Told in alternating tales at once haunting and redemptive, A Tangled Mercy is a quintessentially American epic rooted in heartbreaking true events examining the harrowing depths of human brutality and betrayal, and our enduring hope for freedom and forgiveness.
After the sudden death of her troubled mother, struggling Harvard grad student Kate Drayton walks out on her lecture—and her entire New England life. Haunted by unanswered questions and her own uncertain future, she flees to Charleston, South Carolina, the place where her parents met, convinced it holds the key to understanding her fractured family and saving her career in academics. Kate is determined to unearth groundbreaking information on a failed 1822 slave revolt—the subject of her mother’s own research.
Nearly two centuries earlier, Tom Russell, a gifted blacksmith and slave, grappled with a terrible choice: arm the uprising spearheaded by members of the fiercely independent African Methodist Episcopal Church or keep his own neck out of the noose and protect the woman he loves.
Kate’s attempts to discover what drove her mother’s dangerous obsession with Charleston’s tumultuous history are derailed by a horrific massacre in the very same landmark church. In the unimaginable aftermath, Kate discovers a family she never knew existed as the city unites with a powerful message of hope and forgiveness for the world.
|Product dimensions:||5.90(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.30(d)|
About the Author
Joy Jordan-Lake has written more than a half dozen books, including the novel Blue Hole Back Home, which won the Christy Award in 2009 for Best First Novel. The book, which explores racial violence and reconciliation in the post–Civil Rights South, went on to be chosen as the Common Book at several colleges, as well as being a frequent book club pick. Jordan-Lake holds a PhD in English, is a former chaplain at Harvard, and has taught literature and writing at several universities. Her scholarly work Whitewashing Uncle Tom’s Cabin draws on the narratives, journals, and letters of enslaved and slaveholding antebellum women, research that led her to the story behind A Tangled Mercy. Living outside of Nashville, she and her husband have three children. To learn more about the author and her work, visit www.joyjordanlake.com.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A simply wonderful book elegantly written, filled with mystery and surprises and yet so in touch with the realities of life. This is a dual time-line with two stories each told in alternating chapters. Both, one from the 1820's, the other from 2015 are woven into one saga dealing with hate, suffering, and destruction. Yet, ultimately it all becomes a tale of forgiveness and hope. We can see vivid descriptions of the Charleston Lowlands- "the infernal beauty of a place steeped in pain." Many scenes of violence are balanced by instances of courage and love. The power of forgiveness overcomes the power of hate. The message has always existed, but may have greater meaning for us today. Hate will not win, Love has the last word. Excellent novel!