Debbie Macomber's 44 CRANBERRY POINT will appeal to both her
longtime fans and new readers. Some of the characters here are from
her other books, such as 311 PELICAN COURT, 204 ROSEWOOD LANE, and
16 LIGHTHOUSE ROAD.
The novel focuses on Peggy and Bob Beldon, owners of the Thyme and
Tide Bed and Breakfast. The Beldons are trying to figure out who
murdered one of their B and B guests, who happened to be a former
platoon member of Bob's squad during Vietnam. The storyline brings
in Roy McAfee, a retired cop turned private investigator who is
looking into the murder.
There are several other storylines going on. Olivia and Jack
Griffin are newlyweds who are trying to get used to being married.
They both have jobs; she's a judge and he's a newspaper editor. But
Olivia is a health nut and neat freak, while Jack is a junk food
loving slob. This puts some strain on their new marriage.
Marriage is also a topic of discussion for Maryellen Sherman and
Jon Bowman. They are due to be married shortly and are already
parents to Katie. However, family issues of Jon's threaten to get
in the way of their living happily ever after. Maryellen's mother,
Grace, is trying to put her life back together after breaking up
with her boyfriend, Cliff Harding. A dog and bachelor auction is
the vehicle for Grace's friends to try to get her back with Cliff,
but will it work?
Cecilia and Ian Randall are a young couple trying to get over the
devastating grief of losing their infant daughter to a birth
defect. Cecilia wants another baby badly, but Ian is scared to try
again. He is in the Navy and his fear of Cecilia getting pregnant
puts a damper on his being home on leave.
Macomber's characters are realistic and so well drawn that her
audience will have no problems keeping track of them. Readers will
be concerned that the Beldons may be at risk, hopeful that the
newlyweds will work through their adjustment period, anxious to see
Maryellen and Jon finally marry, root for Grace and Cliff to
reunite, and cry with Cecilia and Ian in their anguish. The mystery
and romance weave together a plot that will keep readers engaged,
and there are twists and turns that readers will not see coming at
Macomber has written over a dozen novels and has not lost any
steam. Her writing style is incredible. This is not "just" a
romance. It is so much more. This is a series that will be
successful for years to come; the next installment, 50 HARBOR
STREET, is due out in September 2005.
Reviewed by Melissa Palmer on December 22, 2010