Imagine a novel that kicks off with its heroine roaming the Georgia woods with her dog and stumbling upon an old cabin whose owners seem to have been suddenly, mysteriously called away. Through its tall windows, she sees furniture around a massive stone fireplace, books lining shelves, and beds heaped with blankets. The house itself, built of chinked cedar logs, wrapped by an Adirondack-style stickwork porch, and surrounded by pines and hemlocks, overlooks a trout stream and is invisible from the road. It feels like a secret, a discovery that belongs to her alone.
If you were to read on, you'd find that our heroine, partial to history, mystery, and old houses, tracks down the family who'd owned the home since 1925, then buys the place to restore it—and you'd be holding Annie Westermann's story in your hands.
Shown: The existing kitchen's pine cupboards, stainless-steel sink, and vintage Hoosier cabinet were salvaged from a Georgia farmhouse. The homeowner lightened up the space with open shelves and snappy paint hues inspired by a retro-style refrigerator.