A Merciful Secret

A Merciful Secret

Paperback - 2018
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In this Wall Street Journal bestseller, a pair of ritual murders could expose Mercy Kilpatrick to something terrifying: her own past...

Raised off the grid by survivalists, Mercy Kilpatrick believed in no greater safeguard than the backwoods of Oregon. Unforgiven by her father for abandoning the fold for the FBI, Mercy still holds to her past convictions. They're in her blood. They're her secrets--as guarded as her private survival retreat hidden away in the foothills.

In a cabin near her hideaway, Mercy encounters a young girl whose grandmother is dying from multiple knife wounds. Hundreds of miles away, a body is discovered slashed to death in a similar way. The victims--a city judge and an old woman living in the woods--couldn't be more different. With the help of police chief Truman Daly, Mercy must find the killer before the body count rises. Mercy knows that the past has an edge on her. So does her family. How can she keep her secrets now...when they're the only things that can save her?

Publisher: Seattle : Montlake Romance, [2018]
ISBN: 9781542047869
1542047862
Branch Call Number: Fic
Characteristics: 322 pages ; 21 cm.

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LLM428
Nov 04, 2018

I had read one of Kendra Elliot's books before and forgot to write her name down so I could read more. I picked up this book in the library's recommended section and remembered that I had read about Mercy Kilpatrick previously. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more. The book also gave me a different insight into "preppers" and what they are about.

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maucarden
Jan 19, 2018

You can take the girl out of the family circle but you can’t take the prepper out of the girl. Mercy Kilpartrick is an FBI agent who has a hidden cabin in the woods and is a secret prepper. On the way back from a late night visit to her cabin she almost runs over a child desperately seeking help for her dying grandmother.
Morrigan Sabin’s grandmother, Olivia, isn’t just dying, she has been slashed to death and Morrigan has been alone with her. Her mother, Salome, left before the crime and Morrigan doesn’t know where or for how long, or why.
The family’s isolation isn’t for the same reason as Mercy’s hidden cabin; the Sabins stay hidden because they are healers, herbalists and maybe other spooky things. They have been ostracized for generations, unless of course someone needs their help. Then they come sneakin’ ‘round that back door.
Mercy has been told in no uncertain terms that she is a witness, nothing else. Yeah, like she is going to listen, especially since a judge in Portland, OR has just been found murdered. The Judge has slash marks in the same pattern as Olivia Sabin. He also has family connections to the area. Since he is a federal judge, this brings the FBI into the picture. The murder also brings a welcome appearance of two characters from Elliot’s Bone Secrets series.
Mercy, along with her lover, Police Chief Truman Daly inserts themselves into the investigation of the two connected murders. Truman does so as local law enforcement who knows everyone, even the missing Salome, a fact he doesn’t wish to acknowledge. Mercy has her own personal connections to some of the suspects.
Mercy is a complex and conflicted character. How she made it into the FBI is amazing and would probably not have happened in reality. She has an absolute need for her secret cabin, dating back to her being raised by a family of preppers. Her upbringing is still an integral part of her, despite being banned from the family by her father. Mercy thinks she is prepared for any eventuality with her cabin, except for what really happens.
Mercy has been estranged from her family for eighteen years but recently has reestablished contact with some members. Her blind sister Rose still remains Mercy’s closest friend and relative. It is disquieting to read about Rose’s happiness with her pregnancy, even though the baby was conceived in a violent rape.
The information presented in the book about preppers, their communities and other survivalists is so fascinating. The mindset seems so stupid, or it did until recently. First thing Mercy does is check the morning news. Think about that for a moment. Think about N. Korea. Think about Hawaii and its recent scare. Who’s the crazy one?
Chief Daly is still a steady character, providing loving balance for Mercy. He continues to learn as much as possible about the unusual people of Eagle Rock and the surrounding area.
The more I read about Bend. OR or the fictional Eagle Rock, the more I want to move there. Right after I move for awhile to Three Pines and Virtue Falls. Elliot paints a picture of her settings that equals her unusual characters, both major and minor. Eagle Rock and its citizens is a whole ‘nother world.
Twists and turns abound in this book, just as they do on the mountain road to Mercy’s cabin. The story draws you in and keeps you guessing.
There is a hint of the supernatural in A Merciful Secret with a lovely scene between Mercy and Salome.
Of course A Merciful Secret can be read as a standalone, but then it would be like missing a visit with weird neighbors and catching up with them.

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