08 October 2013

Marian Baay reviews THE MERCIFUL SCAR by Rebecca St. James & Nancy Rue

The Merciful Scar


Reviewed by Marian Baay
~5 stars~*****

When Kirsten was sixteen a tragedy happened to a family member and because of her guilt she started cutting herself to try to ease the pain inside of her.
Now she is twenty-three and is still struggling with pain deep inside her. One night, after a fight with her boyfriend, she wants to cut herself. She didn’t expect her boyfriend to return at the very moment she was cutting herself, and that things could get so dangerous. She ends up in a hospital psychiatric ward, because people believe she tried to kill herself.
A pastor from church stops by and tells her about Sister Frankie, an ex-nun, who takes girls like Kirsten under her care and ministers to them, so they can find healing at her ranch.

Kirsten knows nothing about ranching or sheep, but since she has no other options she decides to hear Sister Frankie out. Frankie is not the ‘sister’ she had expected to see—wearing jeans, boots and a baseball cap.  Kirsten decides to give it a chance and goes with Frankie to her ranch for 30 days.

As a fragile and skinny girl, Kirsten finds ranch work heavy, but after some time she is learning and getting stronger. She also finds new friends and favorite animals to care for.
Frankie is like a mentor to Kirsten and she encourages her to listen to God’s voice. With Sister Frankie’s loving care and spiritual guidance, slowly understanding the things that haunt her will dawn and healing can begin.

Even Sister Frankie’s handsome nephew, Andy, seems to have ghosts from his past haunting him. A sweet friendship blooms between Andy and Kirsten and together they try to find healing from the scars of the past.

A touching story about a young woman who couldn’t carry her guilt on her own. She tried to relieve some of the hurt by cutting herself, but finally found healing in the most unexpected place. The reader will often be reminded of Psalm 23 throughout the book—The Lord is my Shepherd.
The authors captured the emotional aspect of the story very well and the tough subject was also made easily comprehensible for Young Adult readers.

Find Nancy's books at Amazon, CBD, B&N, DeeperShopping, and other bookstores.

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GIVEAWAY:  This week we will be giving away readers choice of ANY of Nancy's many books, choice of format. International winners ebook only unless the book is available on the Book Depository.

Leave a comment and your email address to be entered in the contest.

39 comments:

  1. Sounds like a great book. Great review.

    Tammy Hudson
    HUBTIVOLI1@YAHOO.COM

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  2. I am loving that cover. It is so haunting. Sounds like a wonderful book.

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    1. Oh yes, the cover surely attracts attention!

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  3. Sounds great. Would love chance to read. Kathy@harrison-lear.Com is email attached to Amazon..

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  4. It's fun to see Nancy teamed up with Rebecca St. James.

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    1. It surely is, and it is a fantastic read!

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  5. MARIAN, thank you for the wonderful review. I have this book on my kindle and am looking forward to reading it!

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    1. I know you have. ;) Enjoy, whenever you have the chance to read it! :)

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  6. Great review, the story sounds so intriguing, and I love the cover.

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    1. Thanks, Rikii. Story and cover are both wonderful!

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  7. The story sounds great, i do believe a good read awaits us, i would love to win, thanks
    Shirley B jcisforme@aol.com

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    1. All the best in the contest, Shirley!

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  8. I love to see all the new faces stopping by!!

    *** PLEASE LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS FOR A CHANCE TO WIN! ***

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  9. Hallo, Hallo dear ladies of OWG,

    I wasn't sure if last week's book was in e format or print, which is why I hesitated to comment, but this week, I couldn't pass up dropping by as I had only just learnt that Ms. St. James was writing books a handful of weeks ago!! I had the honour of seeing her on her Pray tour whilst it swung through Florida!! She was such an inspiring spirit, and I even *caught!* the beanie hat from one of her bandmates! It was the seriously wickedest concert I had been to at that point in my life (early 20s), and I haven't gone to too many since, which is why it remains one of my favourites!! Aside from the Nite of Joy concerts at Disney!

    If I were honoured to be selected, I'd choose this book: The Merciful Scar, because it would be a step back into Ms. St. James' life and world! I followed other inspirational artists around the time of her music releases as well, such as Jars of Clay, Jaci Velasquez, and the Newsboys! A lot of fun to be had in the late '90s! And, what impressed me the most, as I had the chance to interact with these lovely artists (save Jars of Clay), is how personable and genuine they were!

    This particular story hits close to home, as although I was not stricken with this issue, many of my close friends were, and I would always seek out ways to help them as I could! Including trying to find resources in books or films, that they could be encouraged to watch if only as a measure of a step towards them realising they had a larger problem that needed to be addressed! When I was quite young, say around 11 years old, the kids at my school would cut their initials into their arms as a way of 'tatt signing' their names as a method of solidarity. I sort of became the girl who was known as a snitch because that was one step I thought went too far! :( I feared for them, because this went past the other 'crazy' things boys do at school! Sighs. I oft wondered if they continued or finally sought help to stop because to me, it was more than just school yard games going on!

    Thanks for the chance to win this particular book that was co-written by Nancy Rue!
    [inkand-bookaways(at)usa(dot)net]

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Jorie! How cool that you saw Rebecca St James on stage!! I never been to concerts or anything. I don't like the crowd. I rather listen to music in my own house. We've had several famous Dutch artist doing an open air concert and I could enjoy that from a distance.
      I think I would only go out to a concert if Mark Trammell came to Holland. He's by far my favorite singer and there's no voice I enjoy as much as his - it gives me the goose bumps at times.

      I'm glad you were wise enough to see your friends cutting initials in their arms was a step too far.
      I've only seen one woman who had cut herself for a very long time. She didn't have a smooth piece of skin anywhere where the eye could see, except for her face - that was untouched. I touched her scarred skin when she asked me to. It broke my heart.

      All the best in the drawing, Jorie!

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    1. Yes, they really did a great job on the cover! Good luck, Jieru.

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  11. I look forward to an opportunity to check this out--I actually experienced the problem of 'cutting', with one of my children--fortunately it was not a severe case and was solved fairly quickly after seeking medical/psychological help. And yes, I LOVE the cover too! Please throw my name in the hat...vmarney at hotmail

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    1. Hey Vicki, thanks for dropping by! Sorry to hear you had to experience this with one of your children, but glad that it was solved fairly quickly!

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  12. Loved the review . Don't think I have read anything by these authors but always love to try new authors .
    I would love to win this book . Thanks and blessings
    Elizabeth
    lizd(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. We'll throw your name in the hat, Elizabeth! Good luck.

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  13. Can't wait to read this book! makeighleekyleigh at yahoo dot com

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  14. This sounds like a really good book. Would love to win and read it.

    seraphinangel7@aol.com

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    1. All the best in the contest, Juanita.

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  15. Your review moved me. So much pain for someone so young. I feel like the cover works beautifully with this story.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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    1. It's a moving story, Mary, and I'm glad it showed in my review. And yes, the cover is perfect for this story.

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  16. Oh so need this for my daughter 24 who use to be a cutter. We dealt with this from 17 till 20. Thank you Marian for reviewing this book.
    You do such fine work.
    Blessings
    Linda Finn
    faithfulacres7@gmail.com

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    1. Thanks, Linda! I think I needed to hear that today. :) Good luck in the contest.

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  17. Marian, good review as usual. I would love to win this book or another if it can be PRiNT. I had a close relative who did this. It is horrible. Was a long road. I just trust she has broken the habit. But, you never can really be sure it won't happen.
    Thanks! MAXIE mac262(at)me(dot)com Praying all of you OWG girls are okay. GOD bless you. <3

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    1. Hey Maxie! This book is available in print, so you can choose this one if you win. Good luck!!

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  18. Great review MARIAN, this sounds like a very real, very compelling story! I'm surprised (but sad) to see how many people have shared of someone they knew that have done this. I knew a young girl that did this as well from when she was going to high-school and bears many scars from it. Thankfully she has stopped but still needs God..

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    1. Thanks, Noela! Yes, we all seem to know someone who has done it. It's sad indeed. We all need God.

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  19. The cover is simply beautiful!! And your review was stellar as usual, Marian! Sounds like such a compelling story! Joy Ross Davis

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  20. Love books like this - dysfunction, romance, healing through the Lord, & real issues faced by many people in real life! The fact that I worked in a children's home for abused & neglected children, where I became familiar with this issue, makes the book that much more interesting to me.

    Thanks for the nice review, Marian!

    bonnieroof60(at)yahoo(dot)com

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    1. Interesting to learn you worked in a children's home for abused and neglected children. I'm sure you will find this a fascinating read. Good luck, Bonnie!

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