In Alice Wisler’s novel “Hatteras Girl”, the protagonist, Jackie Donovan, feels her life is falling short of her dreams. Her eccentric, loving, but quite clueless relatives have set her up on a string of horrible blind dates. She likes her job as a writer for a magazine all right, but dreams of owning a bed and breakfast – specifically the Bailey House. The Bailey House has been standing empty for years, and with its astronomical price tag, Jackie sees no way her dream will ever become a reality. Enter Davis Erickson, a blindingly handsome real estate agent who also is the heir to the Bailey House. All of a sudden Jackie is full of hope that both her heart’s desires will come true in one fell swoop. But all isn’t as it seems.
The story takes place on the Outer Banks, a setting that holds special significance to me. So that added to my enjoyment of the story. What struck me most about the book were the well-developed side characters: Jackie’s roommate Molly, who lost her husband a year ago. Jackie’s relationship with Molly’s young son rang very true to me, and helped establish Jackie as a real person who reacts in human ways. The cast at Jackie’s office. Her colorful family. To me, those relationships were what made the book.
This is not so much a ‘Christian novel’ as a novel about people who happen to be Christian. Her faith is just a natural part of Jackie’s life and flows into the story from there. There is only one conversation that seems shoehorned in to make a theological point, but that is a minor distraction.
A fun, light summer read.