Official Review: A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine

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jemgirl202
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Latest Review: A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine

Official Review: A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine

Post by jemgirl202 » 09 Jul 2018, 02:46

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "A Crowded Heart" by Andrea McKenzie Raine.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine is a historical fiction novel that begins with the eruption of World War II. Willis Hancock is desperate to escape his small town life and decides to enlist. His parents try to dissuade him from enlisting, even going as far as to set him up with local girls. Nothing stops Willis. He enters the war and sees things that no one can imagine. One day while on a much-deserved break, he meets Ellie. He is intoxicated by her brightness. After a week, he gives her a promise ring, then goes back to the war. Ellie waits patiently for his return. As soon as he gets back, they wed. Things start out promising, but take a drastic turn.

The memories of fallen comrades invade his thoughts at every moment, driving him to drink. He has moments when he thinks he is getting better, but then he falls right back down again. Ellie tries her hardest to stay close to him. She really struggles with how to help him and finds herself drifting from him. They drift even further apart after having a miscarriage. During this time, Willis stays distant from his parents. They don't know about anything that he is going through. How can someone endure so much loss and pain? How does a loved one help in this situation? How can they cope?

It is rare to find a book that dives straight into the depths of human emotion. There are aspects of life that are very much stigmatized and rarely discussed so openly. Reading books that go into detail about the hardships of life create empathy and understanding which can help those around us.

I loved this book, but it is heartbreaking. Themes like PTSD, miscarriage, addiction, and mental health are very much present in this book. After World War II, there wasn't a lot of help for soldiers struggling with PTSD. The author does a great job of showing the horror and suffering from PTSD. The characters are all well-developed. Willis' character is so tragic. Readers will feel for him and want to desperately help. Ellie's character is also amazing. She doesn't know how to help Willis but does whatever she can. She also has her own moments of struggle but often shows determination to not lose herself as well. The conflicts that arise in their life are still very relatable today.

I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I did not see any grammar issues. The book is well edited. I did finish this book in one afternoon. I could not put it down. The ending will leave the reader feeling so many different emotions. I really enjoy that the author discusses real issues that can affect anyone. There is only one issue I have with the book and that is the story's timeline does advance rather quickly. There are points where the story will jump 2-3 years ahead in the middle of the chapter. I feel this could be paced a bit better. However, that did not detract from my enjoyment of the book. However, be prepared for some graphic situations and language. This book is for those who enjoy historical fiction or stories of war. I do believe that anyone could read this book and learn something or relate to the struggles of the characters.

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A Crowded Heart
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Post by Cecilia_L » 10 Jul 2018, 19:48

This sounds like a well-written story that really connects with the reader, though maybe a bit too heavy for me at this time. Thanks for your interesting review!

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Post by Eryn Bradshaw » 10 Jul 2018, 20:33

This book sounds absolutely heart breaking. I'm glad the author did well exploring such sensitive topics. Thank you for the well written review.
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Post by crediblereading2 » 10 Jul 2018, 21:59

Willie was determined to be a soldier and go to war and his parents could not stop him. Sometimes when someone wants to do something, you cannot do anything to stop that person. Therefore, allow the experience to teach the knowledge. Thank you for a great review.

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Latest Review: A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine

Post by jemgirl202 » 11 Jul 2018, 00:33

Cecilia_L wrote:
10 Jul 2018, 19:48
This sounds like a well-written story that really connects with the reader, though maybe a bit too heavy for me at this time. Thanks for your interesting review!
Thanks for reading! It is heavy but certainly worth it :)

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Latest Review: A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine

Post by jemgirl202 » 14 Jul 2018, 18:16

Eryn Bradshaw wrote:
10 Jul 2018, 20:33
This book sounds absolutely heart breaking. I'm glad the author did well exploring such sensitive topics. Thank you for the well written review.
Thank you so much for reading it! Yes, these topics are difficult but necessary.

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Post by CatInTheHat » 15 Jul 2018, 16:20

It's good to see a piece of historical fiction addressing PTSD. People think it's something new or not real, but it has been existent forever. It just that today, we have a name for it.
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Latest Review: A Crowded Heart by Andrea McKenzie Raine

Post by jemgirl202 » 02 Aug 2018, 12:44

crediblereading2 wrote:
10 Jul 2018, 21:59
Willie was determined to be a soldier and go to war and his parents could not stop him. Sometimes when someone wants to do something, you cannot do anything to stop that person. Therefore, allow the experience to teach the knowledge. Thank you for a great review.
Thank you for reading!

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Post by Scruffy+dove 10 » 10 Aug 2018, 11:30

Sounds like an interesting book would probably enjoy it

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Post by sanjus » 11 Aug 2018, 05:54

This book titled A Crowded Heart deputing the love life during the second world war and shows how uncertain the life was during that time, yet it never restricted people from going towards their passion and love. Nice review indeed.
life is only knowing the unknown, we can do this by reading books easily

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