In Every Heartbeat. Kim Vogel Sawyer. 2010. September 2010. Bethany House. 352 pages.
Don't you dare cry.
Libby Conley, Pete Leidig, and Bennett Martin are three friends attending the same college, the fall of 1914. Libby dreams of being a journalist. (And she's looking for a shortcut or two). Pete has wanted to be a preacher for years. And Bennett. Well, Bennett's good at many things--very athletic, very popular. But, truth be told, he's just waiting and hoping for a chance to be a soldier. Though the war in Europe has just gotten started, he's hoping that the United States will join sooner rather than later.
The book is narrated by all three. These three share a deep bond because they all grew up together, grew up as orphans. Though technically Pete has parents. They just happened to kick him out when he was a young boy. Which led to a tragic accident. But. That's Pete's story to tell.
The main story? Pete loves Libby but he feels called by the Lord to preach--and Libby is a bit too worldly to settle down with. Libby loves Pete but she wants to travel the world and be a journalist. She loves Pete. But. She feels the need for some independence.
In Every Heartbeat is a novel that I didn't connect with. Perhaps because it's the second in a series. Perhaps because I wasn't in the right mood for it. On another day, maybe I would have liked it better. Or maybe it's just a bit too much. It seemed to go in a dozen different directions. Just when I felt comfortable with where it was going, it shifted focus entirely. This kept happening which made me a bit frustrated. (Though I was VERY relieved it didn't spend more time on baseball. There was one chapter early on that bored me with its endless details on one baseball game in particular.)
I guess my biggest problem with In Every Heartbeat is the characterization. I had a hard time believing in these characters. And there were a few scenes where I just wanted to slap whoever was speaking. (In particular, the scene where Libby's article is rejected.)
© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews
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