Have been so blessed to be a part of Lynn Austin’s launch team for “Legacy of Mercy”. It was such a treat to have heard her speak a couple of times and then to meet her in person this past spring.
“Waves of Mercy” is a story set in Chicago and Holland, Michigan. Time shift of sorts involving two characters. We see the time shift in the memoir one character is writing as she takes us back in time with the history of the Dutch immigrants, their trials and struggles as they settle in the ‘wilderness’ of West Michigan. And with the other character trying to find her place in the world as well as her own history.
“Legacy of Mercy” is the sequel to the story that was begun in “Waves of Mercy”. We get to know more about the characters and how social classes are perceived in the late 1800’s. We also get to see how deep hurts can lead to despair and bitterness. But in the end grace, mercy and forgiveness also shine forth.
Living in Holland, as well as having ancestors who immigrated here and planted a church it was a treat to read both books.
So glad to share an interview with Mrs. Austin.
1. Legacy of Mercy will be released on October 2 and will be the first sequel you’ve ever written. What made you decide to write a sequel?
My readers decided for me! I received many, many letters from them asking if there would be a sequel to “Waves of Mercy.” The main character, Anna, is only in her twenties and is a new Christian, so when she decides to return to Chicago and marry her fiancé at the end of the book, readers wanted to know what happens next in her life. The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to explore what happens next for Anna, too. She has just discovered who her birth mother is, so naturally she’ll want to learn more about her. She’ll also want to solve the mystery of who her real father is and what became of him. What if he is still alive? Lots of material for a story here, especially when the other people in Anna’s life try to discourage her investigations.
2. This story is set in your home town of Holland, MI. Did you discover anything surprising while you were researching these books?
I knew very little about the early history of Holland, Michigan when I began this series—only that it was settled by Dutch immigrants. What surprised me was how much they suffered to establish a settlement here, including religious persecution, a malaria plague, and a devastating fire. Their enduring faith in spite of all their many trials was a huge inspiration to me.
3. You are known for writing multi-generational books and Legacy of Mercy is no exception. What intrigues you about writing in this style?
I enjoy creating women’s personalities from various eras and exploring how the roles and opportunities changed for women from generation to generation. I find it very interesting to see how the choices one generation makes has an influence on each generation after them. It causes me to be more thoughtful in the way I live, knowing that my children, grandchildren and even great-grandchildren may be impacted by my life.
4. Which character in Legacy of Mercy do you identify with the most and why?
I would have to say I identify the most with Geesje DeJonge. For one thing, she is about the same age as I am, and has lived long enough to be able to look back through the years and analyze them. She is in a position to see all of the ways and times when God carried her through—something we usually only see in hindsight, not when we’re going through the difficulties. I’m at the same stage in my life, and I can see God’s faithfulness to me in spite of the many times I questioned His wisdom.
Happy early book birthday Lynn Austin!