Tuesday, June 25

Buddy Review: The Wanderer by Robyn Carr

So today is the release date of Ms Carr's newest novel, The Newcomer. Ames and I thought it'd be nice to post this review of The Wanderer, the first book in the series, as an incentive to those of you who hadn't planned to give it a try... Because really, Ms Carr has penned another winner series :)


The Wanderer by Robyn Carr
published by Harlequin Mira in March 2013
Nestled on the Oregon coast is a small town of rocky beaches and rugged charm. Locals love the land's unspoiled beauty. Developers see it as a potential gold mine. When newcomer Hank Cooper learns he's been left an old friend's entire beachfront property, he finds himself with a community's destiny in his hands.

Cooper has never been a man to settle in one place, and Thunder Point was supposed to be just another quick stop. But Cooper finds himself getting involved with the town. And with Sarah Dupre, a woman as complicated as she is beautiful.

With the whole town watching for his next move, Cooper has to choose between his old life and a place full of new possibilities. A place that just might be home.
Genre:  Contemporary Romance
Series:  Thunder Point, Book #2

Ames: Thanks Nath for mentioning how much you enjoyed The Wanderer. Otherwise I would have just stuck it in my pile and put off reading it. I’m glad I read it right away. 

Nath: No problem, Ames! I’m so happy you read it! But I think the trick was that you borrowed it from the library :)

So what did you think of The Wanderer, Ames? I have to admit that my big fear coming in this new series of Ms Carr would be the similarities to her Virgin River series. However, I think she pulled it off :)

Ames: Well I can’t say I had any thoughts like that because I haven’t read enough of the Virgin River books to compare. LOL But I feel bad because I keep forgetting how good of an author Robyn Carr is. So I was surprised by how much I enjoyed The Wanderer. I mean, I’ve really enjoyed every book of hers I’ve read...but it just slips my mind I guess. Whoops.

Nath: LOL, you’re so funny Ames. Well there’s definitively a reason why Ms Carr’s Virgin River series was so popular :) But let’s discuss The Wanderer.

I was pleasantly surprised at The Wanderer. Not only because it was different from the Virgin River settings, but just how the story unfolded. I really liked that Ms Carr showed us how Cooper was settling in in Thunder Point instead of jumping straight into the romance. Him deciding what to do with the inheritance he got and making friends with Landon and the Mac. That was nice to see.

Ames: I liked that too!! I like how The Wanderer unfolded before us from Cooper’s point of view and not Sarah’s. And the beginning was focused on Cooper getting established in Thunder Point almost against his better intentions.  He shows up in town, thinking he’d poke around a little bit into a friend’s mysterious death and then ends up inheriting his friend’s property and business. And Cooper was definitely a fun character to read about. I liked how he became friends with the different townsfolk before he even met the heroine.

And like I said in our emails, Sarah has just gone through a divorce (where the ex was a cheater) so it wouldn’t have been fun being in her headspace. Wise decision on Ms. Carr’s part there.

Nath: I think Ms Carr really captured well the state of mind Sarah was in. She’s been burned by her previous relationship. Not only was her ex a cheater, but she’s had to move away, uproot herself and Landon. She’s definitively not in a hurry to get back into the saddle. So I really liked how Ms Carr took it slowly. Even when Cooper and Sarah started going out together, there was no pressure. Then, their fling just grew into something more and I like that they are going to continue to explore their relationship once The Wanderer is over :)

Ames: I liked how Sarah and Cooper’s relationship evolved. Very mature. However, as much as I liked the two together, I really enjoyed Cooper’s developing friendships with Landon and Mac. It’s hard not to gush about the friendships in this book. The whole book, character-wise, was extremely well-rounded and I appreciated that. And it was a good way to showcase some humor. The way the guys talked to each other was funny. Here’s an example of an interaction between Cooper and Mac. Oh and Hamlet is a big Great Dane of Sarah’s that she likes to exercise on the beach.
"I have to go," Cooper said. "I'm going to meet Sarah at my place."
"I don't need to know that."
"Sometimes she's tired from her jog and needs to lie down awhile."
"Really, you can keep it to yourself, asshole."
"Hamlet likes to watch."
"You're a sick fucker, you know that?"

Nath: LOL, that part was so funny! I like the budding friendship between the guys and how they like to niggle each other. As a whole, I thought The Wanderer felt very real :) It’s about different people from different circumstances, interacting with each other.

I also enjoyed getting to know Landon. I have to say, Ms Carr definitively has a knack at writing interesting teenager characters.

Ames: I will take your word on that one, having only read a few of Ms. Carr’s books (and none featuring teens). But I really liked Landon’s character too. I like how Landon wasn’t just a cookie-cutter character off in the background. He had his own plot and love interest too!

That’s basically the reason why The Wanderer works. Each character is fully realized in their own way. And we get to meet them all through Cooper’s eyes and I don’t blame him for being torn on should he stay or go.

Nath: I would be torn too. What I liked though is that ultimately, Cooper did make the decision and he wasn’t wishy-washy about it. He didn’t leave to only come back or Sarah didn’t plead with him. I think their story is actually going to continue in the subsequent novels and I can’t wait to see it unfold :)

What did you think of Mac and Gina? They are the main characters of the next book, The Newcomer, and I think their story will be interesting :) Go Gina for realizing she cannot wait for him forever! It’s exactly the kick he needed :P

Ames: Oooh I liked their story! Friends to lovers and all that. I like how they had their single parent support system and Gina wanted Mac to get a move on already. Yup, I thought they were cute.

Nath: I think it was a good beginning for their story which I’m looking forward to :)

So your verdict for The Wanderer? I thought it was a solid book and beginning to Ms Carr’s new series. It didn’t wow me, but I did enjoy it a lot and therefore, it’s a B for me :)

Ames: I have to give The Wanderer a B+. I really enjoyed it and was so captivated by all the characters. And Cooper’s POV was a great way to get introduced to this small town. And the humour. Kudos to the humour. I have several favorite passages bookmarked that I like to re-read for a good laugh. :P


Patti (@TheLoveJunkee) said...

I haven't read any of the Virgin River books (it seems there are quite a few and I'm a little intimidated, lol). I did read the Wanderer and like you, enjoyed it. I'm buying The Newcomer this week :)

nath said...

Patti - I hear you, Patti about the long series syndrome! Playing catch up is never fun! But I'm glad you gave The Wanderer a try and that you enjoyed it! Let's hope The Newcomer is as good!