The Heart Between Us left a profound impact on me. This story is an emotional roller coaster no one can prepare for, but I’m glad I experienced it.
Lindsay Harrel is a new author to me, and I look forward to reading more of her books. She does a wonderful job of drawing you into the story, creating realistic people and scenarios.
I knew the basic premise of the story; a young woman, Megan, who is 32 years old, struggles with heart disease until age 29 when she receives a heart transplant. What I didn’t know or expect was the heartfelt authenticity of the story. I found myself truly feeling for the characters as if I’d known them for years.
I empathized with Crystal, Megan’s sister, who felt she could never be enough because her parents’ focus was always on her twin sister’s physical problems. The problems Crystal and her husband faced within their marriage were true to life. Sometimes it’s easier to revert to autopilot and become a super controller than it is to confront and fix problems, but failing to solve existing issues spawns new ones.
Traveling around the world with Crystal and Megan brings us many delightful and breathtaking moments, along with insightful glimpses into our own humanity.
The story is one of growth and healing, of questioning God, of reconciliation and of anger, with a large dose of jealously. Ultimately, we experience redemption and healing.
Maybe the past didn’t have to be a bitter mark always marring the surface of her heart. Maybe life really could be an amazing adventure, one not of her own making, but the kind that comes from toil and heartache and love.
Especially love. (pg. 281)
“God can handle your questions, Meg. If you want to know, ask. A relationship is about trust, and trust is grown through communication.” (pg. 227)
Some parts of the story are predictable. However, the predictability does not detract from the entirety of the story. Be prepared to laugh, cry and perhaps grow just a little in the process, too.
I received this book from The Fiction Guild. However, I was under no obligation to post a review.
Megan Jacobs always wished for a different heart. Her entire childhood was spent in and out of hospitals, sitting on the sidelines while her twin sister Crystal played all the sports, got all the guys, and had all the fun. But even a heart transplant three years ago wasn’t enough to propel Megan’s life forward. She’s still working as a library aide and living with her parents in her small Minnesota hometown, dreaming of the adventure she plans to take “once she’s well enough.” Meanwhile, her sister is a successful architect with a handsome husband and the perfect life—or so Megan thinks.
When her heart donor’s parents give Megan their teenage daughter’s journal—complete with an unfulfilled bucket list—Megan connects with the girl she meets between the pages and is inspired to venture out and check off each item. Caleb—a friend from her years in and out of the hospital—reenters her life and pushes her to find the courage to take the leap and begin her journey. She’s thrown for a loop when Crystal offers to join her for reasons of her own, but she welcomes the company and the opportunity to mend their tenuous relationship.
As Megan and Crystal check items off the bucket list, Megan fights the fears that have been instilled in her after a lifetime of illness. She must choose between safety and adventure and learn to embrace the heart she’s been given so that she can finally share it with the people she loves most.