who heals animals and is unable to heal himself, these characters and others become living breathing people for the reader.
The mystery contains some supernatural elements which are explained as expected by the end of the novel. Billed as "romantic suspense" by the publisher, the suspense angle is virtually non-existent for those who have read widely in either or both genres. The obviousness of events can't be discussed without ruining the book for readers and as such can't be explained in a review.
However, the romance part of the term "romantic suspense" works very well as the story charts the tumultuous courtship between Casey and Amy. Passion drives this book in terms of the mystery as well as the romance and passion fuels both characters in the way they love as well as the way they live life.
The result is an overall enjoyable novel and a pleasurable read.
Echelon Press Publishing
ISBN # 1-59080-514-3
Large Trade Paperback
Review copy provided by P. J. Nunn of BreakThrough Promotions in exchange for my objective review.
Kevin R. Tipple © 2008