The venture ahead could leave their friendship behind.
Made a safe-haven after the Civil War, Ironwood Plantation is a refuge of equality for former slaves. But twenty years and a new generation later, they have become an isolated community with little contact with the rest of the world.
Mercy Carpenter is everything the world thinks she shouldn’t be. Educated and adventurous, she longs to make a life for herself beyond the beautiful prison of Ironwood. When she secretly submits an article to the Boston Globe under a man’s name and receives an enthusiastic response and an offer for employment, she’s determined to take advantage of the opportunity. But she isn’t prepared for a startling world that won’t accept her color or her gender, and her ambitions soon land her in grave danger.
The privileged daughter of a plantation owner and an aspiring suffragette, Faith Harper is determined not to marry. Especially not her father’s opportunistic new business partner. She doesn’t want any man telling her what to do, least of all the annoyingly chivalrous Nolan Watson. But when Mercy goes missing, Faith will do anything to find her best friend, even if it means trusting a man she doesn’t understand. In a time where prejudices try to define them, Mercy and Faith must push the boundaries of their beliefs and trust in the God who holds the keys to freedom.
*Includes discussion questions
Don't miss these other titles from Bestselling Christian Historical author Stephenia H. McGee
Ironwood Plantation Family Saga
The Whistle Walk
Heir of Hope
The Liberator Series
Stand Alone Titles
In His Eyes
Eternity Between Us
The Heart of Home
Her Place in Time
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
‘For the one who feels plain, ordinary or forgotten - He has great plans for you, and His plans always prosper.’ This third book in the Ironwood Plantation Family series is my introduction to this wonderful set of stories. This one can easily stand alone, but I am certainly going to read the other two as well. A totally fascinating setup - a gated community if you will - Ironwood is a plantation where color is not seen. Faith, the owner’s daughter, and Mercy, the housekeeper’s daughter, are sisters from other mothers. They learn together, play together and have grown up together. The difference is that Faith can leave the compound, but Mercy is discouraged from doing so for safety reasons. Slavery may have been outlawed, but feelings still run very high in Mississippi in the 1880’s. What follows is an in depth look at what it was like for a young colored girl to step out on her own, braving a world she knows nothing about. Faith, who thinks she is worldly-wise, also finds out how little she really knows about the world outside Ironwood. Adventure, danger, a hurricane and much more keep the reader glued to the words of this page-turner! Many lessons are learned about themselves, but the most important one is that God has the future in His hands and they need to trust Him to follow through. I received a copy of this ebook through Vine Press and CelebrateLit. The impressions, comments and rating were in no way solicited.
“I have this impossible idea that God wants all his children to realize that what makes them different isn’t nearly as important as what makes them the same.” It always amazes me how historical fiction can be just as relevant today as the themes were at the times in which they were set. In Missing Mercy, we encounter racism (born of ignorance as well as hatred) and human trafficking – two things that are still prevalent in our world today. For all of our technological advancements, humankind doesn’t change all that much as far as our prejudices and sins, do we? If nothing else, Missing Mercy reminds us that ‘there is nothing new under the sun’ and ‘Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it’ .. and thereby challenges us to always be alert to how we can be used to change the current course. But that’s not all that Missing Mercy does – it also captivates readers with a beautifully written story of friendship, forgiveness, and the truest Love that pursues us through our faults and failures. It’s an adventure, a love story, a tear-jerker, and a smile-inducer. Mercy & Faith are strong heroines, due in part to their unusual upbringing at Ironwood Plantation – a community protected from racism and one which encourages female education and independence. Both young women are in for a rude awakening when they venture out into the world, and both must learn to lean into God and surrender to His plans for them. I loved both Faith and Mercy (and Nolan and Jed, too, for that matter) but oh how I wanted to shake both of them at various times throughout the book. Probably because I share similar traits with each one and heaven forbid fictional characters point out my own flaws LOL. During their separate character arcs in Missing Mercy, my heart alternately sank with dread and swelled with pride. One scene in particular, near the end, almost had me standing up and clapping (I refrained, because my husband was already asleep lol). And then there’s Hezzie – oh my heart, one of my fave fictional characters ever, I think. I wanted to pick her up and hug her more than once. At other times, I wanted to sit at her feet and just listen. She was adorable, intuitive, wise, and kind – and she just made me smile. Bottom Line: Missing Mercy by Stephenia H. McGee is simultaneously heartwarming and heartbreaking. While it’s the third book in this series, it can easily be read as a standalone. The theme of freedom – and where it’s truly found – manifests in various ways and through various characters, and its contribution to the story is well-written and pivotal. The layered plot keeps you firmly engaged from beginning to end, and the multi-dimensional characters capture your heart. Thought-provoking and entertaining, Missing Mercy is a must-read! (I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book)
'May twelfth, eighteen eight-seven. Mercy has gone missing.' These are the words found in a diary that relates what occurred in the lives of two young women in Oakville, Mississippi in 1887. Mercy Carpenter has decided to leave Ironwood Plantation to make a new life elsewhere. She has lived there and been safe at the plantation but she believes that there's so much more waiting outside of these boundaries. She's heard that there are wonderful opportunities in the North but she doesn't anticipate what she will encounter-- prejudices aren't just race related and there can also be prejudices about gender! What follows is a story of danger, uncertainty, and disappointment as Mercy leaves the plantation, Faith sets out to find the black woman who is more like a sister than a friend, and they both encounter unknown consequences. Ironwood Plantation was supposed to be a haven for freed slaves but instead, it had almost become a prison and Stephenia McGee paints a poignant picture with Faith's realization that 'Truth be told, Faith had thought little of the opportunites afforded to her, while at the same time expecting that Mercy should be grateful for a safe place and stay quietly at home.' This is the third book of the Ironwood Plantation Family Saga and McGee has created memorable characters and exciting events to conclude this series. The Civil War is one of my favorite eras and this novel is set twenty-two years after the end of the Civil War. It reaffirms what I've read before: that the end of the war wasn't the end of the hate and prejudice that had bound the United States for so long. This is a story of the search for freedom and for affirmation and it shares the universal need for hope, faith, and perseverance. There is also the possibility of romance for both Mercy and Faith but the real love story is the love between the two of them and this book reminds us once again that love isn't determined by blood ties or family relations. If you enjoy historical fiction and Christian romance you will certainly want to read Missing Mercy. I received an advanced reader copy of this book but a positive review was not required. These are my honest thoughts.