I am repeating myself when I say that this book is my new favorite of Kim's books. I can claim that I have read each one she has written and also own them. I love Kim's writing and am thrilled to see a small change in her style, adding Historical. I feel that this book is an exceptional example of her writing.
I love and have always loved the way Kim describes each scene where the story takes place with such descriptive words. I always feel with her stories that I can walk right into the book and be a part of the story myself. I also love the way she weaves the characters faith or lack of into the story, and to be able to read about these characters growing in faith no matter what goes on in their lives is such an inspiration.
Caroline Lang is on her way to the Dinsmoor World Famous Chocolate Factory in Sinclair, Kansas to investigate how a man was killed and why there are so many children working there. She just has to get this job, just to be able to be in the factory so she can see what's going on. As she accepts the job she gets drawn into many more people's lives that she ever intended to.
Her adventures, if you can call them that because some are dangerous, set in motion events involving Ollie Moore. A man who is infuriating at times and can read her like a book at others. Ollie has his own agenda for being in the factory working close to where Caroline is.
One has strong faith, one has almost none. One came from a moneyed family, the other from a life of abandonment and hard labor. Can these two ever see eye to eye, or even be in the same room together?
I would greatly recommend this book to all who love Christian Fiction and Kim's writing. If you haven't tried it yet, please do, you will be pleasantly surprised.
I received this book from the publisher an author and this is my honest opinion
This book was fantastic. I was hooked from the very first page. Kim Vogel Sawyer is an excellent writer. The plot was fast-paced and exciting. I loved that both Caroline and Oliver were under cover, trying to uncover things at the chocolate factory. I loved that the setting was in chocolate factory, as well. I am a HUGE fan of chocolate, so this book made me crave some! The romance between "Ollie" and "Carrie" was sweet (no pun intended, hehe). It wasn't the main focus of the book, and that was fine. The insights on child labor back in that time period was also interesting.
The author does a wonderful job of creating depth in each character and explaining what has made them the way they are. Caroline Lang (aka Carrie) has gone through a lot in her life. She detests child labor, and for a good reason. Throughout the book, we see her struggling to overcome the emotional turmoil her past wrought on her and we can rejoice with her when she finally does! Oliver Dinsmore (aka Ollie) is the heir to the Dinsmore Chocolate factory. He's lived a live of priviledge and wealth. I love that he was humble enough to go undercover as a janitor to do research that would allow him to be a better owner when he took the reins. Throughout the story, we see his compassion and rejoice with him when he comes to know the Lord on a more personal level.
Here, we come to my favorite part of the story: the message. From overcoming our past and learning to trust in God completely, to the gift of mercy, grace, and salvation, this story has it all. It took me over half of the book to realize the significance of the title Echoes of Mercy. Mercy, by definition, is an act of kindness, compassion, or favor. Throughout the story, we see "echoes" of mercy shown especially to Caroline. Once I realized the significance of the title, I loved it even more!
*I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group through the Blogging for Books program for this review.*
It's another Kim Vogel Sawyer book! Kim's books have become some of my favorites in recent years. I love the 'good friend' type of books she writes. If you're a reader, you know what I mean. Those books that are warm, comfortable, cozy up under a blanket, read-again kind of stories.
Echoes of Mercy was a little different than Kim's norm. Oh, it was still a book that made me feel satisfied and comfortable at the end - but, she wrote a little more suspense into this one. I liked that! And, the chocolate factory setting was just fun and unique!
I haven't watched the show, but Kim had a little 'undercover boss' going on, which I find a fascinating concept (although I was surprised that Gordon wouldn't know the owner's son?)!
Kim's characters are always easy to relate to and love - or not! Kesia was great - loved her! I always enjoy when her type of character is added to a book! The wise, speaks-her-mind-can't-help-but love person! And then there was Mr. Dinsmore. I wanted to like him - well, I did, as he seemed a wonderful father and even a kind man; I guess I was disappointed that he didn't apologize at the end, or at least we weren't told of any change of heart after all that happens.
Still, despite the unsatisfactory conclusion with the senior Dinsmore, Echoes of Mercy was another winner by Kim.
*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine.*
One thing that I've come to realize over the past few years is this -- you just can't go wrong with a Kim Vogel Sawyer book! Echoes of Mercy, a compelling story filled with interesting characters, is one more example of that truth.
Carrie, Ollie, Kesia, Noble, Annamarie, and the Holcomb children are all people I came to care about as I read, and they each added their own unique flavor to the story. The faith exhibited by the characters -- some strong and some just in infant stages, the passion for people and for causes, and even the deceit and evil plotting of Gordon Hightower all fit together into a tale that sometimes made me smile and at other times brought tears to my eyes. As usual, Kim brings her story to life and tugs at her readers' hearts.
Echoes of Mercy is a great mix of history, relationship, romance, and faith. Through several of the characters, Kim shares insightful reminders of God's grace and provision. One of my favorite lines in the book was near the end of the story when Noble offered Caroline an answer to her question about how to stop worrying and trust God: "Very simply, Caroline, you open your fists and you give the worry over to the One who is capable of carrying it."
Thanks to Kim Vogel Sawyer for providing me an advanced reading copy of Echoes of Mercy.
Kim Vogel Sawyer is a name that never disappoints. In this volume, she takes us back to the early 1900's and the issue of child labor in factories. One undercover operative placed in Dinsmore's World-Favorite Chocolate Factory has died a suspicious death as he investigates cheap child labor. Enter Caroline, the new, feisty, and determined clandestine worker who needs to uncover how the original operative died as well as the unfair treatment the children may suffer in the factory. Caroline finds a questionable ally in a janitor, Ollie Moore, who is also more than he seems. As she begins to lose her heart, she questions whether she can trust him with her quest to make things more equitable for the children, especially three she has grown close to and will do most anything to protect. Soon she is in a race to protect her job, "her" children, and even her life. Who does she dare trust?
Sawyer does a great job showing how hurts from the past can make us better or bitter. She also shows us that hanging onto hurts of the past can unnecessarily cripple even the best of hearts, affecting others in our lives. We must choose to let God in that area of our lives and let Him heal the pain, so we can move past it. Another great lesson Sawyer shows is the need to depend on others, and to allow them to help us in the hard times.Sometimes we and others in our lives suffer unnecessarily because we try to do things on our own. And who can miss the lesson that we all have great value, although sometimes our value is hidden to others, waiting for the right moment to appear, for our particular skills and abilities to be needed. Bravo, Kim!!