About Heavy Weather
• Paperback: 408 pages
• Publisher: Sleepy Creek Press; 1 edition (March 10, 2015)
It takes a town to save a child. That town is Beaufort.
Annie Mac’s estranged husband vows that nothing will stop him from getting his baby girl. Not Annie Mac and certainly not that boy of hers.
Only four blocks away, Hannah Morgan lives in comfort with her husband and dog, making pottery and waiting for her best friend to come home. When she discovers the two children cowering in the bushes and their mama left for dead, it doesn’t take her long to rally the sleepy town of Beaufort, NC, and to set her coterie of do-gooders to some extra-strength do-gooding. Add in Clay, a lonely police lieutenant yanked out of his comfort zone and into the heart of this small family, and who knows what will happen?
I had the opportunity to review this book on Kindle for free in exchange for an honest review. I love to read, and read, and read, so this was an opportunity to try the writing of an author I didn’t know.
The first thing I would like to say that I think the name “Normandie” is very unique, in my experience, but very cool. This novel starts out with a graphic scene of domestic violence when Annie Mac’s husband comes looking for their daughter so he can take her away. Royce Bingham has been violent with her before, but not to this extent. She refuses to divulge where their daughter, Katie, is. He leaves her and warns her he’ll be back. He is an evil man with a one track mind and keeps his promise. You’ll need to read the book to see the havoc he creates.
In the meantime Hannah Morgan, of quiet Beaufort, North Carolina, can’t sleep and waking early she takes her Irish setter, Harvey, out for a walk. For some reason she goes in the opposite direction from her usual route. Harvey goes nuts as they near some bushes and sticks his head in. Trying to reel him in she sees two young children cowering in the bushes, a 10 year old boy named Tyler Rinehart, Annie’s child from another marriage, and a 4 year old girl with her thumb plugged in her mouth. This is Katie, Annie Mac and Roy’s daughter. The mother has trained them to hide when Roy comes around.
Wondering where their mother is the boy tells her his mother is in the house and that Roy has just left. She coaxes the children out and leaves them with the dog on the porch of their home while she ventures inside. She almost loses her stomach contents when she sees the abused women lying on the floor, with blood everywhere and her leg at an odd angle. Hannah holds it together, finds the woman is still alive, alive enough to ask if her children are safe, and then wants Hannah to take them.
Hannah has called the sheriff and the ambulance comes and whisks Annie to the hospital. Hannah takes the two waifs home. She doesn’t have children of her own after two miscarriages and she is not sure what to do with the children. Her husband, Matt, is not pleased. But soon Hannah finds her days filled with children and all that goes with parenting. As you might suspect, she falls in love with them.
Annie Mac heals enough to be released from the hospital, but where to send her? She is still healing and not able to take care of herself, let alone her children. Lieutenant Clay Dougherty lives along in a huge home by the bay. What better place to hide Annie Mac and her children than at a police officer’s home?
Will they catch Roy before he does any more damage and steals Katie? How will Hannah and Matt, who now has fallen in love with the children as well, manage to go on childless? Will Tyler and Katie finally be safe and able to heal?
A very intense novel with several subplots, yet, despite the pain and sadness, this was a well written book and I enjoyed the read. I was also very impressed with the author’s genuine concern for abused women. She included several resources for women in need, and even offered her e-mail in case someone had needs.
Overall, I would give Heavy Weather, 4 out of 5 stars, only because I was able to anticipate the wrap-up of two of the mysteries.
About Normandie Fischer
A life-long sailor, Normandie has been writing and editing professionally since the seventies. She studied sculpture for several years in Perugia, Italy, before returning stateside to complete her degree with special honors in English. When they’re not visiting grown children who have scattered elsewhere, Normandie and her husband divide their time between their waterfront home in NC (where she takes care of her mama) and their waterborne sailing home, Sea Venture, lately returned from Pacific Mexico. She has three women’s fiction books now: Becalmed, which was the first Carolina Coast novel; Sailing out of Darkness; and now the second Carolina Coast story, Heavy Weather.