Lost in Dreams, Altered Hearts Series #2
Give it a try
Kim returns from her mission trip to Mexico and encounters a tragedy that turns her life into chaos. Only the excitement of another mission trip manages to bring her out of her depression. She sets out for California to help put the final touches on the Welcoming Arms Christian Hostel, so it can open to family members visiting inmates of the Red Cedar Correctional Center. But it turns out that Kim will be doing a little revival service at the prison as well, something that forces her to trust God completely. The question is, can she do it?
This book starts out right where the first book left off. TheyÃ¢ÂÂre really one big story. This was a hard read at first. I was shocked at what happened in the beginning and it was hard to watch Kim suffer and grieve. Bruner did an excellent job writing KimÃ¢ÂÂs grief, though. It was very real. And then the story shifted into the mission trip. BrunerÃ¢ÂÂs strength is his characters. They are deep and complex; I enjoy them very much. I particularly enjoyed Aleesha and Jo in this book. And Graham too. The characters are delightful.
The only thing that threw me for a loop was when the story shifted to JoÃ¢ÂÂs point of view toward the very end of the book. But it all worked out to tell a good story. I enjoyed both of these books and think that others will too. If you havenÃ¢ÂÂt read them, give them a try.
December 3, 2011
Lost in Nightmares?
Instead of coming home from her missions trip to a welcoming party...Kim reenters America only to face a string of difficult, terrible circumstances.
Lost in Dreams by Roger Bruner with Kristi Rae Bruner is the sequel to Found in Translation.
To be honest, I found the beginning depressing. Which is how readers are probably supposed to feel...it means we care about Kim Hartlinger and what happens to her. The title also doesnÃ¢ÂÂt seem very fitting. Lost in Nightmares would have been more relevant. I was happy; however, that Aleesha returns as a main character in this book. That was a pleasant surprise! Rob reappears as well. And we finally get to meet Betsy Jo.
While things donÃ¢ÂÂt go as Kim planned (going straight to college and majoring in Spanish), God has something even greater in store for her. I wonÃ¢ÂÂt tell you exactly what but the aforementioned characters all get to do it together...and itÃ¢ÂÂs ministry...and He uses them to touch peopleÃ¢ÂÂs lives in a positive life-changing way...how cool is that?!?
So even though the book began as a real downer, the middle was interesting. Several different types of conflicts are introduced. I did want to shake Kim and tell her to be more open with her dad, though :).
The ending was, ah, quite different than what I had expected. The authors managed to approach KimÃ¢ÂÂs problem from an angle that hadnÃ¢ÂÂt even crossed my mind. DonÃ¢ÂÂt worry; itÃ¢ÂÂs a satisfying resolution.
All in all, Lost in Dreams is a good, clean book and unlike so many novels for my age group, it doesn't have the distraction of teenage romance in it.
October 21, 2011
My daughter disappeared into Kim's World
Lost in Dreams is the first book by this duo that my daughter has read, but I doubt it will be the last. My almost eleven year old is inhaling the Gallagher Girl books, Tricia Goyer's WWII titles, but stopped all that to escape into Kim's world. Here's what she has to say about this book:
AMAZING! I could really interact with the character, even though I haven't had experiences like hers. I could totally understand how she was feeling and relate to her story. Her story is a mixture of emotions: one minutes you're laughing with her and the next you're crying with her. Kim just returned from a life-changing missions trip. While waiting for her mom to pick her up from the airport, she gets a distressing phone call. WIth the blink of an eye, her mom's gone and her life is changed. This book tells the story of her dealing with the changes and getting to know her father, who she hasn't been really close to before. While watching Kim, I learned that God can take bad situation and turn them into something beautiful.
I think we'll get the first book in the series, since my daughter enjoyed this one so much!
August 23, 2011
God's at work changing lives!
Kim Hartlinger, whom we met in Roger BrunerÃ¢ÂÂs first novel, Found in Translation, is on her way home from her life-transforming mission trip to Mexico. Little does she realize her life changes are about to accelerate even more: a tragic auto accident, overwhelming guilt, horrible nightmares, unrelenting fatigue, a revamped relationship with her dad, her two Ã¢ÂÂbestÃ¢ÂÂ at odds with one another, and another short-term mission tripÃ¢ÂÂthis one to work on a hostel for the families of inmates in a remote area of California. The mission team gets involved in prison ministry in addition to helping catch a crook within the correctional facility. I appreciated reading about such ministry from the Ã¢ÂÂinsideÃ¢ÂÂ since I grade Bible studies for prisoners.
Although much transpires in this lively story, the emotions and relationships explored add depth and challenge readers to consider their own lives and feelings. ItÃ¢ÂÂs exciting to see God at work, even in fiction. For a heartwarming read, jump into Lost in Dreams, but it may keep you awake until you finish the book. Written with RogerÃ¢ÂÂs daughter, Kristi Rae Bruner, this is the second in their Altered Hearts series.
August 12, 2011