The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

The Mercies is one of those haunting reads that had tears rolling down my face and will stay with me for a long time to come. This book first came to my attention on the longlist for the Jhalek Prize and I was not disappointed.

What I learned from The Mercies:

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

A reminder that we never really own the earth, we are only ever custodians.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

…just a beautifully astute observation on grief.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

When you are away do you miss the place or the people? I think lockdown has shown that it is often the people and the human spark that makes the places so special.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Norway has long been on my “list” as a dream destination, and this description just cements that! ‘I take each sight for itself alone…’ Such a beautiful sentiment. And yet another lovely reminder that just because you have seen other sights that people may perceive as “more special”, it never ever detracts from the beauty in front of you in any given moment if you simply choose to see it.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Are you existing or living? Never, ever stop striving to

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

In my opinion this is the worse kind of faith…faith should never ever be weaponised – and actually it’s this very weaponising of faith that can lead to villainisation of groups of people perceived to be “others”. We see this so many times in history and it always makes me sad.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Lot’s of lessons that could be taken from this one – whether as a study aid or a timely reminder to start a gratitude journal or jar – if you write down the good or positive or happy things that happen in your day you will have an eternal reminder on the not so good days.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

Well I couldn’t very well leave this one out now, could I?

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

This passage is simply stunning. It made me think of my daughter. She brings light and sunshine to my life in so many unexpected ways and I couldn’t ever imagine being without her.

Quote from ‘The Mercies’ by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

The most beautiful summing up of this book…and it resonates in such a magical way. How we lose someone shouldn’t really ever become their defining moment because how they lived every single day is so much more…

This book really is something special, and sent me down a rabbit hole of research surrounding the real life events in Vardo, and the beautiful memorial they have created, together with the close links to our very own Scottish Witch Trials. There’s a follow up post coming very soon…

Let us know your thought on this books in the comments below!

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Happy reading!

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