Synopsis: Bad luck’s been biting at Allie Daniels’s heels all her life, so when she inherits a tiny cafe in a small Texas community she’s sure there’s a catch. But Allie brings her grandmother along, and the cafe gives Nana a chance to do what she does best – cook. As the pair settle in to make the best of what surely must be a mistake in an old man’s will, the people of the town drop by. Lonely folk discover there’s always a “table for one” available, with down-home food to warm the soul. An old maid, a shy young man, and a drifter, slowly become the family Allie never had. When trouble comes, Allie finds she’s not alone anymore — and that, sometimes, the only cure for bad luck is the courage to love.
My Thoughts: I loved this story from beginning to end. Allie and Nana find themselves in a run-down cabin at Twisted Creek that doubles as a general store and a café. And though they are new to the area, they are not strangers to the people who live at Twisted Creek. Allie’s Uncle Jefferson, spoke of her often and so when he passed away, folks expected Allie and welcomed her as only a small community would do. And the small community soon engulfs Allie and Nana as one of their own, forming a make-shift family.
The cast of characters includes Willie, the fisherman who always stinks of the river; Mrs. Deats, the eccentric rich woman who lives alone at the top of the hill; Thomas, a young man living in his family’s home living inside his books and searching for direction in his life; Mary Lynn, a woman nearing middle age who is wrestling with demons from her past; Paul, a banker who is relearning how to live his life; the Landry brothers, former miners who spend their days fishing and eating; and Luke, the grandson of Jefferson’s best friend and who has more going on than what it seems.
The story was very easy to follow ~ it flowed nicely and the world-building was done slowly. The tale was told in two parts, really. Allie’s part of the story was told in 1st person; Luke’s part of the story was told in 3rd person. Yes, there was romance, but the story encompassed more than that. It was a story of friendship, of family, of community, and of just finding a place to belong.
Verdict: This was Excellent. Jodi Thomas is another new-to-me author and I’m really looking forward to reading more of her. I have a few of her westerns tucked away in my TBR stacks, so I plan on digging them out and reading them soon.