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While He Was Away - Karen Halvorsen Schreck Don’t let the pastel colored sunset fool you into thinking this is a love conquers all thing. This is not just some sweet love story of a couple seeing things through to their happily ever after. IT’S BETTER THAN THAT. Mainly because it’s more real but more importantly less dramatic about the goings on. There’s no closely held dark secret to discover; there’s no big mystery to solve… here it’s more on learning to hold on. But, instead of holding on to each other, it’s really about holding on to yourself. Sure there are other key moments of certain people moving on, letting go, and then making things right… but all of it leads to her not forgetting herself. From the start one sees where things might go wrong: with the one left behind wrapping her life around the one who’s not there. She’s not really present merely just waiting for the next time he’s in the picture. For a good long while that is exactly what happens until more and more people come into focus. Like her mother who has her own issues to deal with. She reads tough and no nonsense but has this big hurt she’s not hiding but can’t get away from. Like those people from the past, people whom she knew nothing about, but people she’d come close to and feel connected with for some odd reason or another. Or like all those other “new” people who make their presence felt in her life, so felt that the story no longer is just about David being elsewhere. So that’s what this becomes: it’s not just about the love of your life (love of her life?) It’s about life moving on …and her moving on with it. But things could get slow and frustrating, especially how quickly (slowly) those realization came to her, that their each their own person, that they’re necessarily this something “big” she’d describe them to be. That she’s a life of her own. That he’s a life of his own, too … and that both their lives indeed move forward. So if at first she folds in on herself and doesn’t quite know where to pick up again, things still march on anyway… and so does she.3.75/5(I do feel this was better than both [b:If I Lie|10564983|If I Lie|Corrine Jackson|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1324452777s/10564983.jpg|15471867] and [b:Personal Effects|9372419|Personal Effects|E.M. Kokie|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1330545297s/9372419.jpg|14255981])