Travelers Rest by Ann Tatlock

This is a powerful novel about the impact of war on the lives of soldiers and their families. Jane and Seth were childhood sweethearts with beautiful plans for marriage and a “happily ever after” life together. Jane was excitedly preparing for their wedding and awaiting Seth’s return from serving in Iraq.
Their lives were turned upside down when he returns paralyzed. He is no longer the man she knew, physically or emotionally. Seth struggles with depression and a myriad of emotions at being robbed of his vibrant life and future. Jane still deeply loves him but battles between her loyalty to the man she fell in love with and questioning her ability to commit to a lifetime of caring for a paraplegic.
The author did an amazing job of drawing the reader into the painful challenges each one faces. While I found this very intense, it gave me a greater understanding of the realities military couples encounter when a loved one returns injured.
Jane finds strong support in two people she meets while Seth is in the V.A. hospital. One is Truman, an elderly retired doctor who has overcome a very painful past. The other is John Paul, a young attorney facing an overwhelming daily challenge. In spite of these hardships, both men have learned to live their live with purpose and joy.
While I cannot begin to imagine the suffering and difficulties those who serve our country face, this story gave me a small idea of what it is like to walk in their shoes. I have always had compassion toward those that pay such a high price for our freedom, but Travelers Rest gave me an even greater understanding and empathy.
I was inspired by each of the characters and their ability to surmount very different problems with courage and perseverance. It made me ashamed for whining at the small frustrations I face. There are some pleasant surprises along the way and an unexpected ending!
I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255


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