I wasn't sure what to expect of the book Sweet Mercy. I had never read anything by Ann Tatlock before, but the cover drew me in, along with the description of the book. When I received a free copy of the book, I didn't hesitate to dive right in. I am very glad I read this book because I found it very entertaining and enjoyable.
The book starts with a Grandma and her grandson. They are returning to a house from the Grandma's childhood and as it is filled with memories, the Grandma tells her grandson the story of her childhood. We are then transported back to 1931 when Eve Marryat, the Grandma in the story, is a young girl of 17. A year and a half after the stock market crashed, Eve finds herself moving to Ohio with her family to live with her Dad's brother. There they work for her uncle who owns the Marryat Island Ballroom and Lodge.
Leaving behind St. Paul and its den of gangsters and lawbreakers, Eve is anxious to find herself in a safe haven. However, during the time of Prohibition, Eve will soon learn that Ohio is anywhere but a safe haven. When she runs into bootleggers and their still, she must decide what she must do and who she can trust.
I really liked the cast of characters that Ann Tatlock created. There were some that you found yourself liking a lot, and then others that were disagreeable right from the start. I especially found myself drawn to Link. However, because of the circumstances in the book, I was unable to determine who I should "trust" along with Eve.
The twists and turns in this book make for a great story that will keep you guessing as to how everything will be resolved.
I found the time period to be interesting as well. I believe I have only read one book about Prohibition before this one and as I enjoyed that one very much, I was excited to read another book about the same time period. Sweet Mercy did not disappoint and I am very glad I had the chance to read it. This is a book that I am glad found its way to my bookshelf_ and I plan to keep it there!
I received a free ecopy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. I received no compensation for this review and was not required to write a positive review. All opinions stated are my own.
This is the second book I read by Ann Tatlock, and once again I really enjoyed her storytelling. It's a great summer read.
Sweet Mercy is a coming-of-age story set during the Great Depression and Prohibition. When Eve Marryat's father loses his job, they move away from crime-ridden St. Paul, Minnesota and move back to where her father grew up in Ohio. Eve's Uncle Cyrus has invited her family to live and work at his Marryat Island Ballroom and Lodge, where Eve and her family have spent past summers. She has good memories of this idylic summer retreat and loves it the moment they arrive. During that memorable summer Eve discovers the stirrings of first love, meets a homeless young man named Link, and faces a dilemma when she realizes that things are not what they seem at the Lodge.
Eve is an interesting character. She is forthright and a little self-righteous. She also has a good sense of justice and is sensitive, kind and generous. The story is told from her first-person point-of-view and I enjoyed seeing her blossom. We see things from her perspective, her naive and innocent perspective, which was refreshing. Although at times, she came across as being much younger than her seventeen years. I found it interesting that Tatlock chose for Eve to have a very close relationship with her father. Her mother seemed absent to me. She was loving but seemed oblivious to her daughter's emotional feelings.
The historical setting really made this story memorable with the contrast of a beautiful summer vacation spot with the suit-clad, fedora-wearing gangsters that proliferated during Prohibition. Tatlock showed us the human side to these men and why some chose to break the law. She also showed us how the Depression changed people's lives. Link would often appear at the Logde along with other men who knew they would be given a free meal, and I truly liked how Eve came to develop a relationship with him.
This book was such a pleasure to read. It was clean and well-written. I am now a fan of Ann Tatlock's novels and look forward to reading Travelers Rest. If you like Christian fiction that isn't preachy, I would recommend this one.
Note: There was one short scene that included gun shooting and killing. Not gory or too descriptive.
Sweet Mercy by Ann Tatlock is the novel you have been searching for. As always, this favorite author did not disappoint. Her cast of characters will draw you into their lives with the prologue until the fantastic, neatly tied up in a bow , conclusion revealed in the final chapter and epilogue. I just loved this novel and the theme laced throughout these pages, Sweet Mercy.
Sweet Mercy is set in the early 1930's, in the era of the Great Depression and Prohibition. When Eve Marrat's father is laid off from his job at the Ford Motor Company, in St. Paul Minnesota, he packs up his family and returns to his childhood home in Mercy, Ohio. Eve's uncle, Cyrus, opens his lodge to them as not only a home but also employment.
This naÃ¯ve, wide-eyed, young lady is thrilled to be moving away from the gangsters, such as Al Capone, and the bootleggers that filled her neighborhood, to a wholesome, upstanding neighborhood. Eventually she learns that Uncle Cy's lodge is at the heart of the local bootlegging industry. With her faith in her uncle destroyed, she contemplates what action she should take, as a Christian, and as a daughter and niece.
Although there were numerous characters in this novel, which is very typical of this author, every character had a necessary role. My favorite character was a bum named "Link," who Eve befriended throughout the novel. He eventually assumes the role of a trusted friend and confidant as he observes much more than Eve imagined. The masterfully written conclusion was much better than I hoped for. I loved every page of this mystery and know you will, too.
Sweet Mercy by Ann Tatlock is just what the title suggests, it is one "sweet" story that I am thankful I requested to read. I have read other books by Ann Tatlock and have not been disappointed and I was mesmerized by this book.
The story takes place back in 1931 when times were very different, since it is set during the Great Depression and Prohibition. Eve Maaryat lives in St. Paul Minnesota and thrilled to move to Ohio when her dad loses his job with Ford Motor Company. They get to live with her uncle at his Maaryat Island Ballroom and Lodge where her father will work and the family will help out. Eve believes she will leave all the gangsters in Minnesota and will find "good people" and this will be a "safe haven" for her family. She soon will encounter an interesting mix of people and will forge an unlikely friendship with a strange young man-Link. Now comes the interesting part of the story-Eve finds out things and people are not what they appear to be. Will she risk exposing people and force her family to make more decisions? Can't say anymore without giving a good part of the storyline away. I was totally surprised when the ending was coming-never saw where the story was heading.
This is one story I will read again-it was that good. It was also a story set in-some ways-simpler times and just made for an interesting read. Love when these "sweet" stories really turn out "sweet". Make sure this book is on your summer reading list.
Thanks to Bethany House for sending me this book for free just for my honest opinion.
I had never read anything by Ann Tatlock so I wasn't sure what to expect. I am normally not a huge fan of stories written in the first person, but this book was an exception. At first, I wasn't sure I was going to be into it: normally I have to be captivated in the first few pages. So it took me a while to get into the book, which is a negative. The plot was solid, and the ending was pretty climactic, which was a positive. The characters were interesting but I didn't feel as drawn into their world as I normally am when reading a good book. Overall this book was pretty average; nothing extraordinary.