Book Review: The Edge of Mercy

9 May

Two women, three hundred years apart, must face the devastation of all they hold dear…Suspecting her husband is having an affair, Sarah Rodrigues fights to appear unbroken while attempting to salvage her family. Though distracted by her own troubles, Sarah is summoned to an elderly friend’s deathbed for an unusual request — find a long-lost daughter and relay a centuries-old family story.Determined not to fail her friend, Sarah pieces together the story of her neighbor’s ancestor, Elizabeth Baker, a young colonist forced into an unwanted betrothal but drawn to a man forbidden by society. While Sarah’s family teeters on the edge of collapse, her world is further shaken by the interest of a caring doctor and a terrible accident that threatens a life more precious than her own. Inspired by the unconditional love she uncovers in Elizabeth’s story, Sarah strives to forgive those who’ve wounded her soul. But when light shines on the dark secrets of her neighbor’s past and the full extent of her husband’s sins, will looking to a power greater than herself rekindle lost hope?

Heidi Chiavaroli began writing twelve years ago, just after Jesus had grabbed hold of her heart. She used her two small boys’ nap times to pursue what she thought at the time was a foolish dream. Despite a long road to publication, she hasn’t stopped writing since! Heidi won the 2018 ACFW Carol Award for Debut Novel and is a 2018 Christy Finalist. Both her debut novel, Freedom’s Ring, and her sophomore novel, The Hidden Side, are 4½-star Romantic TimesTop Picks. Freedom’s Ring was also a Booklist Top Ten Romance Debut. Heidi loves exploring places that whisper of historical secrets, especially with her family. She loves running, hiking, baking, and dates with her high-school sweetheart and husband of fifteen years. Heidi makes her home in Massachusetts with her husband and two sons.

My Impressions:

I have heard so many great things about author Heidi Chiavaroli, that I knew I needed to read one of her books sooner rather than later. I finally did it with The Edge of Mercy, the author’s third published novel. Set in present day and colonial Massachusetts, this time-slip novel featuring two very different women explores the true nature of love. For fans of women’s fiction, this one is a must-read. I promise you will love it!

The Edge of Mercy combines the first person perspective of modern-day Sarah Rodrigues and the 300 year old journal of Elizabeth Baker. Sarah’s life is falling apart as her husband of 17 years announces he wants a break. As she transcribes Elizabeth’s journal, a project assigned to her by her deceased neighbor, she comes to learn about love, sacrifice, and forgiveness. Sarah’s life really takes center stage, and I quickly became invested in her story. I wanted to cry with her and shake some sense into her husband. I liked Elizabeth’s story as well (her husband Caleb was the bomb!), but more as a vehicle for the lessons about persistent and pursuing love of a man for a woman and for God for His children. Sarah got the message, as well as others who read Elizabeth’s historical account. I also loved that the main characters found that when they were at their weakest, God’s grace was enough. The Edge of Mercy definitely has a spiritual thread that runs deeply throughout the narrative, but it is never preachy. The novel should appeal to believers and non-believers alike.

Even with the dual timelines set 300 years apart, The Edge of Mercy possesses a natural rhythm making it a highly enjoyable read. I finished this book in record time. Its likable (and not so likable 😉 ) characters, its relatable message, and the very interesting historical details make this one highly recommended!

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

To purchase this book, click HERE.

(Thanks to JustRead Publicity for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

2 Responses to “Book Review: The Edge of Mercy”

  1. susanblogginboutbooks May 9, 2019 at 8:28 am #

    I haven’t heard of this author before, but I love dual timeline novels, especially when they involve family secrets! I’ll definitely check this one out.


    • rbclibrary May 9, 2019 at 1:50 pm #

      Hope you enjoy it!

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