Friday, July 19, 2019

Review for The Heart Keeper by Alex Dahl

Paperback, 384 pages
Published July 16th 2019 by Berkley Books

Critically acclaimed author Alex Dahl explores how love can turn darkly sinister when a desperate mother looks to reconnect with her lost daughter in this riveting Norwegian set psychological suspense novel.

Two mothers. Two daughters. One heart. 

When Alison's beloved daughter Amalie drowns, her world turns impenetrably dark. Alison tries to hold it together throughout the bleak Fall, but in the darkest days of the Norwegian Winter she completely falls apart.

In another family, Amalie's passing is a new beginning. After years of severe health problems, young Kaia receives a new heart on the morning after Amalie drowns. Her mother Iselin has struggled to raise Kaia on her own and now things are finally looking up. She's even made an affluent new friend who's taken a special interest in her and her daughter.

Alison knows she shouldn't interfere, but really, she's just trying to help Iselin and Kaia. She can give them the life they never had, and by staying close to them, she can still be with her daughter. Kaia is just like her, and surely, something of Amalie must live on in her. As her grief transforms into a terrifying obsession, Alison won't let anything stop her from getting back what she has lost.

My Thoughts…

This book had me on the edge of my seat.     Is Alison going to be able to move past losing her daughter?   Is Iselin going to wake up and figure out what is happening in her life?  While this book has a sad basis, the thriller part of the story is what really stood out.     I knew the other shoe had to drop for Alison and that there was no way that the story would end up the way she wanted, yet I kinda, sorta, almost hoped it would.   More so that I wanted her to be okay, to learn to live, and to learn to accept that Amalie was gone but parts of her were still alive and helping others live. 

I felt that The Heart Keeper was realistic to a point.    A mother (and father) never get over the loss of a child and to know that parts of your child were still working in other bodies would be tough.   I admire that they could make the decision to donate while mourning but I am not sure that they realized how hard it would be to keep living knowing this.    Neither Alison or her husband were okay, they both were dealing with their loss in their own ways, and they were not able to help each other.    They kept secrets, they hid their thoughts, and they just couldn’t cope.  

I was hooked, I couldn’t stop reading, and I kept hoping for an ending that all could live with.   The story was heartbreaking and the characters were easily relatable.  

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