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Fields of Grace [Paperback]

Kim Vogel Sawyer
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)

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Book Description

September 1, 2009
With their eldest son nearly to the age when he will be drafted into military service, Reinhardt and Lillian Vogt decide to immigrate to America, the land of liberty, with their three sons and Reinhardt's adopted brother, Eli. But when tragedy strikes during the voyage, Lillian and Eli are forced into an agreement neither desires. Determined to fulfill his obligation to Reinhardt, Eli plans to see Lillian and her sons safely settled on their Kansas homesteadand he's equally determined that the boys will be reared in the Mennonie faith. What he doesn't expect is his growing affection for Lillianand the deep desire to be part of a family.

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Positioned as a gentle historical romance for lovers of Amish and Mennonite stories, this tale by inspirational Christian novelist Vogel Sawyer (My Heart Remembers) fits this description in too tidy a fashion. Set in 1872, married couple Reinhardt and Lillian Vogt decide to leave their Mennonite village of Gnadenfeld, Russia, for America rather than see their eldest son, Henrik, drafted into the military. The Vogts begin their ocean voyage along with their three sons and Reinhardt's foster brother Eli Bornholdt when the unthinkable occurs. Faced with sudden tragedy and a future in Kansas now made even more uncertain, Lillian must act quickly and decisively, and does so, but not without drawing the ire of her oldest son. With little to go on but grit, faith and loyalty to each other, these immigrants forge a new life despite obstacles both internal and external. Fans of this type of formulaic fiction won't be put off by its conclusion or its lightweight treatment of true loss and the grief that follows. Others who prefer more realism in their reads won't be as easily satisfied. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

Sawyer brings to her readers a moving tale in Fields of Grace, based on her own unique family heritage.

Opening in Russia in the latter half of the 19th century, members of a Mennonite family are faced with one of the greatest challenges of their lives. In an effort to save their eldest son from being forced into military service on his 18th birthday, Lillian and Reinhardt Vogt face the grim reality of uprooting their family and leaving behind their close-knit community to find religious freedom in America. What they discover on their journey tests the very foundation of Lillian's faith.

Fields of Grace is a heart-touching story about what it means to be a family. Finding hope, the Vogt family rekindles faith and makes a new life in what becomes for them a true promised land. --Christian Retailing


Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers; Original edition (September 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764205080
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764205088
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (76 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #922,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars " Absolute Perfection " August 11, 2009
Format:Paperback
Fields of Grace by Kim Vogel Sawyer is ab-so-lute perfection ! When Reinhardt and Lillian Vogt decide to immigrate to America ,with their three sons and Reinhardt's adopted brother Eli, double tragedy strikes. Lillian and Eli are forced to marry, in order to be able to travel together. Eli is determined to fulfill his promise to take care of Lillian and her sons and see them safely to America. What Eli and Lillian don't expect is the feelings and affection they begin to have for one another, as they start to build their life together in the new world. Lillian begins to feel guilty for the feelings she has for Eli. Eli has never had a real family and is afraid he will eventually lose his new ready-made family. Eli and Lillian's strong faith in the Mennonite faith keeps them going. A wonderful book.

My only complaint is that it was so good , I could not put it down, and read it in less than two days. I would love to see a sequel to this to catch up Henrik ,the oldest son to see how he fairs in love in America. Whoever does Kim's art work for her book covers does fantastic work also. Wonderful, and spirtually uplifting novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Lovely Tale of Faith and Hope October 8, 2009
Format:Paperback
When their eldest son nears the age when he can be drafted into the Russian military, Reinhart and Lillian Vogt look to a new world which offers them freedom and opportunity. Along with their three sons and Reinhart's adopted brother, Eli, they immigrate to America. But on the long sea journey from Russia, tragedy strikes, ripping apart the family as it was and joining them together in ways they never expected.

Fields of Grace is another moving historical novel from beloved author Kim Vogel Sawyer. It's obvious that Sawyer spends a great amount of time researching her stories to get the details just right. From the way a sod house is built to mouth-watering descriptions of traditional Russian foods, the historical details add depth to the story. But Sawyer does more than get the facts right. She gets the characters right.

On the wild Kansas prairie, Eli must fight to keep the promises he made to Reinhart and to Lillian. For her part, Lillian has more to deal with than any woman should in one lifetime. And her sons struggle to find their own place in the new world and their new life. Through it all, the family clings to their faith in God, sometimes wavering, but always returning to it. In the end, they discover that God uses bad situations to make beautiful things, and that He always gives us more than we need, even when we don't know to ask for it.

Full disclosure: I received a copy of Fields of Grace from the publisher for the purpose of reviewing. I am not a paid reviewer. The opinions expressed in this review are mine alone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great story, struggled with style. September 19, 2009
Format:Kindle Edition
This book has a unique and cute story line, but I had a hard time getting into the book. I'm not sure what my problem with it was. I think I mostly struggled with the style of writing, not the story itself.

The story starts with a Mennonite family in Russia, who finds themselves in a situation where they are needing to move to America immediately. Trouble ensues during their travels, and they find themselves in Kansas in a situation that they hadn't expected. Friendships, romances, and trust in God all find their place in this story.

Sawyer writes from her own family's experiences as she weaves this story about Eli and Lillian. She brings real life to the characters, as she tells their story in her own unique way.

If you enjoy reading historical fiction and enjoy learning about the Mennonite people and their faith, you will want to pick up this book from Bethany House Publishers.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My new favorite September 12, 2009
Format:Paperback
This book was wonderful. I didn't want to put it down and I didn't want it to end. Especially enjoyable was the glimpse it gave into the immigrant experience shared by so many of our ancestors. I got a taste of the history of the German Mennonite colonies in Russia, the life on a ship coming to America and the settling of the plains of Kansas. So much rich heritage is within the pages of this book but the story is so compelling that you do not even realize how much historical information you are receiving until you sit savoring the whole experience at the end of the book. I'm going to be looking for more by this author. And maybe a sequel -- hint hint.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mennonite Inspiration August 29, 2009
Format:Paperback
Picture in your mind the swaying of vast fields of wheat in a warm gentle breeze and imagine, just for a moment, the countless hours of hard work that it takes to bring a crop to maturity even for those who have farmed the same land for many years.

Now, step back in time more than one hundred years, to the harsh Kansas plains where the first Mennonite immigrants settled. Changes in Russian government found them unable to continue to live according to their faith at home, and ultimately shipload after shipload of Mennonites fled to build a new life in America. They brought with them precious grains of special "Turkey Red" wheat that they had grown successfully in Russia. This fine wheat eventually enabled them to prosper in their new home but not without enduring much hardship and no small measure of heartache, all the while being sustained by their faith in the God who had brought them to this new land.

Kim Vogel Sawyer in her new book Fields of Grace tells the fictional account of one such family. This book, reminiscent of similar Christian fiction about Amish and Norwegian immigration to America, is a refreshing story that captivated me from the first page, when Reinhardt and Lillian Vogt make the decision to bring their family to America, and kept my interest until the last page. The family endures much in this story, but the faith that is woven throughout the saga carries them through each trial. In addition to being an inspiring and enjoyable read, I found myself learning more about the Mennonite way of life and gained new appreciation for the strength of their character as they built new lives in a new land.

This book could easily turn out to be the first in a series about this group of Mennonite settlers.

by Linda Hoye
for Story Circle Book Reviews
reviewing books by, for, and about women
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book - alone or as part of the series
This has been my favorite in the series so far...do wish there were connections made between all of the books, but as a stand alone book this one was TOPS!! Read more
Published 7 days ago by Deborah Shirek
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book!
Will order Kindle version of the next book in the series. Have read 4 Heart of the Prairie books! Thank you.....
Published 13 days ago by Deborah Domingo
5.0 out of 5 stars Field of Grace
Through out the story I cold not help from think how Great and sufficient God is ... He love's up beyond our own understanding. Read more
Published 16 days ago by Judy Parker
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
She is my favorite author great reads
Published 24 days ago by MaryEllen
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I like this item.
Published 1 month ago by Alisha Gerardo
5.0 out of 5 stars Love the Prairie Series!
I have just finished reading Book 4 of the Prairie series and I loved everyone of these books! I have not read a series of books in a very long time (since I was a kid) and Ms. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Christine
4.0 out of 5 stars Faith under fire
There is insight into a culture I had no knowledge of .I like the bravery of setting off to a foreign land without the language to understand They were fortunate to find honest... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Erma
5.0 out of 5 stars Love to Read
Very good reading, characters was great, need a part two to the story.
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I like these books because it helps me understand my part of having a closer walk with God!
Published 2 months ago by Peggy
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Read
The book was filled with joy, intrigue, and sadness! I found myself eagerly rushing through each page only to be sad when there was no new page to turn at the end.
Published 3 months ago by Polly Stelzel
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