Love contemporary fiction with a mystery, great dialogue, and relatable characters that will make you laugh out loud? Then don’t miss the second-place winner of Jerry B. Jenkins’s Operation First Novel Contest.
Double Header Synopsis:
Four years have passed since Casey Gallagher’s father died, but she still polishes his state trooper boots every evening. Then she receives a letter that shatters her perfect image of him and her carefully scripted life. Is she willing to meet her half-brother?
As Casey struggles to forgive her dad for his affair, she continues writing a sports column with her brother, Griffin. They soon become friends with two Red Sox rookies and a cop Casey’s husband met at the gym. Could one of them be more than he seems?
Double Header is a compelling story about faith, family, and forgiveness. (Tweet that!) The writing was so fantastic and the plot so deftly unfurled, I found it hard to believe this was James’s first published novel.
Her characters stormed off the page into my head. I got a kick out of the relationship between Casey and her fun brother and grinned at the antics of their overbearing agent, Roberta. Here’s how James first introduces us to Casey’s boss:
“Gordy, alway the first one at work, shouted, ‘Is that you, Casey? I need a favor.’
Our whole division knew doing favors for Gordy was a no-brainer. We got theater tickets he didn’t want due to the ‘ungodly noise level’ and seats to sporting events he didn’t understand. The biggest favor I’d ever done for Gordy was to take the VP’s corner office off his hands because he ‘couldn’t stand the glare from all that glass.’”
James then describes Gordy’s appearance:
“When I entered his office, Gordy was rustling through a messy stack of papers on his desk. My nickname for him was Macarena man because, more often than not, he was patting his back pocket for his wallet, his front jacket pocket for his glasses, his belt for his phone, or his wrist for his watch.
‘Put that to music, Gordy,’ I’d teased once, ‘and you’ve got a wedding dance.’”
I’m not a sports fan, but I enjoyed the baseball imagery James used throughout the story, and absolutely loved the ending. With her humor, great voice, and words that spring off the page, James has won a fan for life.
I recommend this book to baseball enthusiasts and readers who enjoy drama, mysteries, and realistic fiction.
Want to learn more about Clarice G. James and her award-winning novel? Read my interview with here.