Guide Me Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer – Book Review

Guide Me Home  by  Kim Vogel Sawyer

Published By  WaterBrook & Multnomah   August 02, 2016

Genres:  Historical Fiction, Christian

Pages:  352

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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Publisher’s Description

Working in the massive cave might allow
Rebekah the chance to bring joy back to her family.
But will it claim more than it gives?

After tragedy leaves its mark on Rebekah Hardin’s family, she plans to help her parents and six siblings honor her beloved brother’s memory and alleviate their poverty by working as a guide in the dangerous cave system. Kentucky’s renowned Mammoth Cave presents profitable opportunities in for hardworking, capable men. But Rebekah is determined and if it means presenting herself as a himself, then she’s up to the job.

Under the wing of experienced guide Tolly Sanford, “Reb” begins to learn the complexities of the cave and the two are joined by an aspiring young cartographer, Devlin Bale.

The university student has traveled to the hill country to map tunnels—not to fall for a girl in disguise. Can the God who designed miles of underground astonishment shape Devlin’s ambitious plans and free Reb from the weight from the past?

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Story Notes

Kim Vogel Sawyer’s latest historical romance is a lovely story of redemption, sorrow, and healing found through God’s grace and mercy.

This wonderful story was somehow lost in my device for over 2 months before I discovered its presence in a little used app – quite a sad thing as it turned out to be a really engaging story that I would have hated to have missed. Ms. Sawyer is a favorite writer of mine and I hoped this latest would be up to the mark as well. I found this story to be a little different than those previously written, but not in a bad way. On the contrary, I really enjoyed the way she had multiple main characters rather than one and that each one’s story was told in completion. Ms. Sawyer tells the story of how past tragedy has drastically effected the Hardin family through the eyes of the two oldest daughters and neither story is the same. Rebekah Hardin is the oldest child and carries the guilt of her brother’s death in Mammoth Cave with her daily. She believes that Andy would not have gone into the Cave if she had not told him to leave her alone one afternoon as she read her latest library book. Wanting to help her family purchase a stone marker for Andy’s grave, Rebekah will become a guide for the Mammoth Cave Resort company that takes travelers on tours through the Cave – a job that requires she dress and work as a man. Cissy Hardin, on the other hand, views helping her family as a life of true drudgery. She has become convinced she is not loved by her parents and that the only way to be happy is to find a way to make money and go to the nearest large city in search of a rich husband. Cissy despises the daily work of her family farm and cannot stand the cloud of sorrow that continually hangs over them. Her jealousy over Rebekah’s job and consuming desire for money will lead her to a job helping a photographer on the Mammoth Cave Resort grounds – a job that will give her the money she needs to escape her “terrible” life. With these two drastically different views, Ms. Sawyer creates a story that will leave the reader laughing out loud, feeling deep frustration and, perhaps, crying a few tears of joy over the redemption of the characters involved.I really enjoyed the journey that Ms. Sawyer set her characters on. She was careful to give them each distinctive personalities but also showed that they all had a similar problem – they lacked the forgiveness and joy that is to be found in Jesus. I also found it interesting that she used Rebekah, who was so burdened by guilt, to be a “light” for Devlin in more ways than one. She, along with Tolly, was able to show Devlin that what truly matters in life is not what money or standing you have before others, rather what standing and value you have before God. And, in turn, Devlin was able to help her see that Andy’s death was not her fault, rather it was the will of God. In Cissy’s case, Ms. Sawyer used the several heartbreaking experiences to help her learn she was not unloved by her family and that money would not bring her the peace and joy she was seeking. Ms. Sawyer brought her to the point of ultimate fear in facing death to show the error of her belief in going her own way to have the best life. I enjoyed seeing that Ms. Sawyer also had the Hardin family offer total love and forgiveness to Cissy in an effort to point her to the true Forgiver of her sins. My only issue with this book was that the ending felt a little rushed. Decisions and plans were made by Rebekah, Devlin and the Hardins in a quick fashion that did not exactly fit with the rest of the story. I would have liked to have seen a few more pages added to add details or time that would have rounded out the story better. But, other than this, I found the story to be one of complete development and truly enjoyed reading it.I hope Ms. Sawyer will make a series from this book as I would love to read more about the Hardin family members. I will most certainly recommend this book to others and will be looking for Ms. Sawyer’s future works.

I received this ebook free of charge from Waterbrook/Multnomah via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review. I will receive no fiscal compensation from either company for this review.

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