Wednesday, February 8, 2012

(17)Home Front by Kristin Hannah

Home Front

Publication Date: January 31, 2012
Pages: 400

Kristin Hannah is one of those authors that I will buy whatever she writes. It could be a novel written on a roll of toilet paper and I would run right out and be the first in line to buy the first roll.

Her newest novel, Home Front, is one that will strike a chord with millions of women all over the country.  The year is 2005. Jolene and Tami are best friends who are closer than sisters.  They met when they both joined the military and started flying Black Hawks. Over the years they have joined the National Guard together, become neighbors, and have raised their families together.  They help each other celebrate the happy times and are there for each other during the rough times.   Right now it is Jolene going through a rough patch.  Her husband has said the words that all married women fear, Michael has told her that he no longer loves her.  And the next day Jolene and Tami are told that they will be deploying to Iraq.  As they prepare to leave, Jolene is numb and scared. Michael has been "absent" for quite a while and she is afraid of how he and the girls will handle her deployment. She is afraid of what her deployment will mean for their marriage.  But at least she will have Tami in Iraq.  She knows that together, they can make it through anything.  But, when things don't go as planned in Iraq, Jolene comes home a broken woman. Both physically and emotionally.  Will she ever feel whole again? And will she and Michael be able to repair what is broken in their marriage?

I am not from a Military family, but I am a wife.  And it is on that level that I could really connect with Jolene.  Her and Michael come from such different backgrounds, but they have been able to build a life together. When he tells Jolene that he no longer loves her,  I could feel her heart shatter through the pages.  I cried right along with her. Then to receive the word that she is deploying right as her world is crumbling, well, it is just another nail in her emotional coffin.  Especially since Michael has never supported her Military career.  After she returns from Iraq, it is very clear that Jolene is not the same person. Physically or emotionally.  I can never pretend to know what it is like to be an injured, returning Vet, but there were times that I found it very difficult to like Jolene.  She is raw and bitter and closed off to the possibility that life ever may be normal for her again.

Kristin Hannah has written another blockbuster.  Her characters are never perfect and often flawed, but that is what makes them so real.  As an author she creates situations and stories that come to life for us, the reader.  That is why, I feel, that we connect with her books so much.  That is why her books evoke such strong emotions in her readers.  I don't really consider myself an emotional person, but when it comes to Patriotism, I become very emotional.  I choke up EVERY.SINGLE.TIME I hear the National Anthem. So to read about an injured warrior, even a fictional one, I cried like a baby.  Consider that a warning.  Keep a box of kleenex nearby as you read Home Front.  You will need them.


CraftyGardenMom - Tanesha said...

I agree, this book was "that" good. Best I've read so far in 2012.

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

I am meant to be clearing my TBR lists this year and not adding to them, but after reading this great review how can I not add this title to the wishlist!

Brasil said...

Kristin Hannah has never disappointed me and she goes one better this time by going above and beyond expectations. She brings us an epic tale not in time but in content. She brings us much more than the family drama that enfolds between these pages. She brings us a tale of war but it doesn’t end in the usual battlefield encounter as she brings the war home with the wounded warriors it creates and the problems these injured soldiers face when they step off the transport and land on the “Home Front”

Why I Read...

I remember the carefree summer days when I used to ride my bike to the public library to pick out new books. I would go almost daily to find books to read. I read to learn. I read to explore the world. I read to escape. I read because not reading is not an option.

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