Hidden in the Heart  -     By: Catherine West
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Hidden in the Heart

OakTara Publishers / Paperback

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Product Description

After losing her mother to cancer and suffering a miscarriage soon after, Claire Ferguson numbs the pain with alcohol and pills, and wonders if her own life is worth living.Adopted at birth, Claire is convinced she has some unknown genetic flaw that may have been the cause of her miscarriage. She must find a way to deal with the guilt she harbors. But exoneration will come with a price.

With her marriage in trouble and her father refusing to answer any questions about her adoption, Claire begins the search for her birth mother. For the first time in her life, she really wants to know where she came from. But what if the woman who gave her life doesn't want to be found?

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 248
Vendor: OakTara Publishers
ISBN: 1602903298
ISBN-13: 9781602903296
Availability: In Stock

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  1. Beaumont, CA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Redefining Dreams
    April 21, 2013
    The IE Mommy
    Beaumont, CA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Hidden in the Heart is such a beautiful story of one woman's journey through despair, hope, love and forgiveness. Catherine West will draw you into her story with her heartfelt words and emotion wrought from her own adoption experience.

    Catherine West grew up knowing she was adopted but she never felt the emptiness or abandonment until she lost her adopted mother and suffers her own tragic loss. Finding solace in alcohol causes friction between she and her husband and her father. When she separates from her husband, the longing to know where she comes from becomes unbearable.

    Taking a lead she finds, she travels from her home in Connecticut to a small town in Maine where she stays in a cabin, fighting for her past, her future and ultimately her very life. Will the answers come before she lets the hopelessness take over and drowns herself in alcohol?

    I loved reading this story that took place in Connecticut and Maine as my family has roots in both states. It always makes me have a soft place in my heart and a deep connection to a place I know and love. West's writing made me feel like I was home again and so this book had a nostalgic feeling for me all the way through.

    Once I read at the end that West had loosely based the story on her own experience, I understood how she could write with such emotion and rawness.

    Hidden in the Heart is wonderfully written, emotionally charged and renewed my faith in hope and forgiveness.
  2. Oak Harbor, WA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    touching novel of finding your birth family
    April 11, 2013
    bookwomanjoan
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    It took me about 50 pages to get into this book but after that, it was a compelling novel.

    Claire is a young wife who had just lost her (adoptive) mother and then, a few months later, experienced a miscarriage. Overwhelmed, she turns to alcohol and prescription drugs. Knowing she is adopted she wants to find her birth mother. She is afraid there might be a genetic cause to her miscarriage that would make a disaster at further attempts to have a child. Claire's adoptive father refuses to help her. Her loving but frustrated husband is loosing his patience. He can't understand why she just doesn't move on. And then Claire finds a clue, a name written on the back of a paper in the file her father kept on the adoption. As she makes plans to follow the clue, she realizes she is terrified her mother may not want to be found.

    I was not adopted and I have no idea what that must mean to a person. Catherine clearly takes the reader in with Claire as she experiences the agony of not knowing and then the agony when she begins to uncover the truth.

    Catherine shares in her Author's Note that this book is loosely based on her own experience of adoption and then searching for her birth family. As with Claire's experience in the novel, not everything worked out as Catherine had hoped.

    This is a compelling novel. It was amazing to read how God worked through people and experiences to heal Claire, on so many levels. When you get towards the end, be sure to have a tissue handy.

    Catherine has a way with words. Here are a couple of quotes so you can see what I mean. Speaking of Claire's pain: "Anger, pain, and stubbornness pitched a tent and demanded she camp out with them." (48) And when Claire finds the ugly truth about her birth and adoption: "She'd released the deadbolt and opened the door to the past, and they all had to walk through it. Whether they wanted to or not." (163)

    Questions for Reflection and Discussion have been added so this would be a good choice for a reading group.

    I received a complimentary galley from a publicity group for the purpose of this review.
  3. Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Realistic and touching
    January 31, 2013
    Sarah Sundin
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Realistic and memorable characters, a charming setting, and beautiful writing all support this incredibly moving story. Catherine West doesn't hold anything back - the grittiness of addiction, the pain of infertility, and the multi-layered emotions wrapped up in adoption - they're all here. I highly recommend this book.
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