Monday, October 23, 2017

"Bringing Maggie Home" by Kim Vogel Sawyer

About this book:

  “Decades of Loss, an Unsolved Mystery,
and a Rift Spanning Three Generations
  Hazel DeFord is a woman haunted by her past. While berry picking in a blackberry thicket in 1943, ten-year old Hazel momentarily turns her back on her three-year old sister Maggie and the young girl disappears.
  Almost seventy years later, the mystery remains unsolved and the secret guilt Hazel carries has alienated her from her daughter Diane, who can’t understand her mother’s overprotectiveness and near paranoia. While Diane resents her mother’s inexplicable eccentricities, her daughter Meghan—a cold case agent—cherishes her grandmother’s lavish attention and affection.
   When a traffic accident forces Meghan to take a six-week leave-of-absence to recover, all three generations of DeFord women find themselves unexpectedly under the same roof. Meghan knows she will have to act as a mediator between the two headstrong and contentious women. But when they uncover Hazel’s painful secret, will Meghan also be able to use her investigative prowess to solve the family mystery and help both women recover all that’s been lost?”

Series: As of now, no.  

Spiritual Content- Psalm 13:12 at the beginning; Many Scriptures are quoted, read, remembered, & discussed; Prayers; Witnessing & being witnessed to; Church going, a Bible study, & a prayer group; Many talks about God, trusting Him, believing in Him, praying, peace, faiths, & blessings; ‘H’s are capital when referring to God; Meghan isn’t sure if God is real, but wonders and asks God for peace, *Two Spoilers* 40 pages until the end, Meghan wants God & prays to Him; while 20 pages until the end, Margaret prays for forgiveness *End of Spoilers*; Many mentions of God; Many mentions of talking about God; Many mentions of prayers, praying, & blessings over food; Mentions of being saved; Mentions of Bibles & Bible reading; Mentions of those in the Bible & discussing them; Mentions of Christians & faiths; Mentions of Bible studies, a prayer group, & prayer warriors; Mentions of churches/chapels, church going, services, worship, hymns/choirs, & pastors; Mentions of blessings; Mentions of Heaven; Mentions of sin & sinners; A few mentions of holidays; A couple mentions of mission trips; A couple mentions of religious people; A mention of praising the Lord; A mention of Sunday School; A mention of Biblical symbols;
             *Note: Mentions of Margaret’s opinion on religion & the hypocritical stares and comments she got from churchgoers for being an unwed mother; Mentions of evil & evil people; A mention of being chased by the devil; A mention of joining a cult; A mention of karma.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: a ‘blasted’, two ‘dumb’s, and six ‘stupid’s; A couple mentions of curses & swallowing a curse; A mention of receiving improper gestures; Some sarcasm & eye rolling; Jealousy; Remembering hateful words & bickering; Pain & Injuries (barely-above-not-detailed); Many mentions of a disappearance of a child, the aftermath, & what could have happened (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of other children hurt, abducted, & killed (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of a man hit by a train & his death; Mentions of car accidents, deaths, & injuries (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of the Great Depression & World War II; Mentions of passing out & pain (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of strokes & illnesses (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of alcohol, drinking, alcoholics/drunks, & bars (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of drugs, drug users, & drug abuse; Mentions of gambling & casinos; Mentions of burglars, thieves, stealing, & being threatened; Mentions of burning a place to the ground; Mentions of the possibility of die bunnies & a snake after them; Mentions of lies & liars; Mentions of jealousy; A few mentions of throwing up; A few mentions of spankings; A few mentions of gossip; A couple mention of unsolved rapes and murders cases; A couple mentions of criminals in jail; A couple mentions of beatings; A couple mentions of cigars & smoking; A couple mentions of frat houses; A mention of coarse jokes; A mention of cheating on a test; A mention of animal waste;
             *Note: Mentions of celebrities & old TV shows.

Sexual Content- a forehead kiss, and a not-detailed kiss; Some Touches & Embraces (barely-above-not-detailed); Noticing (barely-above-not-detailed); A Flashback to Margaret waking up in her boyfriend’s arms, telling him about the pregnancy, & his opinion of getting an abortion; 3 forms of ‘hot’; Mentions of pedophiles & sex trafficking; Mentions of intimacy, a man getting a girl pregnant, out-of-wedlock pregnancies, & unwed mothers (including Margaret, never any details, just hints); Mentions of abortions, the father wanting to get rid of the baby (Meghan), & missing periods; Mentions of an embraces & touches (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of a prom & dates; Mentions of flirting; Mentions of blushes; A few mentions of a player & (sexually) being with only him (no details); A few mentions of a wife giving a teasing pinch to her husband’s bottom; A few mentions of kisses & kissing; A couple mentions of unsolved rapes and murders cases; A couple mentions of birth control; A mention of a person telling a couple to get a room; A mention of a rendezvous; A mention of a reputation being safe; A mention of a married couple kissing;
             *Note: Mentions of child-birth, breast-feeding, & a bit of pain (barely-above-not-detailed); A couple mentions of when Margaret’s friends encouraged her to get an abortion; A couple mentions of a couple incapable of having biological children; A couple mentions of junior high girls showering after PE; A mention of hormones.

-Hazel Mae Blackwell-DeFord, age 79-80
-Margaret DeFord, age 47
-Meghan DeFord, age 27
-Sean Eagle (a couple handfuls of times)
                                P.O.V. switches between them
                           Goes back-and-forth mainly between 1943 and 2013 (but other times as well)
                                                        337 pages

Pre Teens-

New Teens-

Early High School Teens-

Older High School Teens-

My personal Rating-

What an interesting and intriguing plot.
I’ll admit that I’m not normally a fan of books split in two different time periods (i.e. historical and contemporary), but I ended up really enjoying this one. As I’ve noticed with other books by Kim Vogel Sawyer, her (historical) writing style is so, for lack of a better word, well-done. I don’t know how to explain it, but I honestly can’t name other author that does historical books like she does.
The bickering and unrest between Hazel and Margaret did hurt my heart at times, though I completely understood why they acted the ways they did. I really like Meghan, but I’m still not sure how Sean stole the show in this novel…? ;)
For genre wise, I would say this book is more contemporary than historical (but not quite 50/50 either), but all throughout is the mystery of what happened to Maggie, and then there’s a small amount of romance with a ton of faith content. :)

See y’all on Wednesday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Multnomah) for this honest review.

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