Cape Refuge (Cape Refuge Series #1)

Cape Refuge (Cape Refuge Series #1)

by Terri Blackstock

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Experience the first book in the Cape Refuge series from New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Terri Blackstock.

“Good writing, well-honed descriptive details, compelling characters, and a conclusion that doesn’t succumb to pat answers keep the pages turning, making this an engaging novel . . .” —Publishers Weekly

When the kindest couple in Cape Refuge is found murdered at their church, their daughter will have to find the killer . . . before her own husband is convicted.

Wade and Thelma Owens run a halfway house on the small island of Cape Refuge that caters to wayward souls just out of prison. So when Wade and Thelma turn up brutally murdered, the town goes into shock, concerned that one of the Hanover House residents is a murderer who could strike again.

Shattered by her parents’ deaths, Morgan Cleary struggles to keep Hanover House running while her husband, Jonathan, has been arrested for the murder.

As the killer runs free, a lethal race against time ensues, with far more than the halfway house at stake.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780310565680
Publisher: Zondervan
Publication date: 05/18/2009
Series: Cape Refuge Series , #1
Sold by: HarperCollins Publishing
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 5,067
File size: 2 MB
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Terri Blackstock has sold over seven million books worldwide and is a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author. She is the award-winning author of Intervention, Vicious Cycle, and Downfall, as well as such series as Cape Refuge, Newpointe 911, the SunCoast Chronicles, and the Restoration Series. Visit her website at; Facebook: tblackstock; Twitter: @terriblackstock.


Read an Excerpt

The air conditioner was broken at City Hall, and the smell of warm salt air drifted through the windows from the beach across the street. Morgan Cleary fanned herself and wished she hadn't dressed up. She might have known that no one else would. The mayor sat in shorts and a T-shirt that advertised his favorite beer. One of the city councilmen wore a Panama hat and flip-flops. Sarah Williford, the newest member of the Cape Refuge City Council, looked as if she'd come in from a day of surfing and hadn't even bothered to stop by the shower. She wore a spandex top that looked like a bathing suit and a pair of cutoff jeans. Her long hair could have used a brush.

The council members sat with relaxed arrogance, rocking back and forth in the executive chairs they'd spent too much money on. Their critics--which included almost everyone in town--thought they should have used that money to fix the potholes in the roads that threaded through the island. But Morgan was glad the council was comfortable. She didn't want them irritable when her parents spoke.

The mayor's nasal drone moved to the next item on the agenda. "I was going to suggest jellyfish warning signs at some of the more popular sites on the beach, but Doc Spencer tells me he ain't seen too many patients from stings in the last week or so"

"Wait, Fred," Sarah interrupted without the microphone.

"Just because they're not stinging this week doesn't mean they won't be stinging next week. My sign shop would give the city a good price on a design for a logo of some kind to put up on all the beaches, warning people of possible jellyfish attacks."

"Jellyfish don't attack," the mayor said, his amplified voice giving everyone a start.

"Well, I can see you never got stung by one."

"How you gonna draw a picture of 'em when you can't hardly see 'em?"

Everyone laughed, and Sarah threw back some comment that couldn't be heard over the noise.

Morgan leaned over Jonathan, her husband, and nudged her sister. "Blair, what should we do?" she whispered. "We're coming up on the agenda. Where are Mama and Pop?" Blair tore her amused eyes from the sight at the front of the room and checked her watch. "Somebody needs to go check on them," she whispered. "Do you believe these people? I'm so proud to have them serving as my elected officials."

"This is a waste of time," Jonathan said. He'd been angry and stewing all day, mostly at Morgan's parents, but also at her. His leather-tanned face was sunburned from the day's fishing, but he was clean and freshly shaven. He hadn't slept much last night, and the fatigue showed in the lines of his face.

"Just wait," she said, stroking his arm. "When Mama and Pop get here, it'll be worth it."

He set his hand over hers--a silent affirmation that he was putting the angry morning behind him--and got to his feet. "I'm going to find them."

"Good idea," Morgan said. "Tell them to hurry."

"They don't need to hurry," Blair whispered. "We've got lots of stuff to cover before they talk about shutting down our bed-and- breakfast. Shoot, there's that stop sign down at Pine and Mimosa. And Goodfellows Grocery has a lightbulb out in their parking lot."

"Now, before we move on," Fred Hutchins, the mayor, said, studying his notes as if broaching a matter of extreme importance,

"I'd like to mention that Chief Cade of the Cape Refuge Police Department tells me he has several leads on the person or persons who dumped that pile of gravel in my parking spot."

A chuckle rippled over the room, and the mayor scowled.

"The perpetrator will be prosecuted."

Blair spat out her suppressed laughter, and Morgan slapped her arm. "Shhh," Morgan tried not to grin, "you're going to make him mad."

"I'm just picturing a statewide search for the fugitive with the dump truck," Blair said, "on a gravel-dumping spree across the whole state of Georgia."

Morgan saw the mayor's eyes fasten on her, and she punched her sister again. Blair drew in a quick breath and tried to straighten up.

"The Owenses still ain't here?" he asked. While Morgan glanced back at the door, Blair shot to her feet. "No, Fred, they're not here. Why don't you just move this off the agenda and save it until next week? I'm sure something's come up."

"Maybe they don't intend to come," the mayor said. "Don't you wish," Blair fired back. "You're threatening to shut down their business. They'll be here, all right."

"Well, I'm tired of waiting," the mayor said into the micro-phone, causing feedback to squeal across the room. Everybody covered their ears until Jason Manford got down on his knees and fiddled with the knob. "We've moved it down the agenda twice already tonight," the mayor went on. "If we ever want to get out of here, I think we need to start arguin' this right now."

Morgan got up. "Mayor, there must be something wrong. Jonathan went to see if he could find them. Please, if we could just have a few more minutes."

"We're not waitin' any longer. Now if anybody from your camp has somethin' to say . . ."

"What are you gonna do, Mayor?" Blair asked, pushing up her sleeves and shuffling past the knees and feet on her row. "Shut us down without a hearing? That's not even legal. You could find yourself slapped with a lawsuit, and then you wouldn't even have time to worry about jellyfish and gravel. Where would that leave the town?"

She marched defiantly past the standing-room-only crowd against the wall to the microphone at the front of the room. Morgan got a queasy feeling in her stomach. Blair wasn't the most diplomatic of the Owens family. She was an impatient intellectual who found her greatest fulfillment in the books of the library she ran. People were something of a nuisance to her, and she found their pettiness unforgivable.

Table of Contents

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Although Blackstock, a former bestselling romance author in the general market, is now well-known in the CBA for her writing partnership with Beverly LaHaye, her most successful books belong to the inspirational suspense genre, and this novel is no exception. On a small barrier island east of Savannah, Ga., lies Cape Refuge, the site of Hanover House, a halfway home for ex-cons and derelicts run by the island's most beloved no-nonsense Christian couple, Thelma and Wayne Owens. But when the Owenses are found spear-gunned through their throats in their warehouse church, the island and its inhabitants get turned upside-down. The Owens's daughter Morgan's husband, Jonathan, is charged with the murder, but former drug addict Gus Hampton and Hanover House resident Richard Dugan also fall under suspicion. As the Owenses' other daughter, Blair---who has spent a lifetime rejecting faith and love because of facial scars from the mysterious burns she suffered as a young child---examines her parents' papers, she discovers that Thelma and Wayne had a very shady past. Also drawn into the web of intrigue is a homeless teenager who comes to Hanover House seeking shelter from an abusive family. The pacing is a bit slow at the start, but good writing, well-honed descriptive details, compelling characters and a conclusion that doesn't succumb to pat answers keep the pages turning, making this an engaging novel for fans of Christian nail-biters. (Apr.) -- Publisher’s Weekly

Customer Reviews

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Cape Refuge (Cape Refuge Series #1) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 173 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i hated reading before i read this book.the reason i read this book is because i have had a book report to do. I was sad because the book is like 385 pages which is a lot for some one who hates to read. this book is excellent some nights i was up to like 12:00 at night reading. you can not put this book down. this book is so good that i asked my parents for the rest of the series.
b_k_r More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful book. Very entertaining.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is my 3rd time reading Cape Refuge. The first time on my own, and the 2nd and 3rd time for book clubs. I Absolutely Love this series.This 3rd time I read it brought me back to the characters I didn't want to see end. I need to reread the rest.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Telling the whole story in you review is not helpful Give a quick review if you like it or not and why But telling the story chapter by chapter is not helpful Geez Why read it * you've done it for us
caanders More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed all her books I've read so far. They don't contain all the sexual language and graphic violence. Much more relaxing read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
it was nice reading a book without cussing and sex. It was based on God and how even christians have really hard times. this is the first of the trilogy and i can't wait to read the last two. I am truly excited about reading again
songbirdsue More than 1 year ago
Another great book by Terri Blackstock. Murder and corruption is the basis of this story as well as ministering to those in need. I love her well-developed and believable characters and the mystery with plenty of plot twists and turns. You are drawn into her books from the beginning, then throughout there are so many suspects and ways that the plot could go that you can’t put it down. I love that there is plenty of suspense without foul language or intimate sex scenes! This is a Christian story that has plenty of persons who have faith as well as those who question faith. It represents where each places this is their life. Highly recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love Terri Blackstock
Morbrymom More than 1 year ago
I'm a fan of mystery and the Christian aspect made it even better. I love the fact that I can read good fiction without the bad language. This is a great read that will keep you up at night to finish! I'm reading the second book in the series now. It is equally as good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this was my first terri blackstock novel and i must say that i enjoyed it. i woud recommend this book to anyone who oves a good mystery. my only complaint was that i thought it was a bit drawn out.
ruthhill74 More than 1 year ago
When I began this book, I was quite intrigued. After all, it is a Christian mystery. That is a genre I have never read. I grew up reading Erle Stanley Gardner and Agatha Christie where everyone jumped into bed with each other and used foul language right and left. How refreshing this book was in light of that! First of all, the author is a fantastic writer who certainly knows how to develop believable characters and plots with intriguing twists and turns. I was drawn into the book from the very beginning--which is quite refreshing.  Furthermore, I absolutely loved that there were no bedroom scenes and no foul language! Yes! I could certainly handle reading more books like this. While the gospel was there, the reader did not feel as though he/she was being beat over the head with Christianity.  And finally, I pride myself in the fact that I partially solved the crime. I could follow the author's clues, and that really was exhilarating. Rarely could I ever solve an Agatha Christie or Perry Mason case, but I have a chance with Terri Blackstock. I certainly look forward to reading more of her books. It looks as though this is the first in the series, and it would be nice to read the sequel.
LucyBH More than 1 year ago
This was so refreshing to read Murder Mystery that is clean and inspirational. This was the first book that I have read by Terri Blackstock and was a great writing. Well written, fast pace, descriptive yet not overly done, inspirational book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this first in the series of Cape Refuge, spellbinding, suspenseful couldn't put it down.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good read, interesting people and a good story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was really uplifted by this book, even though it had some emotionally draining parts. I've already bought the others in the series so will move right into them.
ninisb More than 1 year ago
This book holds your interest! It has family, God, kindness to others & the best part written about beautiful Savannah & the Georgia Islands.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A nice read with a good storyline and satisfying ending.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A book that I can read that is not filled with explicit sex that I skip over, that is well-written and praises God at the same time. Our media will ignore this wonderful writer, though - they can't allow a Christian to become a best-seller, sad to say.
Cydonia More than 1 year ago
I read her Restoration series, and this was the second series I have read. I didn't grip me as strongly as the previous series had, but I still found it well-written, entertaining and worth continuing on to the next book. I have recommend this series and author to others. It is nice to have a Christian-thriller genre out there.
lewis936 More than 1 year ago
You have got to read it
rijoice More than 1 year ago
The story was interesting but rather simple. It was based on Christian principles, but no real lesson to be learned.
jake21 More than 1 year ago
Awesome read! could not put down!
cindy_in_va More than 1 year ago
Enjoyed the multiple story lines and characters. Christian themes throughout. Made me think about how homeless people are viewed and some of the struggles they face.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Morgan and Blair, two sisters, have opposite points of view concerning God and faith, and I love their story in this first book of the Cape Refuge series. Terri Blackstock has written another winner.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am not much of a reader, but this book was so well written, I was able to read it in two and 1/2 days! Although it dealt with murder, it was not extremely graphic, as this would have appaulled me. Plus, the writer is able to express real thoughts and feelings within her characters that parallel to the thoughts and feeling of people I personally know. I believe this is a well written book which is so suspensefull I had a difficult time putting it down.