Thursday, September 5, 2013
WHAT ONCE WAS LOST by Kim Vogel Sawyer
On a small Kansas farm, Christina Willems lovingly shepherds a group of poor and displaced individuals who count on her leadership and have come to see the Brambleville Asylum for the Poor as their home. But when a fire breaks out in the kitchen leaving the house inhabitable, she must scramble to find shelter for all in her care, scattering her dear “family.”
With no other options, Christina is forced to approach Levi Jonnson, a reclusive mill owner, to take in a young blind boy named Tommy Kilgore. Levi agrees with reluctance but finds himself surprised by the bond that quickly grows between him and Tommy. As obstacles to repairing the farm pile up against Christina, she begins to question her leadership ability and wonders if she can fulfill the mission to which she's dedicated her life. And when an old adversary challenges Christina, will she find an unlikely ally—or more—in the aloof Levi? Can Levi reconcile with the rejection that led to his hermit-like existence and open his heart and life to something more, especially a relationship with a loving God?
With her father's death, Christina has taken over running the Asylum for the Poor and unconditionally loves every person in her care. She has made this place their home, a safe haven. Then a horrible disaster... a suspicious fire destroys the kitchen and everyone must be placed elsewhere. It isn't an easy task finding townspeople who will allow these outcasts into their homes. The bonds that form, the friendships, and even romance make this an emotional yet very enjoyable read.
I loved the characters, especially little Tommy, blind and disfigured from a boiler explosion. No one wants him. Christina has no choice but to ask the last person on earth she's ever think about asking, Levi Johnson, who just wants to be left alone. She convinces him to let the boy stay for a little while. Tommy has a secret though and Levi may be the person who can relieve his fears.
What an incredible story, I was hooked from the first page. Sawyer is so talented, she knows how to tell a story!
I received a copy of this book free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.