Publisher: Thomas Nelson--FICTION
Publication Date: 7/1/2014
Series: (Hope Beach, #3)
My Rating: 5 Stars
In a secluded corner of Hope Beach, one woman must decipher a stranger’s memories . . . before they cost her everything.
Elin Summerall was one of the lucky ones. Not only did she get a heart transplant, but the donor was a perfect fit. A miraculously perfect fit.
But when Elin begins having violent flashbacks—and vivid dreams of being strangled—she realizes that she has been the recipient of more than just a new heart . . . Elin is remembering her donor’s murder.
Her strange affliction has attracted some unwanted attention: from the press, from the authorities . . . and from the killer himself. Now, living alone with her young daughter and aging mother, Elin is being stalked—by a man she’s only met in her nightmares.
The police are dubious of her story, but one off-duty FBI agent is eager to help her: Agent Marc Everton, the father of Elin’s daughter. Of course, he doesn’t know about that. Yet.
Now, in a remote cottage on Hope Island, Elin and Marc must probe the secrets buried in her borrowed heart. And there’s no time to waste. One man is desperate to silence her—before she remembers too much.
A special thank you to Thomas Nelson-FICTION and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
SEAGRASS PIER by Colleen Coble part of an intriguing Hope Beach series—packed with suspense, mystery, emotion, complex characters, a psychopath, obsession, and romance. Elin, is frantic to get to Hope Beach, from Virginia Beach to escape a murderer. She lost her husband two years ago, then suffered from a terrible virus, and ultimately was fortunate to receive a heart transplant from a local girl, Laura who was murdered. Shortly thereafter, strange things began happening to Elin. She begins having violent flashbacks--and vivid dreams of being strangled. Elin is remembering her donor's murder. When she attempts to tell authorities of these disturbing events, they think she is nuts, and do not take her seriously. Elin is scared for her life, and her family—she now has a four year old daughter, Josie, and an aging mother, Ruby with dementia, to protect. She also begins questioning herself and her identity, as worried she may be taking on her donor’s personality. There is much publicity around the murder and Elin. She works with organ donors and wonders if there is a connection. She fears due to all the media, the killer will come after her. Now, living alone with her young daughter and aging mother, Elin is being stalked--by a man she's only met in her nightmares. When good-looking Marc, an FBI agent investigating Laura’s murder, steps back into Elin’s life—(the last time he’d seen her she was pregnant, and her husband Tim had thrown him off the premises). At first Marc does not buy into “cell memory” (accounts of things a recipient knows about their donor). Within a few hours of receiving her new heart, she began having flashbacks of Laura’s murder. She recalls the color of the murderer’s hair, and smelling a man’s cologne. He was wearing a sweater the night he killer her and it was red and a ring. At first Marc, found this entire story unbelievable. After her four year old daughter, Josie walks into the room, inviting him to her upcoming fifth birthday—he quickly does the math, and realizes this is his daughter—she looks just like him—he never knew! While Marc risks his life to protect Elin and Josie, Elin is struggling to recall more clues in order to track down the murderer. As the investigation heats up, their attraction grows, and grandparents wanting them to build a family together. However, in a secluded corner of Hope Beach, time is running out as they have to find answers before it is too late. There are also other things going on behind the scene –making for a very surprising climax. When Elin discovers some diaries in the attic, from 1907 by Georgia Hurley, the original owner of the home, and quite the adventurer—very mysterious. Ruby is hiding a map, and unaware of what it means; however, someone is on their track to steal the map and another body is found. Can these mysteries be connected? In the meantime, Sara, Erin’s best friend gets involved and also has a romance developing with Josh. Lots of action, for a fast-paced suspense thriller, where no one seems as they appear. Throughout the book, everyone is second guessing one another. Can they be trusted and are they authentic? Some of the characters possess a hidden side, or a fake side (two different personalities, and some an obsession). The constant theme being identity. Identity: the state or fact of remaining the same one or ones, as under varying aspects or conditions. Elin and Marc question her taking on some of Laura’s personality. Sometimes the places we find our identities can vary depending on what part of our lives we’re in. Marc’s dad’s identity was his job—now he is content being a grandpa and the law is not as important. Erin has been a mom, a wife, a caretaker, and a single mom struggling to do it all on her own. Responsibilities change us and shape us. In the end when love is concerned—“the trick to loving someone is to nurture those changesd and encourage one another to be better people”. After reading SEAGRASS PIER (Hope Beach #3) the third installment in this suspenseful series, I was so curious, with mentions of Libby and The Tidewater Inn, could not wait to read the previous two books. I have started Tidewater Inn(Hope Beach #1), and Rosemary Cottage (Hope Beach #2), to read thereafter. Was delighted to be introduced to this talented newfound author, Coleen Coble through NetGalley. Seagrass Pier is an engaging contemporary romantic suspense, and found it to be quite the page-turner, and difficult to put down. A light mixture of a Christian theme and lots of mystery—can be read as a standalone; however, you will want to read them all! I look forward to reading Coble’s other series, as well. You also get a surprise at the end with excerpts from Dangerous Depths by Colleen Coble and
Dancing with Fireflies, by Denice Hunter 3/11/14, which I enjoyed.