Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Miracle of Mercy Land by River Jordan - REVIEWED

About the Book: (from the publisher)
Mercy Land has made some unexpected choices for a young woman in the 1930s. The sheltered daughter of a traveling preacher, she chooses to leave her rural community to move to nearby Bay City on the warm, gulf-waters of southern Alabama. There she finds a job at the local paper and spends seven years making herself indispensable to old Doc Philips, the publisher and editor. Then she gets a frantic call at dawn—it’s the biggest news story of her life, and she can’t print a word of it.

Doc has come into possession of a curious book that maps the lives of everyone in Bay City—decisions they’ve made in the past, and how those choices affect the future. Mercy and Doc are consumed by the mystery locked between the pages—Doc because he hopes to right a very old wrong, and Mercy because she wants to fulfill the book’s strange purpose. But when a mysterious stranger shows up, Mercy begins to understand she may have to choose between love and loneliness . . . or good and evil . . . for the rest of her life.

My Thoughts:

Mercy Land is a woman born in tumult, raised in relative tranquility and thrust back into tumult when a mysterious book – a book containing light, and names, past and present choices and a host of mysterious circumstances – makes its appearance in her life. The story of Mercy Land is told by River Jordan in a lyrical prose that begs to be savored and relished. The story itsefl is like the name of the town it takes place in – Bittersweet. It is a story all of us can relate to, because we all have a book of our own life choices stored within our hearts and minds, and the ending is known only by God Himself.

Folks, The Miracle of Mercy Land is a very unique and unusual story. I must admit, at times I was confused by the abrupt change in the point of view that took place periodically within the story. I understood the reason behind it eventually, but initially it threw me off a bit. I loved the characters and their quirky personalities. I particularly enjoyed Mercy’s quiet strength. She was much more than people perceived her to be, and I think she knew that in her heart. The events that take place within the story reveal that strength very plainly to Mercy, so that she is able to boldly state to her Aunt Ida, “I am Mercy Land, born in a lightning bolt on the banks of the Bittersweet Creek. And, Aunt Ida, I will never forget it again.” (p. 300)

I doubt readers will quickly forget Mercy’s lightning bolt strength after reading her story. The truth of it sort of niggles into your mind and heart, and makes you realize the power of your own choices – and how important it is to make them wisely.

Check it out.

About the Author:

RIVER JORDAN began her writing career as a playwright with the Loblolly Theatre group. She teaches and speaks nationwide on ‘The Power of Story’, is a monthly contributor to the southern authors’ collective A Good Blog is Hard To Find, and produces and hosts the weekly radio program CLEARSTORY with River Jordan, in Nashville, where she and her husband live. She is the author of Saints in Limbo and this is her fourth novel.

1 comment:

Mocha with Linda said...

I didn't care for her previous release (Saints in Limbo) so I skipped this one.