In On Lucky Shores, Kerry Donovan introduces guitarist, singer, drifter Chet Walker. When we first meet Walker, he’s walking the Rocky Mountains, away from his troubled past and to, he hopes, a gig in the town of Lucky Shores, where he can fill his belly and wallet for his next chunk of walking. He writes music while he walks, working out chords, melodies, and lyrics in his head. He has just taken a detour off the highway, a shortcut marked by a sign that promises a gig at the end of the road. Walker soon regrets his decision. The road is in lousy shape, rain begins to fall, and he worries about his guitar getting wet.
When a passing car careens out of control and crashes, Walker runs to rescue the badly injured Michael (Mickey) Dolan, who begs Walker to take a message to his daughter Josephine in Lucky Shores. Now Walker has yet another reason to get to Lucky Shores.
He arrives in Lucky Shores in style, riding in an ambulance with Dolan and the paramedic he’s been chatting up since they met out on the mountain road. Within a day, it seems that everyone in Lucky Shores knows Walker: the local bullies, the sheriff and his deputy, the crowd at the Lucky Shores Diner, and, of course, Josephine.
And Walker finds himself in the middle of an old mystery: Who stole twenty-eight million dollars from the Lucky Shores savings & loan eight years ago, money that townsfolk had been saving to develop Lucky Shores into a resort?
Despite his protestations to the contrary, Walker finds himself the target of suspicion. Folks doubt his claim to be a drifting singer—partly because of his association with Michael Dolan, partly because he can’t keep his mouth shut, and partly because he can handle himself—and the town bullies—so well. In the end, Walker gets his gig—and a lot more—in Lucky Shores.
On Lucky Shores is a quick read, exactly the kind of book I love to read on a plane or on a cold, snowy day. I hope that Mr. Donovan has more in store for Chet Walker.