Saturday, October 12, 2013

Traces of Mercy-Michael Landon Jr. and Cindy Kelley

Traces of Mercy

Michael Landon Jr. and Cindy Kelley

David C. Cook, Oct 1 2013, $14.99

ISBN 9780781408691

In 1865, Dr. Abe Johnson administers to the unconscious woman dressed in men’s garb and wearing her hair short. When she awakens in his St. Louis clinic, she tells Dr. Johnson she has no idea who she is, why she dressed as she did, how she got injured or anything about her past. The physician tells his patient she suffers from amnesia, an illness not understood by the medical profession. He takes her to Mother Helena at the Little Sisters of Hope. Because of the medallion she wears, Mother Helena names her Mercy. Filled with fear, Mercy knows she prefers trousers and loves animals, but hates womanly chores.

In St. Louis, Rand Prescott, son of a railroad owner and Union supporter, is picnicking on his family’s vast estate when he notices trespassing Mercy who he treats as an interloper. Later he feels remorse so visits Mercy at the Little Sisters of Hope. Rand tries to help her and soon they fall in love; but she refuses to act on her feelings because she has no idea who or what will surface from her past. Former Union officer Elijah Hale sees Mercy wearing the medallion he gave to a kind Confederate soldier. He demands she tells all to her beloved or he will; she fears Rand and his parents will hate her for fighting for the Confederacy.

This marvelous Mercy Medallion Americana romantic drama brings to life the immediate aftermath impact on people once the fighting ended. Character driven by the fully developed lead triangle (even amnesiac Mercy is three-dimensional); readers will relish visiting St. Louis circa 1865.

Harriet Klausner

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