Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Book Review: Saving Each Other

By Sara Steven

What would you do if the most important people in your world were suddenly and violently taken away from you? Everything is excruciating! Everything is broken! Ean Montgomery and Dani Adams were each forced to see the same grief counselor after a drunk driver killed both Dani’s husband and Ean’s wife and six year old son. Two cars demolished, two families killed. In an unconventional twist of therapy, Dani and Ean were each given a private cell phone and only the first initial of their first names. They were then instructed to reach out to one another in order to share their grief…to heal. The rules: Communicate only through text messages and never reveal our real names or other personal details. Neither planned to contact the other, but with all hope and the will to live gone… (Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads)

My worst fears are presented and on full display with Saving Each Other. I cannot fathom losing my husband, or one of my children. The way the pain and utter despair has been captured within Ean and Dani’s stories, it felt realistic and human and while it was difficult to delve into, given the subject matter, I didn’t want to turn away from it. I wanted to better understand, to fully experience it.

Ean and Dani are given an opportunity to help one another through one of the most difficult times I feel anyone could go through, but they don’t know each other, have never met. They don’t even know names, using first initials instead. Yet, I could feel the deep connection that begins to form, a bond grown from tragedy. No one else would understand what they’re going through, and in this ambiguity they become a lifeline for one another, enabling both characters to live each day, even when it feels like the days aren’t worth living.

Granted, this is fiction, yet I could see how the process of healing, how finding the light at the end of a dark tunnel is achievable. Whether it’s through an unconventional method of conversing with a stranger who is also going through the same pain, who knows the score, or finding solace within loved ones who want nothing more than to be there. And there were subtle elements of something reminiscent to the movie You Got Mail, where the two primary characters form a bond without even knowing each other or never meeting. It was a nice, sweet romantic touch that helped to balance out the heavy subject matter of the plot. It will be interesting to see what’s next in book two of the Saving series, not only for Ean and Dani, but for their supporting characters, too.

Thanks to PR By the Book for the book in exchange for an honest review.

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