The Hero (Thunder Point Series #3)

The Hero (Thunder Point Series #3)

by Robyn Carr

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With warmth and sensitivity, #1 New York Times bestselling author Robyn Carr shows readers that falling in love can be the bravest act of all.

In a moment of desperation, Devon McAllister takes her daughter and flees a place where they should have been safe and secure. She has no idea what is around the next bend, but she is pretty certain it can't be worse than what they've left behind. Her plan is to escape to somewhere she can be invisible. Instead, an unexpected offer of assistance leads her to Thunder Point, a tiny Oregon town with a willingness to help someone in need.

As the widowed father of a vulnerable young boy, Spencer Lawson knows something about needing friendship. But he's not looking for anything else. Instead, he's thrown his energy into his new role as Thunder Point's high school football coach. Tough and demanding to his team, off the field he's gentle and kind…just the kind of man who could heal Devon's wounded heart.

Devon thought she wanted to hide from the world. But in Thunder Point, you find bravery where you least expect it…and sometimes, you find a hero.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780778314592
Publisher: MIRA Books
Publication date: 08/27/2013
Series: Thunder Point Series , #3
Edition description: Original
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 102,520
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Robyn Carr is a RITA® Award-winning, #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than forty novels, including the critically acclaimed Virgin River series. Robyn and her husband live in Las Vegas, Nevada. You can visit Robyn Carr’s website at

Read an Excerpt

Devon McAllister walked down a tree-lined back road, not really sure where she was but certain that she was far away from the family compound. She felt safe enough that she no longer took cover when she heard a vehicle approach. She'd been walking for at least eight hours and saw the first rays of light coming over the mountains behind her. This reassured her that she was traveling west, toward the coast. She carried her three-year-old daughter, Mercy, and a backpack stuffed with a few items of clothing and forty dollars that had been given to her by the kindhearted stranger who had given her a ride.

She was exhausted but would not stop to rest until she reached Highway 101. Every so often she would put Mercy down and hold her hand, but that made the walking unbearably slow. When she heard a vehicle, she just kept her head down, staring at the ground.

It was a truck—it drove past them, but then it stopped up ahead. It was cranberry-red and old, but in mint condition. A man got out and yelled to her. "Miss? Need a ride?"

She walked toward the vehicle. "Am I close to Highway 101?" she asked.

"I'm going that way. I'm on my way to work," he said. "I can give you a lift."

He was an older guy. He wore a red, white and blue ball cap and his cheeks and chin were stub-bled in places that he'd missed with his razor. Though it was June, he wore a jacket. The early morning was misty, which told her she must be in a valley near the Pacific. "Where are you headed?" Devon asked.

"Thunder Point," he said. "It's a very small town on the coast in Coos County. I work at a beach bar and I open the place in time for breakfast. Been there a few years now. It's mostly fishing towns around there."

Well, she'd gotten out of Douglas County, but she wasn't sure where Coos County was. She didn't know where anything was—she rarely left the compound and had never been to any of the small coastal towns. Still, she knew that Highway 101 stretched as far north and south as she needed to get. Highway 5 was bigger and closer to the compound and if anyone was looking for a couple of runaways hitching rides, they'd probably start there. "How close to 101 is your town?"

"Plenty close. Want me to drop you there?"

She walked toward the truck. "Thanks," she said. "You're sure?"

"No trouble," he said.

She put her backpack in the truck bed. Holding Mercy on her lap, she buckled them in together. She kept her head down, her hands tucked between her knees.

"Name's Rawley Goode," he said. She said nothing. "You got a name?"

"Devon," Devon said. She shouldn't use her real name. What if someone came poking around, asking if anyone had seen a woman named Devon? But she was almost too tired to lie. Not to mention nervous. At least she hadn't said Sister Devon.

"Well, you're not an escaped convict, are you, Devon?" he asked.

She looked at him. "Is there a prison around here?"

He smiled. "Just kidding," he said. "Where you headed?"

For lack of a better answer she said, "Seattle. Eventually."

He whistled. "You're a long ways from there. What brings you to this old back road?"

She shrugged. "It's where I was dropped off, but I'm heading for 101."

"You hitchin' rides?"

She nodded. Her ride over the mountain had been planned, but was kept secret. "Yes, 101 will have more traffic," she said.

"Unless the police see you. Then it could get complicated."

"I'll watch."

Devon wasn't really headed to Seattle, but she just said that because that was where she came from originally. She thought there might be a shelter or charity of some kind in one of the bigger towns on the coast. "I don't know this area very well. Is there a town or city near Highway 101 that's pretty big? Big enough that it might have a shelter or maybe a hostel?" she asked him.

"Couple," Rawley replied. "Listen, I have an idea. You decide exactly where you need to go and I'll fix you up with transportation. How's that?"

"Why?" she asked suspiciously. "Why would you do that?"

"I been in your spot, hitchin' rides, lookin' for the easiest way to get from here to there, takin' a little help sometimes. I normally went to the VA when I needed a little assistance." He paused. "You got room for a little breakfast? 'Cause that's my job in the morning—perking the coffee, warming up egg sandwiches, watching the sun come over the mountains. It's not far from the highway, neither. I could show you a map while you and the little one eat something."

"No, thank you. I have a couple of apples for later."

"I know that look of no money," he said. "Been wearin' it and seein' it for forty years now. No charge for the map. Or the breakfast. Then I'll give you a ride to wherever you need to go to catch your next ride. It ain't no gamble. I admit, I ain't always been the best person in the world, but I ain't yet done nobody harm. You can hang on to those apples."

Rawley didn't know for certain, but he was pretty sure the young woman was from The Fellowship—a small religious compound along the river in Douglas County. She was wearing their "uniform" or "habit" of overalls, sturdy shoes, long-sleeved T-shirt with one button at the neck and a long, thick, single braid down her back. He'd donated to the group a couple of times himself and had noticed that the women were all attired the same while the few men in evidence all wore their own combinations of jeans, plaid or cham-bray shirts, hats and down vests. A few months back, when Cooper had been renovating the old bait shop and turning it into a first-rate bar and cafe, Rawley had taken the used industrial-size washers and dryers, along with a lot of kitchen wares they couldn't use, over to The Fellowship compound.

They were a private bunch, but he knew they had a roadside stand near their compound where they sold produce, quilts and woven goods. He'd only stopped once and had seen a group of them gathered around the stall, the women doing the business and the men helping with the heavy work, but mainly just presiding over everything. And he'd seen a few of them wandering around the Farmers' Market in Myrtle Creek where they sometimes had a stand, again the women together in a tight knot and the men following along or standing behind them, watching.

He had never given the group a second thought until this morning when he found the young woman and her child walking down the deserted road at dawn. Now he wondered what that group was all about. Beautiful, young, smiling, soft-spoken women apparently watched over by big, silent men who were clearly in charge.

The girl seemed skittish, so Rawley played his cards close to his vest. As they drove the twenty minutes to the beach at Thunder Point he kept the conversation light, only saying things like Gonna be a right fine day and Fog'll burn off the water early today and Should get up around seventy degrees, and that's a heat wave on the ocean.

She kept very quiet, offering the occasional Mmm-hmm but nothing more. Her little girl rested her head on her mother's shoulder and a couple of times they whispered quietly to each other. As they drove down the hill toward the bar she saw, for the first time, the beach sheltered by the rocky coastline, the bay studded with giant rocks and the fog at the mouth of the bay just lifting. All she said was, "Wow."

"Pretty, ain't she?" Rawley replied.

Moments later they arrived at the bar. Rawley parked out back behind the building and used his key to open the place up. It was 6:00 a.m.

"Come on inside, sit up at the bar and I'll put on the coffee and heat up some eggs. Got some fruit, too. And Cooper, the owner, he likes his Tony Ti-gers—you or the little one like Frosted Flakes?"

"Anything is very generous," she said. "And appreciated."

"Like I said, I passed your way plenty of times. I got a lot to pay back."

As he turned to get things started, Rawley noticed the coffee was already brewing. He looked out the window and saw a lone man out on the still bay on a paddleboard. That would be Cooper, getting in a little early morning exercise. And as he watched, a Razor ATV came across the beach with a big black-and-white Great Dane riding shotgun—Sarah, Cooper's woman, must have a day off from the Coast Guard.

Good, he thought. Cooper and Sarah would be out on the water for a while. That would give him enough time to figure out what to do with Devon. Because obviously something needed to be done. A woman and a small child with a single backpack out walking the back roads at dawn with no money and no plan… It didn't take a genius…

He wet a cloth with warm water and handed it to Devon in case she wanted to wipe the grime of the road from her hands and face, and she did so. Then wiped off her daughter's hands and face, muttering a very soft "thank you" as she put down the cloth.

Rawley got started with the food. He put out a fruit plate, a box of Frosted Flakes, two bowls, utensils, a carton of milk, a couple of small glasses. Then he pulled two egg sandwiches out of the cooler and popped them in the microwave.

Devon served her little girl, sharing everything. When the egg sandwiches arrived she gave voice to her thoughts—"So much food."

"Traveling makes a person hungry," Rawley said. And then he poured himself a cup of coffee. While they tucked into their breakfast he wandered out to the deck to think. He wanted to see where Cooper and Sarah were, and give Devon and her little girl time to get some food in their stomachs. If he watched them eat, they'd try not to eat too much—a man who'd been hungry and had taken charity knew this.

Hamlet, the Great Dane, was tied to the dock while Sarah paddled out to join Cooper on the bay. Rawley propped open the doors to the deck so Cooper would know he was on duty and that the place was open for business. A few moments later as he stood on the deck with his cup of coffee, Cooper waved. Rawley lifted a hand back. Then he watched them glide over the calm water, chasing the fog out of the bay.

By the time he went back inside, Devon and her little girl had put away a good deal of food and that made him smile. He went back behind the bar with his coffee. "Fill you up?"

"Oh, yes, sir," she said, giving her mouth a pat. "If you'll write down your name and address for me, I'll try to repay the kindness when I'm able."

"I'd rather you pass it on, Devon," he said. "That's what I try to do when I can."

"Of course. I'll do that, too."

"So. Looking for a larger town? One with a shelter?"

"That seems a good place for me to start," she said.

"Mind if I ask? What put you in these straits?"

She took a breath and stroked her daughter's back. "It's not complicated. I lost my job and couldn't find another. I got some benefits and food stamps, but it wasn't enough to pay the rent and I didn't have family to take me in. So, here I am."

"What kind of work you lookin' for?" Raw-ley asked.

Devon laughed a little bit. "I've been working since I was fifteen, I can do a lot of things. Office work, waitress work, worked in a nursing home for a while. I even worked on a farm. I cleaned, cooked, worked in child care a lot—once I was a teaching assistant in a preschool. I went to college. But none of those things paid enough to keep me and Mercy comfortable. I had a boyfriend, but he left. See?" she finished, tilting her head to one side. "Pretty simple. Just rotten timing. Bad luck."

Rawley leaned on the bar. "You know, there's this place on the river. Some kind of religious group. They call themselves The Fellowship. I could drive you out there, see if they'd take you in for a while, fix you up with some—"

"No!" she said hotly. "Please, no! If you could just give me a lift to the highway."

He held up a callused hand. "Shh," he said. "Devon, I know you're from there. I don't know why and you don't have to tell me, but it's pretty clear you needed to be out of the place if you'd drag your kid out in the dark of night and walk over a mountain." He frowned. "She is your kid, ain't she?"

"Of course!" She looked down. "I got a ride over the mountain. I should just get going…."

The child looked like her mother. Rawley was just checking. "Just sit. I can help you out here. You and the little one would be safe while you figure things out. You don't have to be out on the highway, takin' your chances."

She just looked at him with those big blue eyes, her peachy lips parted. Her daughter continued to move Frosted Flakes around in her bowl, apparently oblivious to the conversation. "Why?" she whispered.

"I told you why. You need details? There was this war you're too young to even know about and I came home a mess and no one wanted any part of me, of any of us. A lot of us wandered, just trying to forget or get the noise in our heads to stop. We had the VA but folks didn't even know how to help Vietnam vets. Like I said, I took a lot of charity. I worked some here and there, slept on the street some, helped out at the VA some. Now—I got a house and a job. That's my story. You keep yours till you feel safe. But, girl—we're gonna have to make some changes 'cause I knew where you came from the second I seen you walkin' down the road."

Her eyes got pretty round at that, but she remained mute.

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The Hero 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 156 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Plot spoilers should be banned from giving so called reviews that give away the entire plot of the book. Every review here is a plot spoiler, including those who brag how they got their book for free for their 'honest'review. What a laugh. We all know you will give a 'glowing' review for that free book, but the rest of us has to buy that book and you just ruined pal, by telling everything that happened. Who wants to read a book knowing every detail before it happens? I sure dont. And before some smart aleck pops off dont read them....i dont, but when they run on for miles, and you have to scroll past them, its hard not to see something that ruins the story. Think about the other readers before yiu ruin tge book for them. Jyst leave a few lines saying if its good or not. Thats all you need to do. You dont have to regurgitate the book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Robyn Carr is a master wordsmith. She puts together beautiful romance and wonderfully winding plots. This is yet another great novel from Ms. Carr.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great series. Just wish she would write faster!
BookBabe67 More than 1 year ago
 "The Hero" delivers the the kind of exceptional story-telling that we have come to expect from Robyn Carr.  Continuing the trilogy of Thunder Point and it's inhabitants, we meet new characters and catch up on the lives of previous characters.  It's like visiting old friends.   Robyn Carr is one author whose books I'll buy  on name alone, knowing that any book of hers will be worth the read.  
mayrrz More than 1 year ago
I love this series. You can follow the characters from the other books of the series and how they intermingle with the new characters. I like how the community opened up to this young lady as it does for all newcomers. They are fast reads and I enjoy them between other books that are more complex.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very enjoyable continuation of this series
KrittersRamblings More than 1 year ago
Check out the full review at Kritters Ramblings The next in the Thunder Point series from Robyn Carr.  With the addition of Spencer to town, this book mostly revolves around his adjustment to the small town and a new character addition by the name of Devon.  Devon has stumbled upon Thunder Point by escaping a religious compound and has fear that she still isn't really safe. I love reading about books with characters that are involved in extreme "religions."  Maybe it is the religious studies major in me, but I just love reading about the psychological effects this situation can have on someone.  The added addition of fear for Devon's daughter who is a child of the religious leader created some great mystery in the book.  I also loved the updates on the other couples in town who were featured in previous books.  It was a perfect balance of update and new storyline!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Robyn's books are always a pleasure. Easy to read and I like how they are tied together between people and places. Always drawn back for more.
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D-does-reviews More than 1 year ago
Another winner by Robyn Carr! While we catch up on all the characters we have already met, this book adds a woman who's running for her life with her small child and ramps up the storyline of the small town of Thunder Point. Devon and Mercy grabbed my attention and my heart when crusty bachelor and war veteran Rawley takes them into his home and his heart. Their fear and trepidation was so palpable it jumped off the page and once again, the residents of Thunder Point welcome them with open arms and work their magic on them both. Devon is strong and her devotion to her child is unending and the growing attraction between her and Spencer is deliciously romantic until things take a nasty turn. I love this series and highly recommend it to contemporary romance fans who love a book that grabs your attention and won't let you go. This book is awesome!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read the virgin river series. Loved the series. I am now reading the 4th book the of the Thunderpoint series. Excellent seriesso far.keepin coming Ms Carr
Pure_Jonel More than 1 year ago
What a story! Carr takes a concept that many of us never think about and turns it into an unforgettable romance. The contrast between the Fellowship and Thunder Point was so poignant that it not only captured my attention, but definitely had me thinking a mile a minute. The way in which she developed all aspects of the story, tying the intertwining lives of the characters together, gives you the big picture, while also allowing you to enjoy the story as the characters live it. Romance and suspense, danger and friendship all make their way into this intricately crafted tale. Devon was quite the heroine for this story. Her worries and fears are so real. Her loyalty to her daughter at all costs made me smile, while the little bit of happiness she took for herself gave me hope. Not only did Carr let readers know how Devon ended up with The Fellowship, she also made it very clear why she stayed there. Our hero Spencer, however, made me want to scream into a pillow at times, and hug him at others. He was your stereotypical male, all in until it’s too much then gone again. Despite that, I really enjoyed getting to know him on all fronts. Rawley goes from a minor character that I didn’t quite know what to do with to a completely developed individual with unexpected depths. I absolutely loved getting to know him so much better. He was one of my favourite parts of the story. Once again Carr has created a story that had me on pins and needles throughout. I love how emotion pours from the pages as I get to experience the lives of her brilliant characters.
Griperang72a More than 1 year ago
Another hit by Robyn Carr. She has a way of making you fall in love with each of the characters in her books. Her writing style is such that I don't want to put the book down until I am done with it. This one touched on a cult religion and how a woman got out of it. Therefore there are two stories going on here. The stories of the townspeople and the story of the cult and what is happening there. I felt for Devon and wanted to help her out myself. This was a great addition to the series and I can't wait to get to the next one. I am sure there will be more adventures in store for us. This one had some action as well as the romance in it. A great series.
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nookgeekCD More than 1 year ago
This is a great series. Looking forward to the next one.
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tauralibra2 More than 1 year ago
I loved the whole series. So easy to pick up the characters from one book to another. I don't know if there is a book #4, but I want it if it's out!
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She pulled him closer, closing her eyes.