Mercy isn’t just a town in Ohio. It is also the underlying theme touching all the characters in this story. The main character, Eve, is telling this story, her story, to her grandson. We meet them as they are entering the family ballroom and lodge that is about to be demolished. They are there to retrieve some keepsakes and so begins the story.
Eve’s rememberings take them back to her seventeenth summer. It was a time when she was forced to face her innocence and naivety. Her family ends up back in Ohio because they are looking to escape the crime of St. Paul–a haven for gangsters of all kinds. They were ill-prepared for the impact that the bootleggers in Ohio were going to have upon them.
“Love covers a multitude of sins” is a quote that Eve’s father uses. It is often referred to in the story as the characters struggle with their “black and white” thinking in a world that is rapidly turning gray. The author does a masterful job of addressing things like prejudice, labeling, and assumptions.
Ann Tatlock is a gentle story teller who disarms you with her style but doesn’t hesitate to bring the conflicts of human nature right to you. She is adept at touching your heart while also challenging your mind.
I highly recommend this book.
(I received a free copy of this book to review from Bethany House.)