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Review: Lost in Dreams by Roger Bruner

Monday, June 27, 2011
3 Stars: A Good Read
Series: Altered Hearts #2
Paperback: 368 Pages
Publication: August 1, 2011 by Barbour Publishing, Inc.

Grace, hope, and healing intersect in the California mountains.

From the moment eighteen-year-old Kim Hartlinger steps off the plane from a mission trip to a remote Mexican village, her journey takes a turn for the worse. As she collides with the biggest challenge of her young life—and faith—Kim struggles with haunting questions and recurring nightmares. . .all the while trying to hide a deep, dark secret.Will Kim find the hope and healing she needs? . . . Or is her broken spirit beyond repair?

Lost in Dreams is the second installment in the Altered Hearts series about Kim Hartlinger, a series by Roger Bruner with Kristi Rae Bruner. Having just returned from her mission trip in Mexico, Kim frets over her mom’s late arrival to the airport only to learn that her mom died in a car accident along the way. Guilt plagues Kim as she blames herself for her mom’s death, inflicting her with increased fatigue. It isn’t until receives the opportunity to help those in need that she begins to awaken. The story follows her as she struggles with her guilt, bonds with her previously estranged father, and grows spiritually and emotionally with her companions.

While Bruner does incorporate much of the spiritual factor into the novel, he doesn’t forget the teenage factor. Kim is a really fun character with a great sense of humor. Her distress at her mother’s death will touch the reader’s heart and yearn to pray alongside with Kim’s friends for her recovery. I rejoiced along with her friends with her miraculous recovery, and her experience with the prisoners moved my heart.

While the story is told from Kim’s perspective, it isn’t her story alone. As Kim attempts to forgive herself for her mother’s death, she searches for a way to share her love with God to the prisoners and aid her companions with their personal situations. Side plots include Jo’s strange behavior, conflicts between Jo and Aleesha, her father’s personal struggles, Graham’s guilt, and the hostility of Chaplain Thomas, who doesn’t seem happy that Kim’s group plans on spreading the Gospel among the prisoners.

Kim’s story is spiritually moving. Her honest love for God, Christians, and those yet-to-be saved will touch readers’ hearts and motivate them to be as active as she is in her spiritual life. Lost in Dreams is about learning to forgive yourself and trust in God’s love and salvation. I recommend this for those looking for a good, heartwarming Christian story.

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An ARC was provided for review purposes by the publisher.
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