Aaron Miller is a hero. A fact very few know. Most wouldn’t glance twice at the aging handyman who lives in a storage room. The Vietnam vet himself doesn’t believe he’s a hero. Not after he returned home only to lose his family and everything he cared about because he couldn’t get his life together. Despite cleaning up his act and turning his life over to God years ago, his ex-wife made it clear that there is no room for him in the life of his children. They have moved on and so should he. With Christmas coming up, Aaron is resigned to spending yet another holiday alone with little more than memories and an old picture of his kids as company. But three men haven’t forgotten the one who saved their lives 40 years earlier in a far-away jungle and they are determined to find him.
Dave Russo dreams of writing a book about Vietnam veterans in an attempt to connect with the father he lost to that war. To fund his project, he undertakes the task of finding a man who may not even be alive. With little more than a name, he sets out on a practically impossible mission. Along the journey he meets people that will change his life forever.
Dan Walsh delivers another heart-wrenching novel with The Reunion. Honestly, I felt a bit apprehensive starting out. I absolutely loved Walsh’s The Discovery and couldn’t imagine how anything could come up to that. It didn’t take me long to realize I worried about nothing. The Reunion is a beautiful story that tugs at the heart-strings and plays with the reader’s emotions. I lost track of how many times my throat constricted and my eyes filled with tears only to have a huge smile appear on my face a few minutes later. There were moments, especially towards the end when I experienced both at the same time.
Aaron Miller is a wonderful character with such a beautiful soul. The reader can’t help, but love him. While the book centers mostly on the Vietnam War and the challenges veterans faced when they returned home, I couldn’t help, but compare it to the current conflict, making the story very relevant.
In my opinion, the romance moved too fast. I would have liked the author to develop the relationship between Dave and Karen further. It felt too rushed when they started talking about long-term after just two or three meetings even while living in different States. As is, it sounded like instant attraction being confused with love. Still it was fun to watch these grown characters fumble around awkwardly, at times, acting more like nervous teenagers than adults. The Reunion is perfect for anyone searching for a sweet, feel-good story.
Rated PG: Briefly deals with suicide and partner abuse.
Review copy provided by publisher. Thanks!
ABOUT THE REVIEWER: Elizabeth Olmedo (REQUEST QUEEN & PUBLISHER RELATIONS GURU) is one of those people who wants to be and do many (not always compatible) things in life. However, as one who belongs to the race that only gets one life (lucky cats get 9!), she makes up for it by reading and writing. Thankfully, books allow her to be anything and anyone—no questions asked!
Fiction is her absolute favorite. Whether getting lost in a good book or creating one herself, they usually belong to the mystery/suspense/romance genres. Elizabeth can often be found with a good ole classic in hand—Jane Austen being her hero and Mr. Darcy the love of her life.
A graduate of Bethel College with an English degree under her belt, Elizabeth is back home in Spain, but dreaming of living in Israel. She is an English teacher and hopes to someday be a published novel writer. Other hobbies include watching movies (or any other activity that pulls you into a good plot) and learning Hebrew. Elizabeth can also be found on Fiction Addict.