As Katie wound her way among the tables, a breeze from the Atlantic rippled through her hair. Carrying three plates in her left hand and another in her right, she wore jeans and a T-shirt that read Ivan’s: Try Our Fish Just for the Halibut. She brought the plates to four men wearing polo shirts; the one closest to her caught her eye and smiled. Though he tried to act as though he was just a friendly guy, she knew he was watching her as she walked away. Melody had mentioned the men had come from Wilmington and were scouting locations for a movie.
After retrieving a pitcher of sweet tea, she refilled their glasses before returning to the waitress station. She stole a glance at the view. It was late April, the temperature hovering just around perfect, and blue skies stretched to the horizon. Beyond her, the Intracoastal was calm despite the breeze and seemed to mirror the color of the sky. A dozen seagulls perched on the railing, waiting to dart beneath the tables if someone dropped a scrap of food.
Ivan Smith, the owner, hated them. He called them rats-with-wings, and he’d already patrolled the railing twice wielding a wooden plunger, trying to scare them off. Melody had leaned toward Katie and confessed that she was more worried about where the plunger had been than she was about the seagulls. Katie said nothing.
She started another pot of sweet tea, wiping down the station. A moment later, she felt someone tap her on the shoulder. She turned to see Ivan’s daughter, Eileen. A pretty, ponytailed nineteen-year-old, she was working part-time as the restaurant hostess.
“Katie—can you take another table?”
Katie scanned her tables, running the rhythm in her head. “Sure.” She nodded.
Eileen walked down the stairs. From nearby tables Katie could hear snippets of conversations—people talking about friends or family, the weather or fishing. At a table in the corner, she saw two people close their menus. She hustled over and took the order, but didn’t linger at the table trying to make small talk, like Melody did. She wasn’t good at small talk, but she was efficient and polite and none of the customers seemed to mind.
She’d been working at the restaurant since early March. Ivan had hired her on a cold, sunny afternoon when the sky was the color of robins’ eggs. When he’d said she could start work the following Monday, it took everything she had not to cry in front of him. She’d waited until she was walking home before breaking down. At the time, she was broke and hadn’t eaten in two days.
She refilled waters and sweet teas and headed to the kitchen. Ricky, one of the cooks, winked at her as he always did. Two days ago he’d asked her out, but she’d told him that she didn’t want to date anyone at the restaurant. She had the feeling he would try again and hoped her instincts were wrong.
This is an excerpt from SAFE HAVEN by Nicholas Sparks. Copyright © 2010 by Nicholas Sparks. Reprinted with permission from Grand Central Publishing, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
In his gripping new novel, Safe Haven, #1 New York Times bestselling author Nicholas Sparks reminds us why he is beloved by fans.
The friendly residents of the small North Carolina town of Southport can’t help but notice a lovely new resident, or that she seems very guarded. Katie is well aware that her sudden arrival has raised questions, but her past is her business. Earning her keep as a waitress in a local eatery, she’s determined to avoid forming personal ties—until a series of unexpected events draw her, albeit reluctantly, into two relationships: one with store owner Alex, a single father of two; and another with her neighbor, Jo, a woman who doesn’t hesitate to speak her mind. It isn’t easy for Katie to let down her guard, which is why she herself is astonished when she soon grows fond of her new close-knit community…and realizes that Alex and his adorable family have stolen her heart.
But even as Katie falls deeply in love, she’s haunted by a dark secret, the reason she’s been running from one small town to another, desperately trying to blend in. Will she come to realize before it’s too late that in the darkest hour love is the only true safe haven?
Hardcover Book : 352 pages
Publisher: Hachette Book Group Usa ( September 14, 2010 )
Item #: 13-152012
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 0.79inches
Product Weight: 13.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
This book was okay but predictable. It brought to mind the Julia Roberts movie "Sleeping with the Enemy" with a few storyline changes, but does have a interesting twist at the end. I will probably watch the movie of it mainly because I love Julianne Hough. It is suitable for many age groups as long as they are prepared for some violent descriptions. All in all a decent read.
Great book! My whole family enjoyed it.
This book was slightly different from his other books, for it held suspense. The characters were likeable, flawed, and realistic. I found myself thinking about them even after I set the book down. Great read!
Reviewer: Angela S
One of his best books! I couldn't put this book down...