Heart Of Mercy, Tennessee Dreams Series #1
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Heart Of Mercy, Tennessee Dreams Series #1

Whitaker House / 2014 / Paperback

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Mercy Evans has known a great deal of heartache and hardship in her twenty-six years. She lost her mother at a young age and was only sixteen when her father was killed in a brawl sparked by a family feud spanning several generations. Yet Mercy never doubts the presence and provision of her heavenly Father. When a house fire claims the lives of her two best friends, leaving their two young sons as orphans, Mercy offers to be their guardian. It seems simple enough, until the judge mandates that the boys be placed with a married couple.

Samuel Connors is a man adrift. Despite the success of the blacksmith business he inherited from his father, he senses a void unaffected by material rewards. His mother keeps nagging him to find a wife, but the only woman who comes to mind is Mercy Evans. What would she want to do with the man whose father is now serving a life sentence for the murder of hers?

Mercy is determined to do whatever it takes to win custody of the Watson boys. But marry a mortal enemy of the Evans family? God alone can give her the heart to go through with it.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 336
Vendor: Whitaker House
Publication Date: 2014
Dimensions: 9.00 X 6.00 X 0.75 (inches)
ISBN: 1603749632
ISBN-13: 9781603749633
Series: Tennessee Dreams

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Publisher's Description

Mercy Evans has known a great deal of heartache and hardship in her twenty-six years. She lost her mother at a young age and was only sixteen when her father was killed in 1880, in a brawl sparked by a family feud spanning several generations. Yet Mercy never doubts the presence and provision of her heavenly Father. When a house fire claims the lives of her two best friends, leaving their two young sons as orphans, Mercy offers to be their guardian. It seems simple enough, until the judge mandates that the boys be placed with a married couple.
Samuel Connors is a man adrift. Despite the success of the blacksmith business he inherited from his father, he senses a void unaffected by material rewards. All he knows is that he’s ready to move out from under his manipulative mother’s roof. When the lovely Mercy Evans advertises for a husband, he finds himself strangely inclined to respond. But what would she want to do with the man whose father is now serving a life sentence for the murder of hers?
Mercy is determined to do whatever it takes to win custody of the Watson boys. But marry a mortal enemy of the Evans family? God alone can give her the heart to go through with it. 
 

Author Bio

Sharlene MacLaren was born and raised in west Michigan and attended Spring Arbor University. Upon graduating in 1971 with an education degree, she taught second grade for two years, then accepted an invitation to travel internationally with a singing ensemble for one year. In 1975, she came home, returned to her teaching job, and married her childhood sweetheart. Together, they raised two lovely daughters, both of whom are now happily married and enjoying families of their own. Retired in 2003 after thirty-one years of teaching, "Shar" loves to read, sing, travel, and spend time with her family—in particular, her adorable grandchildren!
A Christian for over fifty years, and a lover of the English language, Shar always enjoyed dabbling in writing. She remembers well the short stories she wrote in high school, and watching them circulate from girl to girl during government and civics classes. "Psst," someone would whisper from two rows over, always when the teacher’s back was turned, "pass me the next page."
In the early 2000s, Shar felt God’s call upon her heart to take her writing pleasures a step further, and in 2006, she signed a contract for her first faith-based novel, Through Every Storm, thereby launching her writing career. With eighteen published novels now gracing store shelves and being sold online, she daily gives God all the glory. She dedicated her last novel, Their Daring Hearts, to Jesus.
Shar has done numerous countrywide book signings and made several television appearances and radio interviews. She loves speaking for community organizations, libraries, church groups, and women’s conferences. In her church, she is active in women’s ministries, regularly facilitating Bible studies and other events. She and her husband, Cecil, live in Spring Lake, Michigan, with their beautiful white collie, Peyton, and their ragdoll cat, Blue.
 

Editorial Reviews

Mercy me, what a love story! Sharlene MacLaren has done it again—swept me away with a tender tale that has stolen both my breath and my sleep. Rich with historical detail, small-town magic, and the wonder of hearth and home, Heart of Mercy will coax tears from your eyes and hope from your soul.
—Julie Lessman, Author, The Daughters of Boston and the Winds of Change series

This Tennessee mountain Romeo and Juliet story is a roller coaster ride of a tale—and it’s MacLaren’s best yet. Of course, I think that about each of her books!
—Lena Nelson Dooley, Author, Love Finds You in Golden, New Mexico,
and the McKenna’s Daughters series

Three words come to mind when I think of Sharlene MacLaren’s amazing novel, Heart of Mercy: Lovely, lovely, lovely! Truly, one of the best inspirational historicals I’ve read in ages, with the ideal mix of romance and intrigue. Highly recommended!
—Janice Thompson, Author, Queen of the Waves

Feuding families. Forbidden romance. A first real kiss that leaves you breathless. With nail-biting excitement, a heart-tugging marriage of convenience, and a powerful message of faith and forgiveness, Heart of Mercy is Shar MacLaren’s best book to date. I loved it!
—Vickie McDonough, Author, Whispers on the Prairie and Call of the Prairie

Heart of Mercy grabs you from the first page, and by the time you look up, you care about the characters so much, you don’t want to look away.
—Mary Connealy, Author of "romantic comedy with cowboys"

If you’ve read Sharlene MacLaren before, you already know she’s a masterful storyteller. If you haven’t, you’d better clear some space on your "keepers" shelf, because after reading Heart of Mercy, you’ll want to devour every Sharlene story you can get your hands on! Once again, she delivers a poignant tale that features people just like us—flawed, wounded, and struggling to hold fast to faith…and the belief that true forgiveness and lasting love really exist.
—Loree Lough, Author of 100 award-winning books

Product Reviews

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  1. sunny island breezes
    a sunny island
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    July 22, 2014
    sunny island breezes
    a sunny island
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    It started as a pleasant evening and ended in heartbreak. Mercy takes in the young orphaned sons of her best friends, but has to fight to keep them since the judge has decided they need to have a married couple as their guardians.

    Sam is a man still living with his mother, who is constantly whining and trying to manipulate him. He has to escape, but isn't sure how to go about it.

    The judge finally agrees to give Mercy thirty days to find a husband if she wants to keep the boys. She's desperate enough to advertise for a husband. Sam is desperate enough to answer that ad.

    It sounds like a good thing all around except for the feud between their families. It's a real Hatfield and McCoy type feud. The problem is no one quite knows why it's still going on after all these years.

    Are these two willing to go through all the grief that will be heaped on them from both sides? It will take some real determination to put themselves in that position.

    Thank you, Ms MacLaren. I'm looking forward to more Tennessee Dreams.

    ***A special thank you to Cathy Hickling for providing a review copy.***
  2. Janna Ryan
    North Platte, NE
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Beautiful beginning to a series!
    February 12, 2014
    Janna Ryan
    North Platte, NE
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    I fell in love with Sharlene MacLaren's writing back when she wrote the Little Hickman Creek series. It was a wonderful trilogy and while I have enjoyed her other books, I think she may have found the mystery that made the Little Hickman Creek series so whimsical and fun. In book #1 of this series we meet Mercy as she goes through a horrible tragedy - losing her best friend and her friend's husband in a house fire and leaving behind two young boys. She is determined to step in and raise her friend's sons but the judge doesn't believe that a single woman is the right person to raise two young boys. So she has a month to get married so they can have two parents, or she will lose the right to raise them. Hilarity ensues as she tries to find the right man in the small town without many choices. But in her desperation to save the boys will she make the wrong decision?

    And what about the guardian angel that saved the boys from the fire in the first place? It's a Hatfield/McCoys scenario between Mercy's family and Samuel Conners' family. That would never work and they both know it, so Mercy keeps looking for love in all the wrong places.

    I am loving the start of the Tennessee Dreams series and can't wait to see where Sharlene MacLaren will take them from here!
  3. MaureenT
    Syracuse NY
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Living in 1800's Tennessee
    January 29, 2014
    MaureenT
    Syracuse NY
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    So sad all this hate and feuding between families, and in the end, they can't remember why. Decades go by and things get worse, but the hearts of two people joined together for convenience. When Samuel Connor enters a burning house, and saves the lives of two young boys, Joseph and John Roy, their lives and his become entwined with Mercy Evans.

    Can you imagine being so desperate that you need to marry within thirty days, and your not even dating. That is what the judge did to Mercy. The old thing about woman not being capable without a man? Anyway feuding family members are against a union of Marcy and Samuel...a marriage of convenience??

    Some cruel things happen, in the name of keeping on with the feud, but to hurt innocent children...ugh! Seems both Mercy and Samuel have grown up without much parental love. They instinctively seem to do better with children, than either experienced themselves.

    Be ready for a great experience of a small town living in late 1800's Paris, Tennessee. I loved my visit here and can't wait for the next book in this series.

    I received this book through First Wild Card Book Tours, and was not required to give a positive review.
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