Publication date: 6/24/2014
My Rating: 5 Stars
In her latest ripped-from-the-headlines tour de force, New York Times bestselling author Heather Gudenkauf shows how one small mistake can have life-altering consequences
Veteran social worker Ellen Moore has seen the worst side of humanity—the vilest acts one person can commit against another.
She is a fiercely dedicated children's advocate and a devoted mother and wife. But one blistering summer day, a simple moment of distraction will have repercussions that Ellen could never have imagined, threatening to shatter everything she holds dear, and trapping her between the gears of the system she works for.
Meanwhile, ten-year-old Jenny Briard has been living with her well-meaning but irresponsible father since her mother left them, sleeping on friends' couches and moving in and out of cheap motels. When Jenny suddenly finds herself on her own, she is forced to survive with nothing but a few dollars and her street smarts. The last thing she wants is a social worker, but when Ellen's and Jenny's lives collide, little do they know just how much they can help one another.
A powerful and emotionally charged tale about motherhood and justice, Little Mercies is a searing portrait of the tenuous grasp we have on the things we love the most, and of the ties that unexpectedly bring us together.
A special thank you to Harlequin MIRA and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Heather Gudenkauf's LITTLE MERCIES is Totally Amazing! A book you will want to devour; however, you find yourself savoring every minute of this intense, and heartfelt story! A social worker finds herself living her own nightmare.LITTLE MERCIES is a powerful "must read," 5-Star Winner! Every woman, mother, and daughter will relate to this gripping and emotionally charged novel. Set in Iowa, Ellen and Adam are happily married, with three small children living busy harried lives. Ellen is a loving mother and conscientious in her professional life as a social worker, balancing her life between personal and business, and all the demands which go along with this role. Being a social worker is extremely stressful and one which tragedy occurs daily-she sees firsthand the delicate relationships between children and parents and the devastating effects of neglect. However, in a blink of an eye, a busy morning—a distraction, and an accident occurs, which will forever change the lives of this family. In a different town, Jenny, a ten-year old from Nebraska finds herself alone on a bus, after her alcoholic dad is taken away. She has not experienced an easy life, with one obstacle after another— poverty, abuse, struggles with school, a runaway mother and an unpredictable father. In a town alone, far away from her father, she finds herself alone at a diner, when one special lady shows her kindness, by taking her into her heart and family. Told in alternating perspectives between Ellen and Jenny—offering readers an insight into difficult situations, through the eyes of a guilt-ridden mother and an innocent but determined child. Full of suspense, a chilling tale, so realistic--with twists and turns you will not see coming—these two stories collide for the most powerful and gripping story. There are so many lives connected from the mothers which were former clients of Ellen (Jade), Ellen’s mother, Maudene, (which I loved), and Jenny (you want to cry for her), and Joe (the cop friend). Your heart goes out to Ellen and this family, keeping you turning pages, into the night, to learn the fate of this two families. Social workers and those in a capacity of who work tirelessly to protect children and help families, are often disregarded. Often, we forget that those who spend their lives serving and helping others can also make mistakes, at times with shattering results. This was my first book by Heather Gudenkauf, and was so impressed. She has made it to my favorite author list, and have become an instant fan! I immediately, purchased LITTLE LIES, the e-short story novel, a prequel to LITTLE MERCIES and quickly adding her earlier books to my reading list. A beautifully written novel, with lovable characters you will remember long after the book ends. Fans of Diane Chamberlain and Jodi Picoult, will enjoy the book as well as the author's style. LITTLE MERCIES offers a great takeaway-grab life; appreciating the little things (little mercies) in life which are precious, as they could be threatened at any moment. This story makes you take notice of little ways in which you can make a difference in the lives of others, by offering your time, kindness, and support in a time of need. Let’s hope for a sequel, as these characters are too good to end! Goodreads