05 May 2016

Room for Hope by Kim Vogel Sawyer -- Reviewed by Carrie Fancett Pagels


Blurb
In a desperate time, can Neva find forgiveness for a grievous wrong—and make room for hope?

Neva Shilling has a heavy load of responsibility while her husband travels to neighboring communities and sells items from his wagon. In his absence, she faithfully runs the Shilling Mercantile, working to keep their business strong as the Depression takes its toll, and caring for their twins.

When a wagon pulls up after supper, Neva and her children rush out—and into the presence of the deputy driving a wagon carrying three young children. The deputy shocks her with the news that Warren and his wife have died, insisting it was their last request that the three children go live with “Aunt Neva.”

Neva’s heart is shattered as she realizes that Warren’s month-long travels were excuses for visits with his secret family. She wants nothing more than to forget Warren, but can she abandon these innocent children to an orphanage? Yet if she takes them in, will she ever be able to see them as more than evidence of her husband’s betrayal and love them the way God does?

Carrie's Review

Five Stars *****

I listened to this novel as an audible.com download. I have a yearly membership. This story is set in the 1930's, a hard time all across America.  Imagine believing you have a loving husband whose travels for your business turn out to be time spent with another family -- then having the offspring from that other union brought to you to raise during the Great Depression? 


This novel has multiple points of view, which I found distracting at first but I think give the story a broader perspective. We have Neva's, her son Bud's, the sheriff's, and a neighbor/suitor's perspectives throughout the book.  Having two adult males, both hero prospects, is something I'm not sure I've seen in other CBA novels. 


The narrator has a rather depressed-sounding voice. At the beginning of the book this somewhat works for the story. She does lighten up some as the book goes forward. But I don't hear the hope in her voice that I imagine the author intended, hence the title. Still, if you prefer audiobooks or require them, this is a good listen and you can get past the narration because the story is compelling.

Room for Hope is a great read by Kim Vogel Sawyer, with many unique elements. I highly recommend it.

Bibliotherapy elements: Death of a spouse, bigamy, illegitimate children, raising someone else's children, financial struggles, hope in Christ, and being shunned by "friends." I think this story is also good for bibliotherapy for someone who is feeling a little down as the tone of the book won't grate on you like it might if you were in a really chipper mood. 

Question: Have you read any of Kim Vogel Sawyer's other books? Which ones?



12 comments:

  1. Great review Carrie.
    Wow, I can't imagine learning something like that. Sounds very interesting....I have this on my very long to-be-read list.

    I have read several of Kim's books:
    -My Heart Remembers
    -Waiting for Summer's Return
    -Courting Miss Amsel
    -A Hopeful Heart
    -A Whisper of Peace
    .....and have several more on that ever so long to-be-read list.
    Blessings, Tina

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    1. So many great books, Tina! Thanks! I think you'd love this one!

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  2. I am reading this on my Kindle! I am enjoying it...as I do Kim's books (have read all of them), but it is different. Your review helps me understand it more. Your winner will enjoy it.

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    1. I agree, Jackie -- this is different. It is so cool that she is going with those multiple POVs and leaving the reader guessing as to who will win the heroine's heart! Glad this helped!

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  3. Wow, that would have been tough for Neva. The betrayal she must of felt would have been astronomical. Her emotions, all over the place. Kim is an amazing author, so I know she would have pulled all this off brilliantly. Thank you for your wonderful review CARRIE and for bringing it to my attention!

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    1. I can't even imagine such a betrayal, Noela! How could you trust again after something like that? But Neva has a super strong faith, and God gets her through after a bit of a bumpy road.

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  4. Thanks for your insightful, enticing review, Carrie! I love Kim's books and have been reading them ever since she first started writing. I have missed a few in between but try to read them as often as I can.

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    1. Don't miss this one, then, Angel Girl! I think you'll really enjoy it, Diana! Kim Vogel Sawyer does a great job on Room for Hope.

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  5. I have read all her books and reading the current one. Love her books.

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    1. You are a true Kim Vogel Sawyer fan, Kim!!! Isn't this a great book? Thanks for coming by!

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  6. Carrie, thank you for your wonderful review of 'Room For Hope'!! I love it's unique storyline as I love reading books with dysfunctional characters and hope/healing through God - helping me to better understand the situations of others and reach out to them. I think 'Room For Hope' is based on the story of a member of Kim's husband's family.

    Speaking of healing, Kim has a wonderful testimony on how she was healed from numerous debilitating illnesses through prayer with another well-known author. Prior to being healed, she walked with a cane and keeps it on her office wall to remind her of God's healing and love. Possibly a connection to her always wearing purple also.
    I traveled to hear her speak in a 2-day women's conference as I wanted to hear her healing testimony. She's a wonderful author and I have many of her books.

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    1. Thanks for sharing, Bonnie! We were blessed to have Kim on OWG giving a testimony once before. She seems like a lovely person. This was a great listen and I hope you get a chance to hear it or read it! Blessings!

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