Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Heaven is for Heroes @pjsharon #review #audiobook


Smart and athletic seventeen year-old Jordie Dunn has a bright future planned, but when tragedy turns her life upside down, she begins to question not only her future, but the facts surrounding her brother’s death in Iraq. The military’s account that his best friend and fellow Marine, Alex Cooper, is at fault, is a notion she refuses to believe. Alex was the careful one--the shy, protective, computer geek she’s had a crush on since the ninth grade, and she knows better than anyone that her troubled brother had a dark and reckless side—a secret she’s kept for far too long.



With no memory of the incident that killed his best friend, nineteen year-old Alex Cooper returns home, shattered and facing a difficult recovery. Determined to go it alone, he pushes Jordie away. No longer the freckle-faced tom-boy who followed him and Levi around as a kid, she has become a beautiful and stubborn young woman who believes in him far more than he deserves. 


While Jordie’s unique approach to rehab pushes Alex to extremes, the two discover that their childhood friendship has grown into more. The attraction has Jordie’s head spinning and her heart soaring, but Alex struggles to deal with his guilt, his loss, and the nightmares that continue to haunt him. Even though Jordie is determined to help him heal, and even more determined to find the truth, what she doesn’t expect, is to find love.



Review:

With her finger on the pulse of today's military families, PJ Sharon has crafted a debut novel to set the bar quite high.  With characters that live and breathe and a story line that hurtles through the highs and lows of first love and deepest loss,  Heaven is For Heroes has the potential to be a classic.

Jordie has loved Alex since childhood.  Alex has been her brother's best friend forever.  Both young men enter the military after high school and are deployed together to Afghanistan.  Sadly, both return home at the same time - Levi dead, Alex broken.   Jordie and her family are left to grieve and move forward but knowing and doing are two different things.  When Jordie shifts all her priorities to help Alex walk again and resume a normal life, the pair grows closer.  But her obsession with finding out how her brother died threatens to tear her whole world apart.

Sharon creates very believable characters with very real quirks and emotions.  By no means an easy subject, she manages to find the balance between grieving and living.  The dialogue flows well and the story keeps a steady pace.  The audiobook reader Erin Mallon does a solid job of voicing the teen protagonist.  There are moments of serious emotion and Jordie, as a character, has many of those frustrating hyper-focused qualities of a teen (which makes an adult reader want to give her a whack at times).  However the bond between Jordie and Alex has true chemistry and the mystery surrounding Levi's death and the accident that took Alex's leg and his military career drives the reader to listen long after pulling in the driveway!

RATING: Four Chocolate-Dipped Strawberries.  This book was given to us by the author for an unbiased review. Many thanks.

 

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