Bringing Maggie Home

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Bringing Maggie Home

Bringing Maggie Home (WaterBrook, September 2017)

Decades of loss, an unsolved mystery, and a rift spanning three generations

Hazel DeFord is a woman haunted by her past. While berry picking in a blackberry thicket in 1943, ten-year old Hazel momentarily turns her back on her three-year old sister Maggie and the young girl disappears.

Almost seventy years later, the mystery remains unsolved and the secret guilt Hazel carries has alienated her from her daughter Diane, who can’t understand her mother’s overprotectiveness and near paranoia. While Diane resents her mother’s inexplicable eccentricities, her daughter Meghan—a cold case agent—cherishes her grandmother’s lavish attention and affection.

When a traffic accident forces Meghan to take a six-week leave-of-absence to recover, all three generations of DeFord women find themselves unexpectedly under the same roof. Meghan knows she will have to act as a mediator between the two headstrong and contentious women. But when they uncover Hazel’s painful secret, will Meghan also be able to use her investigative prowess to solve the family mystery and help both women recover all that’s been lost?

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Reviews

  • Don’t let this book pass you by. Once again Ms. Sawyer has brought a lovely story of LIFE and all it brings.

  • Bringing Maggie Home is a well written novel showcasing forgiveness, compassion, hope and love. It shows us that we need to be honest with those we love and to learn to show compassion and forgive each other for our mistakes. I laughed and cried along with Hazel, Diane and Meghan always keeping my fingers and toes crossed for the happy ending that this family deserves. This is a definite must read novel!

  • This book is about how the past can shape your future if not dealt with and can also affect future generations. I enjoyed reading the book.

  • “Bringing Maggie Home” by author Kim Vogel Sawyer made me cry  as I read it. Sometimes I was happy sometimes I was sad. I cannot begin to explain what a wonderful story this is. It is a story of faith, family and love. I cannot say anymore without giving away the story but I  recommend this as highly as I can. Be ready to not be able to put it down once you start reading it.

  • A story of three generations of women who bring their baggage in their relationships with one another to the table where frustration, a few eye rolls but much love ensues. This is a wonderful story with mystery, relationships, forgiveness, redemption and love. Well woven characters make you miss the DeFord women when the last page has passed. Wonderful read!

  • Definitely an intriguing (and heartbreaking) story. This book made me stop and thank God for His faithfulness and strive to be more in tune with His gentle voice. Great job Kim Vogel Sawyer!

  • I liked this novel of character transformation. It was interesting to see how past events had shaped the three women. I liked how the truth of past events being revealed made for an understanding of why Hazel raised Diane the way she did. That is a good lesson to us all to be truthful to our family and friends. There is a little bit of mystery and romance too.

  • I really liked this book. The whole mystery behind the disappearance of Maggie had me wanting to read as fast as I can. I wanted to find out what happened. You can only imagine the guilt that Diane held onto her whole life, so you could understand her sense of being over protective. When Meghan found out about the cold case she was determined to solve it. I thought the author did a good job of developing the story and characters. This could have been a real life story. I felt drawn in from the first page. I also liked how through trying to solve this case the family was brought together.

  • A heart-gripping, emotional story that covers three generations of DeFord women and a mystery dating back to when matriarch, Hazel DeFord, was a ten-year-old girl. Powerful, heart-breaking and healing story all in one! Didn’t want to stop reading even to eat!!

  • Right from the start, this book will grab your soul and twist it through lots of ups and downs.

  • One thing I appreciate about Kim Vogel Sawyers books is the way she weaves living a Christian life in the lives of her characters. In Bringing Maggie Home, I love the way she eased the Gospel into her story, especially in the life of Sean

  • Bringing Maggie Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer hits all the right notes in a well crafted novel. A story about mother-daughter relationships as it is about the consequence of a past that haunts. With enough intrigue and a mystery that drives, the emotional turmoil and the effects of it that drove 3 generations, Bringing Maggie Home will ensnare your soft spot.

  • Bringing Maggie Home has a completely different plot than compared to other novels by the author. For some reason, I was expecting another romance story, but this one is a mystery-thriller-drama. I was hooked to the story after reading the first chapter, which is set in 1943 and sets up the overall plot. The second chapter takes place in 2013, where us readers are introduced to Meghan, and then story keeps flipping back on and off between 1943 and 2013 for most of the novel.

  • In Bringing Maggie Home, Kim Vogel Sawyer weaves a beautiful story with strong messages of faith, trust, and hope. It’s wonderfully poignant novel that captivated me from the first page, and I highly recommend it.

  • Bringing Maggie Home is my favorite Sawyer book yet!  I absolutely love the way that Sawyer blends the stories of all three generations of DeFord women.  

  • This book was so hard to put down! It’s a wonderfully written, suspenseful story that spans three generations. I loved getting to know the three main characters, as they learned how the choices of the previous generation affected their response to mother/daughter relationships. I will warn you, this one is hard to put down, since it is well written and has a lot going on. I can’t even imagine having to deal with the aftermath of losing a child.

  • I really enjoyed this novel as readers get to understand how the actions of one person can have a life long affect on those that come after them. This is more than a family torn apart by the years but also leads to discovery, hope and reconciliation as they work together in hopes of finding the answers that will do more than heal them of their past hurts.

  • Bringing Maggie Home is a delightful Christian novel about the power of love and loss. It moves backwards and forwards seventy years from 1943. It is a read that really impacted me and my emotions. The reader ‘sees’ life through the eyes of three generations, at various stages throughout their lives.

  • Much more than a story about searching for a long lost sister, this is a story about grace, reliance on God, second chances, and forgiveness. The storylines flowed together effortlessly, and I found myself sad once I reached the last page.

  • A fantastic story that will have you beside yourself with worry for this family. A great read!

  • Sawyer masterfully portrays the family dynamics of Hazel’s childhood and her relationships decades later with her daughter and granddaughter. So much is tucked inside the pages of this book – mother/daughter issues, sister love, and more. Poignant and worth every tender ache, Bringing Maggie Home brims with love, loss, hope, and faith.

  • Bringing Maggie Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer was a book that I fell in love with. This book combined two of the things that I currently love. It combined reading, and it also combined my love for real crime / cold cases.

  • “Bringing Maggie Home”, by Kim Vogel Sawyer, is an excellent story that read like fiction based on a true story. It is easy to identify with all three women, and cheer them on. It plays with your emotions, so be prepared.

  • Moments says:

    I loved this book, it was such a powerful read.  I loved the mystery/cold case aspect of it, but also how this one incident has molded Hazel’s life and her relationships as well as leading Diane to feel and behave the way that she does.  Meghan is such a strong individual and my favorite of the three women. 

  • Thank you, Ms Vogel Sawyer, for this thought provoking book. I’m looking forward to your next book. I hope you’ll be writing more about Meghan. She’s an intriguing character.

  • I always like Ms. Sawyer’s books because there is a thread of hope no matter the circumstances surrounding the plot. For anyone needing a novel of hope amidst angst, this novel would serve you well.

  • You can definitely feel the emotions through this story and you can also feel God through this story as well. Forgiveness,love and God is always there for you when you need him. The characters were very well done. I really enjoyed reading about each character through this story. A well drawn story line and read smoothly. I was hooked from the start. A job well done.

  • Have you ever read a book that you just wanted to read over and over again? That’s this book for me! It was a fast paced read that left me in love and wanting more. I could read it over and over again! It’s well written and full of surprises. The characters are well developed, unique, and relatable. There’s no fluff and the book is easy to understand and follow. I finished this book in under 12 hours. I just couldn’t put it down. Sawyer  is such a talented writer! I plan to read more from her.

  • Opening in 1943, the time settings and character perspectives of Bringing Maggie Home dance about bringing viewpoints built on both environmental and individual angles.

  • Bringing Maggie Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer was a book that interested me so much from the synopsis that I nearly requested it twice! That being said, when I started reading it took me nearly 2 weeks to get past the first couple of chapters. The back and forth style of the writing going between present day and nearly 60 years before was hard initially. However, once I pushed through those first few chapters, it was excellent! So excellent, in fact, that I finished within 24 hours. The story is of three generations in one family who are brought together after the granddaughters is injured working. As they come together, you learn that there is a lot of animosity between the older two generations as well as between the younger two generations.

  • I love this author. I have read almost every book she has written. She was among the first of the Christian Authors that I discovered when I switched genres. It was interesting to see the switch in gears then what Ms. Vogel Sawyer writes – but it seems to be a smooth transition. Her books have a way of unfolding right before your eyes. The characters are well developed, well written and tangible. I enjoyed going on this journey that the author took me on.

  • My Thoughts On The Book: This was one of the best books I have read in a while. It was AWESOME!!!! I have shared it with my reading buddies and plan to reread it as soon as I get it back! I love the way the story weaves throughout the lives of 3 different generations of women in the same family. I felt as if I knew each character. This was one of those books you just can’t put down once you pick it up. I hated to see the book come to an end. Kim Vogel Sawyer is one of my favorite authors. She really makes the story come true on the page. I actually recommend all of her books, but most especially this one! It is dynamite. Loved it!!!!

  • This is a beautiful story. I love the way that the author uses the perspective of each of the three women throughout. The story changes from present to past and from Hazel to Diane to Meghan. This way of presenting the story allowed me to get to know each character well, and the characters were well developed.

    The change back and forth from past to present was also a good way to watch the story unfold. I was able to “see” the events as they took place. And viewing the past events through the eyes of each character helped me to understand each one better.

  • This was such a wonderful story! I didn’t want to put it down; it completely fascinated me. I loved that we got all three perspectives and it’s still amazing to me how things can get so misinterpreted because of our past experiences or prejudices.

  • A book about three generations, grandmother, daughter and granddaughter and the relationship between each one and how something that happened when Hazel (the grandmother) was young could affect the each generations. A book I enjoyed very much from start to finish. Very inspirational. Maggie is the long lost sister of Hazel and 70 years later they are trying to find her. Love the characters, the dogs are a special addition to the story. I don’t believe there was anything I did not like about the book.

  • This book by Kim Vogel Sawyer was so complex and deep and had so many facets! However, it was written so well that you could keep all the stories straight and it was such a great book!

    It was filled with suspense, drama, mystery, love and faith that withstands it all! It kept me on the edge of my seat wanting to read and read until I found out what happened! It was definitely a great read and I recommend!

  • Even though this story touched on a very sad and scary topic, devastating people’s lives, I cannot express enough how much this story affected me to love a little more and let go of things that do not matter. Hug my family a little tighter and thank God for them every day, many times a day. More than anything this book just showed me how all our perceptions right or wrong can affect those we love the most. That forgiveness is best and guilt and shame can ruin and cause death.

  • I was excited to get to read another book by Kim Vogel Sawyer because I have enjoyed other books from her. Bringing Maggie Home: A Novel by Kim Vogel Sawyer was next in my pile to read and I had to finish it before posting the review. I was trying to find time to read and it seemed to always be taking a back seat to other things but I finally finished the book and enjoyed the amazing progress through the book to bring Maggie home.

  • A very well written novel which spans three generations and 70 years and each was tied together beautifully. It also showed how God can take what seems like a tragedy and use it for His glory. I didn’t want to put this book down because I couldn’t wait to see how it turned out.

  • This is not an action/adventure. The story takes a slower pace, with frequent stops along the way to look back at memories. But if you are looking for a novel that will draw you gently into the emotional drama of its characters and extend hope to your own heart, Bringing Maggie Home is a sweet read.

  • I so enjoy a book that spans generations as Kim Vogel Sawyer’s “Bringing Maggie Home” does. Not only does it span generations it also deals with a cold case mystery bringing a nice thread of suspense to the story. Ms. Sawyer handled this storyline quite well, bringing the reader into the story and keeping them intrigued while trying to figure out the mystery.

  • The book is rich in history and takes readers on a journey of forgiveness, mending relationships, finding faith and experiencing unconditional love. I have to say this has been one of my favorite books of 2017. With such gripping emotions and connecting with characters, the story was written with such passion I could feel the author laboring over each word. Don’t miss the story of three generations and a mystery that will have you crying and cheering at the same time.

  • What a powerful page turning read, one that started so innocently with a berry picking trip, a trip that dictates the rest of their lives.
    The Author has us walking in three different women’s shoes, Grandmother, Mother, and Daughter, and how one act affects each one through decades, and actually forms the person they are now.

  • Definitely a book worth picking up and once you start reading you won’t want it to end – you will love the characters that much!

  • First of all I just love the cover of this book! Its so eye catching and sets the perfect scene for the first few pages of this book. I was instantly intrigued after reading the plot of this book. I am always fond of a book with any kind of mystery element.

  • This is an interesting story, shared by three generations of women. I found it challenging sometimes, since it switches viewpoints among the three women. Still, it is a captivating story.

  • Bringing Maggie Home is a story I wasn’t entirely sure about going in. Although I have read many of Kim Vogel Sawyer’s books in the past, and really enjoyed them, but I wasn’t sure how I felt about the plotline of this story going in. However, I was captivated with the mystery surrounding Maggie’s disappearance from the very first couple of chapters, and I soon found myself fighting for the relationship between Hazel and Diane as well. Honestly, I think the brokenness between the two of them was one of the best aspects of this story, because I loved reading about the way their relationship ebbed and flowed. There were just so many aspects of this novel that made it that much more enjoyable, and I absolutely loved the ending.

  • I so enjoyed Bringing Maggie Home. It has all the elements of a great story and a great movie for that matter! I love a book that will pull on your heart strings and won’t let go until the very end. You will laugh, you’ll cry, you may even find yourself wanting to smack a character or two! Either way I know you will love it and I hope you will grab a copy and take a trip to Vegas with the DeFord women.

  • The mysterious disappearance of her sister during childhood haunts Hazel DeFord and forever impacts her life. Told from three different points of view, this story gently draws the reader in, and the varying perspectives of three generations offer a deeper understanding of each of the complex characters. A family drama laced with intrigue, Bringing Maggie Home is an enjoyable read.

  • I read a LOT of books, and I don’t say this often about a book, but this is one of the most engaging books I’ve read this year! I did not want to put it down! The emotions, the depth to the characters, the rich details, family dynamics, beautiful prose… There are so many things to gush over.

  • EmpowerMoms says:

    This book was very well written and kept me engaged from beginning to end. It was an emotional book to read with some very sad parts, but overall I liked it because it was realistic and hopeful.

  • Ms. Sawyer added an interesting twist to this involved story of conflicting family and conflicting generations. She wove a decades old mystery into the pages resolving it at the end in what would prove mind boggling in real life.

  • Bringing Maggie Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer is a beautiful, powerful, and inspiring novel that readers will fall in love with and will not want to put down!

  • Book by Book says:

    What an excellent book. Kim Vogel Sawyer’s Bringing Maggie Home held me captive from the very beginning with its characters and their secrets, regrets, and hurts. Sharing the story of three generations of the DeFord family, many moments throughout the novel broke my heart, but great emotion and faith flow through it all, too. Add to the family drama the mystery deep in the past, and Bringing Maggie Home is an intriguing and page-turning read. I loved it and can’t help to recommend it to all interested readers.

  • A creative masterpiece. Captivating, poignant, riveting, suspenseful, spiritual … I could keep going, but all the adjectives I might come up with barely scratch the surface of what you’ll find within these pages. There’s a complexity in this character-driven, multi-layered story. Best of all is that readers will see Jesus in this story as Sawyer’s characters exhibit faith in action – not a perfect faith, but a realistic one that struggles as it grows.

  • I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Suspense/Crime Fiction and/or Kim Vogel Sawyer, you will NOT be disappointed. I cannot wait to read more from Kim Vogel Sawyer, she is definitely one of my top must read authors.

  • Bringing Maggie Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer was a book I could not put down. The tension between the mother-daughter relationships was far too real and the working through decades of misunderstanding was beautiful. The mystery included in the story was heartbreaking and likely a truthful telling of some missing children nearly one-hundred years ago. This book reminded me a little of Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate, which came out earlier this year.

  • What a challenging story to write, I thought as I read the synopsis before even getting the book.  How can an author take a genre such as cold cases, family rifts, faith, and more to come up with moving book?  I don’t know how Kim did it but she succeeded beyond my imagination!

  • I loved all the intricate personal relationships and how each relationship was in some way affected by the incident that happens in the first chapter. How one devistating incident can affect other generations to come is very well represented in this book.

  • I enjoyed BRINGING MAGGIE HOME, not because of the mystery vein, but because relationships were restored and healing found.

  • Just beautiful and so very sad!!! It brought tears of sadness and tears of joy to my eyes!!
    Some of this story even made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck. Call it premonition.

  • I have always enjoyed every book I’ve read by Kim Vogel Sawyer, but I think Bringing Maggie Home may be one of my favorites by her. It is one that I’ve caught myself thinking about several times throughout my day.

  • I like the author’s writing style so I might be open to reading more of her novels.

  • This book was engaging, beautifully written and compelling to read.

  • Author Kim Vogel Sawyer uses a variety of writing techniques that work well in Bringing Maggie Home.  The most striking contrast came between the time periods involved in the story.  In turn, this impacted the characters who star in the plot. It was fascinating to read how one woman’s past so strongly influenced the next woman’s life.  It really would be a spectacular movie! No matter where you fit in the whole scheme of family relationships, there is someone in this book who will remind you of a person you know. 

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