My Heart Remembers

series: My Heart Remembers

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United by blood, divided by time, will three orphan train siblings ever find one another again?

Orphaned in a tenement fire, three Irish-immigrant children are sent to Missouri to be adopted. Despite eight-year-old Maelle's desperate attempts to keep her siblings together, each child is taken by a different family. Yet Maelle vows that she will never stop searching for her brother and sister...and that they will be together one day in the future.

Seventeen years later, Maelle is still searching. But the years have washed away her hope... and her memories. What are Mattie and Molly doing now? Where has life taken them? Will she ever see her brother and sister again?


"Waiting for Summer's Return is a tale of prairie life that will touch your heart and warm your soul."
--Janette Oke

"Kim Vogel Sawyer is an exceptional storyteller who is sure to please fans of historical fiction. Her attention to detail and love of God shine through in each endeavor."
--Tracie Peterson, bestselling author of the Ladies of Liberty series

" of historical prairie stories will feel at home with Sawyer's warm and tender voice."
--Romantic Times

"This debut author hooked me from the very beginning by breathing the very life and soul into her characterizations..."
--Marilyn Rondeau, The Best Reviews

"If you thought there wasn't a fresh twist on prairie romance, think again. And if you love Janette Oke's books, you will be delighted with Waiting for Summer's Return."
--ACFW Book Reviews

"Kim Vogel Sawyer's characters are so real they will step off the page into the reader's heart."
--Dancing Word Book Reviews

"Kim Sawyer turns in a fine writing performance with her strong, deep characters and gentle story."
--Christian Book Previews

"From the first page to the last, Sawyer's ability as a word weaver captured me and immersed me in the world she creates."
--Novel Reviews

The Author

  1. Kim Vogel Sawyer

    Kim Vogel Sawyer

    Kim Vogel Sawyer is the author of nineteen novels, including several CBA and ECPA bestsellers. Her books have won the ACFW Book of the Year Award, the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence, and the Inspirational Readers Choice Award. Kim is active in her church,...

    Continue reading about Kim Vogel Sawyer


"When a tenement fire in 1866 New York City leaves three Irish immigrant siblings parentless, the children are placed on an 'orphan train' and sent to adopted out West. The children are separated when each is taken by a different family, and eight-year-old Maelle, apprenticed to be a traveling photographer, vows to be reunited with her brother and sister. A sympathetic protagonist and interesting historical detail enhance this sweet, simple story of family bonds and faith that spans nearly 20 years. A good family read, this title is appropriate for both adult and YA readers." --Library Journal

"The characters came alive in this book as you see God work, in His timing, and in response to their great faith. Anyone that read My Heart Remembers will laugh, cry....and grow spiritually. This is historical fiction at its best!" --Mary Saile,

"This is a wonderful story with memorable characters. Historical details are vivid without being overbearing, and the characters' struggles are helped by their faith and beliefs. Sawyer is a gifted author who knows what readers want--and she delivers." --Romantic Times

"In this wonderful historical novel, Kim Vogel Sawyer knits a moving story that is both fresh and meaningful. She even manages to shed light on the many injustices shown to poor and orphaned children in the 1800s without disrupting the flow of the storyline. And of course, it wouldn't be a Kim Vogel Sawyer book without the element of the love story, which she is so good at writing.

"Woven with rich, fascinating historical details, and filled with captivating characters, romance, faith, and a compelling story that will keep the pages turning, this novel is destined to become a favorite on CBA lists. The threads about the orphaned children will challenge the hearts of readers, but My Heart Remembers will no doubt touch readers and fill them with hope and inspiration." --Tina Ann Forkner,

"Kim Vogel Sawyer has done an incredible job of writing an inspirational Christian fiction book which has its own line of mystery, history and intrigue all rolled into one volume. My Heart Remembers is a book which will pull at your heartstrings. What an incredible love and determination the Gallagher children have in trying to hold on to the hope of ever seeing their siblings again. I had a very difficult time putting this book down. I simply loved it and hope that Kim Vogel Sawyer is writing another book similar to this one again soon. My heart will definitely remember My Heart Remembers for a long time." --Lori Plach,

"It's been a long time since I read a book that brought tears to my eyes, but My Heart Remembers did, both sad and happy tears. This emotionally packed novel is sure to tug at your heartstrings as you read the story of the Gallagher children, who represent so many children who actually rode the orphan trains and were separated from their loved ones and thrust alone into unfamiliar circumstances. Readers will experience the children's feeling of total loss, their fears, and longings through each of their points of view and will find it difficult to set this long book aside until it is finished. Some interesting and unique twists enhance the plot and add intrigue. Have a Kleenex handy. My Heart Remembers is definitely a book for your keeper shelf." --Vickie McDonough,

"Kim Vogel Sawyer weaves the lives of the three siblings together in a way that not only exposes the plight of children during this era, but also explores the hope that remains in the midst of difficulty. It is a touching story that will remind you to cherish your children and to thank God for the providence and care he provides, regardless of the circumstances."

"An orphan train carries three Irish children from their tenement life in New York City to Missouri in 1886. Before they are parted toward separate households, the eldest, Maelle, bestows on her brother and sister their heritage: a family bible for baby sister Molly, a family photograph to brother Mattie, and a packet of her parents love letters for herself. These become the talismans of the children's lives, as Maelle searches to reunite her family for the next seventeen years.

"Unbeknownst to each other, all have followed their father's advice to 'take care o' the wee ones." Mattie, a cowboy and sheepherder, protects the downtrodden, with his fists when need be. Molly uses inheritance money to found a school for orphans. Maelle becomes a photographer in the Jacob Riis tradition. Petey, an abandoned newsboy, brings the three siblings together as he winds each around his heart.

"Kim Vogel Sawyer displays a good command of the conventions of the Christian historical novel, with a fast-moving plot and enjoyable characters deserving of their road back to family." --Eileen Charbonneau, Historical Novels Review

"I loved this book. It was so easy to read and just flowed along as a good story should. I quickly identified with the main characters and could easily visualise the various scenarios. This story, although fiction, was based on how orphans in America were treated approximately one hundred years ago. It was very clever how all the different threads of the story were carefully woven together, piece by piece and had everything from humour and romance, to tragedy and triumph. It really tugged at my heartstrings and I even cried towards the climax of the story. It was an emotional but a very enjoyable read. I found it hard to put this book down and kept picking it up to find out 'what happened next'. I don't usually read novels but this book has changed my mind, as I would read more if they were of this calibre." --Janet Pollard, Christian Marketplace

"When a devastating fire kills the parents of an immigrant family in New York, three children are taken to an orphanage. Maelle has had her hair cut short because of nits, and everyone thinks she is a boy. She doesn't try to change anyone's mind because it would mean she would be separated from her brother Mattie. Baby sister Molly has already been given away to a rich couple. Maelle and Mattie are sent on the orphan train to Missouri and become separated. Seventeen years later, Maelle has given up hope of ever finding Mattie or Molly when circumstances lead them all to a small Missouri town. God has a way of answering prayers when you least expect it."
--NP, Libraries Alive