A powerful debut novel of a refuge in Brooklyn for women in trouble—and the one woman who will risk all to protect them.
In the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn stands a century-old row house presided over by renegade, silver-haired Sister Evelyn. Gruff and indomitable on the surface, warm and wry underneath, Evelyn and her fellow sisters makes Mercy House a...more
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Mercy House is a powerful story about three nuns who run a shelter for victims of domestic violence.
Nuns Sister Evelyn, Sister Josphine, and Sister Maria run Mercy House, a refuge for women who have suffered horrific physical, emotional, and sexual abuse at the hands of their partners, parents, and guardians. To help these women, the three nuns act in ways that go against the teachings of the Catholic Church.
Sister Evelyn is at the forefront of this story. In her role as pr ...more
This is an incredible story about women’s unity and solidarity for fighting against abandonment, physical and mental abuse, harm, humiliation, neglecting. I enjoy the characters of this amazing house opening to their doors to those brave women suffered more than they could stand and who are adamant to leave their painful memories and wounded pasts behind, forming great friendships with each other.
I know that too many readers are ready to ...more
Informative and eye-opening. Heart warming and heart breaking.
Mercy House is a women’s shelter in downtown Brooklyn run by three vivacious nuns. The shelter provides a safe place for victims of domestic abuse to flee their from their dangerous situations. Sister Evelyn, one of the founders of the shelter, is the main character of this story whose personality had me surprised and giggling in each chapter. Her no-nonsense, tell-it-how-it-is attitude helps her navigate the rough and rundo ...more
Bishop Hawkins is scheduled to visit Mercy House, and the sisters are worried he may find out the extra ways they have helped the women, as in ways that are not allowed by the church.
Sister Evelyn is at the heart of Mercy House, and she will use all her might to protect and serve it. I loved her character. She was ...more
What an amazing story and an amazing debut by Alena Dillon.
Jumping into this book, I was not sure I would be interested in reading about the Catholic Church and the religious cover up as part of its dark history. However, I was completely wrong. I loved the story of a renegade and badass nun unlike those I have had in my parochial school.
Sister Evelyn, our protagonist and once a nurse, runs the Mercy House, located in Brooklyn, a safe haven for the abused and mistrea ...more
Ever since Evelyn entered the convent fifty years ago and was required to rise with the sun, she worshipped sleep like it was a false god.
She’d never been to Rome, she’d never met the current Pontiff, and she had virtually no desire to do so. Pope Benedict XVI wore red velvet capes with ermine fur trim. He commissioned his own cologne, which Evelyn called Pope-pourri. He was chauffeured around in a Mercedes… That lavish lifestyle bore little resemblance to her experience in Bedfo ...more
Her time in the convent wasn't pleasant. Evelyn saw and endured unpleasant things.
After a few years, she and a few of her fellow nuns opened a shelter in Brooklyn that housed girls suffering from domestic abuse and abandonment.
The red door with the angel knocker was a welcome refuge for these girls.
Sister Evelyn - our protagonist, is sixty-nine years old. A nun for fifty years, she was essentially abandoned to the convent at a tender age by her Irish-American family. When still a novice, Evelyn suffered repeated ...more
A wrenching but hopeful story of women seeking shelter from abuse and the unconventional nun that ministers to them.
MERCY HOUSE is story about Sister Evelyn, a feisty feminist nun who runs a shelter for abused women in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood in Brooklyn. When the Vatican sends Bishop Robert Hawkins to investigate American religious sisters as part of the Apostolic Visitation, convinced they are breaking Catholic doctrine, Sister Evelyn is distressed. When t ...more
Mercy house was place of refuge, a place of healing for broken girls. I saw an inside glimpse of the faithful ministry of nuns. They had gone through years of change and were committed to staying the course helping anyone who came to their door. They were brave, determined and not perfect. It was refreshing. It was also brutal and unfair. Life is like that isn’t it?
Some people will think this book is about the Catholic Church, but it was about abuse to women. And it also was about ...more
I think this a book that each person who reads it will have a range of reactions and emotions because this is a story of tragedy and hope, secrets and how they damage those who hold them, how mistakes follow you through life and continue to affect you. It is also ...more
I was really excited about this book’s potential, and it started out really strong. However, about halfway through, it started to feel like too many things were being tossed in the mix, and it started to get feel crowded. I appreciated the ending and will have plenty of people to recommend it to. However, I needed the plotline to be thinned just a bit for a full 5-star rating.
I contacted the author so that I could thank her for such an incredible book!!! I simply love it and since I want to provide a valid and convincing review, I will do it shortly.
If you read this looking for guidance whereas to read this or not, let me tell you this: YES! DO IT! DON'T HESITATE! And don't trust any review saying otherwise xD
By far this will be in my top 5 of the year!!!!
A few words come to mind when de ...more
Mercy House is a women's shelter in Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood in Brooklyn, It is run by three aging nuns, Sister Evelyn, Sister Maria and Sister Josephine, each of them bringing something different to the operation of the Home. It is a shelter that acce ...more
I was initially really excited to read this book after seeing the description. Once I got into the book, it was quickly evident that the author has an ax to grind with the Catholic Church and every negative cliche and stereotype within the Church was milked to its full extent. It is a somewhat heartwarming story wrapped in so many errors and gross misinterpretations of the Catholic Church and Religious Life. I was ...more
A Catholic community based program known as Mercy House is being spearheaded by some amazing women and sisters who share a strong desire to help others in need.
That's until they get word that the Bishop wants to investigate their desires to help women; forbidden by the church.
Sister Evelyn is one tough cookie and stops at nothing to save the house and the women they are attempting to save.
It's a story of grace, of dignity, of cou ...more
“Two eighty-four Chauncey Street. It’s the one with the angel doorknocker. Arrive any time. Day or night. You can be safe.”Sisters Evelyn, Josephine and Maria have run Mercy House for twenty five years, providing a safe place for women who are escaping violence. Although they are undoubtably effective in their mission, they don’t always play by the strict rules of the Catholic Church.
“It’s what we’ve feared,” Josephine said. “It’s him.”Bishop Hawkins is coming to visit Mercy House. His vi ...more
I am not sure what I was expecting when I selected this and started reading but I got so much more than anticipated. This was really a remarkable story about courage and resilience not only that of the women who came there to escape horrible situations, but also ...more
This is one of those books that is not for everyone and is definitely controversial, but I found it to be a compelling and thought-provoking read. (As a Catholic myself, a warning if you are easily offended even by works of fiction, this is not the book for you). It's also a book where the audio narration absolutely added to the story.
Sister Evelyn has experienced repeated sexual abuse at the hands of a well-respected priest...yet she is forced to stay quiet. Sh ...more
(Side note: Many of my Goodreads pals are fellow lovers of Christian, inspirational, and clean fiction. This is not that.)
There is much to applaud about a story that celebrates heroines in their late 60s. These ladies have spent their entire adult lives protecting the ...more
This book is incredibly controversial and I absolutely cannot wait for everyone to read it so we can discuss! This is going to be a fantastic book club choice because there’s SO much to pick apart. People are going to fall into two camps- they are going to love it or they are going t ...more
It rare that we get a book set in a convent in modern day literature. This convent, also known as Mercy House, is in Brooklyn and run by a small number of older nuns. They take in girls, usually young who are in need of care and hiding from the abuse of men in their lives. The characters, both the nuns and the residents are fantastic and the dialog is heartfelt and funny. Then along comes the Bishop who has a previous connection with Siste ...more