About the Book
Book: Unveiling the Past
Author: Kim Vogel Sawyer
Genre: Contemporary Christian Fiction
Release Date: May 12, 2020
Mysteries, family secrets, and learning to love and trust again rest at the heart of this contemporary novel from the best-selling author of Bringing Maggie Home.
Newlyweds and cold case detectives Sean and Meghan Eagle have been given the task of investigating the twenty-years-past disappearance of a husband and father, Anson Menke. A judge ruled that the missing man chose to leave the country and abandon his family, but his wife wouldn’t concede that he left his family nor declare him dead. Their mother now gone, his children want answers.
As Sean and Meghan follow the man’s last known steps, they also involve themselves in a more personal inquiry: locating Meghan’s biological father. But as Meghan struggles to balance her work and her new role as a wife, she becomes terrified of failure. She doesn’t want to hurt Sean or jeopardize the Menke investigation by falling short of his expectations.
When her mother, Diane DeFord, sees Meghan’s turmoil, she decides to take action, potentially reuniting father and daughter. As the two searches intertwine, Meghan must become vulnerable with Sean, letting him into her life and being a true partner, while letting her heart be tender to God, the One who truly knows the journey each disrupted life needed to take to Him.
Unveiling the Past by Kim Vogel Sawyer is a unique read. I liked several things about this story, but I struggled a bit too. I liked the characters. They are well written. I appreciate their development and felt that for most the character arcs are realistic and relatable. I very much enjoyed the two cold cases and found these specific plotlines to be highly engaging. And, I really loved the discussion on parenting and raising children. I could very much relate to several of the struggles and conflicts the parents deal with. While I did find these aspects enjoyable, I did struggle to read this book. I found the pacing to be seriously slow, which made several moments in the story drag. These slow moments made me want to put the book down. Overall, I consider Unveiling the Past to be a 3-STAR story.
I’ve always been a little nervous about being a mom. My number one worry is the end product. No one wakes up and says, “I want my child to turn into the worst adult ever.” I genuinely believe that most every parent on this earth wants to do a good job and raise quality humans. I want to do a great job and raise my daughter well. But that’s the thing, you can do everything right — raise your child knowing that Jesus is Lord and Savior, hug, praise, and spend quality time with your child, and discipline lovingly — and still your child could turn out “wrong.” Add to that an awareness about potential negative genetic traits or negative family habits that could pass down, and having a kid seems fraught with nothing but negative. When so much could go wrong, why would anyone bother to have a kid?
Meghan, the protagonist of Unveiling the Past, is very uncomfortable with the idea of becoming a mother. Her husband is more than ready to grow their family from two to more, but Meghan just isn’t there yet. Yes, she loves her mother and grandmother very much, but they weren’t the best role models, and Meghan is afraid that her relationship with her future child could be negative. In Meghan’s family, the legacy passed down from mother to daughter is one of contention and stubbornness, and this is not something she wants to continue. Add to this that Meghan has never even met her father and has no idea the kinds of skeletons he may have in his closet, and Meghan is positive she is nowhere near to being good mother material. There just seems to be too much bad she could potentially pass down to her child.
Being a good mom or dad has nothing to do with genetics or family legacies. Being a good mom or dad has to do with our walk with God. Every success I’ve ever had as a mother has directly correlated to when my walk with God was good. Likewise, every mistake I’ve ever made coincided with times when my walk with God was a bit off. It’s all about our foundations. When our foundations are built upon our SELVES, and our walks with God are shaky at best, we can be assured that mistakes and wrong turns will abound. Make enough of these mistakes and wrong turns as a parent and they are bound to negatively impact our children. But when our foundations are solid and Jesus is our strong cornerstone, when our walk with God is first and foremost, our parenting skills will be solid too. Does a solid foundation with God mean our kids will be perfect? Of course not. Our kids are humans too. They will make mistakes. But mistakes are less likely to destroy the goodness of our kids, of our abilities to be good moms and dads, when we are solid with Jesus. I appreciate this discussion because it is a great reminder for me to make sure I am daily reflecting on my relationship with God. If I want my relationship with my daughter to be solid, I first need to verify I’m solid with Jesus!
There really is a TON to love about this book even though at times the pacing became really slow. Unveiling the Past allows the reader the opportunity to wrestle with some big-time issues and struggles, and because of this, I do recommend this story.
***Unveiling the Past is the second book in the Bringing Maggie Home series. While I do think reading book 1 would have been beneficial in my understanding of the characters’ backstories, I did not have any problem grasping any of the storylines in Unveiling the Past.***
I received a review copy of this novel in eBook form from the publisher, Waterbrook Press, via NetGalley in order to review. I also received a paperback copy of this book from the publisher as well. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
I am giving away ONE (1) paperback copy of Unveiling the Past by Kim Vogel Sawyer. My giveaway begins today, 5-12-20 at 5:00 am (PST) and ends on Saturday, 5-16-20 at 12:00 pm (PST). To enter, click on the Rafflecopter link below. Good luck!
Congrats to Sonnetta J.!
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