Friday, June 26, 2015

Hope Harbor - Irene Hannon

Hope Harbor
Irene Hannon
Revell, Jul 7 2015, $14.99
ISBN: 9780800724528

Since the death of his wife eighteen months ago, Michael Hunter wallows in self-pity and loathing of God.  Taking two months leave from St. Joseph Center not for profit, Michael drives almost non-stop from Chicago to his seaside destination, his late spouse’s hometown Hope Harbor, Oregon.  Tired and frustrated to learn his motel is closed due an electrical fire, when he steps onto a street without looking Michael causes a cyclist to crash to avoid hitting him.  At Charley’s food truck, Anna Williams thinks the stranger looks remarkably like someone she has not seen in two decades; thus the sexagenarian offers Michael a place to stay.

Bruised from her bike crash caused by the daydreaming pedestrian, Widow Tracy Campbell blames God for the death of her late husband and ignoring her furtive prayers.  At her family’s 80 acres farm Hope Harbor Cranberries, Tracy, works alongside her uncle on the 20% of their spread dedicated to cranberries.  She also provides accounting services and volunteers at Helping Hands.  After their first encounter, the widow and widower find commonality in their anger towards God and their grief.  With help of townsfolk like Anna, Charley and her uncle; Michael and Tracy begin to move on from their respective deep loss as their broken spirits mend and restore their trust in God and in love.

This leisurely-paced inspirational second chance at faith, life and love is an engaging contemporary ironically due to the newcomer’s invigorating impact on the townsfolk though they affect him even more than he does them.  Containing humor mostly from Floyd the seagull and mysteriousness (Charley’s perceptiveness and Anna’s past), readers will enjoy visiting coastal Oregon with mostly Michael, Tracy and Anna as our guides.

Harriet Klausner

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