cover image A TABLE BY THE WINDOW: A Novel of Suspense

A TABLE BY THE WINDOW: A Novel of Suspense

Rebecca Kai Dotlich, . . Bethany House, $12.99 (400pp) ISBN 978-0-7642-8077-1

CBA readers will recognize the essential plot contours of this offering from Blackwell (the Gresham Chronicles series): a single young woman, through circumstances beyond her control, leaves her life and job in the big city to find herself, her faith and her true love in a small town. The appealing main character is Carley Reed, who grew up on the wrong side of the tracks. She receives a modest legacy from a Mississippi grandmother she never knew. In claiming her inheritance, she falls in love with the tiny town of Tallulah, Miss., and the extended family she has there, and uses her inheritance to open a small cafe. Despite the book being billed as a "novel of suspense," that element doesn't kick in until the last 50 pages, and even then it feels contrived and forced. While the suspense subplot isn't successfully woven throughout the novel, building tension as the plot unfolds, the story is still worthwhile for its likable protagonist and gentle approach to faith and redemption. (Apr.)