Laura's Reviews > Red Heart Tattoo

Red Heart Tattoo by Lurlene McDaniel
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's review
Dec 06, 11

Read from November 30 to December 01, 2011

3.5 Stars

Confession time. I might have been looking forward to ripping this book apart. **Hanging head in shame** I know, I know…I’m scum, but growing up Lurlene McDaniel books were just not my style. I skipped right on by to rocker boys, shenanigans, and big trouble! :D I brushed her books off as fluff or Lifetime movies in print. Not that there is anything wrong with Lifetime movies! But…

I was wrong. Red Heart Tattoo by Ms. Lurlene McDaniel surprised, impressed and moved me.

Life can change in an instant. A bomb explodes at Edison High School changing the lives of the students and the town forever. Readers are introduced to “always-color-in-the-lines” Morgan, Trent with his “Hey Babe” personality, “trouble-is-my-middle-name” vibe Roth, Kelli, Liza, Max, Carla and many more students and parents before the bombing and travel with them through the grief, loss, and pain of the tragedy. The emotional trauma and changes these characters experienced made such a strong impression and impact on my heart. Most of the plot points and big “secrets” with some of the characters were really obvious. If you cannot figure out what’s up with Kelli, you are living under a rock! I don’t believe surprise or shock was the point though. The focus was more on how each character responded to the life decision, change, pain, or loss in their life.

Every single one of the characters in this book faced a life altering tragedy, decision, or event in their life before or after the bombing. Everyone! How we react to life’s hard decisions and pain make us who we are in this world. The different voices come together to inspire readers to reflect on their own path in this world or how they might affect others around them. Curl up or stand up? Trust someone with your heart or not? Many of the characters made me think, but Roth’s story really touched my heart with warmth, humor, pain, and honesty. His transformation and journey through these pages is truly a joy to experience and take to heart.

There is a lot going on in such a short book. Some points felt underdeveloped and glossed over, but in the end this book did make me think, smile, swoon a bit, and wonder. How would I react? What would I have done?

The scary part--We won’t know until it happens to us.

Thank you to NetGalley for my very first Lurlene McDaniel book. It will not be my last.
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