While on tour in Iraq, U.S. Marine, Logan Thibault is jogging early one morning. He notices a photo partially sticking out of the sand. An attractive girl was posed in front of a sign that said "Lucky Lady." There was also an inscription, "Keep safe. E."
When Logan doesn't succeed in finding the owner of the photo, before going into action, he places the photo in his pocket.
Members of his Marine unit are injured or killed but Logan excapes injury and comes to feel that the girl in the photo is somehow protecting him.
After his military service ends, he decides to find the woman. He isn't exactly sure why but it's as if fate draws him to her, as if she was part of his destiny.
He sets about walking from his home in Colorado with his dog, Zeus. There was an indication on the photo that it was taken in the town of Hampton and Logan looks at other details and decides that it is Hampton, North Carolina.
When he arrives in the town, his first encounter is with Deputy Keith Clayton, a sneaky man and a bully who had been in the woods taking photos of unsuspecting coeds who were sunbathing. Catching Clayton in this act, embarasses Clayton and causes him to feel an animosity toward Logan.
Later, Logan shows someong in town, the photo and finds that the woman, Elizabeth, "Beth," and that she runs a kennel. Beth had been in need of help at the kennel and had a sign out for help. Logan accepts a job working for her. He doesn't mention the photo but becomes an indespensable part of her operation while becoming friendly toward Beth's son, Ben, and her grandmother.
The themes of the novel are fate and destiny. It could be said that the author had, at least an unknowing influence of Mark Twain and the naturalism movement in literature that was popular at the turn of the last century. The movement dealt with middle class America where a person's fath was already ordained. The literature also had more emphasis on character than on action.
The pacing of the novel was precise with a gradual build-up to a momentus conculsion. Logan and Beth have a romance that is close to Romeo and Juliet without the tragic ending.
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