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Friday, March 16, 2018

TLC Book Tours presents... THE HEART BETWEEN US by Lindsay Harrel

Hi there!
Welcome back to Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers.

Today, we're joining TLC Book Tours for a tour already in progress starring a work of Fiction that fits both in the Contemporary and Christian genres.  It explores the life of a survivor, but not of the astonishing, heart-stopping accident victim type, but of the born-with-something-that-was-completely-out-of-their-control-but-without-the-gift-of-life-from-someone-else-their-days-are-less-than-numbered variety.  Trust me, it doesn't make it any less harrowing, and with a dash of romance, a healthy dose of family, and a heaping scoop of finding yourself, it's a tale that was waiting to be told.  Ready or not, here comes today's blog tour guest and book of choice...

Two Sisters, One Heart Transplant, and a Bucket List
Lindsay Harrel
Thomas Nelson

About the book...
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.


This was a curious book to me because although it is fiction, it reads very much like real life, and remembering it was one not the other throughout was often times a fine line to walk.  (Bookmarks up to the author!)  The story takes you behind the eyes of an organ donor recipient to see just what happens once the life saving procedure is completed.  I mean, think about it...the waiting and prayers that went up on their behalf before is only half the journey; what comes next is never considered and yet just as important, if not more so.

Image result for colored row hearts

I found Megan both inspiring and infuriating...I know, what a mix.  You see, I was maddened by the fact that she made all these plans, dreamed all these dreams, and they were within her grasp time and again, only to slip through more often than not on account of fear.  I'm not saying I wouldn't have had some as well after all she went through, but she was given a new lease on life so to seemed wasted to not actually LIVE.  Now, as much as she exasperated me, she also warmed my heart as I made connections with her, grew to understand her motivations (and fears), and watched her finally take hold the reigns of her future and give them a good shake.  Seeing her come into her own, stand on her own two feet, reverse roles with the sister she revered all these years, and finally get her kiss in the rain, was almost magical.  Was I saddened it took a young girl's life ending for her to get her chance?  Of course, who wouldn't be...but I was also incredibly moved by the gift her and her family gave; the gift of not only "life", but of understanding.  Amanda hadn't lived a cakewalk herself, but those dark times she captured between the pages, and the bucket list she kept for her future self did more than keep her spirits up, but inspired another life to move forward.

In the end, it was a beautiful story about life's ups and downs, but mostly about LIFE itself.  The title itself can be taken many ways...from the obvious donor and recipient angle to that between sisters, families, and potential loves...but the story's intention is clear.   Every day is a gift.  Good, bad, or somewhere in between, it should be cherished because we never know just how many "presents" we have left.  


About the author...

Lindsay Harrel is a lifelong book nerd who lives in Arizona with her young family and two golden retrievers in serious need of training. She’s held a variety of writing and editing jobs over the years, and now juggles stay-at-home mommyhood with writing novels. When she’s not writing or chasing after her children, Lindsay enjoys making a fool of herself at Zumba, curling up with anything by Jane Austen, and savoring sour candy one piece at a time.


Special thanks to Lisa at TLC Book Tours for the chance to bring this tour to you as well as to the Thomas Nelson team for the ARC for review.  (THANKS!)  For more information on this title, the author, the publisher, THIS TOUR, or those on the horizon, feel free to click through the links provided above.  This title just celebrated its BOOK BIRTHDAY Tuesday, so be on the lookout for it on a bookstore shelf or virtual retailer of your choosing.

Until next time, remember...if it looks good, READ IT!


SavingsInSeconds said...

Love that there are so many great Christian books to read lately!

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

Wow, what an amazing story! I'd have a hard time remembering that it wasn't a true story.

Thanks for being a part of the tour!

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