Legacy of Mercy

Legacy of Mercy

by Lynn Austin


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780764217630
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 10/02/2018
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 37,511
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

Lynn Austin has sold more than 1.5 million copies of her books worldwide. A former teacher who now writes and speaks full-time, she has won eight Christy Awards for her historical fiction. One of those novels, Hidden Places, has also been made into a Hallmark Channel movie. Lynn and her husband have raised three children and make their home in western Michigan. Learn more at www.lynnaustin.org.

Read an Excerpt



Chicago, Illinois 1897

I am still in bed, languishing in that lovely state between dreaming and wakefulness, when the note arrives. Our housemaid has brought it to my bedroom on a tray along with tea and toast and a soft- boiled egg. The moment I see whom the letter is from, I am fully awake. My life is about to change. I tear open the envelope and pull out the card.

From: The Pinkerton Detective Agency Agents R. J. Albertson and M. Mitchell

To: Miss Anna Nicholson

Please be advised that we have found information concerning your mother, Christina de Jonge, that may be of interest to you. We await word of a convenient time to call on you to relay our findings.

I toss the covers aside and leap out of bed, causing the maid to step back in surprise. "Is the courier who delivered this note still waiting for my reply?" I ask her. I can't recall the maid's name. She is new and young and very skittish. Mother demands a lot of our servants, and few of them last very long. I have already seen this poor girl in tears.

"I-I'm not sure, Miss Anna. Shall I go and see?" She glances around as if looking for a place to set the tray. The cup rattles against the saucer.

"No, wait a moment, please." I rummage through my desk for stationery and a pen to scribble a reply. I'm certain my social calendar is filled with scheduled events today, but I'm too excited to recall a single one. The Pinkerton detectives have a fine reputation for unearthing secrets from the past, and I have been growing impatient as I've waited for them to report back to me. I scribble a note to Agents Albertson and Mitchell, inviting them to come today at three o'clock, then I fold the note, place it in an envelope, and seal the flap. "Take this down to the courier right away," I tell the maid. I grab the tray from her and shove the envelope into her hand. "Hurry!"

"Yes, Miss Anna."

As soon as she's gone, I remember that I have a luncheon engagement with my fiancé's mother and sister that is certain to drag on until three o'clock. I will simply have to excuse myself early. Mother will be annoyed, but it can't be helped. I have been waiting for weeks for news of my real mama, ever since returning from Michigan in July.

The detectives' report is all I can think about as I sip tea and eat tiny sandwiches at the garden party later that afternoon. as her son's fiancée to some of her longtime friends and their daughters. The fall afternoon is so lovely that the luncheon is held outside in the beautifully kept gardens behind the Wilkinsons' mansion. Tables and chairs dot the grass between the flower beds, and the tables are set with white linen cloths, fine china, and silverware. Maids serve the tea from sterling silver pots, the sandwiches from silver platters. It's a serene setting, with birds twittering and the air perfumed by the last of the summer roses climbing the trellises.

Mother looks as regal as a queen as she chats with William's mother. She is beaming as if she is the bride-to-be instead of me. This marriage will raise her status in Chicago society by several notches. I'm seated at a table a few feet away with William's sister, Jane, his Aunt Augusta, and two cousins. I should be filled with genteel enthusiasm as I listen to them talk about William and share some of their wedding day experiences, but I'm restless. My only role is to look pretty, make polite conversation, and enjoy the luncheon, yet I feel a lingering uneasiness, as if I'm supposed to be doing something else. I have no idea what. But something useful.

By the time dessert is served, I'm tired of smiling. I'm timid by nature and unused to being the center of attention. I can't stop glancing down at the little watch brooch pinned to the bodice of my gown — a present from Mother and Father. Time seems to crawl at a snail's pace. Mother catches me watching the time and discreetly shakes her head, a signal to mind my manners. I never had a problem following all the rules that my social position requires until I spent a week in Michigan with my grandmother Geesje in the summer and saw how liberating a simpler life can be.

Jane, who is five years younger than me, leans close to whisper something. She is slender and dark-haired like William, and her brown eyes sparkle with mischief as she discreetly gestures to a fashionably dressed young woman sitting near the fountain. "Have you met Clarice Beacham yet?" she asks.

"Only briefly. Why?"

"William courted her for some time before he met you. Clarice was furious at being tossed aside for you."

"I'm surprised she came today."

"My mother and her mother are very old friends. It was their idea to pair her with William in the first place, not his."

"I see." Clarice is easily the most beautiful woman at the luncheon, with shining auburn hair pinned up in the latest Gibson girl style. She exudes a self-confidence that I've never had, visible in the way she sits and walks and converses effortlessly with the other women. Yet the word I feel that best describes her is not a kind one: haughty — as if wealth and luxury and privilege are her birthrights. I dare not judge her, though, because I have held the same attitudes for most of my life, even though my position in society comes through adoption, not birth.

"Clarice has been keeping a close eye on you for months," Jane tells me, "waiting to pounce if things between you and William don't work out."

I'm wondering why Jane would confide in me this way. As if reading my thoughts, she adds, "I'm only telling you this so you'll be careful what you say around her. Clarice would do anything to get William back."

I'm unnerved to know that I have a rival, let alone a beautiful, ruthless one. "I see. Thanks for the warning, Jane."

"You're welcome. I like you a lot better than Clarice. I hope we'll become friends."

"I do, too." I reach to give her hand a squeeze. How I have longed for a close friend!

The maids glide around the garden in ruffled aprons, refilling teacups, holding out trays of delicate tea cakes. I glance down to check the time again, and when I look up, Clarice is walking toward me.

"Congratulations on your engagement," she says with a smile. She sits down in an empty chair beside mine as the other guests begin to rise from their places to mingle.

"Thank you, Clarice."

"William's mother tells me you have recently returned to the city after being away for a few weeks this summer."

"Um ... yes." I wonder if Mrs. Wilkinson also told Clarice that it was because William and I briefly ended our engagement before reconciling again. "Mother and I spent some time at a resort in Michigan," I tell her. "It was lovely and relaxing."

"What made you decide to leave Chicago?" It is very brash of her to keep probing for information, and I'm grateful for Jane's warning.

"Chicago can be so hot during the summer months," I say with a little wave of my hand. "Were you able to escape the city at all?"

"I wouldn't want to. There are so many exciting things to do that I would be afraid I would miss something. Besides, if I had a fiancé as handsome as William, I wouldn't leave his side for a single day." I have no reply to that. "Listen, Anna," she says, resting her hand over mine. "We don't know each other very well yet, but I hope we can become friends. My family and William's have been friends for ages, so you and I will be almost like sisters now that you're marrying him. When might you have a free afternoon so you can join me for lunch? We can get to know each other a little better, just the two of us. Please say you'll come."

"That's very kind of you. We'll have to arrange a time very soon." I wonder what she is plotting. I'm relieved when Mother joins us before Clarice pressures me to choose a date. Mother has more experience with scheming women than I do. As she and Clarice talk, my thoughts drift to my meeting with the Pinkerton detectives in another hour, wondering what they might have discovered. Any news about my real mama will be welcome, but I'm also hoping to learn who my biological father is. According to my grandmother, Mama had been madly in love with a man named Jack Newell, and they ran away together the day after a fire destroyed most of Holland, Michigan, including the factory where Jack worked. The two were headed for Chicago and didn't know that a huge fire had also destroyed much of the Windy City on the very same night. I have read firsthand accounts of the Great Chicago Fire and wonder where Mama and Jack would have found work and a place to live after such devastation.

It's half past two when Clarice finally wanders away. I rise and tell Mother I would like to leave. Her serene façade vanishes. "We can't leave now," she whispers. "It would be rude."

"Some of the other ladies are leaving," I say, nodding toward two departing guests.

"But you are the guest of honor!"

"You may stay longer if you'd like, Mother. I'll send the carriage back for you."

The color rises in Mother's cheeks. It's hard to tell if she is furious with me for wanting to leave early or for daring to defy her. Perhaps both. I start to walk away, but she stands and grips my arm, holding it in her firm grasp to keep me from leaving. "What is this all about, Anna? Are you unwell?"

I could lie and pretend to be sick, but it would be wrong. "The detectives Father hired are coming today at three o'clock. They have news about Mama. I need to leave."

I can see she is torn between staying so she won't miss anything and going with me to keep an eye on me. She decides to accompany me, and as we thank our hostess and politely take our leave, I brace myself for the lecture that is certain to come. We climb into our carriage to start for home and she doesn't disappoint me. "When your father and I agreed to help you hire the Pinkerton detectives, we never imagined it would interfere with your life this way."

"I'm sorry. But I forgot all about the luncheon when I told the detectives to come at three o'clock today. Besides, the luncheon was nearly finished anyway."

"That's no excuse. As the guest of honor, you should be among the last to leave, not the first."

"I'm hoping that the detectives have information about who my real father is."

Mother purses her lips as if it will help hold her anger inside. When she finally speaks she sounds calm, but I know she's not. "Isn't it enough to know your mother's story and how she died? You need to leave the rest of it alone, Anna, and get on with your life."

"But I'm curious about my father, too. If he really is Jack Newell, I would like to know what happened to him and why I don't remember him at all."

"You may learn something very unsavory. It's a stone best left unturned."

"I can't leave it. I want to know."

"Listen to me." She grips my arm again and hushes her voice as if she doesn't want anyone to overhear, even though the only person near enough is our driver — and he would never tell family secrets, would he? "It's entirely possible that your parents never married, Anna. If that turns out to be true, we would be obligated to make William and his family aware of it."

"Of course I'll tell William. He's going to be my husband.

He'll want to know who I really am as much as I do."

"That isn't true. You are the only one who is obsessed with this. William and his family would prefer not to know."

I stare at her in surprise. "Did they tell you that? William never mentioned it to me."

"His mother let me know in a very delicate way that they would be happier not to have the past exhumed. Most of Chicago society has no idea you're even adopted, let alone what your background is, because frankly, it's none of their business. William's mother and I both feel that the past should remain buried. As William's wife, you must be above reproach. We cannot allow any unsavory details about your parents to taint your reputation."

"I promise that no one outside our family will ever know what I discover. But I have to keep searching until I learn the truth."

"Once it's out of the box, the truth can rarely be concealed. The harder one tries to hide it, the juicier the gossip becomes. And you also must think of your children. Anything you learn about your past becomes part of their past, too."

"I'm not ashamed of my mother. She died saving me."

"And your adoptive father put himself in danger to rescue you. Don't forget that. You owe him a measure of discretion, too."

I know she's right, but I still can't contain my curiosity. I remain silent for the rest of the drive home, promising myself that I will listen to the detectives' report and let that be the end of it. When we arrive home, a small carriage is parked out front, and our butler tells me that the two Pinkerton agents are waiting in the front parlor. I pluck off my hat as I hurry inside to greet them. After the preliminary niceties, Agent Albertson hands me a typewritten report, and we take our seats on the sofas to settle down to business.

"We found a record of marriage in your mother's name. Christina de Jonge married Jack Newell in October of 1871."

My heart leaps in my chest. "They did get married!" I look up at Mother and can see that she is relieved to learn that my birth was legitimate. I'm relieved, as well. I silently rehearse my real name — Anneke Newell. "Were you able to find any more information about Jack?" I ask.

"We're following up on some possible leads. You told us he was a laborer, so we're searching through membership lists of various trade unions for his name. I'll let you know as soon as we find something."

I look down at the report again. "According to this, they were married two weeks after the Chicago fire," I say. "That's two weeks after running away from home in Michigan."

"Yes. The ceremony was performed by a justice of the peace in the village of Cicero. Since the fire destroyed central Chicago and all of the city records, most legal transactions in the city were disrupted. That's why we decided to comb through the marriage records in neighboring towns, which is where we found it. You told us that Christina and Jack came to Chicago to find work, and there were plenty of construction jobs after the fire, but housing was scarce. You'll see that Christina listed an address in Cicero as their place of residence."

"Did you go to that address? Is the house still there?"

"We did. It's a boardinghouse that has been in operation for some thirty years. We spoke with the landlady, Mrs. Marusak, and from our description, she thinks she may remember your mother."

I leap up from the divan, too excited to remain seated. "I want to talk to her. Can you take me there?"

"Certainly, if you'd like." Agent Albertson rises, as well.

"Anna, dear. Are you forgetting that you have plans this evening?" Mother asks, pretending to be calm. "I'm afraid there won't be enough time for my daughter to travel all the way to Cicero and back with you this afternoon," she explains to the agents.

"How about tomorrow?" I ask.

"That won't be possible, either," Mother says. "Your calendar is quite full, dear, for the remainder of this week."

"But there must be an afternoon when I can get away. Can't we cancel something?" After consulting the calendar that she meticulously keeps, Mother informs me that with our multiple social engagements and two important dress fittings, the earliest opportunity to travel to Cicero will be a week from tomorrow. I don't know how I'll be able to wait that long. I remember my silent vow to abandon this search, but my curiosity outweighs any fear I have about what I might discover about my parents in Cicero.

I show William the typewritten report when we meet for dinner later that evening. "It was such a relief to know that my birth wasn't disgraceful," I tell him. He nods but shows little enthusiasm, briefly scanning the page before folding it in half and laying it aside. We are in the elegant dining room of the private men's club that he and Father belong to, in the only area where women are allowed. The plush surroundings and hushed atmosphere make me feel as though I must whisper.


Excerpted from "Legacy of Mercy"
by .
Copyright © 2018 Lynn Austin.
Excerpted by permission of Baker Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Legacy of Mercy ( Book #2) 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 46 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anna and her Grandma, Geesje, have suffered many losses in their lives. Anna feels if she is called to sacrifice her happiness to save her family, but in the end God provides a way for her to marry for love and serve His people. A great story that weaves so many different lives together. A page turner from start to finish.
rkfall 5 months ago
Legacy of Mercy by Lynn Austin is the second book in this series by her and I found that it was an emotionally, beautiful book. I don’t think you can ever go wrong picking up a book by this author. In her penning of a masterpiece, she fills the pages with a story weaved with the Word of God, with people with relationships with God, living out what is on the pages of Scripture. It’s not just fiction where God is mentioned a few times, but it’s fiction where God is interwoven throughout. I feel that this type of writing inspires me greatly. Grace, forgiveness, and love were so deep in this one. No matter who you are, the church attender or the pastor, you need to proceed in life with grace, forgiveness, and love. This can only come through the power of the Holy Spirit in us. May we allow the Holy Spirit to be seen in us by our brothers and sisters, spurring them on to grace, forgiveness, and love as well. Read this one and be inspired by the themes of hope for the future, letting go of the things we can’t take with us, and forgiving those that hurt us. Warning: Once started, you might be not able to put it down. I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
KrisAnderson_TAR 7 months ago
Legacy of Mercy by Lynn Austin is the second novel in Waves of Mercy series. Anna Nicholson has returned home to Chicago after spending time with her newly discovered grandmother, Geesjede Jonge in Holland, Michigan. Her mother wishes Anna to focus on her upcoming wedding to William Wilkinson, but Anna wants to know more about her birth parents. Her father hires Pinkerton detectives and Anna soon finds herself meeting people who once knew her mother. The more Anna learns, though, the more she understands why her adopted mother wished her to leave the past buried. Unfortunately, secrets have a way of coming out especially when there is a vengeful society lady involved. Anna wants to share her faith with others, but her society acquaintances are not receptive. Anna wants to make a difference and is curious what God’s purpose is for her life. Anna seeks counsel from her Oma, Geesjede in Holland and she also gets to spend time with Derk Vander Veen. Geesjede has the troubled Cornelia Den Herder staying with her. Cornelia and her grandfather, Marinus are new to America. Geesjede hopes in time that Cornelia will open up to her and she can help the unsettled young woman. She also hopes her insight will guide Anna to make the right choices. Where will Anna’s search lead her? Will she follow her heart, or will Anna do what is expected of her? Legacy of Mercy is a multifaceted story with developed characters. I thought Legacy of Mercy was well-written with a gentle pace which suits the story. The author’s writing drew me into the book and it held my attention. Anna Nicholson is a thoughtful, Christian woman who has recently discovered her maternal grandmother. Despite negativity from her adopted mother, Anna is determined to learn about her birth parents. The information she learns, though, could jeopardize her standing within society. I liked that Anna wanted to share her Christian values with her circle of friends and her family. Anna needs to decide if she will marry William as expected or follow her heart. While the focus of Legacy of Mercy is Anna, we also spend time in Holland, Michigan with Geesjede. Geesjede is forced to share her cottage with newcomer, Cornelia. She soon learns that God put Cornelia with her for a reason. While Legacy of Mercy can be read on its own, I recommend starting with Waves of Mercy first. Lynn Austin captured the era with the clothing, buildings, furniture, conveyances, books, expectations for women, and the historical characters referenced (Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr for instance). I appreciated that Anna went to visit Hull House and the author talked about the conditions that exist for the poor in Chicago in 1897. The Christian element is integrated nicely into the book. Anna is trying to live a Godly life, but it is difficult as a society woman. We see the struggles Anna faces. There is a lot going on in Legacy of Mercy, but it is enjoyable to read. Personally, I could have done without the secondary storyline involving Cornelia and her grandfather (it did not tie in with Anna’s story). I did feel that Cornelia’s story was incomplete (I wanted a better ending for her). I am giving Legacy of Mercy 4 out of 5 stars (I liked it). Legacy of Mercy has a heartwarming ending that will please readers.
Deanne-Patterson 9 months ago
The Refiner's Fire Series by Lynn Austin was the best book series I've ever read. I read the books in the series as soon as they released and the stories have stayed with me. I remember how impressed with the books in the series I was and still am. This series just may top it! Some author's change their writing style with the more books they release, not so with this author. If anything her writing style just continues to improve. She gives us a glimpse into the life of Anna Nicholson, a young socialite. Engaged to a wealthy young man, William she plays the part of happy fiancee but she's really not. This young woman was adopted as a very young child when her mother was killed in a boating accident. Anna is on a mission to find out all she can about her birth mother. The more she delves into family secrets the more complicated it becomes. Sometimes what you uncover from hidden secrets can have devastating consequences. Even though she has grown up rich with her adoptive parents does she really fit in with the gossips? Is the opulence what she even really wants in life? A compassionate story, Austin weaves a masterful story of profound faith and overcoming weakness in the darkest times with faith,love and forgiveness. Pub Date 02 Oct 2018 I was given a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House through NetGalley and their Bloggers Program. Thank you All opinions expressed are my own.
E_Espinoza 12 months ago
Legacy of Mercy, by Lynn Austin, is the second book in the Waves of Mercy series. Told from the first-person perspectives of a grandmother and her granddaughter, this historical fiction novel swiftly and easily captured my attention from the very first paragraph straight through to the final word. Set in America in the late 20th century, this novel truly touched my heart with its captivating characters and compelling plot. Legacy of Mercy is an utterly engaging novel. The well-developed characters are simply captivating and abound with authenticity and credibility. Their questions, their insecurities, their fears, their needs, and their desires are wholly believable, heart-wrenching, and inspiring. The opportunities, the choices, and the trials that the characters endure are intricately developed, and from them there unfolds a story that is thoroughly enriching and ultimately uplifting. The well-researched details and descriptions ensure that every moment spent reading this book is a thoughtful experience to be savored. With elements of mystery, history, and romance, Lynn Austin has crafted a story that entertains as well as inspires. With a thematic emphasis on grace, forgiveness, and unconditional love, this novel is one of hope and second chances. Ms. Austin is an incredibly talented author with a real gift for meaningful story-telling. Legacy of Mercy is a book I wholeheartedly recommend to anyone who enjoys terrific historical fiction. *I was given a copy of this book by the publisher. A review was not required. The review I have written contains opinions that are entirely my own.
WishEnd More than 1 year ago
LEGACY OF MERCY is a story that embodies its title. It's overall, a story of Anna and past generations who made mistakes, loved, lost, and found mercy and forgiveness. Those who read the first book in this series will love finding out what Anna's future holds and those who have not, will fall in love with her and the other characters in this story for the first time. It's an inspiring story of family, life choices, and trusting in God and love. The characters are so charming in this story! How I loved Anna's grandmother! She is a an absolute sweetheart, with a fabulous backbone, and so caring towards others. I would definitely claim her if I could. I also loved Derk and Anna's parents. Of course I loved Anna the most who is young in her faith and trying to figure out how to keep that faith alive and growing, and how it fits into her life. I was a little frustrated in some ways in that I felt since she had lived in this wealthy society her whole life and that she would have had more friends and those who would be on her side. In that I felt something was missing. Maybe she had completely switched social circles and she didn't know anyone? Otherwise, I understood the societal expectations, the concern for status and appearances, and how the upper class could be so very nonreligious. I loved Anna's search for her father. I also loved Cornelia's story, even in all its heartbreak. This is a romance, but it wasn't completely the main focus of the story. There is the situation with Cornelia and her grandfather, there's Anna's grandmother, Derk, Anna and William, Anna and her parents, Anna and her search for her mother's history and for her father (and oh my, I just have to say I loved how this turned out!), and the different personal faith struggles they each have. There's an overall theme of the struggle between the heart, mind, or faith (sometimes a combination of them) being your guide. The religious aspect in this story is very strong, so if you like your inspirational fiction on the lighter side, that might be something to consider. I felt it was handled fairly well. I didn't read the first book in this series and while that would have made reading this one more enjoyable, it wasn't necessary. The author did a good job of giving the pieces of information I might have missed and filling me in as I read this one. In the end, was it what I wished for? I enjoyed this story immensely. It was heartfelt, sweet, and inspiring. Content: Clean Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher through Prism Book Tours, which did not require a positive review nor affect it in any way.
SarahGraceGrzy More than 1 year ago
This is the first Lynn Austin novel I have read, and I have to say, I was greatly impressed! Despite this being book two in a series, I was able to jump right into the story without any confusion and still be just as attached to the characters, despite not knowing their complete story. I quickly fell in love with the beautiful and realistic characters in this story. While I loved Anna, I had a hard time relating to her based on the decisions she made, so I have to say I loved Geesje's storyline better. She's just such a beautiful character, and I can't wait to go back and read book one to learn more about her. I also loved Cornelia's character, and the storyline between her and her grandfather was incredibly touching and inspiring! The story was very interesting, and while I expected to be bored, I wasn't at all. There was not one time I wasn't invested in the story and anxious to see what would happen next. I particularly loved all the historical detail Austin includes in her story. For example, a little-known fact is that on the day of the Great Chicago Fire, massive fires broke out all over the state of Michigan and caused an incredible amount of damage to large portions of the state and destroyed much of Michigan's timber, known as "green gold" for its great value. I appreciated how Austin included this information along with the history of the Great Chicago Fire. Also, I found it very interesting to be reading about Holland, MI, as I have frequently been there, so to learn some of the history of it was fascinating for me. All in all, I greatly enjoyed this beautiful novel by Lynn Austin, and look forward to reading the first book, and more from this talented historical author! Highly recommended! CONTENT NOTE: Recommended for ages 16+ for mild romance and mentions of illegitimate births and domestic abuse.
MeezCarrie More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars While my heart ached for Anna and the hard life lessons she’s forced to learn in Legacy of Mercy, I also loved the journey that Austin took her on in the process. Additionally, Anna’s continued search for information about her birth father – which takes her down a path of potential scandals and long buried secrets – had me riveted to the page as new leads surfaced only to take unexpected turns. Back in Michigan, we get to spend lots of time with Geesje (though it’s never enough because I love her so much) and her steady wisdom and big heart. As God brings two wounded souls into her life, we get to see her ‘tough love’ side as never before and oh what we could all learn from her. When to correct and when just to love. Austin’s writing is always impeccable, and Legacy of Mercy is no exception. More than the great characters, spot-on characterization, and vivid setting & time, though, is the gentle message of mercy that manifests as both a legacy and a fresh start. More than once, it had me in tears, so touched was I by the events unfolding on the page and the embrace of mercy on their lives. If you’re a fan of stories that linger with you, make sure you add this book to your TBR list! (I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book)
caribougirl More than 1 year ago
Legacy of Mercy is the sequel to the book Waves of Mercy, which came out about 2 years before this one. If you haven't read the first one, you could still enjoy this one, but you will understand more if you read Waves of Mercy first. I was grateful that the author chose to begin the book with letters between Anna and Geesje (the 2 main characters from Waves of Mercy) as it brought some remembrance to what happened in the first book (and can set the stage for anyone who hadn't read the first book). Because of that, it felt a little "slow" at the start; however, because I know and trust Lynn Austin's work, I continued on and was so glad. It definitely picked up steam before 10% and I was fully engrossed! This story was a beautiful tale of love (not even romantic love, though that was touched on.... but love for parents, love for fellow man), forgiveness and healing. I loved how the pain Geesje encountered in the last book came full circle in this book and allowed her to help a young woman named Cornelia who came to stay with her for a time. We get to see more of Anna's life in Chicago among the elite and see her trying to live out her fledgling faith back home, while she also attempts seek out information about her birth parents without causing a scandal (sometimes unsuccessfully). Throughout the story, you know how you want it to end, but can't see how it could end that way. I will only say that the ending was very satisfactory. :) Lynn Austin is a master craftsman of words and an avid story-teller. I have loved everything of hers that I've read and this one was no different. I laughed and cried at various places and I believe this one MIGHT be better than the prequel (which very seldom happens in my opinion!). If you enjoy good character-driven stories with a hint of mystery and romance, I can't recommend this one enough! Special thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for the ecopy of this book. I was not required to write a review and the thoughts and opinions contained within are my own.
Phyllis_H More than 1 year ago
A story of hope My rating is 4.5 stars Anna experienced the painful reality of how inflammatory and painful gossip could be. Ironically, it was shortly after she politely suggested that the women in her social circle were wrong for gossiping about another woman. Anna, newly introduced to the Bible and living for God, struggled with how to reconcile her life among the wealthy with the teachings of Jesus. Her kindness, compassion, and respect for her adoptive parents were so admirable. Slowly, the answer to the mystery of her parentage unfolded. As she learned the secrets of her birth, they somehow were being spread among her peers, but in a less than flattering manner. Anna was surprised to learn the source and the reason behind the campaign of slander that was being waged and was hard-pressed to come up with a way of stopping it that wouldn't hurt the people she loved the most. Geesje, Anna's grandmother, was embroiled in mysteries of her own after opening her home to a troubled young girl with no desire to live. Crossing words with the girl's stoic grandfather, she loved her through the darkness that was choking her and led her into a life of freedom in Christ. From the drawing rooms of the Chicago elite, to the slums and tenements, and to Holland, Michigan, author Lynn Austin tackled difficult subjects in Legacy of Mercy with grace and aplomb. Grief, guilt, poverty, domestic violence, gossip, and unforgiveness to name just a few. Despite the heavy subject matter, she crafted a story that was full of hope and pointed to Jesus all along the way. The ending was so touching and beautiful. Read with a Preview at AmongTheReads.net I was given a free copy of this item. This gift did not influence my opinion or review.
lsnlj More than 1 year ago
This is book two in the Waves of Mercy series, it is a continuation of Anna's story from book one. So I would recommend reading book one first. Both books are not your typical historical romance novel. they are full of so much more. There are actually a few different stories going on at the same time, however the author does an amazing job at pulling them all together. You are not wondering whom is speaking, even though some chapters are from one characters perspective while another is from another perspective. You know up front whom is doing the speaking and thinking. There are many different characters in this novel that carry many different personalities, history, struggles and heartache. You will learn a lot from more than one character. How people handle the same circumstances in many different ways and how God is always faithful even when we doubt him. This novel is full of forgiveness, finding our past, friendship, loyalty, romance and so much more. I look forward to reading more from this series.
MelissaF More than 1 year ago
First, this cover is absolutely beautiful. It captured me and drew me in. It took me a while to fully get into the grove of this book. By chapter five I was immersed and very interested in the characters and what was happening in their lives. There was a lot of mystery surrounding the characters and what was going on with them and their pasts which drove my curiosity. If you are a Lynn Austin fan I think you will enjoy this book. A copy of this book was given to me through Netgalley.com. All opinions are my own.
grammy57 More than 1 year ago
I requested to read and review this book through Netgalley. The review is my own and freely given. I have never been disappointed with a Jane Austin novel, and the record holds. Even though this is the second book in the series, it is good as a stand-alone book also. The characters are very well developed and the story flows very well. The book is written in sections of each character telling their part of the story. It makes the story flow well. I read an advanced reader copy but even though it wasn't final edition, the editing and grammar were excellent. A poorly edited book can ruin a great story. This is great as both a story and editing. You will not be disappointed. If you like non-preachy, Christian stories set back in time, you will truly enjoy this book. I give it 5 stars out of 5.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
Legacy of Mercy is the second installment from Lynn Austin's series, Waves of Mercy. I thought it was a good read. I liked catching up with characters from the first book of the series. I enjoyed the vivid and descriptive historical details in the story. I give Legacy of Mercy four stars. I look forward to seeing where the story goes in the next installment in the Waves of Mercy series. I recommend Legacy of Mercy. I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.
amybooksy More than 1 year ago
Legacy of Mercy is the second installment from Lynn Austin's series, Waves of Mercy. I thought it was a good read. I liked catching up with characters from the first book of the series. I enjoyed the vivid and descriptive historical details in the story. I give Legacy of Mercy four stars. I look forward to seeing where the story goes in the next installment in the Waves of Mercy series. I recommend Legacy of Mercy. I received this book from the publisher. This review is 100% my own honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I truly enjoyed reading the stories of Anna and Geejse’s life. Both stories are filled with heartbreaks, joys and mercy. Although this book could stand on its own, it was helpful to know the start of their stories in Waves of Mercy. This book reveals the persecutions that the Dutch immigrants faced as well as the struggle in the journey to escape to freedom. I appreciated that their stories were not all neat and the answers expected. The challenges they faced were difficult and often seemed they had to fully trust God in the decision. I appreciated the realness of their faith and how the characters wrestled with God and their faith in the midst of difficult circumstances. I received a free copy of the book from the publisher.
19363916 More than 1 year ago
Legacy of Mercy by Lynn Austin is the sequel to Waves of Mercy. This book is a wonderful book all around- deep, moving, thought provoking, and clearly shows God’s grace and mercy being worked out in these people’s lives. It’s a wonderful continuation of the story of Anneke and her family and how they discover the secrets of their past that lead to better decisions in their future. Lynn does a wonderful job of weaving a story with engaging characters, believable storylines, and biblical themes that provide readers a way to look at their own lives and see how God wants us to show love to others. This is a book you won’t want to miss reading along with the first book in the series Waves of Mercy. Thank you NetGalley and Bethany House Publishers for the free copy of this book.
Oanieanne More than 1 year ago
Lynn Austin puts a lot of research into her stories and carefully creates her characters fitting them into the historical settings she has chosen. This book is the sequel to her book WAVES OF MERCY. Both books are set in the mid to late 1800s in Chicago, IL and Holland MI, places that Lynn Austin has close personal connections to. WAVES OF MERCY tells of the struggles of the early Dutch settlers in Holland, MI and the social norms of high society in Chicago. LEGACY OF MERCY continues the story, which has a satisfying conclusion. It's so easy to fall in love with the people in these books; when the story ends it's like saying goodbye to dear friends. I'm sure that you'll enjoy theses two books as well as any of Ms. Austin's other books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lynn Austin does such a beautiful job in this story about Anna, a young girl in Chicago. From moments of deep sorrow and dark valleys to discovering her her past and the joy that follows, Anna grows in her faith and belief in God. Her desire to be in the perfect will of God is truly inspiring. I loved it cover to cover!!
BarbaraAnne More than 1 year ago
“Legacy of Mercy” is a satisfying sequel to “ Waves of Mercy” by Lynn Austin. I always enjoy this author’s talent to introduce me to a historical setting and people I am unfamiliar with. This book reveals what it might have been like for Dutch immigrants that came to Holland, Michigan to escape religious persecution. The characters experience life-altering choices. They face the challenge to see how God is in control even when their world seems to be shaken, and there are no simple answers. This book tells the story of two time periods and life-altering decisions for women of different backgrounds. As with all of Lynn Austins books I enjoyed this story. This book was provided by NetGalley, and no review was required.
BrendaLee More than 1 year ago
Oh my! When I finished the first book “Waves of Mercy” I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this second book. This book also touched me deeply. And I couldn’t wait to see how it ended. Ms Austin had me that anxious. Anna is so confused about what she should do with her life. Since she is adopted she feels the need to find her birth parents history. Everyone is not trustworthy as she soon finds out. Before long she is the talk of her so called society friends. Geesje de Jonge has learned a lot in her lifetime and hopes to help Anna and the other young people in her life. I loved the faith of this wonderful lady. She learned the hard way how to trust God. This was another wonderful read from Lynn Austin. This book has it all, love, heartache and faith and some joy along the way. An intriguing story with many twists and turns you will not want to miss. I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and the Publisher Bethany House but was not required to write a review. All opinions are my own.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed reading Legacy of Mercy. The characters taught me valuable insights through their struggles and choices and are portrayed as human and not always perfect. Lynn has a knack for writing books that thoroughly pull me into the story and teach me historical facts as well. Because I don’t like it when people tell me what happened in a movie or a book, I will not do that here. I will just highly recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a book that has great characters, a compelling story line and reinforces the importance of belief in God and His plan for us.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Legacy of Mercy By Lynn Austin This story is part of a series featuring a Dutch family finding itself over generations. I don't want to give all the details away, nor would I do them justice so I will simply give you my honest opinion of the work. I started this book not liking the POV used to tell the story. As I read though Lynn had me holding my eyes open at bedtime to find out what happened next. Each section was perfectly organized to keep you on the edge of your seat... In a good way, I promise. I admire Lynns writing because of the content of what she writes. She truly writes authentic struggles and life into her stories and because of that, she writes authentic God experiences and responses as well. I glean so much wisdom from her books. I enjoyed this book far more then I imagined I would when I started it. I highly recommend the whole series however as it makes much more sense together. I received this book in exchange from Netgalley for my honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was so excited to read Lynn Austin's latest book, "Legacy of Mercy!" It works as a stand alone but I recommend reading, "Waves of Mercy" first. Lynn Austin is my favorite historical fiction author and "Legacy of Mercy" didn't disappoint! I loved revisiting the characters and was uplifted by their story. I was even surprised by some of the twists, which is hard to do. The setting is in the real town of Holland, MI and now I want to go there. Her books are always inspiring and she just can't write them fast enough for me!
AMHeath More than 1 year ago
What I Loved: If you’ve read Waves of Mercy, you might have felt like there was more to the story. I’ll be honest with you, I was one of those rare human beings that was actually completely satisfied with the ending as it was. But that doesn’t mean, I wasn’t thrilled to get my hands on the “new ending!” And, boy, was it worth it! This was even better than the first one! What Austin does so well, is that she brings a historical setting to life with well-developed characters and a rich spiritual message. Legacy of Mercy was a powerful story on dealing with grief and forgiveness. The story picks up right where Waves of Mercy leaves off and brings over the same lessons we were learning in the first novel and re-emphasizes their importance and adds to them in a beautiful way. I’ve read some continuations that felt like an extended epilogue but this was not that sort of novel at all! It was a fantastic ride that didn’t end until the very last chapter. Rating and Recommendations: I give Legacy of Mercy 5 full stars and recommend it to those who enjoy historical Christian fiction. While it’s possible to read the books out of order and understand them, you’d appreciate Legacy of Mercy more if you read them in order. ~ I received a copy from Bethany House. I was not compensated for this review or required to give a favorable one.