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Home Front

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4.12  ·  Rating details ·  50,256 ratings  ·  5,189 reviews
Bestselling author Kristin Hannah explores the intimate landscape of a troubled marriage with this provocative and timely portrait of a husband and wife, in love and at war.

From a distance, Michael and Joleen Zarkades seem to have it all: a solid marriage, two exciting careers, and children they adore. But after twelve years together, the couple has lost their way; they ar
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Hardcover, 390 pages
Published January 31st 2012 by St. Martin's Press
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4.12  · 
Rating details
 ·  50,256 ratings  ·  5,189 reviews


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Betsy
Mar 09, 2012 rated it liked it
I am a female veteran, having served in the 80's and 90's. I didn't agree with the author's portrayal of female soldiers as a novelty. We've been around a long time now and have integrated ourselves into the military without being freaks any more. Likewise, in 2007, the nation was highly supportive of its military heroes (and rightfully so). I don't think parents and kids would have taunted and teased a child just because her mother was in the military.

Speaking of children, I tend to disagree w
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Megs ♥
Home Front is the newest book by author Kristin Hannah, and I was thrilled to receive an ARC of this book through GoodReads First Reads.

When I first read the synopsis of this book, I will admit it didn't seem like something that would appeal to me. After reading and loving Night Road I gained confidence in Hannah's writing, though. I loved that book so much I decided I will read everything she writes from now on.

This book is really about a lot of things. Jolene is a 41-year old woman who had a p
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Stefanie
Sep 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kristin-hannah
This book affected me in a very deep way. I have not cried this much in months (a year?). This book reminds me of how lucky I am to live where I live with my small hardships and my small sacrifices. I am so thankful for those who have given their fellow Americans so much by taking on large hardships and enduring large sacrifices. I strive to be worthy. I give this book my highest recommendation.
Julie
Jan 20, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: book-club
I tried to like this book. For the love of book club I really did. In the end I decided that there are two kinds of people in this world: those who like Nicholas Sparks and cats; and those who don't. I fall into the latter category. Kristen Hannah must be in the first.
Kara
Started and finished this on one tear-soaked Sunday afternoon. Reading it reminded me somewhat of the experience of watching Lord of the Rings - cried through the whole thing for no good reason. There's just something about the characters that tugs on your heartstrings. And there were all the orcs and elves running around*.

Okay, really not so much like Lord of the Rings, but definitely stirring emotionally. I didn't think I'd find much in common with a woman in the military, but the author made
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Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*
EXCERPT: Prologue 1982

The way she saw it, some families were like well-tended parks, with pretty daffodil borders and big, sprawling trees that offered respite from the summer sun. Others - and she knew this firsthand - were battlefields, bloody and dark, litteredwith shrapnel and body parts.

She might only be seventeen, but Jolene Larsen already knew about war. She'd grown up in the midst of a marriage gone bad.

ABOUT THIS BOOK: Bestselling author Kristin Hannah explores the intimate landscape
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Shana
Sep 26, 2012 rated it did not like it
This novel was truly disappointing, and I say this from the perspective of a military spouse. The one slightly unique aspect was that the military member in this case was the wife. But the storyline was hardly imaginative. The wife, Jolene, enjoys serving her country and cares a lot about her job. Michael is the callous civilian husband who doesn’t like that his wife’s line of work. In an already tension-filled home, further conflict arises when Jolene is deployed. Surprised? Even more surprisin ...more
Aestas Book Blog
Dec 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
All marriages have a breaking point.
All families have wounds.
All wars have a cost...

I just finished reading this really great book!! For a change of pace from my usual reads, it's actually not a Romance, it's more in the Women's Fiction genre but it's by an author whose writing I LOVE because she writes with such powerful imagery and raw honesty that it feels like you're living the story with the characters. This story is about a woman who serves in the military flying helicopters and who
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Amy
Aug 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: don-t-miss-list
This book initially caught my attention because it was about a female soldier in Iraq. As a civilian we are actually clueless when it comes to the sacrifice and service that soldiers give to hold our freedom. I think we forget the real men and women involved in War and focus on numbers or statistics. It is easier for us to be blissfully ignorant. Kristin Hannah reveals an intimate dual experience of both the soldier and the family. She explores the journey from both sides before, during, and aft ...more
Danielle
Jan 05, 2012 rated it did not like it
I find it hard to believe that the same person who wrote Winter Garden wrote this. None of the characters were even remotely close to being likable; they were all obnoxious whiners. If life gave you do-overs I would definitely invest the time I wasted reading this book in doing something else.
Linda
Nov 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio
Home Front is a raw, gritty and stunning portrayal of a woman battling two separate wars: her crumbling marriage and well, war. Literally.

Jolene, a mother of two and a helicopter pilot in the National Guard, is called up to serve in the Iraq war. Never questioning her commitment to serve, Jolene must leave behind her husband and two young girls and fight for her country as she trained to do.

This book really got to me. At times, I found myself listening with tears running down my cheeks- especial
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Darinda
A story about a military family. Michael and Joleen Zarkades are dealing with normal family issues - marriage, children, and work. Their situation is complicated when Joleen is called to active duty and must leave her family to go into a war zone.

This story is mainly from Joleen's point of view, but some of Michael's viewpoint is included. Michael is an attorney unhappy with his wife and marriage. Joleen is a helicopter pilot in the military. She loves her husband and children, and is surprised
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Sharon
Mar 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
Jolene first met Michael when she was seventeen. It was just after her parents had died and she walked into a legal aid office which Michael was working at. At the time Michael was an intern and it was his first year of law school. Jolene was not only grieving for her parents but she was trying to figure out what to do next. Michael helped her out as much as he could.

Six years later they met up again and and eventually they got married. They now have two daughters Betsy aged twelve and Lulu age
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Ally
Aug 16, 2013 marked it as dnf
Recommends it for: None of my friends
I'm not even going to rate this one because I only got to 36% before I moved on to bigger and better books. One lady in the book club assured me that she was crying and sobbing in the end.

This book was just so boring for me. I couldn't relate to the characters at all. Jolene was such a push-over in every aspect of her life. If her husband was bothering her, she would sometimes say something and then drop it. If her daughter was acting like a total bitch, as she was for the majority of what I rea
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PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
Maybe I expected too much after Hannah's brilliant NIGHT ROAD and most of her other books. I found the story to be incredibly predictable and cliche. The premise of the story is a good one, but this story lacks the originality found in most of Hannah's books. I don't want to say too much detail about what was predictable, for fear of spoiling the book. The character of Michael is the most well rounded and well written, because he's a flawed good guy. His major flaws--workaholism, poor communicat ...more
Anna
Apr 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chic-lit, romance
Jolene and Michael Zarkades are at a crossroads in their marriage. Michael works late hours, is grieving the loss of his father and is out of touch with his family. Jolene puts on a happy, positive face to hide the pain she still carries from her childhood, and the unresolved emotional baggage that resulted. She loves her two daughters fiercely and fully, wanting them to have the love she never knew. The every day stresses of life have put a strain on their marriage, and the future is uncertain. ...more
Cafelilybookreviews
Dec 28, 2011 rated it liked it
The beautiful, peaceful beach scene on the cover of this book did not prepare me for what I was about to encounter within it's pages. When I finished this book, I was emotionally wrung out. To say that I have a greater appreciation for what our servicemen and women go through when they are deployed and then come home again, is an understatement. I could not stop thinking about the troops who are on their way home even now - and what life for them and their families will be like when they get her ...more
Becky
Jan 18, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: book-club
Short synopsis: Jolene, a stoic National Guard pilot, is married to selfish, brooding Michael. She has two kids: cute little Lulu and bratty Betsy. She also has a plucky friend named Tami and an angelically supportive mother-in-law. Then Jolene is deployed to Iraq, and everyone Learns Something and Jolene isn't so stoic and Michael isn't so selfish and brooding and Betsy isn't so bratty. Lulu is still cute.

A woman in my book club won free copies of this book for all of us, so we picked it up as
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SummerAmethyst
Jun 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Although I can say that I did enjoy this book, there were several times that I couldn't put it down, I have to be honest and also say that I cannot give it 5 stars and am not sure that I really want to give it 4 stars. The storyline was very good, the characters of Michael and Jolene were likeable, by the end of the book I really wanted their marriage to work out and I felt terrible for everything they had been through as a couple and as individuals. However..... I could not stand their older da ...more
Crystal Starr Light
Bullet Review:

This book is HUGELY offensive. Offensive to military families (how the f$&@ did Michael survive THAT LONG married to a Army National Guard officer?!). Offensive to women (assuming it's the wife's responsibility to teach her husband to leave work for his OWN F$&@ING DAUGHTER'S TRACK MEET). Offensive to people who like good writing and characters (Lulu is that 4-year old that exists in Family Circle comics and in imaginations only).

But it was this line that made me DNF at 16%
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Carol
Mar 01, 2012 rated it did not like it

Heavy handed, sophomoric and sappy! Those were my feelings just in the first 40 pages of this novel. And, the names, OMG, the names!! Joline, Betsy, Lulu, Sienna, Zoe, Tami??? Each on their own, just fine -- but all in one book? Just too much sugar, thank you.

I found Michael, the military spouse, to be extremely unlikable from the first "This war is stupid and I don't support you," moment. Especially considering the fact that Jolene was an army reservist before they even started dating; did he m
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Jill
Feb 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone!
There is a reason I am stingy with 5-star ratings and this book is a prime example of that reason. Every now and then you read a book that is just so far above the rest of the pack that you know you will not soon forget it. For me, this is one of those books. The last one I read that touched me to this degree was Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand, which also deserves 5 stars. This is one of the most compelling books I have read in a long time. Periodically I had to put it down and walk away, regain ...more
Christine
May 01, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really didn't care for Home Front. I did though like the idea behind the story.

As the novel unfolds, we meet Joleen, the product of two alcoholic parents, now a supposedly strong and independant woman who flies helicopters for the National Guard. She is married to a successful lawyer named Michael who seems to be logging more hours at the office than at home, and is getting pulled into defending a former US Marine accused of killing his wife. Joleen and Michael have a teenage daughter who is s
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Pat
Nov 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I found this book extremely emotional for me. I am a great fan of Kristin Hannah novels, Firefly Lane I think was my favorite...until now.

The Zarkades family seems like your ordinary American family...till you take a closer look. Michael is a criminal defense attorney, starting to wonder if he will ever be able to defend an innocent person. He is quite affected by his fathers death, but is unable to express his feelings. Consequently, he's removed himself from the family, and working harder than
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Laura
Jul 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought this was a very well written story. It made me cry... several times. (I don't recommend listening to the audio while driving. It's just not safe to cry and drive at the same time.) Unfortunately, there is a fair amount of language in this story and there is one intimate scene that takes place, however, I felt like it was handled well and helped move the story along. ( I thought that I should mention it just for those who like to have a better feel for what content is in the book.) Over ...more
Nancy
Jul 30, 2012 rated it liked it
I think I'm done with Kristin Hannah. I used to see her books as great chick-y reading: marital ups and downs, personal crises, kids in trouble yada yada yada. But the last couple have been major disappointments. I don't think it's Hannah's writing or plotting. I think it's me.

As I was reading, I felt continuously yanked around by the author's Big Important Points: Military families must do their duty, even when one spouse is inclined to be liberal. Spouses must face their interpersonal problems
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Krista
Jun 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 stars because I flew through it and was captivated by the story. One star taken away because almost all the characters annoyed me at one point or another.
Sandy
Jul 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Tear jerker from begining to end! Worth reading!
Bookworm
Mar 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is absolutely brilliant in parts while at other times it is kind of clichė and repetitive. As a result, I went with an average of 4 stars. I think the author did a fantastic job of portraying a married couple in crisis. I will admit I shed quite a few tears. I also haven’t read any books that take place in the Iraq war so the setting was intriguing. I learned a few details about this war that I wasn’t aware of.

I’m not sure if it was the audio narrator’s annoying character voice but I
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Sonia Cristina
Dec 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016

Agora não sei porque adiei tanto a leitura deste livro ou ainda porque pensei, durante 2 anos, que não ia ler, que não queria. Acho que há livros e autores que têm uma altura certa para ser lidos e só resta esperar por essa leitura e não forçar.

Adorei "O Regresso". Mas adorei mesmo; para mim é um livro de 5 estrelas. Nas primeiras 100 páginas, pouco mais que isso, ainda andei ali a patinar. Michael irritava-me profundamente; Jolene também era irritante com aquelas frases feitas de encorajamento
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Kristin Hannah is the award-winning and bestselling author of more than 20 novels including the international blockbuster, The Nightingale, which was named Goodreads Best Historical fiction novel for 2015 and won the coveted People's Choice award for best fiction in the same year. Additionally, it was named a Best Book of the Year by Amazon, iTunes, Buzzfeed, the Wall Street Journal, Paste, and Th ...more
“I know about forgiving people and loving them anyway, even after they hurt you.” 32 likes
“She had been ready to love this man from the moment she first saw him. In all these years, that had never changed. They'd hurt each other, let each other down, and yet, here they were after everything, together. She needed him now, needed him to remind her that she was live, that she wasn't alone, that she hadn't lost everything.” 21 likes
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