Book Review: Interrupted: A Life Beyond Words by Rachel Coker

Can love really heal all things? If Sam Carroll hadn't shown up, she might have been able to get to her mother in time. Instead, Allie Everly finds herself at a funeral, mourning the loss of her beloved mother. She is dealt another blow when, a few hours later, she is sent from Tennessee to Maine to become the daughter of Miss Beatrice Lovell, a prim woman with a faith Allie cannot accept. Poetry and letters written to her mother become the only things keeping Allie's heart from hardening completely. But then Sam arrives for the summer, and with him comes many confusing emotions, both toward him and the people around her. As World War II looms, Allie will be forced to decide whether hanging on to the past is worth losing her chance to be loved.

Release Date: February 14, 2012
Age Group: Young Adult
Publisher: Zondervan
Source: Review copy from publisher

Historical, Christian fiction---one of my favorite genres!  I went into Interrupted with very little expectations, as I had forgotten what the story was about from the time I accepted the review copy to the time I finally got to sit down and read.  I like when I can go into a book totally open-minded.

My husband asked me, "What book are you reading?"  I answered him, telling him about the book, and he said, "What, no werewolves, aliens, futuristic setting, dystopia, or vampires?  I didn't know you still read "regular" books!"  And I answered, "Yes, I do and this book right here is why----it is so good!"

I was drawn into the story from the very first page.  I really felt for Allie, a 14 year-old having to completely care for her sick mother.  Allie and her mother are separated from everyone and live a sheltered existence.  Allie's only friend is her neighbor Sam Carroll, whom she considers to be a nuisance as he is always following her around.  Then, one day, an accident happens, which leads to her mother's death.  Allie blames Sam, and is sent to Maine to be adopted by a stranger.  Allie's heart is as hard as stone, as she never fully recovers from the loss of her mother.  Her only comfort is her art: she draws and writes poetry.

Overall, I loved the story, and Allie's growth.  The first person narrative gave so much insight into Allie's thoughts, which really added a lot of depth to the story.  I thought her coming to Christ experience was very sweet and well-handled.  I also loved the poems by Emily Dickinson at the beginning of each chapter, which really set the tone for the book.

My only complaint was that some of the vernacular did not sound appropriate to the time period.  There were a couple of times while reading that I thought, "what?  That doesn't sound like something someone who lived in the 1940's would say." Not that I have any personal experience, but just through my love of historical fiction, some of the language did not feel time-appropriate.

Overall, I loved Interrupted. I stayed up late reading because I just had to know how it ended.  I loved the ending and the fact that things weren't 100% perfect for each and every character, because it was so realistic.  I would recommend this book to fans of Christian fiction, and fans of historical fiction. 


  1. This sounds great. Thanks for the review.

    Your husband's comment made me smile.

  2. Well I red many books of Rachel Coker and I am very glad now that your review about her written aspect is very closely to what really there....though I haven't red "A Life Beyond Words" but now I am planning to grab it soon... :)


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