SANDPEBBLES

Patricia Hickman, Author . W Publishing Group $12.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-8499-4300-3

The pain caused by the loss of her daughter the previous year in a car accident permeates Hickman's newest inspirational novel, the story of a widow's search for meaning after her husband's death. "Not letting go is my downfall," says March ("like the month") Longfellow, and so begins this tale of losing loved ones and finding renewed faith through surrendering control. March is attracted to Pastor Colin Arnett, a widower with four children who knows grief as well as she. But March fends off love and holds tightly to what little control she has left in her life, keeping a close rein on her widowed father, her young son, Mason, and her newspaper, the Candle Cove, N.C., Sentinel, until the story's conclusion allows March to lay old ghosts to rest. Hickman's characterizations are chock-full of originality, from March's would-be suitor and town exterminator, Jerry Brevity, who drives a truck with a giant fake rat on top, to Charlotte, Colin's eight-year-old handicapped daughter, who has a penchant for angels (a motif scattered throughout the story). However, Hickman's descriptive writing and her word choices often go over the top, making it difficult for the reader to become engrossed in the narrative. Too many hospital incidents are included, and even the cat has a brain tumor. It's a good if not exceptional story with some nice touches of humor. Hickman continues to be one of CBA's most promising novelists, even if this story doesn't achieve its full potential. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 03/18/2002
Release date: 04/01/2002
Genre: Fiction
Open Ebook - 336 pages - 978-1-4185-1731-1
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