‘Shadows on the Sand’ by Gayle Roper

Carrie Carter has finally come to terms with her life.  Running away from an alcoholic mom and her abusive boyfriends as a teen, she took her young sister with her and made a home for them both.  Now seventeen years later, she’s a business owner and ready to move on to the next phase of her life:  love, hopefully involving her favorite customer, Greg Barnes.  Greg begins to move out of a long period of personal trial when Carrie’s dishwasher is found murdered and her favorite waitress disappears.  Can this former runaway and former cop work together to solve the mystery – and find their own personal happy ever after?

I love the subplots and current issues included in this book.  While this book definitely falls into the ‘romance’ category, it does not read like your typical romantic novel; the plot is far deeper and more complex.  Issues relevant to today’s society are woven seamlessly throughout the story, making the characters more believable and adding layers to the plot.  Alcoholism, forgiveness, cults, grief, and teen runaways are all dealt with in a real and knowledgeable manner.  It would be easy to make this another surface issue who-likes-whom story, but Roper goes deeper, and that alone makes this story stand out.  The smooth flow and colorful word choice only makes it better.

I’ve read several of Roper’s novels, and this is by far my favorite.  I will be seeking out the rest of the Seaside Series – soon!

If you’d like to read Chapter One of Shadows on the Sand for free, click here.

I received a free copy of this book from Waterbook Multnomah in exchange for an honest review.

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