LEGACY LANE: Hart's Crossing #1

Robin Lee Hatcher, Author
Robin Lee Hatcher, Author . Revell $14.99 (160p) ISBN 978-0-8007-1854-1
Reviewed on: 03/01/2004
Release date: 00/00/0000
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RITA and Christy award–winning novelist Hatcher, who has penned 40 works of fiction, kicks off her new four-book Hart's Crossing series with this disappointing first installment. High-powered journalist Angie Hunter reluctantly returns to her Idaho smalltown home to care for her mother, Francine, as she recovers from knee surgery. Francine had "fallen in love with Jesus" at age 44 and driven Angie away from Christianity and, finally, from Francine herself. CBA readers will have a sense of déjà vu as Angie gradually comes to see the value of her small town, finds a potential love interest and overcomes her strained relationship with her mother. Other characters are briefly introduced, including women in a quilter's group. The dialogue can be banal ("You've always made the best coffee...." "Thank you dear, but there's really no secret to it. I just follow the directions on the coffeemaker"). The faith that is presented comes across as preachy rather than inviting further investigation. Some readers will disagree with Hatcher's views about God's will ("While there's [sic] lots of good things I can do, not all of them are part of God's plan for me. I'm trying to discern what those plans are"). Many of the characters' names closely resemble those of fellow Christian novelists (Patti Bedford for novelist Patricia Bedford, Lyssa Sampson for Church Ladies author Lisa Samson, Angie Hunter for Angela Hunt, etc.), perhaps an insider joke that falls flat. Hatcher is a better novelist than this book indicates, and one hopes the second installment will be an improvement. (Apr.)

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