Friday, September 13, 2013

CFBA Blog Tour | Shades of Mercy

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Shades of Mercy
Anita Lustrea & Caryn Rivadeneira

Shades of Mercy
by Anita Lustrea & Caryn Rivadeneira
Christian Fiction / Historical
Available September 2013
River North
272 pages

Buy a copy
Read an excerpt
Find out what others think

About the Book
It's 1954 and the world-even the far Northwoods of Maine-is about to change. But that change can't happen soon enough for fourteen-year-old Mercy Millar. Long tired of being the "son" her father never had, Mercy's ready for the world to embrace her as the young woman she is-as well as embrace the forbidden love she feels.  

When childhood playmates grow up and fall in love, the whole community celebrates. But in the case of Mercy and Mick, there would be no celebration. Instead their relationship must stay hidden. Good girls do not date young men from the Maliseet tribe. At least, not in Watsonville, Maine. When racial tensions escalate and Mick is thrown in jail under suspicion of murder, Mercy nearly loses all hope-in love, in her father, and in God himself.

My Thoughts
Shades of Mercy is a coming-of-age story set in Maine in the 1950s. While racial tensions were coming to a head in the South during this time, the authors tell an eye-opening story of racial tension between the Maliseet Indians and the white citizens of Watsonville, Maine.

I loved the premise of this book and was hopeful to fall in love with the people of this small, 1950s town. However, while the writing style had a beautiful, literary quality, I never really connected with the story or the characters. Additionally, the pace of the story itself was quite slow, and I had to really push myself to keep reading. I felt that there were many times when the authors were telling me things that they could have been showing me.

I did love the many lessons to be learned from this book—of treating people with respect, showing God's mercy with our actions and not only our words, the dangers of prejudice. In fact, it reminded me in many ways of the classic books that we read in middle school. While this wasn't the best fit for me, there are probably many who will enjoy it. [2.5 stars]

I received a free copy of this book from River North and CFBA in exchange for my fair and honest review.

About the Authors
Authentic. That’s the word heard over and over when women describe Anita Lustrea. She is a popular speaker at women’s conferences and retreats, and an amazing communicator as co-host of the award winning Midday Connection radio broadcast. Her deep desire is to communicate freedom to women and help them nurture and care for their soul. 

Anita is the co-author of Come to Our Table: A Midday Connection Cookbook and Daily Seeds from Women Who Walk in Faith, a devotional for women. Her first solo venture as an author released in November 2010, What Women Tell Me: Finding Freedom from the Secrets We Keep. Anita and her pastor husband, Mike Murphy, along with her teenage son John live in the Chicago suburbs. When she’s not traveling or speaking, you can find her reading and drinking a venti hot tea at her local Starbucks.

Anita Lustrea Online
Website  |  Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter

Caryn Rivadeneira is a sought-after writer and speaker. She’s the author of four books—Shades of Mercy: A Maine Chronicle, Known & Loved: 52 Devotions from the Psalms, Grumble Hallelujah, and Mama’s Got a Fake I.D.—and a regular contributor to Christianity Today’s Her.Meneutics as well as columnist for Re:Frame Media’s ThinkChristian blog. She has written dozens of magazine article. Her work has appeared in such publications as Christianity Today, Relevant, FamilyLife, and Engineering and Mining Journal (you read that right). 

Caryn leads workshops and speaks at conferences and church groups across the country. She’s also a regular guest on Moody Radio’s Midday Connection with Anita Lustrea and Melinda Schmidt and has been featured on such radio shows as The John and Kathy Show, Changing Worldviews/WOMANTalk with Sharon Hughes, I Thought She Said with Faith Daly, The Paul Edwards Program with Paul Edwards, and Talk from the Heart with Rich Buhler, among many others. Caryn also appeared on The Harvest Show. 

 Caryn earned a B.A. in English from Calvin College and attended the University of Chicago’s publishing program. She lives in the western suburbs of Chicago with her husband, Rafael, her three kids, a rescued pit bull terrier, two hermit crabs, and several tank fulls of who-knows-what-kind-of fish. Caryn and her family are members of Elmhurst Christian Reformed Church in Elmhurst, Illinois, where Caryn recently joined the worship staff. 

Caryn Rivadeneira Online
Website  |  Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter

1 comment:

  1. I completely agree with your thoughts, Brooke. Although it's been ages since I've read it, I felt a hint of To Kill a Mockingbird there... Maybe it's a really loose connection, though. :) Anywho, I didn't really feel emotionally engaged either, although I, too, think the writing was nice in a literary way and that there were some great things about the story. It just felt very drawn out.

    Thanks for the review!



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