Thomas Nelson, 2012
I'm not big on mysteries, but I enjoyed Blue Moon Promise so much I had to give Tidewater Inn a try. From the beginning, Colleen Coble had a story that caught my attention and gave me the shivers. When Libby witnesses her best friend and business partner's abduction via a webcam, while also discovering that she's just inherited a historic hotel from the father she thought long-dead, her life is suddenly spinning out of control. The dramatic and intense experiences that follow make Libby question everything: her life goals, her priorities, her faith, her heart.
Not only is Libby dealing with an intense investigation into the disappearance of her friend and associate Nicole, but she suddenly finds herself with siblings and a family she never knew existed. And they're none to happy to see her - or hear about her plans to sell the historic Tidewater Inn. Libby doesn't want to sell the old estate, but neither does she see how to keep it, a struggle that just adds more tension to an already stressful time. Through it all however, she finds unexpected help in the form of handsome Coast Guard officer Alec. Not only does he help her investigation, but he helps ease her into the slow-paced, close-knit Outer Banks community. Alec is also a pillar in the faith, and that's something Libby definitely needs as she seeks to fully understand what living for Jesus means.
I really enjoyed the chemistry between Alec and Libby, their relationship evolves naturally from strained strangers to friends with the chance for more. Each has something to offer the other, and their differences complement. I also think Coble did a masterful job of weaving the various mysterious threads together - I had a hunch who was ultimately responsible for things, but when the resolutions all came together at the end? Well, I was a little surprised. That is quite an accomplishment to be sure. I'm definitely looking forward to the future novels in the Hope Beach series.
eARC provided by publisher for review.