Ya - that's "face to face" in a nutshell.
The story centers around Wanda, a middle aged recovering alcoholic who longs to be reunited with her daughter. As she begins to search, she discovers that her daughter has disappeared, and she devotes herself to chasing down all possible clues. The clues reveal a daughter who longs for reconciliation with her parents, and who is kind, generous, creative, ambitious, and determined to break the cyle of heartbreak and alcoholism. Wanda is soon joined by her ex-husband, Derek, and they trace their daughter's steps back to the South Carolina town where they will come face to face with the truth.
The secondary story follows the detective who is struggling to solve two mysteries involving mysterious young women. At the same time, he is dealing with the secrets of his past, his failing marriage and his troubled son.
As a Christian novel, there are several upsides:
- recurrent theme of trusting in God, not in our own strength
- models of faithful, though flawed, Christians (Wanda's friend Lottie, and Bruce's mother, Marintha)
- the possibility of restoration of broken relationship through the healing power of Christ
- "Wanda thought back over the times during the last few weeks that it seemed that God was speaking directly to her. Although she had heard of so many people experiencing such events, she wondered if it could really be true, that the Lord would take time to give individuals messages, or to give them specific instructions about what to do about their lives. Now she firmly believed it."