Brandi Kosiner (Brandi Breathes Books)'s Reviews > While He Was Away

While He Was Away by Karen Halvorsen Schreck
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Apr 13, 2012

really liked it
Read from April 13 to 15, 2012

I LOVE this cover. I think that the colors are beautiful and the couple embracing adds just the right touch for the story.
While this story wasn't exactly what I was expecting, it was good. I liked the idea of exploring the ramifications of having a military boyfriend and how that effects you and your life. I also liked the glimpses into what David's life is like in Iraq. It seems really well researched and while I still can't imagine how our soldiers do it, I can relate with the emotions and with the vivid imagery.
I think that Penna is a likable character, and I connected with her. I wish that I would have been shown more the relationship and how it built with David, but as is, I can still root for their love story to have a happy ending and understand how their emotions grew. I know that the story is more about him being away, and how he's changing as he's deployed. Ms. Schreck does a good job relaying Penna's emotions and it helps a bit to imagine what the wives and girlfriends are going through.
The other secondary characters are well done in my opinion. I liked the mystery that unfolds between Penna's mom Linda and her grandma Justine. I can see Penna's intrigue with why Justine left and feeling that connection since she also had a loved one go to war. She doggedly searches down her grandma and I appreciate how they end up being there for one another. I also appreciated Tom's strength and character.
I also wanted more of Ravi. I am not sure how else he could have played into the story except as the supporter and long lost friend that he was, but I appreciated his shyness and his ability to overcome.
Somehow though, I wanted this story to be more complete, and if there is a sequel, then that is problem completely solved. I mean, things were wrapped up well enough I suppose, but I wanted more development and to know how my characters fared.
That said, the plot is solid, the characters well done, and once I opened the book, I did not want to put it down.

For more of my reviews, check out Blkosiner’s YA and Teen Book Blog:

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read While He Was Away.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.