"God wouldn't want you to remain a prisoner of your own shame, Olivia. Be brave enough to claim the life and happiness He has in store for you."
Set in 1939 when attitudes towards women labeled as unsavory and incorrigible due to situations caused by no fault of their own, Susan Anne Mason takes us on a journey of healing, forgiveness, and seeing ourselves through the eyes of the Father who redeems us and makes us whole again!
I knew in history that women's reformatories like where Olivia was sent existed, but I had no idea the atrocity and living conditions these women had to endure! The author doesn't sugar coat some of these horrors Olivia faced in the book, but she also didn't go too far in explaining them either. She balanced it so that the reader could use some of their own imagination in “seeing” these things happening. It's awful to think that women endured such pain and humiliation in real life so many years ago! By the end of the book, what I loved is how Olivia was able to open her heart and allow the Lord to heal her and find her worth, purpose, and new love in Him! Ruth was a tremendous help to her along the way and also found new purpose in her own life.
"You are a child of God, just like everyone else in this world. We all make mistakes, and we are all worthy of redemption.~ Ruth"
Darius was a great compliment to her, I think. He also has had his share of pain when he lost his beloved wife and is finding his way while raising his daughter Sofia. He faces many challenges in this story and sticks to his integrity as a Godly man. And little Sofia is the highlight in my opinion! She's a delightful girl full of spunk, sparkle, and everything nice! She also plays a huge role in helping Olivia heal and I loved how she brought laughter in her life again. I enjoyed how God used these two as a healing balm and reminded Olivia of His truths.
"With Darius, she'd found not only the security and the respectability she craved, but a true haven for her heart. She had no doubt he would cherish it always and do everything in his power to keep it safe."
I loved everything about this book! Susan Anne Mason never fails to write heartfelt stories of love, faith, and journeys of healing for her characters. She also challenged me with this book as a reader to see beyond myself to God, who deems me worthy in spite of my past because HE has called me worthy! My favorite part is when an author can speak Biblical truths into my own life and give me those to ponder long after the last page is turned!
I highly recommend this to historical Christian fiction readers who want to be challenged to reach beyond their own lives to help others, and to realize their worth is in God and not mankind. He loves us beyond what we think we deserve and He calls us His own!
*I received a complimentary copy via Bethany House publishers on the authors’ behalf. I was not obligated to leave a favorable review & all opinions expressed here are my own. *
Toronto, Olivia Rosetti is taken in by an angel of mercy, Ruth Bennington. The two discover they share a painful past and together decide to open a maternity home for troubled women.
Despite the success of the home, Olivia is haunted by her inhumane treatment at the reformatory and the way her newborn son was taken from her. She feels undeserving of love--until she meets businessman Darius Reed. Although his attention makes her heart soar, he can never learn of her past.
Greek widower Darius Reed is determined to protect his daughter from the prejudice that killed her mother. He'll ensure her future by marrying a woman from a respected Toronto family. But when Darius meets Olivia, he's immediately drawn to her beauty and compassion.
Can love prove stronger than prejudice and past mistakes? Or will Olivia's secrets destroy any chance at a future together?