In a desperate time, can Neva find forgiveness for a grievous wrong—and make room for hope?
Neva Shilling has a heavy load of responsibility while her husband travels to neighboring communities and sells items from his wagon. In his absence, she faithfully runs the Shilling Mercantile, working to keep their business strong as the Depression takes its toll, and caring for their twins.
When a wagon pulls up after supper, Neva and her children rush out—and into the presence of the deputy driving a wagon carrying three young children. The deputy shocks her with the news that Warren and his wife have died, insisting it was their last request that the three children go live with “Aunt Neva.”
Neva’s heart is shattered as she realizes that Warren’s month-long travels were excuses for visits with his secret family. She wants nothing more than to forget Warren, but can she abandon these innocent children to an orphanage? Yet if she takes them in, will she ever be able to see them as more than evidence of her husband’s betrayal and love them the way God does?
Proud owners of the town's general store, Warren and Neva Shilling along with their two children, Bud and Belle, live luxuriously in Buffalo Creek, Kans. despite the country's financial troubles of the 1930s. Warren's frequent weeks away from home while on business keep his family busy with the store and eagerly awaiting his arrival. Then Neva's life is dramatically turned upside down one day with the arrival of Warren's secret family: three young children, a wagon load of furniture, and heartbreaking news delivered by Jesse Caudel, the new sheriff of Buffalo Creek. Although Neva keeps Warren's horrible secret to herself, the sheriff discovers the truth about the children. Neva realizes that the secret cannot remain hidden, and knows she cannot protect her children from hurt or her heart from shame. When sales at the store begin to fall, Neva fears there is no hope, but the unexpected friendship of an overly ambitious furniture salesman helps her heart to mend, and allows Neva to trust again. The message that love is greater than wealth is sewn through every seam of this charming story.
Wonderful, hearfelt novel!
Room for Hope by Kim Vogel Sawyer is set in Buffalo Creek, Kansas in 1936 (starts in late September). Neva Gaines Shilling helps her husband run the Main Street Mercantile and takes care of their home (above the store) and their two children. Warren Shilling (her husband) takes a wagon out to pick up supplies and visit remote communities. Warren has been gone a month and they are expecting him home that day. Instead of Warren, Deputy Sheriff Jesse Caudel arrives with a wagon. He has come to inform Neva that her “brother” Warren passed away along with his wife, Violet. One of his last actions was for someone to bring their three children to their Aunt Neva. Neva is shocked, but she quickly recovers (she does not want the Jesse to know she is really Warren’s wife). Neva takes the three children into her home (reluctantly) for now (while she decides what to do). Neva tells her children (twins Bella and Bud) that their father wanted them to take in these three children (not that Warren is there father as well). What would happen if the truth comes out about Warren and his activities? Can Neva handle manage the store on her own? Warren always handled the ordering (and the store is almost bare). Arthur Randall (of Randall’s Emporium) offers to buy out Mrs. Shilling, but Neva does not wish to sell. Arthur tries to convince her with charm and kindness. Will Arthur be able to convince Neva to sell the mercantile? You will need to read Room for Hope to see how Neva handles these new developments in her life.
Room for Hope is such a good book. I loved Room for Hope and did not want it to end. The book is well-written and has such a good flow (makes for easy reading). It is a heartwarming story about faith, acceptance, and God’s love. This tale will warm your heart. Room for Hope has such a sweet ending. I stayed up late reading this book because I did not want to put it down. I give Room for Hope 5 out of 5 stars. I look forward to the next book by Kim Vogel Sawyer. If you enjoy historical, Christian novels, you will want to read Room for Hope!
I received a complimentary copy of Room for Hope from the publisher and Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.