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Hello Stranger

By Katherine Center

A Perfect Book for a Day at the Beach or Pool



Sadie Montgomery ran down to the corner store to pick up some wine for an impromptu celebration of the most significant achievement of her artistic career.  She has been named a top ten finalist in the North American Portrait Society competition, with only one more portrait to paint.

But she has just woken up in the hospital without memory of what happened to her.  The doctor tells her she has to have brain surgery immediately.  She discovers she is face-blind when she wakes up from the brain surgery.  She can see people in general, but their faces never come into focus.  That is not a good thing for a portrait artist.

Sadie struggles to cope with her new reality.  Her artistic dream hangs in the balance while she copes with horrendous family drama, a very sick dog, and falling madly in love with not one but two men.  The timing could not be worse.  Sadie cannot bear to share the news of her face-blindness with anyone, although her father, stepmother, and her one best friend know the truth.


HELLO STRANGER is a perfect book for a day at the beach.  It’s got everything a good beach read needs.  The story is light and fun to read, has a strong female lead, and is captivatingly full of both drama and romance.  It even creates a hopeful sense of anticipation.  It is a perfect escape from reality and will even make you smile.

Sadie’s face blindness makes the book compulsively readable.  Can you even imagine this happening to you, let alone a portrait artist, during the most important opportunity of her career?  This story is vibrant with emotions, and you can’t help but laugh, cry, and worry about Sadie.  If only she would tell people about her face blindness...but then we wouldn’t have this delightful book.  Did you know that over one in 50 people have face blindness?

Author Katherine Center has written ten novels, of which I have read five and enjoyed every one of them.  She writes novels about how life knocks us down and how we get back up.  Her writing is witty, and her research for this book was admirable.

I listened to the audiobook of HELLO STRANGER.  Narrator Patti Murin’s performance was delightful.  Her voice was perfect for the book.  She enhanced the story with her inflection, pacing, and emotional tone.  Listeners will leave the book happy.  Read it!

Thanks to Netgalley and St Martins Press and Macmillian Audio for an advance reading copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review.

Publisher    St. Martin’s Press

Published   July 11, 2023

Narrated     Patti Murin

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