In 1904, Caroline goes undercover in a Kansas chocolate factory to investigate child labor conditions. Meanwhile, the factory's soon-to-be-heir Oliver disguises himself as an employee in order to learn every aspect of the business. Despite their battle of wills, sparks fly between them. But what will happen when their true identities---and motives---are revealed? 352 pages, softcover from Waterbrook.
Average Customer Rating:
(28 Reviews) 28
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28 out of 28100%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Kim Vogel Sawyer again offers up a light mystery set in a historical romance. Carrie or Caroline Lang has worked with the Labor Commission for sometime. She prides herself in her investigations skills and is proud of the work she does to help the children in factories. She is a strong believer of education and letting children be children. As a member of the Labor Commission, Carrie goes undercover to factories to see how the conditions are for the people and children working. Ollie Moore, or Oliver Dinsmore is an educated man who wants to see how his father's business runs before he takes over things himself. Knowing he would get special treatment and not see the full picture if he showed up as the heir, disguised himself and started working in his father's candy factory as a janitor. It is here at his father's factory, he runs into Carrie, a girl working as a toter of candy. As he starts to get to know Carrie, he realizes, this girl isn't like most women who work in the factory. She is educated and carries herself with decorum.
As Carrie and Ollie get to know each other, they discover that their ideas on how a company should be run differ greatly and cause strife between them, but when they both set their sights on investigating the manager, Hightower, they see how they can help each other.
In the beginning of the 1900's, it was tough to be a kid. I cringe a little when I read a story of a child having to work at such a young age. I had to cheer on Carrie and her desire to help kids and see that they get an education. Carrie had a good heart and wasn't timid when it came to fighting for the little guy. Ollie grew on me in the story. As began to see things for himself and not as he has been taught.
I felt the story get a little side tracked when Carrie is introduced to and then volunteered to care for three siblings. The story veered more toward their lives and how to help them, but in the end, the kids had a part that was important to the story.
It was sweet story.
Thank you to Blogging for Books, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
Echoes of Mercy takes place in the early 1900′s in Sinclair, Kansas and deals with some pressing issues for its time. Child labor, the discrepancy in pay for women and children compared to men, workplace safety, and the differences that existed between the classes in society.
This was a really enjoyable book. The characters are very well-written and interesting to read about. Ollie and Carrie are attracted to each other, but both are working undercover in the Dinsmore Chocolate Factory and don’t feel that they can fully reveal their true selves to each other. This alone brings a lot of tension to their relationship. Speaking of their relationship, it is a sweet one that develops softly throughout the story, but is fully satisfying in its growth.
I enjoyed the side characters and felt that they were well-written also. I felt intense dislike for the foreman, frustration with Letta and her brothers for some of their actions, and really enjoyed Noble and Annamarie. All of these characters really made for a well rounded story.
The author did a great job making me feel that I was really back in this time, working in the factory. I felt that I could truly “see” it and all of the busyness of the workers shuffling about in their activity. There was a good mystery throughout the book that the heroine was trying to discover the answer to, growth of certain characters as they learned to trust in God, and a satisfying conclusion. A lovely piece of historical fiction.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from WaterBrook Multnomah in exchange for an honest review, which I have given. All thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.
There are so many good things about this book; the story, the characters and the lessons that were taught. Carrie Lang has strong feelings and she’s not afraid to let people know what they are, especially when it comes to children working in factories instead of learning in school. It doesn’t take long for her to butt heads with not only her new boss, but the factory’s newest janitor, Ollie Moore. The chemistry between Carrie and Ollie was fun to watch as they both fight the growing attraction. I think my favorite character, was Keisha, the restaurant owner. She was full of life and was secure in who she was so she wasn’t afraid to call things the way they were.
This is another strong story by an excellent author. The primary storyline is Carries attempt to determine the cause of a co-worker’s death. However, the author weaves not only some romance and suspense into the story but redemption and self worth. I also loved the storyline with Lank, it was a joy to watch where the author took him in this story.
The author not only gives an entertaining story but she gives us good reminders about life and what things are truly important. I look forward to reading more from this author.
Disclaimer: I would like to thank the publisher for the opportunity to read and review this book, I was under no obligation to give anything but my honest opinion.
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Review 5 for Echoes of Mercy
Date:February 26, 2014
This is the first book i have read by Kim Vogel Sawyer, so at first glance I didn't know what to expect, but it was a great book! Excellent plot. Thrilling storyline, an amazing writing style, not to mention great morals! so if you ever have the chance and need something to read. pick up this book, you won't be disappointed.
What could be better than a good book with chocolate? Maybe a book about chocolate!
At Dinsmore’s World Famous Chocolate Factory, everything is not as it seems. The mysterious death of an inspector working undercover. A janitor exploring the business he will inherit from the inside out. A manager set on exploiting the man who took him from nothing and made him something. A young woman, sent to finish the inspector’s job and discover if the accident that killed him was truly an accident who has a heart to see that children go to school instead of spending long hours working. As the worlds of these characters collide, they discover that God’s mercy and justice are ever present.
Kim Vogel Sawyer’s Echoes of Mercy is a very good read and will keep you wondering as to what will happen next. So, grab a box of chocolates and enjoy!
I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Blogging for Books for this review.
Ollie Moore, the day janitor at Dinsmore’s World-Famous Chocolate Factor finds himself attracted to the new toter, Carrie Lang. But he knows Carrie isn’t someone his parents will approve of. After all, he’s not really janitor Ollie Moore. He’s Oliver Fulton Dinsmore, son of the owner of the chocolate factor, working in disguise to investigate working practices at the factory, and the factory manager, Gordon Hightower.
Carrie isn’t who she seems, either. She’s an undercover investigator for the Labor Commission, working to ascertain whether the recent death at the factory was an accident or something more sinister, and with a personal mission to end child labour (sorry. New Zealand spelling coming through here). Carrie is attracted by Ollie, but suspects there is more to him than meets the eye—he might look like a common factory worker, but he doesn’t always sound like one.
I have enjoyed the previous books I’ve read by Kim Vogel Sawyer, and Echoes of Mercy was no different. She combines interesting and likeable characters with a historical romance plot that manages to exceed my expectations in the way she weaves in issues of the day, in this case, child labour. Yet this theme is a natural outflowing of the story and never seems forced, and she gives weight to the arguments both for and against child labour: economic necessity vs. human compassion.
The story also includes a subtle but solid Christian element, best evidenced for me with this quote:
“Jesus tells us in the eleventh chapter of Matthew, verse twenty-eight, ‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest’. He’ll honor the promise, but you must do your part in laying down the burden.”
We live in a world where so many of us are so very busy, yet we are not always prepared to lay that burden at the cross. Hmm …
Overall, I highly recommend Echoes of Mercy as a good story with a thought-provoking yet unobtrusive theme.
Thanks to Waterbrook Multnomah and Blogging for Books for providing a free ebook for review.
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Review 8 for Echoes of Mercy
A faith-filled adventure
Date:February 22, 2014
Echoes of Mercy is set in 1904 Sinclair, Kansas. Investigator Caroline Lang ua sent to go undercover at the Dinsmore's World-Famous Chocolate Factory to investigate an accident. Oliver Dinsmore who is the factory owner's son, is also undercover in his father’s factory to see how things are run before he takes it over. He goes under the name of Ollie Moore and soon meets up with Carrie Lang and they become friends when trying to find a way to help three needy children. But he has no idea what she is hiding and her true identity. They are both faced with lying to each other about their backgrounds. What will happen to these two when their secrets are revealed? It's a story about truth, lies and secrets. Overall, it was an excellent book and I would recommend it to those who enjoy Christian mystery or romance novels. Thank you to Waterbrook Multnomah’s Blogging for Books program for my free copy which I received in exchange for an honest review.
What a delightful book! My favorite part of it? The setting. A chocolate factory is a primary factor in the story, and let me tell you – chocolate factories are awesome, and this one is no exception. Just reading about it made my mouth water more than once! This was such a sweet story (and not just because of all the chocolate) and it’s sure to touch your heart like it touched mine. Caroline was a heroine to love, and I certainly could identify with her. Ollie too was a dear, quite a lovable hero. My only problem with him was his name: Ollie is Oliver Hardy in Laurel and Hardy to me and I could never quite take this Ollie seriously. ;) The mystery was absolutely awesome and can I just say again – I really loved the setting. This one is staying on my keeper shelf! **Blogging for Books sent me this book in return for my honest review. I wasn’t paid in any other way, nor was I required to post positively. All opinions are my own.**
SUMMARY: Working as an undercover investigator, Caroline Lang secures a position at the Dinsmore’s World Famous Chocolates Factory in Kansas. Much to her surprise, Oliver Dinsmore has the same idea-working as an undercover janitor to monitor the factory which he soon will inherit. Through many unexpected circumstances, orphan children, questioned morals, prayers, and a sheltered heart, Caroline must stay true to her priorities and values while overcoming her own past. “Sometimes a secret must be kept for the truth to be revealed“…
A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS: Excited to read Kim Vogel Sawyer’s newest novel, I was not disappointed. With grace and mercy, she weaves an intriguing story line with equally developed characters. Some hard issues were touched upon during the course of the novel but the main character, Caroline, stayed faithful to her values, heart and beliefs. I enjoyed all the twists and turns as well as the subtle humor and genuine hope interspersed. A very well written, well thought-out, and well developed story which I enjoyed to the very end.
RATING: 5 (out of 5) pennies
*I received a complimentary copy of Echoes of Mercy from WaterBrook Press Publishing for my honest review*
When a suspicious accident occurs at the famous Dinsmore Chocolate Factory in Sinclair, Kansas, Caroline Lang goes undercover as a factory worker to investigate the circumstances surrounding the event and how the factory treats its youngest employees—the child workers. Caroline’s fervent faith, her difficult childhood, and compassionate heart drove her to her job as an investigator for the Labor Commission and she is compelled to see children freed from such heavy adult responsibilities, to allow them to pursue an education.
Oliver Dinsmore, heir to the Dinsmore candy dynasty, has his own investigation to conduct. Posing as a common worker known as “Ollie Moore,” he aims to find out all he can about the family business before he takes over for his father. Caroline and Oliver become fast friends, but tension mounts when the two find themselves at odds about the roles of child workers. Hiding their identities becomes even more difficult when fate brings them together over three children in desperate need. When all is revealed, will the truth destroy the love starting to grow between them?
As always, Sawyer delivers a story that is all things to everyone; exciting, romantic, suspenseful, heart-stopping, intriguing, and passionate in the cause Caroline and Oliver are trying to fight for. The chocolate factory was amazing to read about; (who doesn't love chocolate?!) and seeing what factories used to be like back in the infancy of mass production was quite educational.
The story moved along at a good pace, and with the backbone of the story being truth, lies, and secrets hidden - and it is a recipe for success. (Slight pun intended here.) Something interesting that caught my eye was the fact that Oliver and Caroline were on opposite sides of what they felt was a moral issue, and how even the strongest objections can be overcome by love. A wonderful novel about doing what's right no matter what the cost.
This book was provided by the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review.
Echoes of Mercy, by Kim Vogel Sawyer, is a heart-warming novel addressing a number of issues. From child labor to abuse to adoption, this story set in Sinclair, Kansas in 1904 captures the reader’s attention from the beginning and holds it throughout the book.
Caroline Lang, an investigator for the Labor Commission, obtains a position at Dinsmore’s World-Famous Chocolates Factory to find the truth regarding the death of another agent. She is adamantly against child labor, insisting that children should attend school instead. Oliver Dinsmore, aka Ollie Moore, is also under cover at the factory, attempting to observe the family business before taking over from his father. When the two are drawn together to aid three children in need, it becomes difficult to hide their identities from each other and the factory manager.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The characters spoke to my heart, and I found myself turning the next page to discover their fates, not wanting to put the book down. Caroline was determined but a little narrow-minded at times. The children were adorable, and I felt that Kesia added much to the story.
I would recommend this book to all who enjoy historical fiction.
I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.
I am repeating myself when I say that this book is my new favorite of Kim's books. I can claim that I have read each one she has written and also own them. I love Kim's writing and am thrilled to see a small change in her style, adding Historical. I feel that this book is an exceptional example of her writing. I love and have always loved the way Kim describes each scene where the story takes place with such descriptive words. I always feel with her stories that I can walk right into the book and be a part of the story myself. I also love the way she weaves the characters faith or lack of into the story, and to be able to read about these characters growing in faith no matter what goes on in their lives is such an inspiration. Caroline Lang is on her way to the Dinsmoor World Famous Chocolate Factory in Sinclair, Kansas to investigate how a man was killed and why there are so many children working there. She just has to get this job, just to be able to be in the factory so she can see what's going on. As she accepts the job she gets drawn into many more people's lives that she ever intended to. Her adventures, if you can call them that because some are dangerous, set in motion events involving Ollie Moore. A man who is infuriating at times and can read her like a book at others. Ollie has his own agenda for being in the factory working close to where Caroline is. One has strong faith, one has almost none. One came from a moneyed family, the other from a life of abandonment and hard labor. Can these two ever see eye to eye, or even be in the same room together? I would greatly recommend this book to all who love Christian Fiction and Kim's writing. If you haven't tried it yet, please do, you will be pleasantly surprised. I received this book from the publisher an author and this is my honest opinion
This book was fantastic. I was hooked from the very first page. Kim Vogel Sawyer is an excellent writer. The plot was fast-paced and exciting. I loved that both Caroline and Oliver were under cover, trying to uncover things at the chocolate factory. I loved that the setting was in chocolate factory, as well. I am a HUGE fan of chocolate, so this book made me crave some! The romance between "Ollie" and "Carrie" was sweet (no pun intended, hehe). It wasn't the main focus of the book, and that was fine. The insights on child labor back in that time period was also interesting.
The author does a wonderful job of creating depth in each character and explaining what has made them the way they are. Caroline Lang (aka Carrie) has gone through a lot in her life. She detests child labor, and for a good reason. Throughout the book, we see her struggling to overcome the emotional turmoil her past wrought on her and we can rejoice with her when she finally does! Oliver Dinsmore (aka Ollie) is the heir to the Dinsmore Chocolate factory. He's lived a live of priviledge and wealth. I love that he was humble enough to go undercover as a janitor to do research that would allow him to be a better owner when he took the reins. Throughout the story, we see his compassion and rejoice with him when he comes to know the Lord on a more personal level.
Here, we come to my favorite part of the story: the message. From overcoming our past and learning to trust in God completely, to the gift of mercy, grace, and salvation, this story has it all. It took me over half of the book to realize the significance of the title Echoes of Mercy. Mercy, by definition, is an act of kindness, compassion, or favor. Throughout the story, we see "echoes" of mercy shown especially to Caroline. Once I realized the significance of the title, I loved it even more!
*I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group through the Blogging for Books program for this review.*
It's another Kim Vogel Sawyer book! Kim's books have become some of my favorites in recent years. I love the 'good friend' type of books she writes. If you're a reader, you know what I mean. Those books that are warm, comfortable, cozy up under a blanket, read-again kind of stories.
Echoes of Mercy was a little different than Kim's norm. Oh, it was still a book that made me feel satisfied and comfortable at the end – but, she wrote a little more suspense into this one. I liked that! And, the chocolate factory setting was just fun and unique!
I haven't watched the show, but Kim had a little 'undercover boss' going on, which I find a fascinating concept (although I was surprised that Gordon wouldn't know the owner's son?)!
Kim's characters are always easy to relate to and love – or not! Kesia was great – loved her! I always enjoy when her type of character is added to a book! The wise, speaks-her-mind-can't-help-but love person! And then there was Mr. Dinsmore. I wanted to like him – well, I did, as he seemed a wonderful father and even a kind man; I guess I was disappointed that he didn't apologize at the end, or at least we weren't told of any change of heart after all that happens.
Still, despite the unsatisfactory conclusion with the senior Dinsmore, Echoes of Mercy was another winner by Kim.
*I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review. No other compensation was given, and all thoughts are 100% mine.*
One thing that I've come to realize over the past few years is this -- you just can't go wrong with a Kim Vogel Sawyer book! Echoes of Mercy, a compelling story filled with interesting characters, is one more example of that truth.
Carrie, Ollie, Kesia, Noble, Annamarie, and the Holcomb children are all people I came to care about as I read, and they each added their own unique flavor to the story. The faith exhibited by the characters -- some strong and some just in infant stages, the passion for people and for causes, and even the deceit and evil plotting of Gordon Hightower all fit together into a tale that sometimes made me smile and at other times brought tears to my eyes. As usual, Kim brings her story to life and tugs at her readers' hearts.
Echoes of Mercy is a great mix of history, relationship, romance, and faith. Through several of the characters, Kim shares insightful reminders of God's grace and provision. One of my favorite lines in the book was near the end of the story when Noble offered Caroline an answer to her question about how to stop worrying and trust God: "Very simply, Caroline, you open your fists and you give the worry over to the One who is capable of carrying it."
Thanks to Kim Vogel Sawyer for providing me an advanced reading copy of Echoes of Mercy.
Carrie and Ollie are both undercover in the world of Dinsmore's chocolate factory in the mid-west. For different reason, but with the intent of working on behalf of the employees, they each set out to learn what they can about the behind-the-scenes operations of the factory. So much happened in the course of the story! Letta and her two brothers still have an additional story to tell, I think. Carrie and Ollie work on the mystery of the elevator shaft death. And, they undercover a bigger problem in that investigation. My disappointment with any character was Mr. Dinsmore, Sr. (Ollie's dad) who was too much out of touch with plan operations. Carrie and Ollie were great characters with big hearts. It was an enjoyable read that also taught me about factories at the turn of the 20th century. Thanks to Waterbrook Press for supplying me with an advance copy. I provide my own review as I reviewed the story.
Caroline (Carrie) Lang and Ollie Moore are both working undercover at Dinsmore's World-Famous Chocolates Factory in Sinclair, Kansas. Carrie is investigating the hiring and treatment of children as she tries to find out about the suspicious death of a previous investigator assigned there. Ollie is actually Oliver Dinsmore and the heir to the Dinsmore candy dynasty and his father wants him to find out everything he can about the buisness before he takes over. The two have different views about child labor and without telling each other why they are really there, their suspicions about the other are rising.
I think the story started out kind of slow but it didn't take long to speed up and soon I was pouring full steam ahead into this book. Kim did a good job of pulling you in gradually and by the end you're telling yourself, "I'm getting close, I'm getting close, I'm getting close to figuring it out!" She also pulls at your heartstrings when you read about Caroline's childhood and how it ties into why she is an investigator. This is another one of Kim's books that you will love if you like a little mystery along with some heart tugging issues going on.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BloggingforBooks book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Echoes of Mercy was a great enjoyable book to read. The author captured me with in the first few pages and kept up the great pace. Caroline "Carrie" is undercover at a Chocolates Factory in Kansas in 1904. She is on a mission well 2 missions really. One is to find out what happened to one of their undercover labor commission workers. The other is to find out if Dinsmore Chocolate Factory is violating child labor laws. If anyone finds out Caroline could be in big danger, I mean something has silenced Harmon right? However Caroline isn't the only person undercover at the chocolate factory. Oliver "Ollie" is also undercover, but his isn't as dangerous as Caroline's mission. Oliver is working undercover to see what the workers, and bosses are like at the Dinsmore Chocolate Factory before he takes over for his dad. He want's to see first hand how the workers are treated, what they do and what it will be like to take over the family business.
Caroline and Oliver can't deny the instant attraction they have to each other. However they don't have time to fall in love they each are their to gain information not a boyfriend or girlfriend. Plus they are falling in love with each other under a different name, and backgrounds. Plus even more so Oliver doesn't seem bothered by the children working for Dinsmore Chocolate Factory or the child labor laws. Can Caroline help the children and change Oliver's mind? Can Caroline find out what really happened to Harmon? Was Harmon's fall really an accident? Or was it someone trying to silence him? Can Oliver figure out where he wants to lead Dinsmore Chocolate Factory? Will Caroline and Oliver see God's plan for them in time?
Thanks to blogging for books for my review copy. I received a complimentary copy for review purposes. A positive review was not requested or guaranteed; the opinions expressed are my own.
Echoes of Mercy by Kim Vogel Sawyer is one of the best stories I've read from this author. It's set in 1904 Kansas and highlights the injustices of children working in factories, missing their childhoods, and having no education leaving them with few options as adults. Anybody who knows me, knows I absolutely love historical fiction. I love learning about life long ago and hearing little known facts of their lives so this book was a big hit with me. :-)
Twenty-seven year old Caroline Lang's painful past has formed how she thinks so working for the Labor Commission was a natural fit. Her job has helped her change the lives of children with similar childhoods, and her goal to get children in school and out of work is her main priority. With that in mind, she accepts the new job her boss, Noble, wants her to investigate. As soon as Carrie arrives in Sinclair, Kansas, she immediately goes to the Dinsmore Chocolate Factory to get hired on so she can find out more information about her coworker's death.
Ollie Moore is the day time janitor at the chocolate factory where he is doing his own investigation into the workings of the factory. His goal is different, though. He wants to know how to more efficiently help the workers do their jobs. When he meets Carrie, he is immediately drawn to her. She is so different from all the other workers. Her spirit, her confidence, her independent spirit intrigue him. But something is off with her. Why is she always asking questions, and why is her speech so refined? He knows she isn't who she claims to be, but who is she really?
This was a well written story with lots of great characters. The plot was good, and I liked how different characters would take over telling the story for a bit. It made for a well-rounded book and in the process helped me know and understand all the characters. If you enjoy historical fiction with some detective work thrown in, you will love this novel!
I was given this book free from WaterBrook Multnomah in exchange for an honest review.