Your audiobook is waiting…

A Tangled Mercy

A Novel
Narrated by: JD Jackson, Angela Dawe
Length: 14 hrs and 44 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (285 ratings)
Regular price: $17.49
$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

Told in alternating tales at once haunting and redemptive, A Tangled Mercy is a quintessentially American epic rooted in heartbreaking true events examining the harrowing depths of human brutality and betrayal, and our enduring hope for freedom and forgiveness.

After the sudden death of her troubled mother, struggling Harvard grad student Kate Drayton walks out on her lecture - and her entire New England life. Haunted by unanswered questions and her own uncertain future, she flees to Charleston, South Carolina, the place where her parents met, convinced it holds the key to understanding her fractured family and saving her career in academics. Kate is determined to unearth groundbreaking information on a failed 1822 slave revolt - the subject of her mother's own research.

Nearly two centuries earlier, Tom Russell, a gifted blacksmith and slave, grappled with a terrible choice: arm the uprising spearheaded by members of the fiercely independent African Methodist Episcopal Church or keep his own neck out of the noose and protect the woman he loves.

Kate's attempts to discover what drove her mother's dangerous obsession with Charleston's tumultuous history are derailed by a horrific massacre in the very same landmark church. In the unimaginable aftermath, Kate discovers a family she never knew existed as the city unites with a powerful message of hope and forgiveness for the world.

©2017 Joy Jordan-Lake (P)2017 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    177
  • 4 Stars
    73
  • 3 Stars
    23
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    4

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    157
  • 4 Stars
    63
  • 3 Stars
    11
  • 2 Stars
    4
  • 1 Stars
    2

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    145
  • 4 Stars
    59
  • 3 Stars
    20
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    6
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A good and hard story that inspires hope and change

I loved going on this journey to the past and the tie in to today and how time has assimilated and transformed the southern culture of today. Though some events may seem a little too convenient (like randomly meeting an unknown nephew on her first day in town), the story is compelling and believable. Well written with moments of great prose, this story takes the events of the past and today to help us all grow in compassion for our fellow human beings and to eliminate racism in our own hearts — even if and especially if we descend from a family who has a racist past. (Spoiler alert:) It does all tie up very neatly in the end, but with the nature and depth of the issues addressed, I for one was very glad to be left with hope to move forward!

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Couldn't finish. Seemed disjointed to me.

Maybe it is just me but I had a hard time following the storyline. It just didn't keep my attention. I do feel that there needed to be more background to the story at the first and the characters needed to be developed so you could relate to them.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A little slow but worth the read

Kate Drayton is reeling from the sudden death of her mother. There are so many things she doesn't understand about her and why she left Charleston never to return. On an impulse and driven by grief Kate abandons her classes at Harvard and runs off to Charleston to find out what she can about her mother's past. Unfortunately no one, not the cute kid Gabe, the powerful matriarch Rose, or the obnoxious lawyer Putt, will help her find any clues to her mother's past even though clearly some of them know something.
I really enjoyed this book. With a two caviots....First, It was slow going in the beginning and Second the big reveal at the end honestly could have been revealed the first day Kate was in Charleston. It felt like that piece of the story was dragged on needlessly just to time the incident at the Church at the end of the novel.
However there was so much that was done right. The characters were interesting and well developed. I loved Kate and how she was trying to deal with her mother's death. She was spunky and yet reserved. It was an interesting combination. I also thought some of the things she did were over the top and a bit crazy but they were also funny. The storyline was interesting and engaging. Honestly my favorite parts of the story was all the history that I got to learn. Unfortunately the historical characters didn't seem to pop off the pages as much as Kate, Gabe, and Rose. However I got to learn about a slave revolt in Charleston, gulla, and southern abolitionists. These were all things I had never learned of before.

PG - 13 hangings, baby birth, implied rape,

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • A
  • 11-12-18

His Mercy Endures Forever

What a mesmerizing historically sound rendering with compassion and the complexities of the Slavery Era coming full circle in today’s national events and people. This book should be a must historic reading novel for high school and college students alike across the USA. Because you can never understand where you are going until you understand where you’ve been! A story that makes you laugh and cry yet find peace.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Better at the end

The protagonist comes across as whiny at first and too little details are left out to truly engage the reader until they reach the midpoint of the book. If I was one to abandon books I would have this one, but in the end it was worth the initial bore.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

great book

this was a really great book. I really enjoyed it.
and I feel it's a great read.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • marylee
  • ROEBUCK, SC, United States
  • 09-19-18

Masterful

The author masterfully tells two parallel stories of life in the historical city of Charleston. It is a brilliant work that shows the depth that the past is intertwined in present day events. Change is a painfully slow process.
The orators of this audio book are both outstanding.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Truly a Tangled Mercy

Joy Jordan Lake makes the characters in this book come alive. I miss them already. I didn't understand the title until I was almost finished.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great story!

Historically and emotionally this great story unfolds with mystery that holds the attention. Really enjoyed the book!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Captivating...

I bought this book months ago but delayed reading it. I am glad I chose to listen instead. The narration held me captive, despite the overwhelming sadness of the context.... The author is truly gifted...