Friday, January 16, 2015

When Mercy Rains by Kim Vogel Sawyer

Overview: She left, heavily weighted with secrets. But God reveals all things, in His timing. And He redeems them.

Suzanne Zimmerman was only seventeen and pregnant when her shamed mother quietly sent her away from their Old Order Mennonite community in Kansas. With her old home, family, and first love firmly behind her, Suzanne moved to Indiana, became a nurse, and raised a daughter, Alexa, on her own.

Now, nearly twenty years later, an unexpected letter arrives from Kansas. Her brother asks her to bring her nursing abilities home and care for their ailing mother. His request requires that Suzanne face a family that may not have forgiven her and a strict faith community. It also means seeing Paul Aldrich, her first love.

Paul, widowed with an eight-year-old son, is relieved to see Suzanne again, giving him the chance to beg her forgiveness for his past indiscretion. But when he meets Alexa, his guilt flickers in the glare of Suzanne’s prolonged secret—one that changes everything.

Suzanne had let go of any expectation for forgiveness long ago. Does she dare hope in mercy–and how will her uncovered past affect the people she loves the most?

ISBN-13: 9780307731319
Publisher: The Doubleday Religious Publishing Group
Publication date: 10/7/2014
Series: Zimmerman Restoration Trilogy Series
Pages: 352
Buy It: B&N | Amazon | CBD

My Review: Wow! Kim Vogel Sawyer knows how to write. This book was fantastic. The plot is engaging, serious, and well thought out. While the focus of the plot was on the lies, betrayal and anger, it wasn't heavy or hard to read. There were moments of dialogue that provided comic relief to keep the story flowing effortlessly.

The characters were phenomenal. I loved Suzanne and Alexa.Suzanne's character was weighed down by guilt and shame. Her attitude through it all, though, was what really amazed me. She was strong, courageous, and kind-hearted despite her past angst. Alexa was a sweet, innocent girl that provided much needed relief to the story. Paul's character was also well-written. He was a great father and worked hard to emulate Jesus in his every day life. Abigail changed the most, in my opinion. At the beginning of the story, she was spiteful, bitter, and angry. I cringed every time she talked! By the end, though, I wept and laughed right along with her!

The message of the story is aptly summed up in the title of the book. Mercy certainly did rain down on this family. As Alexa says, "...when mercy rains, lives become fresh and new." When we allow our past mistakes to bog down our lives, we generally react in one of two ways: like Suzanna, who tried to cover her lies and past with secrets; or like Abigail with bitterness and anger. God doesn't want that for us. As far has He's concerned, when we ask for forgiveness, we are washed clean; like it never happened. That's how we should live our lives! That's what God wants!

Overall, this was a sweet story of God's mercy and grace.

**I received this book for free from the publisher through the Blogging for Books program in exchange for my honest review, which I have given.**

About the Author: Kim Vogel Sawyer is a best-selling, award-winning author with more than one million copies of her books currently in print. Awards include the ACFW Carol Award, the Inspirational Readers Choice Award, and the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence. Sawyer lives in central Kansas, where she and her retired military husband, Don, run a bed-and-breakfast inn with the help of their feline companions. She savors time with her daughters and grandchildren.
Author Hometown: Kansas

Connect with Kim: Email Kim  | Facebook | Twitter | Website

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