“Inescapable” by Nancy Mehl

Lizzie Engel is used to running away. At eighteen, she left her Mennonite hometown, Kingdom, Kansas, with plans never to return.
 
But five years later, the new life she built is falling apart. Lizzie knows she’s being followed, and she’s certain the same mysterious stranger is behind the threatening letters she’s received. Realizing she’ll have to run again, the only escape Lizzie can manage is a return to the last place she wants to go.
 
Once she arrives in Kingdom, Lizzie is confident she’ll be safe until she comes up with a new plan. In reacquainting herself with the town and its people–especially her old friend, Noah Housler–she wonders if she judged her hometown and her Mennonite faith too harshly. However, just as she begins to come to terms with her roots, Lizzie is horrified to discover the danger she ran from is closer than ever. 
 
No longer sure who to trust and fearful for her life and the lives of those around her, Lizzie finds she has only one place left to run–to the Father whose love is inescapable. 
 
I really liked the premise of this book:  How might a former Mennonite handle worldly trouble of the dangerous variety?  I’ve never encountered this idea in any other Mennonite or Amish book, and Mehl used this idea to create a storyline reminiscent of the old-timey villain movies.  You know the ones – where the damsel-in-distress runs, screaming, from the dark-haired villain, up the steps and straight towards him?  You know where he is, you can see her mistakes, but you can also understand why she’s making them, and you’re sadly unable to help her.  Mehl also pulled in church disagreements and large doses of grace, which we all need, and created a story of love, suspense, and redemption.  You can’t help but cheer Lizzie on – and you’ll be unable to put down the book while you’re doing so.
 
Ultra-conservative sects are sometimes misunderstood in our society, but like the rest of us, they are people finding their way.  I love how Mehl depicted them individually as people who don’t always get along and struggle to determine God’s path for them, just as the rest of us do.  Just as the characters in Inescapable had to learn how to give grace and work together, so our world needs a big, heaping helping of this.
 
If you’ve ever felt the need for grace, that a mistake you’ve made separates you from the faithful around you, or you just want to know about how other people live, pick up Inescapable.  You won’t be able to put it back down.
 
To read other reviews on this blog tour, visit the schedule here.
 
I received a free copy of Inescapable from LitFuse Publicity in exchange for a free review.

 

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