Home Front by Kristin Hannah
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Powerful story. Another fantastic Kristin Hannah novel that gets you in the gut. Right through the heart. My husband and I were both in the military but ETS'd right before 9/11. We were fortunate not to have to be in the war but these are my brothers and sisters and it's very hard to read. Yes it's fiction, but still.
Jolene is a doting mother and wife who happens to be a Black Hawk helicopter pilot for the Washington National Guard. She keeps up on flying with her best friend Tami when the kids are at school and the husbands are at work. But this is 2005 and Jolene and Tami are called to active duty to serve in Iraq.
Jolene's husband is a liberal defense attorney who recently lost his father and doesn't at all understand wars and how Jolene can just up and leave her family to fight someone else's war. Jolene's patriotism is put to the test. How can she leave her children with a father who makes little time for them? She knew this could happen and she knows it's her duty. As Jolene is preparing to leave, their marriage takes a turn for the worst and Jolene heads for war to defend her country with a broken heart.
A tragic series of events occur and Jolene's life is turned upside down. She goes home to a different life, nothing is the same. From here it's one heartbreak after another. There were tears and lots of them.
Part of me wants to call this book controversial, but another part of me wants to believe this book was written for a love of our warriors and a cry for help for soldiers who return to war broken people. Not just those with missing body parts and scars, it's also about those who are so mentally broken they lose their identity and struggle to find help for the hell they went through in a war so many of us cannot fathom.
My heart breaks for our soldiers who come back and can't get the help they need through the VA. It's been long known that the VA is not equipped to handle all the PTSD cases there are. It makes me so sad. It makes programs like the Wounded Warrior Project a hero program for our heroes. This book has given me the encouragement I need to donate to them.
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