When Light Breaks
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When Light Breaks

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  844 ratings  ·  81 reviews
Garnering comparisons to Anne Rivers Siddons and Pat Conroy, Patti Callahan Henry has woven her lyrical Southern voice throughout the Lowcountry landscape. Now, as two women from opposite sides of the same sea meet, a tale unfolds that will draw you into the heart's remembrances--and the tender awakenings of first love....

Twenty-seven-year-old Kara Larson is bogged down in...more
ebook, 304 pages
Published May 1st 2006 by New American Library (first published 2006)
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An excellent book and is the type of book that you will remember long after you've finished reading it. Ms. Henry is a great storyteller and her books are always good.

In this book, the heroine Kara Larson is engaged to a pro-golfer and she thinks he is everything she has always wanted. But her friend tells her that she is talking about him like he is a prize won in a game and asks Kara why she loves him. She couldn't think of a good reason but told her friend he reminded her of Jack, her former...more
I chose this read for three reasons: the age of the main character, the Irish connection, and inspiration. It's important to follow your heart, to listen to that, to stop to listen. Kara is happy to marry a wealthy golfer but she's always thoughtful of her teenage sweetheart. A "perfect" life can't be planned because it's life's unexpected turns that guarantee that happiness...if you take the chance.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
“When Light Breaks” isn’t the most original book I have ever read. You know by the end of the second chapter what is going to happen. But, I do think the book’s theme of following your heart is very true to life…and a lesson that all of us need to learn.

I enjoyed Henry’s writing style. It was clean and easy to read. I also LOVE reading books set in the Low Country. So, I do find myself reading a lot books set along South Carolina/Georgia coast. (Pat Conroy is a favorite author.)

And there is defi...more
I'm sorry to say that I did not love "When Light Breaks." I thought I would, since "The Art of Keeping Secrets" by Patti Callahan Henry hit my list of favorites when I read it a few years ago. This book front-loaded the back story (which I know is tough to avoid in a book about regrets and coming to grips with the past, granted) and even though I usually love contemporaries with historical threads, this one left me cold. I think it was the way the elderly character Maeve Mahoney told her story a...more
This story parallels the lost loves of and dying elderly Irish woman and a young woman in South Carolina. The Irish story is somewhat interesting but the contemporary tale is not. Plus, all of the labels of the clothes, shoes, purses the contemporary women wears are mentioned and this plus her general selfish attitude makes her a less than sympathetic character.
Beth Browne
I met Patti at a writer's conference where I mistook her for a participant until she stood up to give the keynote. She's a beautiful, sweet, down-to-earth woman, who loves her kids and her fictional characters. I picked up her book with some trepidation because I was afraid I wouldn't like it (for no good reason really) and was very pleased to find that I liked it very much.

The book is a story about stories with a strong female protagonist and a compelling plot. It's just the sort of book that d...more
Dec 23, 2008 Cathy rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: romantics, southern women
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Janice Marlow
I enjoyed this book for some light reading. It was fairly predictable as most love stories are but still well written. I would recommend it for anyone who wanted a quick light read.
Carol Hahn
A romance book that has two stories-a current romance and a romance in the early 1900's. The story was interesting and an easy read.
I fell in love with Patti Callahan Henry earlier this summer and I am slowly making my way through her wonderful books. This one did not disappoint and I think this might be my favorite so far.

The story of young love interrupted and the sudden re-appearance was not an original storyline, but Henry definitively made it her own and added some unique aspects to the story. While this book was not set in the low-country as many of her books are ( and one of my favorite parts) she still uses the image...more
Jeannie Baracy
One of my all time favorite books.
Having recently discovered this author and enjoyed her latest book, I was disappointed in this book written two years before. I never connected with the main character, and the plot is a familiar one. The young woman comes to understand she is marrying the wrong man (even though he is handsome, wealthy, talented etc.) through her relationship with an elderly woman, whom she befriends as part of her Junior League responsibilities, who shares an Irish legend of lost love. Hmmmm.
poorly written, characters under developed. The writer tries too hard and stretches to write meaning into all objects and conversations. the main character is laughable. her endless analysis is amusing at best (and this is coming from a person who overanalyzes everything!). I dont have anything good to say about this book except it wasnt bad enough for me to stop reading entirely and I managed to muddle through it to the end.
Patti Callahan Henry never disappoints. I enjoyed the changes that occurred in Kara Lawson throughout the story and how she was influenced and mesmerized by a ninety-six year old irish lady's story of first love. As Kara planned her wedding to Peyton, a golf pro, her thoughts are of her first love who with his Mom and Brother moved away suddenly. Thirteen years later she can not stop thinking about Jack.
This book was just OK for me. It had a feel of Nicholas Sparks' work, which is sometimes a little much for me. Young woman is engaged to a professional golfer, meets an elderly woman in a nursing home where she volunteers, and is encouraged to think about and find her "first love" before going ahead with her wedding. All about what we can learn from a previous generation, and the power of a first love.
Mary Baker
I didn't like the plot of this novel very much. I found it implausible and thought the various strands needed more development. People change over time because of environmental and social influences which I didn't feel the writer took into consideration. I do, however, enjoy Patti Callahan Henry's books more than those by most authors.
This is probably my least favorite that I've read by this author. I didn't feel any connection or interest in the characters. I finished it to see the ending for both love stories, but I can't say I was all that invested. The characters just seemed flat. Not one of my favorites. I'm being generous because I have liked her other books.
Apr 04, 2008 Carmela rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: chick lit lovers
Recommended to Carmela by: mom
Shelves: 50-in-year
This was a cute book with some tiny problems. There was sort of a mystical Irish influence to a story set in the American South, but sometimes the characters would talk in way that read as being Irish. It was confusing. But the story was simple and easy to read. It was light and delightful and cute.
Who hasn't dreamed about their first love. Not only will you get caught up with the story, but you'll probably start dreaming up one of your own. You'll want to curl up with this one alone, so you don't have to explain the faraway dreamy face to your husband!
I wasn't sure I would like this story. I don't like lots of "angst" but this was enjoyable. There are several stories going on, and many lessons being taught. Easy to read, the characters are likeable. Love reading about South Carolina. Sounds beautiful.
This is not a book I will remember, but it was a pleasant read. An easy book, read in about a day, that provided a nice diversion in these hot summer days when you can't do anything more strenuous than sit in an air conditioned room and read a book.
The first two chapters were so predictable I skipped ahead to chapter 5 to see if I'd even keep reading. Thankfully, the story got deeper and the writer seemed to get into her groove, and I found the rest of the book quite enjoyable. Recommended.
Laura Beasley
Very good story. First book I have read by this author but plan to read many more. SHe tells a good story. Believable and full of some good life lessons. Loved the main theme--follow your heart. Makes you think but in a good way.
Got it from a recommendation. The story is cute but predictable. I found the dialogue and character development to be severely lacking - and I got tired of seeing "what" as a response to everything. Quick read - finished in one evening.
Adorable. Cheesy at times-but adorable.

One thing I did hate about this book and it might be stupid, but...EVERYONE had curly hair. Everyone in the whole story. It was just annoying.

But other than that -really- a cute read.
it took me a while to get into this book. about half to two thirds of the book to get into it actually. it was a very slow read for me until the last third or so. it had a nice ending, but it's not something i would read again.
Carly Bean
I bought this book by chance. The cover was pretty, and it was on sale. It ended up being one of my favorite stories. It's nothing heroic, or powerful. I end up reading it once or twice a year though. It's a lovely, short book.
Good for a quick read. Love this author, but had a tough time getting into the story at first. Once I was able to really concentrate though, it was good. Nice for traveling. Story about a girl searching for who she is.
Judy Collins
"Powerful stories between women of different generations - inspiring - as our hearts communicate thru stories...first love, romance, Irish angels - great author and storyteller - making the characters come alive! "
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Patti Callahan Henry is the National Bestselling author of six novels with Penguin/NAL (Losing the Moon, Where the River Runs, When Light Breaks, Betweeen the Tides, The Art of Keeping Secrets, and Driftwood Summer).

Patti is hailed as a fresh new voice in southern fiction. She has been short-listed for the Townsend Prize for Fiction and has been nominated for the Southeastern Independent Booksell...more
More about Patti Callahan Henry...
Driftwood Summer Between The Tides Coming Up for Air And Then I Found You The Art of Keeping Secrets

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“People say it all the time--'follow your heart.' What are we supposed to do--take our heart out and walk around behind it--follow it down the sidewalk to the mall? Your feet will lead you to your heart. Ha!
"Maybe it just means you should know your heart, because if you know it, you might do what it says to do. I don't think it means you do whatever you damn well please. I don't think the heart speaks very loudly either--just tosses you hints and whispers.”
“Souls bound together can't be forever torn apart by distance and neither by death.” 10 likes
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