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Another Piece of My Heart Hardcover – March 13, 2012
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“[Green] has a soothing voice. It is a pleasure to listen to her as she brings the characters to life.” – Record-Courier--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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As for writing style, there were a multitude of instances where the author switched from past to present tense and vice-versa, even within the same paragraph or sentence! (I'm not talking about alternating viewpoints, I'm talking about inconsistencies in the way the book was written.) There was also a lot of repetition and lengthy diatribes... the book could have been 30% shorter and better for it.
Favorable: This book was cleanly edited from a grammar, spelling, and formatting perspective.
What really touched me was the end of the book
A real bitter sweet story of a troubled teenage girl going through a lot of pain and heading to nowhere to becoming this that had conquered her demons was able to look really look at herself in the mirror and see that person she was before had transformed into a person that she accepted and was proud of.
(A must for parents ;))
I've really enjoyed many other books by Jane Green, but I'm appalled that I spent any money on this book (never mind a full $7.99!!).
But family life did not unfold in the way that Andi had anticipated, and their "blended" family began to feel more like a chaotic cauldron of warring temperaments and unsolvable conflicts. At the heart of these conflicts was Ethan's teenage daughter Emily, whose histrionic behavior and horrific tantrums began to define their daily lives. Sophia, on the other hand, despite being the youngest, presented as calm, mature, and easily loved.
Because Ethan had a neutral kind of personality, he found himself constantly mediating between Andi and Emily; and in trying to calm Emily down during her tantrums, he appeared to be taking her side.
Something happens during Emily's seventeenth year that changes the dynamics and direction of this family. How will these unexpected events unfurl and cause them all to take another look at things? And what will be the ultimate outcome?
In the beginning, I could see much of the story through Andi's eyes, and felt her frustration for Emily.
Toward the middle, the author brought Emily's point of view into play through alternating chapters in first person narrative voice, so finally I could understand some of what she was feeling.
To say more would be bringing spoilers into the mix, so I will only add that I sometimes couldn't breathe with the intensity of emotions churning up within Another Piece of My Heart. I could understand each of the characters, even as I felt frustrated with most of them at one point or another. In the end, I liked the way things came together, and while I hoped--and even expected--they would play out this way, the ending gave me a very good feeling.
An additional point that can be made is that this book is also an example of a good couple (Andi and Ethan) sticking it out through a rough time, and I personally don't see that often enough in fiction... particularly in the chick lit genre.
If I had to make mention of anything I didn't like about the book, it is the part when Emily leaves her child rather quickly and then the subsequent quick and easy fast forward three years in the story. Also, while the book finally gets to Andi admitting that she can't do it all as a full-time business owner and mother, I feel like that theme wasn't fully explored-- it was introduced quickly and then never really resolved. For these reasons, if there were the option, I would have given the book 4.5 stars instead, but the fact that I truly couldn't put it down prompted me to lean toward the 5-star mark.
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