A young woman finds home, her people, and God in a Christian-based coming-of-age tale with dramatic family elements set in New Orleans.
Jillian Slater gets an enigmatic phone call asking her to come back to New Orleans for her father’s funeral only to discover it wasn’t Olivia Fontaine, her grandmother, who invited her but rather Adella, the woman who manages Saint Sans, the building Olivia owns and lives in, a repurposed church with three renters. Adella hopes the two estranged relatives will reconcile, but instead they are both angry with her, and Jillian leaves in rushed outrage just as the police arrive to inform Olivia that, after further inspection, they’ve realized her son, basically a homeless man, was murdered. Jillian returns home to San Francisco and her problematic relationship with Vince, the wealthy and domineering owner of the restaurant where she works. Believing he’s about to throw her out of the apartment they share, she leaves town with barely the clothes on her back and $1,000 she takes from him—since he controls her finances and she has no money. With nowhere else safe to go, she heads back to New Orleans and turns up at Saint Sans. Adella convinces Olivia to let her stay for a week, a period of time which grows longer and longer, as Jillian and Olivia soften toward each other, Jillian settles in to her new life, and all the residents of Saint Sans grow closer together, especially when they have to confront a strange enemy who’s leaving malevolent tokens on the doorstep. Evangelist Moore moves into Christian fiction with an engaging storyline and occasionally great writing, though at times the overly simplistic “this is good, this is bad, righteous people get miracles” messages may make some readers pause, and the small, secondary historical storyline seems dropped in with little context and a jarring Job-like note.
A compelling, redemptive story.