The Heart Mender: A Story of Second Chances Book reviews


Author(s): Andy AndrewsDownload  


In the classic storytelling style of The Noticer and The Traveler’s Gift, New York Times best-selling author Andy Andrews now delivers an adventure set sharply against the warm waters and white sands of the Gulf of Mexico in WWII America.Saddened and unable to abandon her resentment toward the Nazi war machine that took her husband’s life, the young and attractive Helen Mason is living a bitter, lonely existence. Betrayed and left for dead, German U-boat officer Lt. Josef Landermann washes ashore in a sleepy town along the northern gulf coast, looking to Helen for survival.The Heart Mender is a story of life, loss, and reconciliation, reminding us of the power of forgiveness and the universal healing experience of letting go.

Some Reviews: 695 in


Gigi rated it      

I started this book by Andy Andrews on my 46th birthday. My friend took me to lunch and I asked her to swing by the library to pick it up. I read the subtitle to her: A Story of the One Principle That Frees the Human Spirit. Do tell! I responded with sarcasm.

While that statement is a tall glass of water, it delivers a thirst-quenching story of forgiveness.

Andrews writes, “Where is it written that for one person to forgive another, the offender has to approve it, accept it, or even know about it? Not to forgive means we yield ourselves to another person’s control – another person’s governing values and his attitudes and actions. We are forced by someone else into sequences of act and response, of outrage and revenge, and you know what? It always gets worse. Our present, when we refuse to forgive, is endlessly overwhelmed by the past.”

Later, “Forgiveness frees the forgiver.”

This beautifully-worded biblical principle is brought to life by a story. A story, Andrews says, came to him from the earth. This story that demanded a telling captured his life for weeks, even months. And you know what? It has captured mine.

I am stunned by the fact that I struggle to extend mercy when such colossal mercy has been extended to me. Yet, I do. I struggle at times. This story gives me one more dimension in the facets of forgiveness.

I want to be free. Do you?

Jenny Jo Weir

Jenny Jo Weir rated it      

Read this book!!! You will not regret it. I loved it from the very first word to the very end. It’s beautiful and inspiring. Worth every minute of your time. I am for sure going to be reading more of Andy’s books after this one.


Nancy rated it      

I’m pretty sure this is going down as one of my favorite books. I absolutely loved it!

Andrews weaves a story of finding German WWII artifacts buried in a can on his ocean front property and Josef and Helen’s journey to find peace and forgiveness. Andrews offers photos of buttons, a couple of photographs, a ring, and a medal he found digging up the roots to an old tree. He then seeks to find the story for these items being deposited on the beach.

What he discovers is really quite shocking. German U-boats were always present in the waters serving the American soldiers, including the Gulf of Mexico. During the war, much debris washed up on the shores from U-Boat carnage. They submarines shot all ships they could to smithereens. There were, however, a number of Germans rather than Nazis. They asked the crew to please exit the vehicle, blew it up, then approached the life boats to offer canteens of water and directions to the nearest landfall.

Apparently, this is documented to be true.

Also true is that some of the soldiers chose to be listed as “Missing In Action” or presumed dead rather than return to Germany where Adolf Hitler reigned his horrors and there was nothing to return. They integrated into society, although not without some help, I’m certain.

This is the story of Josef, a German, and Helen, a widow. The story is incredibly well told and draws the reader into a believable realm. Told with empathy, the journey of Josef’s and Helen’s hearts is hopeful. Both have suffered great loss. Both learned how to forgive and relinquish to God.

Loved it.

Jesseca Wheaton

Jesseca Wheaton rated it      

WOW! I loved this book so much!!! I seriously had no idea if I was going to like it. I saw it at our library used-book-sale shelf, and decided to give it a try. (You can’t beat $0.50 for a hardback!)
It was so good! It took me a little while to get into it, and the writing seemed a little slow but the story was amazing! Also, there seemed to be more telling than showing, but it didn’t really bother me at all. It was just hard to wade through some of it. 😉
But the ending was just .. ahh!! I can’t say anymore or I will spoil the book!
If you enjoy WWII history, then you’ll definitely want to check it out!


Ariana rated it     

I actually listened to this book and really enjoyed it. I LOVED the author’s reading voice. It made it all the more enjoyable hearing this story. A sad story but yet endearing.


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