Someone is trying to harm Martin Gilmore. First a white jalopy with a missing tailgate tries to run him down. He encounters road rage involving a dark blue van. Then an oversized black truck stalks him for the final kill. As Martin follows clues leading to the suspected killer, he receives startling news. His young daughter Ruthie faces a diagnosis of breast cancer. Martin’s world collapses, having lost his wife three years earlier to cancer. And now will Ruthie face a similar nightmare? Employed by a real estate development company, Martin is drawn into a web of corporate deceit as Ruthie’s illness overwhelms him, and the killer zeroes in on him. Martin must confront hard choices: be a supportive dad to Ruthie, try to live as an ethical believer, and deal with his feelings for his friend Linda. In the end, Martin faces an inferno of hatred where his life hangs in balance and his trust in God is challenged.
Patch Town: Up From the Ashes is the second book in a series, but it's the first in the series I read. It reads as a standalone novel and at only one hundred and five pages, a relatively quick read. Martin has had his share of troubles. He had troubles growing up, then he lost his wife to breast cancer. He's now trying to get his life together, going to church, talking to God and doing the right thing. However, the past has a way of catching up.
Someone is trying to kill him. He's nearly been hit by a speeding vehicle several times, and it's never the same vehicle. It happens so fast that he can't see who is behind the wheel. Not only is this bearing heavily upon his mind, but he's not sure how the relationship with his friend Linda is going. He thinks he is ready to move things to the next level but he's still unsure. And to make matters even worse, one of his worst nightmares is rising. His daughter Ruth may have breast cancer; the same cancer that took his wife. Martin will need to get on his knees and put all of his faith into God if he hopes to get himself and Ruth out of their current predictaments alive or have peace with the results.
A quick read that has elements of suspense, family dynamics and a splash of romance mesh together into a solid and sharp read. Parlante's talent with words draws vivid images in the reader's mind that really bring it all together. Solid writing and a great novel.
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Wendy