By: Barbara Davis
Publisher: Penguin Group
Publication Date: September 2014
Reviewed by: Diane Lunsford
Review Date: August 27, 2014
Barbara Davis uses the allure of the sea and the pristine North Carolina Outer Banks as her backdrop to tell her captivating tale in her latest novel, The Wishing Tide.
Tropical Storm Penny is making her steady progress toward the small Outer Banks community. The summer season is over and the last of the tourists have all but gone. The quaint bed and breakfast, Cloister House, has survived a storm or two in her sands of time. Lane Kramer watches the progress of the storm as she thinks about her departure from her native Chicago. The devastation of her miscarriage and the end of her marriage is in its wake. As she continues to watch the storm’s progress from her favorite room—her writing room, it is difficult to believe she has been here for five years. She could see the storm clouds circling Starry Point in the distance. The last of her guests were leaving today and so another season would come to its end. Lane would settle into the solitude of her winter months—writing articles of things she knew nothing about for the many magazines she equally knew nothing about...
As the last of her guests leave, Lane is surprised by the sudden knock on the door. When she opens it to find Michael Forrester standing on its other side, her first reaction is to advise him Cloister House was officially closed for the season. Unfortunately, Tropical Storm Penny had other plans—particularly now that she was gaining strength. It would seem a rather large tree had fallen across the only point of access in and out of the small community. For the time being, it looks like Lane’s season isn’t quite over after all. When Lane agreed to provide shelter from the storm for Forrester, little did she know her comfortable and predictable life as she knew it would be put to a battery of tests and choices that would change course for ever more...
Barbara Davis anchors her story with the splendor of the Outer Banks as she sets scene and tone early on. Her detailed description of the beauty along with the threat of a formidable storm bearing down at season’s end manages to capture the reader’s interest to read on. Her characters are believable in that their moods are solidly defined—Michael Forrester: handsome and mysterious with a moody edge. Lane Kramer is a woman of substance and has managed to reinvent her life by making a drastic change of scenery from her native Chicago. Even Bag Lady Mary’s role of roaming the desolate dunes daily beckons more than a curiosity from Davis’ audience. Davis has clear tone and voice throughout as she strategically plants the necessary seeds to build her sound plot. She further enhances the plot with the suggestion of the important connection the ‘haunted house’ across the street from Cloister House plays in this story. The dialogue is strong and the story moves forward at a comfortable pace. This book has all the makings and merits of a good read to take along on summer vacation. It has just the right amount of intrigue and flow to keep the reader engaged from beginning to end.
Quill says: The Wishing Tide is the perfect addition to a tall glass of sweet tea, a gentle summer breeze and a schedule with nothing more to do than 'be.'