The Heart Keeper
"How far would you go to get your daughter back?It’s been twelve months since Alison Miller-Juul’s world fell apart when her six-year-old daughter, Amalie, drowned. Twelve months of sympathy cards, grief counselling and gritting her teeth, but it’s still only the vodka and pills that seem to work.Alison no longer cares about anything. She can’t smile at her step-son, she can’t answer her friends’ texts, she can’t even look at her husband. All Alison wants is Amalie back.Then she learns that the girl who received her daughter's heart lives just a few streets away. Unlike Amalie, this girl has a future. She’s alive because Amalie’s heart beats for her. And in the darkest recess of Alison’s brain, an idea begins to take shape…"

The Heart Keeper Details

TitleThe Heart Keeper
Author
ReleaseJul 4th, 2019
PublisherHead of Zeus
ISBN-139781786699275
Rating
GenreFiction, Thriller, Psychological Thriller, Contemporary, Suspense

The Heart Keeper Review

  • Norma * Traveling Sister
    January 1, 1970
    Moving, heart-wrenching & raw!THE HEART KEEPER by ALEX DAHL is an interesting, enjoyable and entertaining read that had quite the emotional, profound and unique premise. I haven’t read too many books in regards to organ donation and I found that quite intriguing. I wouldn’t necessarily say though that I was totally immersed in this story but I did definitely feel at times an intense emotional pull. The story itself is a scary, horrific and heartbreaking one that definitely plants you right i Moving, heart-wrenching & raw!THE HEART KEEPER by ALEX DAHL is an interesting, enjoyable and entertaining read that had quite the emotional, profound and unique premise. I haven’t read too many books in regards to organ donation and I found that quite intriguing. I wouldn’t necessarily say though that I was totally immersed in this story but I did definitely feel at times an intense emotional pull. The story itself is a scary, horrific and heartbreaking one that definitely plants you right into the storyline with all of its dramatic highs and lows. But I wouldn’t say that it was all that thrilling or had me on the edge of my seat in anticipation until maybe towards the end. Then I was breathlessly awaiting the outcome.ALEX DAHL delivers an intriguing and well-written read here with determined, honest and relatable characters. I especially enjoyed Kaia and she had me totally loving and rooting for her. The concept and the actual things all heart related was pretty palpable and extremely touched me as a reader. You could definitely feel the author’s heart here within this story. Norma’s Stats:Cover: Intriguing, heartfelt, moving and an extremely fitting and meaningful representation to storyline. Title: An intriguing, interesting, meaningful and extremely fitting representation to storyline. I absolutely love the title of this story! Perfection!Writing/Prose: Well-written, sincere, captivating, moving and readable. Plot: Slow-building, steadily paced, interesting, heartfelt, moving, touching, and unique. Ending: Intense, heartfelt and satisfying. Overall: I think this book will be much better perceived if you go into it knowing that it is more of a strong family drama rather than a full on heart-pounding thriller. This book definitely resonated with me as a mother. Would recommend! Thank you so much to NetGalley, Victoria Joss at Head of Zeus and Alex Dahl for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book.Blog tour post can also be found on our blog:https://twosisterslostinacoulee.com/2...
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  • Lindsay - Traveling Sister
    January 1, 1970
    4 stars! Intensely emotional. Unforgettably heart-wrenching. Deeply thought-provoking.Alison is lost in her grief after her five-year-old daughter, Amalie, drowns in the lake. She is consumed by guilt, as she was the one watching her that day. Alison and her husband decide to donate Amalie’s organs, feeling comfort that Amalie can help to save other children. Iselin’s seven-year-old daughter, Kaia, is the recipient of Amalie’s heart. Being born with a heart condition, Iselin has watched Kaia str 4 stars! Intensely emotional. Unforgettably heart-wrenching. Deeply thought-provoking.Alison is lost in her grief after her five-year-old daughter, Amalie, drowns in the lake. She is consumed by guilt, as she was the one watching her that day. Alison and her husband decide to donate Amalie’s organs, feeling comfort that Amalie can help to save other children. Iselin’s seven-year-old daughter, Kaia, is the recipient of Amalie’s heart. Being born with a heart condition, Iselin has watched Kaia struggle to survive for her entire life. Shortly after, Alison stumbles across a magazine article outlining Kaia’s miraculous recovery through the heart transplant. Could part of Amalie be living within this young girl? Would she recognize any signs of Amalie in Kaia?The emotional impact of this book hit me hard. Alison’s grief completely consumed me. It was a gut-wrenching, impossible to ignore sadness that reached my core and had me shedding countless tears within the first several chapters. I felt so deeply for her character and situation that I had to take breaks from reading to dry my eyes and regroup my thoughts. The power behind this author, Alex Dahl’s, writing is undeniable. I had deep sympathy for Alison from start to finish, hoping for her to somehow find comfort and peace and be able to move forward in life. This book is separated into three parts. Part 1 was the most powerful for me, leaving a devastating and unforgettable emotional impact. I thoroughly enjoyed the entire book, but found that Part 2 and Part 3 lost some of the emotional intensity, focusing more on the storyline, rather than the emotions involved. This was a Traveling Sister read with Norma and Brenda. I’m so glad I had them to share this emotional journey with. To find our reviews, please visit our blog at:https://twosisterslostinacoulee.com/2...Thank you to Vicky at Head of Zeus for providing me with this ARC to read and review!
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  • Brenda - Traveling Sister
    January 1, 1970
    Two Mothers, one grieving, two daughters, one gone and the other given a second chanceThe Heart Keeper is an emotional, heart breaking story that explores a mother’s grief and guilt that turns into an obsession.Alex Dahl does a great job capturing the grief of a family after the death of their daughter and sister. Each dealing in their own way that really pulled me into their lives. I was turning those pages as fast as I could to see how this story comes together in the end. We see how grief and Two Mothers, one grieving, two daughters, one gone and the other given a second chanceThe Heart Keeper is an emotional, heart breaking story that explores a mother’s grief and guilt that turns into an obsession.Alex Dahl does a great job capturing the grief of a family after the death of their daughter and sister. Each dealing in their own way that really pulled me into their lives. I was turning those pages as fast as I could to see how this story comes together in the end. We see how grief and guilt start to unravel our grieving mother and she starts to become obsessed with the idea of having a second chance with her daughter through her daughter’s heart keeper.The ending had me on the seat of my chair, holding my breath and rooting for the characters and feeling very satisfied with how the story wrapped up. I highly recommend! Thank you so much to NetGalley, Victoria at Head of Zeus and Alex Dahl for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book.
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  • Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
    January 1, 1970
    An emotional thriller! ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ Set in Norway, Alison’s daughter, Amalie, drowns, and she feels her life is over. In the darkness of winter, Alison is at an all-time low. By contrast, for another family, Amalie’s death means new life. Kaia, riddled with health problems, receives Amalie’s heart. Iselin is Kaia’s mom and things are finally looking up for them. They even have a wealthy new friend and benefactor. Alison should not have crossed the line, and she knows it, but she can’t help herself. S An emotional thriller! ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ Set in Norway, Alison’s daughter, Amalie, drowns, and she feels her life is over. In the darkness of winter, Alison is at an all-time low. By contrast, for another family, Amalie’s death means new life. Kaia, riddled with health problems, receives Amalie’s heart. Iselin is Kaia’s mom and things are finally looking up for them. They even have a wealthy new friend and benefactor. Alison should not have crossed the line, and she knows it, but she can’t help herself. She only wants to be a support to Iselin and Kaia. She can give them a better way of life they wouldn’t have on their own. Alison finds Kaia to be just like Amalie and an obsession is born. The Heart Keeper is full of raw emotion. Alison’s grief is visceral, so I could almost understand the trip she took to obsession. Dahl is skilled at capturing authentic grief. I am drawing a line in the sand and not telling you too much more. Overall, The Heart Keeper is a powerfully emotional, character-driven mystery-thriller, and I am on the edge of my seat waiting for what’s next from Alex Dahl! I received a complimentary copy. All opinions are my own. My reviews can also be found on my blog: www.jennifertarheelreader.com
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  • Mackenzie - PhDiva Books
    January 1, 1970
    What if there were still a part of someone you lost still beating? What would you do to hold on to that person just a bit longer?A dark, heart-wrenching novel that was rich with raw emotions and vivid descriptions. Nordic noir is truly a unique genre. Books within it may range from mysteries to thrillers to dramas, but there is a stylistic and atmospheric feeling to them that is uniquely that genre. I’d classify Alex Dahl’s The Heart Keeper as a suspenseful domestic drama but with that signature What if there were still a part of someone you lost still beating? What would you do to hold on to that person just a bit longer?A dark, heart-wrenching novel that was rich with raw emotions and vivid descriptions. Nordic noir is truly a unique genre. Books within it may range from mysteries to thrillers to dramas, but there is a stylistic and atmospheric feeling to them that is uniquely that genre. I’d classify Alex Dahl’s The Heart Keeper as a suspenseful domestic drama but with that signature Nordic noir vibe.About the BookIt was an accident, but in that moment Alison’s whole world changed. After her daughter Amalie drowns, Alison is plunged int a state of despair she can’t escape from. She drinks too much, her husband and her barely touch each other, she takes leave from work, but nothing makes it better. As winter falls in Norway, Alison doesn’t know that she can keep holding on without Amalie.Iselin’s world changed that day too. A single mother with no support from her parents, Iselin is barely able to make ends meet. She’s spent most of her adult life caring for her sick daughter, Kaia. But then a miracle happens—Kaia receives a new heart. As Kaia recovers, she becomes the girl she was always meant to be. And she has developed some new quirks as well.Cellular memory is the notion that sometimes recipients of a transplanted organ retain some memories of the donor. Memories that live in every cell of their body. When Alison learns of cellular memory, she becomes obsessed with the idea. Maybe something of Amalie is still there, living on in the girl who received her heart. And so Alison finds a way in. But her grief turns her good intentions into a dangerous obsession. Nothing and no one, certainly not Iselin, will stop her from regaining the daughter she lost.ReflectionAlex Dahl is such a talented writer. The way she explores the emotions of these two mothers was quite captivating. I felt their pain, their joy, how touching these moments with Kaia could be. I’m not a mother myself, but I found I was able to connect with both women so acutely.The idea of cellular memory was one that remained open-ended in this book. At times Kaia did seem to have retained some of Amalie. At other times there were rational explanations for it. But ultimately, though a part of Amalie beat in Kaia’s chest, Amalie herself wasn’t there anymore. I found that to be the most heart-wrenching part of the story, watching as Alison sought to find threads of the daughter she lost.The suspense was truly something, because it snuck up on me. I found the ending sequence brilliant and well-written. The final epilogue has stuck with me long since I finished the book. There’s something a bit haunting about it, but of course I won’t spoil what that is!A fantastic Nordic noir drama for fans of emotional, raw, well-written books with a suspenseful twist.Thank you to Berkley for my copy. Opinions are my own.
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  • Kelley
    January 1, 1970
    ARC received courtesy of Berkley PublishingWOW!!!! WOW, WOW, WOW!!!!! The adjectives--pulse-pounding, thrilling, breath-taking don't begin to cover the feels this novel creates!Allison's only child drowns and she and her husband agree to donate her heart. Allison's step-son, Oliver, discovers an article on cell-memory and how recipients of organs sometimes have characteristics of their donors. That was enough for Allison to start looking for the child who received her daughter's heart.I will war ARC received courtesy of Berkley PublishingWOW!!!! WOW, WOW, WOW!!!!! The adjectives--pulse-pounding, thrilling, breath-taking don't begin to cover the feels this novel creates!Allison's only child drowns and she and her husband agree to donate her heart. Allison's step-son, Oliver, discovers an article on cell-memory and how recipients of organs sometimes have characteristics of their donors. That was enough for Allison to start looking for the child who received her daughter's heart.I will warn you: Once you start this book, don't plan to do much else until you finish it! It is absolutely one of the best on the genre I've ever read!
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  • Ann Marie (Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine)
    January 1, 1970
    I'm hosting a GIVEAWAY for this on on Insta. ENTER HERE! You can read this and all of my reviews at Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine.I’ll first start by saying that I loved Alex Dahl’s debut, The Boy at the Door. Therefore, it was an absolute no-brainer when I was asked to join the blog tour for her sophomore novel, The Heart Keeper. It would have been an immediate yes regardless of what she’d written. When I found out that this book was centered around a greiving mother who had chosen to donate her daughter’s I'm hosting a GIVEAWAY for this on on Insta. ENTER HERE! You can read this and all of my reviews at Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine.I’ll first start by saying that I loved Alex Dahl’s debut, The Boy at the Door. Therefore, it was an absolute no-brainer when I was asked to join the blog tour for her sophomore novel, The Heart Keeper. It would have been an immediate yes regardless of what she’d written. When I found out that this book was centered around a greiving mother who had chosen to donate her daughter’s organs after her tragic death, I was beyond intrigued. I was in tears after reading only the synopsis and acknowledgments. It promised to be an original and emotional story and it didn’t disappoint.The characters are all well-developed. I had no difficulty feeling empathy for both Alison and Iselin. Alex Dahl did an amazing job of balancing their positive and negative attributes which served to make them very believable. She also did an excellent job of illustrating the fragility of a marriage after the loss of a child. Oliver, Alison’s stepson, was my favorite character. He was just so loving, and good. My heart broke for him but he’d the kind of kid I know will be okay.I don’t want to rehash the synopsis or lead you in any direction in terms of plot. Based on the synopsis, and where I thought the characters were headed, I thought things were going to shake out somewhat differently. I was happy to have been led astray. I’ll just say that this is more of a domestic suspense with a fair amount of twists which suited me just fine. The deep emotionality revolving around motherhood and grief makes The Heart Keeper a perfect fit for readers of traditional women’s fiction who are looking to up their suspense reading game.The nurse and science junky in me loved learning about cellular memory as it relates to organ transplant patients. Here is just one of many articles describing this fascinating phenomenon. I could write several pages about my feelings on organ transplantation alone but let’s just say I’m PRO and, when and if the time comes to make that decision, my family knows I want to be scattered far and wide. Indulge me a moment to be preachy here: PLEASE make sure your family knows your wishes. It is NOT enough to have it written on your driver’s license.Congratulations to Alex Dahl on another winner! I’m already looking forward to her next book.4.5/5 starsMany thanks to Berkley for providing me a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Mandy White
    January 1, 1970
    The Heart Keeper is the first book by Alex Dahl that I have read. Set in Norway this is a highly emotional read, dealing with the grief of a mother who has lost her daughter. I really enjoyed the story, told from the points of view of both mothers whose lives are going in completely opposite directions. It is certainly not a fast read but it is worth sticking with. The characters are real and the storyline is intriguing. Alison is a mother in mourning. 3 months ago her daughter Amalie died in a The Heart Keeper is the first book by Alex Dahl that I have read. Set in Norway this is a highly emotional read, dealing with the grief of a mother who has lost her daughter. I really enjoyed the story, told from the points of view of both mothers whose lives are going in completely opposite directions. It is certainly not a fast read but it is worth sticking with. The characters are real and the storyline is intriguing. Alison is a mother in mourning. 3 months ago her daughter Amalie died in a tragic accident and she blames herself. Her marriage is falling apart and her best friend is the vodka bottle. Across town Iselin's life is finally starting to come good. Her daughter Kaia has just received a heart transplant and is finally living the life that a little girl should. These 2 women will change each other's lives. Thanks to NetGalley and Harper Collins Australia for the advanced copy of this book to read. All opinions are my own and are in no way biased.
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  • Dennis
    January 1, 1970
    Alex Dahl is a new writer and came out with a blockbuster hit last summer called The Boy at the Door. You would never expect a new author to come up with something completely different for their second novel, but The Heart Keeper feels like it was written by a completely different person, and I appreciate that. This book is more of a drama than a suspense/thriller novel, so go into The Heart Keeper knowing that, and you'll enjoy it much more.Allison is in bereavement, coping after the death Alex Dahl is a new writer and came out with a blockbuster hit last summer called The Boy at the Door. You would never expect a new author to come up with something completely different for their second novel, but The Heart Keeper feels like it was written by a completely different person, and I appreciate that. This book is more of a drama than a suspense/thriller novel, so go into The Heart Keeper knowing that, and you'll enjoy it much more.Allison is in bereavement, coping after the death of her daughter Amalie. Amalie drowned in a traumatic accident, and her family is left to pick up the pieces. Allison's husband Sindre and her stepson Oliver are also struggling with Amalie's death and the trio knows they just have to move on. Amalie's body was donated so others could live. In the same realm, Iselin's daughter Kaia needed a heart transplant, and was given Amalie's heart. As Allison's desperation for her daughter grows, so does her reactionary behavior. Kaia has Allison's daughter's heart, and she wants her.First and foremost, I respect Alex Dahl's ability to change paths between her books. Usually authors play it safe with their second novel, but The Heart Keeper is a strong contender for a second book release. It's a sensitive topic, dealing with organ donation, the death of a child, and a mother's willingness to continue. I think this book will resonate with a lot of mothers and those who could relate to the families in the story. It's not a full suspense novel that you may expect given her debut novel was dripping with it, but it is a strong family drama. I think The Heart Keeper will be a summer hit that we will all be talking about.
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  • Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
    January 1, 1970
    “Hearts are wild creatures, that’s why our ribs are cages.”The Heart Keeper by Alex Dahl is an intensely emotional story of grief, loss and hope.Devastated by the accidental drowning death of her beloved six year old daughter, Alison reels brokenly between crippling emotional agony and a drug and alcohol induced stupor, unable to accept her loss. When her stepson raises the theory of cellular memory, which suggests that a transplanted organ retains some of the memories or personality traits of t “Hearts are wild creatures, that’s why our ribs are cages.”The Heart Keeper by Alex Dahl is an intensely emotional story of grief, loss and hope.Devastated by the accidental drowning death of her beloved six year old daughter, Alison reels brokenly between crippling emotional agony and a drug and alcohol induced stupor, unable to accept her loss. When her stepson raises the theory of cellular memory, which suggests that a transplanted organ retains some of the memories or personality traits of the donor that manifest in the recipient, Alison becomes obsessed with the idea that somewhere Amalie lives on...and she wants her back.“I envision her heart beating in this moment, sutured in place in a little stranger’s chest. I see fresh, clean blood pumped out and around a young body, carrying miniscule particles of my own child. I stand up and press my face to the window. Out there, somewhere, her heart is beating.”The narrative of The Heart Keeper moves between the first person perspectives of Alison, and Iselin, whose paths cross when Alison seeks out the recipient of her daughters heart, seven year old Kaia. At first Alison believes just a glimpse of her child’s ‘heart keeper’ will ease the ache, but it’s not enough, and she arranges a meeting with Iselin, ostensibly to commission some artwork, which simply feeds her obsession.“I couldn’t have grasped, then, that it would grow bigger and sharper every day, that it would rot my heart, that it would devour everything that was once good,...”Alison’s pain is so viscerally described by Dahl, the intensity is difficult to cope with at times. Her slow unraveling is utterly compelling, and though it’s known from the outset the direction the plot will take, Alison’s journey, her longing for her daughter, is what drives the story.“You and her, you’re one and the same. I can’t believe I didn’t realize this before, that all of this time, you were right there.”With richly drawn characters and raw emotive writing The Heart Keeper is an engrossing, poignant and heartrending story about death, and life.
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  • Philomena Callan Cheekypee
    January 1, 1970
    After reading this fabulous read I’m gonna go back and read the authors previous book The Boy at the Door as I’ve heard great things about that one too. I’ve not read many books about organ donation so after reading the blurb I was looking forward to reading it. I wasn’t disappointed as I loved this story. This is a raw and an emotional story that will pull on your heartstrings. The characters are strong, real and relatable which I loved. From start to finish the author takes you on a heart brea After reading this fabulous read I’m gonna go back and read the authors previous book The Boy at the Door as I’ve heard great things about that one too. I’ve not read many books about organ donation so after reading the blurb I was looking forward to reading it. I wasn’t disappointed as I loved this story. This is a raw and an emotional story that will pull on your heartstrings. The characters are strong, real and relatable which I loved. From start to finish the author takes you on a heart breaking story with highs and lows. I’m looking forward to reading more from this author in the future
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  • Donna Hines
    January 1, 1970
    Desperate times brings desperate consequences in this hair raising thriller by Alex Dahl.I had no idea how mind blowing this would be until I cracked open this Goodreads ARC Giveaway and was lured in without an escape plan.Two mothers, two daughters, one heart is the most accurate portrayal of this book as they both are seeking what the other possesses literally and figuratively.A mother's love is like no other but when the husband suffers from PTSD and seeks out love elsewhere it's a whole othe Desperate times brings desperate consequences in this hair raising thriller by Alex Dahl.I had no idea how mind blowing this would be until I cracked open this Goodreads ARC Giveaway and was lured in without an escape plan.Two mothers, two daughters, one heart is the most accurate portrayal of this book as they both are seeking what the other possesses literally and figuratively.A mother's love is like no other but when the husband suffers from PTSD and seeks out love elsewhere it's a whole other set of issues that must be addressed.Alison's daughter Amalie is no longer with her family as sadly she passed away from drowning but her memory lives on through another young girl as her heart beats on inside her. In fact her mother is so distraught she's having recurring dreams of that night and senses her presence and the connection they once mutually shared.Now another family is waiting for closure of a different sort in terms of a new organ to bring a new life and hopefully a fresh outlook for the future.Iselin has struggled to raise her daughter Kaia but those sacrifices seem to go unnoticed and even worse were never truly appreciated.Her daughter perhaps just needs some extra support, a friend, but another mother? Could this be a blessing or a curse in learning who your organ donor is and then creating this new 'forever bond'?Is this truly the answer to everyone's prayers or a nightmare in disguise?After all the heart grows founder in absence but that heart was once connected to the most important part of your life~ your child!It's a tear jerker for sure but perhaps made worse by the fact that my personal experiences and the emotions after having lost my 12 yo niece Cassie Ann Gatcha in a car accident in summer of 2016 were still present.My niece Cassie was cremated yet a part of her feels as though she lives on in each of us to this day.That dreaded call, the terrible memories, the knowledge in knowing you'll never spend another day with this person. Alex Dahl clearly had a reason for this novel and you must read the background behind it all to truly understand this type of work.The writing was superb, eerily similar to my own personal circumstances, and brought a flood of nonstop feelings so much so that I had to pause and regain my composure.I was absolutely consumed by the writing, the message, the heart beating for all eternity.Sometimes in grief we often say or do crazy things but the characters in this story were remarkable in their own ways and I hope you enjoy this as much as I did.In closing the author mentioned the heart as more than just an organ and how the mother literally had to live her life through this other child.So with that I'm at a loss other than to leave you with this quote from my niece's best friend on her obit page: "She knew she was going to die, I believe that much. She said 'this isn't goodbye, it's a see you later,' and a painting she gave me had tiny heart monitors drawn on there, but they went flat but with an infinity sign connected to it."I pray for all those who've lost a child as it's such an unnatural process yet we know our loves ones are at rest and at peace. God bless organ donors and the recipients of such gifts of life.Thank you to Alex Dahl, the publisher, and Goodreads Giveaway for the best ARC I have ever received to date. Please pre order a copy today. You don't want to miss this one!
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  • Dimitris Passas
    January 1, 1970
    This is the second -crime- novel written by a new and talented Norwegian female author, Alex Dahl. The first one, titled ''The Boy At The Door'' was a big success and I was eagerly expecting the publication of ''The Heart Keeper''. Finally, I got lucky and won a free ARC by the publisher in Netgalley, and I began reading it immediately. Overall, I can say that it was a rather satisfying experience, even though it doesn't strictly fall under the Scandi-Noir genre. In fact, ''The Heart Keeper'' is This is the second -crime- novel written by a new and talented Norwegian female author, Alex Dahl. The first one, titled ''The Boy At The Door'' was a big success and I was eagerly expecting the publication of ''The Heart Keeper''. Finally, I got lucky and won a free ARC by the publisher in Netgalley, and I began reading it immediately. Overall, I can say that it was a rather satisfying experience, even though it doesn't strictly fall under the Scandi-Noir genre. In fact, ''The Heart Keeper'' is a moving story about the desperate attempts of Alison, a mother of a little girl, Amalie, who drowned at her watch, to deal with her profound grief and feelings of guilt, that result in a bizarre situation where Alison convinces herself that her daughter is still alive through the body of another 5-year-old girl, Kaia, who carries Amalie's freshly transplanted heart in her little body. It is due to this inane belief that Alison seeks contact with Kaia's mother, Iselin, and begins slowly to get closer and closer to the little girl's life. As anyone can imagine, a situation like that is doomed not to end well for all the parties involved.This is not a novel that counts on its intricate, complicated plot in order to keep the reader engaged, but is mainly focused on the two main characters, Alison and Iselin, who are also the two narrators -in first person- of the story. Alex Dahl is a gifted author who offers great insights in the world of emotional turmoil that Alison lives in and the descriptive parts, especially in some parts of the book, can be considered as an example of writing quality prose. On the other hand, the main flaw with ''The Heart Keeper'' lies in its weak plotline and its predictability which takes away a lot from the book's magic. Strictly in terms of plot, ''The Boy At The Door'' was a better book than this one, but one ought to recognize the maturity of the writer's writing style which promises better attempts in the near future.Alex Dahl is a new, rising star in the notorious Nordic Noir genre, and she continues the fine tradition of other famous Norwegian female crime writers, such as Anne Holt, Karin Fossum and Unni Lindell. I would definitely recommend it to the genre's hardcore fans but keep in mind that this is not an intricate, labyrinthine story in the style of Jo Nesbo, but rather a book reminiscent of Karin Fossum's character-oriented crime novels.I want to thank NetGalley and the publisher for providing a free ARC of this title.
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  • Tripfiction
    January 1, 1970
    Slow burning thriller set in OSLO4.5*Alison and Sindre have lost their 5 year old daughter, Amalie, in an accident. She drowned at a local lake whilst in Alison’s care.This is a portrayal of a marriage and family in crisis after such a devastating event and how, without conventional anchors – reasoning and thinking – obsessive thoughts can embed in the consciousness and drive everything and everyone to the edge.Alison is just about keeping it together as she struggles to come to terms with her l Slow burning thriller set in OSLO4.5*Alison and Sindre have lost their 5 year old daughter, Amalie, in an accident. She drowned at a local lake whilst in Alison’s care.This is a portrayal of a marriage and family in crisis after such a devastating event and how, without conventional anchors – reasoning and thinking – obsessive thoughts can embed in the consciousness and drive everything and everyone to the edge.Alison is just about keeping it together as she struggles to come to terms with her loss. Such an event naturally impacts hugely on the couple relationship and the author strikingly details the progression and stress points in nuanced and reflexive prose. At the end of the book the author acknowledges that she too has suffered a great deal of trauma with one of her children and just by the characters’ responses you can tell that she writes with conviction and heartfelt genuineness.Little Amalie’s heart has been donated to another child, Kaia, who lives with her mother Iselin on the outskirts of Oslo. These are two families conjoined by an anonymous bond, by a heart that has been gifted from one person to another. The two families are very much from different sides of the wealth spectrum.Gradually, however it is clear that Alison is mentally and emotionally unravelling; she is really struggling to cope and alights upon a plan that would bring her closer to her dead child. A relationship of some kind with the recipient family seems to her somehow feasible. At first it is understandable and her research into who the donor family might be is something she needs to do. Her initial reasoning after the death were that Amalie’s heart was giving new life to someone else, but now she realises, the tables have turned. that someone else is giving new to life to Amalie….Alison is particularly struck by the phenomenon of cellular memory – there seems to be evidence that recipients take on personality traits of the donor. In Kaia she perhaps can see something of Amalie and this thought fuels her obsession to connect in any way she can with her flesh and blood daughter.Of course, this is a curious phenomenon, whether there is any justification for it is not known. Alison has lost all sense of perspective and it is her obsessive quest, assisted by alcohol and growing depression, that builds the storyline, culminating in a heart stopping conclusion (!).I did wonder about the premise of a very dead child, drowned, being in a position to donate the heart to another very sick child. Generally I understand a heart still needs to be beating for it to be a viable transplant… poor little Amalie sounded well dead by the time she was found. No matter. This is a well crafted, thoughtful and gripping read.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    Review can be found on my blog here: https://booksonthebookshelf.wordpress...….Thank you to the publisher for the eARC of this book to read and share my review.….After reading The Boy at the Door and loving it I knew I had to read this novel. So I was thrilled when Aria invited me to be a part of the blog tour.Addictive, heart breaking and thrilling . This book was amazing. I had so many feels reading this book and I loved that! A fabulous story of one family dealing with the loss of their daugh Review can be found on my blog here: https://booksonthebookshelf.wordpress...….Thank you to the publisher for the eARC of this book to read and share my review.….After reading The Boy at the Door and loving it I knew I had to read this novel. So I was thrilled when Aria invited me to be a part of the blog tour.Addictive, heart breaking and thrilling . This book was amazing. I had so many feels reading this book and I loved that! A fabulous story of one family dealing with the loss of their daughter and watching their lives unravel before their very eyes and another family whose daughter received an organ transplant. Without giving too much away about the book this is a must read.This book touches on organ transplants, organ donors, tragedy and loss of a loved one. Be sure to sit down and hold on tight, you are in for an emotional roller coaster ride as you read through this book.
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  • Yvonne
    January 1, 1970
    Alison Miller-Juul’s life totally fell apart after the death of her six year old daughter, who drowned. Alison, her husband and her stepson are trying to move forward with their lives but it’s not easy to do.Basically, Alison wants her daughter back. Her daughter had been an organ donor. When Alison learns about the young girl who received her heart, she does everything in her power to get close to the girl. Alison’s mind is all over the place but she knows what she wants - her daughter.This is Alison Miller-Juul’s life totally fell apart after the death of her six year old daughter, who drowned. Alison, her husband and her stepson are trying to move forward with their lives but it’s not easy to do.Basically, Alison wants her daughter back. Her daughter had been an organ donor. When Alison learns about the young girl who received her heart, she does everything in her power to get close to the girl. Alison’s mind is all over the place but she knows what she wants - her daughter.This is a well written, intense novel. I could feel all the pain these characters were going through. It’s an emotional roller coaster for all the characters involved. There were a few slow spots, but overall, I couldn’t stop turning the pages. I couldn’t imagine how this could have a satisfying ending, but the author outdid herself with this one.FTC Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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  • Cheryl
    January 1, 1970
    I liked this book. It does show the struggles that not only a mother but a family goes through when they experience the death of their child. Alison is was not only one that was hurting. Her husband was too. Iselin was learning her to be a mother again (not a caretaker). Kaia was so sick before receiving her new heart. I liked Kaia. She is a sweetheart. Where Alison is concerned I understood where she was coming from regarding getting close to Kaia. Yet, at the same time I felt bad for Kaia. She I liked this book. It does show the struggles that not only a mother but a family goes through when they experience the death of their child. Alison is was not only one that was hurting. Her husband was too. Iselin was learning her to be a mother again (not a caretaker). Kaia was so sick before receiving her new heart. I liked Kaia. She is a sweetheart. Where Alison is concerned I understood where she was coming from regarding getting close to Kaia. Yet, at the same time I felt bad for Kaia. She was her own person but Alison was trying to turn her into her daughter. While, I did like this book; I thought there were be more tense moments between Iselin and Alison. Even when Iselin learned who Alison was, she reacted but it seemed mild. In fact, the last third of the story seemed a bit rushed compared to the rest of the story.
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  • Kath
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars rounded upImagine, if you will, you have just lost your child. She drowned on your watch. You marriage is now crumbling. There's no amount of help you can get that could possible make you feel better. Alison doesn't have to imagine this, she is living it. Her daughter Amalie drowned aged six and even her husband and step-son are powerless to ease her pain; the two of them grieving too. But there is light in her tunnel. Some small solace to ease her pain even if just a little bit. Amali 4.5 stars rounded upImagine, if you will, you have just lost your child. She drowned on your watch. You marriage is now crumbling. There's no amount of help you can get that could possible make you feel better. Alison doesn't have to imagine this, she is living it. Her daughter Amalie drowned aged six and even her husband and step-son are powerless to ease her pain; the two of them grieving too. But there is light in her tunnel. Some small solace to ease her pain even if just a little bit. Amalie's organs were donated on her death. Others live cos she died. And then Alison learns something about donated organs and, finally with something productive to do, looks into this further. Aided by her step-son, she finds the recipient of Amalie's heart. Her baby's heart still alive and beating in another child. Imagine what you'd do with this information...Oh my, this was heart-breaking. I really felt for Alison and certain other members of the cast (who I can't go into too much detail here for fear of spoilers) with what they went through. But, in among all the pain there were some heart-warming moments which lightened the mood a bit and kept the book balanced rather than going too dark. Having never had children myself, it's hard to put myself in Alison's position. But the way the author wrote the book made it easy to believe in what she was doing. Pacing was good, a relatively slow start, setting the scene and characters for what was to come, and then as the tension ramped up, it didn't stop until right at the end. And that end. when it came was perfect. All in all, a great follow-up to The Boy at the Door, this author's debut which I read last year. Looking forward to seeing what she serves up next time. My thanks go to the Publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read this book.
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  • Deanna
    January 1, 1970
    I won this book from a goodreads giveaway.This is a tragic story but characters are developed well. I did not like that the book description gives away the story before you even start it. No surprises as to how it ends. This book was very depressing.
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  • Janie Hickok Siess
    January 1, 1970
    Alison is grieving the loss of her only child, Amalie, who drowned a few months ago at the age of five. She is riddled with guilt about Amalie's tragic passing, and her marriage to Sindre is falling apart. Alison and Sindre donated Amalie's organs and, as the story progresses, Alison learns the identity of the little girl who received Amalie's heart, with whom Alison becomes increasingly obsessed and detached from reality. Author Alex Dahl unsparingly and bravely explores the anguish Alison expe Alison is grieving the loss of her only child, Amalie, who drowned a few months ago at the age of five. She is riddled with guilt about Amalie's tragic passing, and her marriage to Sindre is falling apart. Alison and Sindre donated Amalie's organs and, as the story progresses, Alison learns the identity of the little girl who received Amalie's heart, with whom Alison becomes increasingly obsessed and detached from reality. Author Alex Dahl unsparingly and bravely explores the anguish Alison experiences after the loss of Amalie, the precious girl she refers to as "little bear." Alison is consumed with grief. Via her first-person narrative, Alison describes the visceral physical and psychological pain she is experiencing, as well as her futile attempts to numb that pain through medications, alcohol, and therapy. Even though she recognizes that none of those measures will provide any relief from the reality that her daughter is gone forever, Alison succumbs to self-destructive behavior. Sindre is mourning Amalie, along with Alison. A former soldier, his grief manifests in very different ways. He continues working, but is emotionally distant and removed. It becomes clear that he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of his military experiences and, like Alison, is unraveling psychologically. At his breaking point, Alison tries to care for him. But neither of them are so emotionally fragile that neither is capable of supporting and helping the other. Sindre's teenage son from a prior marriage, Oliver, spends half of his time with his father and the other half with his mother. He loved his little half-sister and is also grieving. He tries to be strong, but he is also a victim of circumstances. Sindre and Alison are aware of their own inability to provide Oliver the strength and support he needs.In alternating chapters, Dahl also conveys Iselin's story. Through an empathetic first-person narrative, Dahl portrays strain that Kaia's illness has placed on Iselin, especially as a single mother lacking an effective support system. Estranged from their own parents, she is close to her younger sister, a successful disk jockey living in Paris. Iselin has been unable to work at all because of the demands of caring for Kaia, relegated to surviving on the meager income she receives from the Norwegian government. Iselin has prepared herself to say good-bye to Kaia many times, and the joy of learning that her daughter now has a chance to lead a long, healthy life is tempered by the knowledge that her joy was only made possible by another family's tragedy.The story's tension escalates as Oliver announces that his class learned about transplants and the phenomenon known as cellular memory. Since every cell in the human body holds an individual's complete genetic material, is it possible that transplanted organ's hold the donor's memories? Or that the donor's personal characteristics manifest in the recipient? Alison, a journalist, researches the topic, and becomes obsessed with finding the donor who received Amalie's heart. Circumstances conspire to reveal Kaia's identity to Oliver, who shares the information with Alison. From there, her obsession with finding out whether any aspect of her daughter lives on in Kaia grows stronger, and Alison engages in increasingly deranged, reckless behavior that includes befriending Iselin and Kaia. Dahl increases the story's pace incrementally as Alison learns that since the transplant Kaia has, in fact, engaged in some behaviors that are eerily like things Amalie did. As Alison becomes increasingly unhinged, it is apparent that the result can be nothing short of catastrophic -- and her actions lead to a frightening climax.Dahl believably takes readers to the psychologically dark places her characters inhabit, making The Heart Keeper engrossing, raw and sometimes difficult reading. It is a beautifully crafted, believable exploration of the power of loss, and the myriad ways in which grief over the loss of a child can psychologically cripple parents and destroy marriages, especially if one parent feels responsible for the child's death. It is also a compassionate look at the toll being the caregiver for an ill child can take on a parent, and how the strain is enhanced if that parent is doing so on his or her own. Those two stories are compellingly interwoven into a fast-paced thriller that supplies a satisfying, rational conclusion.Thanks to NetGalley for an Advance Reader's Copy of the book.
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  • Leslie Lindsay
    January 1, 1970
    Delightfully dark story about two mothers and one little girl, about anger, grief, sadness, and more as the after-effects of organ donation. I loved this book! THE HEART KEEPER (forthcoming from Berkley, July 16 2019) is a raw, gut-wrenching read from critically acclaimed debut thriller writer, Alex Dahl (THE BOY AT THE DOOR, 2018). This harrowingly, gritty read follows a grief-stricken mother who is desperately trying to seek a way to overcome the pain of losing her beloved only child, Amalie, Delightfully dark story about two mothers and one little girl, about anger, grief, sadness, and more as the after-effects of organ donation. I loved this book! THE HEART KEEPER (forthcoming from Berkley, July 16 2019) is a raw, gut-wrenching read from critically acclaimed debut thriller writer, Alex Dahl (THE BOY AT THE DOOR, 2018). This harrowingly, gritty read follows a grief-stricken mother who is desperately trying to seek a way to overcome the pain of losing her beloved only child, Amalie, who drowned. Alison becomes disturbingly fixated on a the life of a small girl who becomes the donor recipient of her daughter's heart. She feels she can reconnect with her own daughter by becoming close to this little girl. On the surface, Alison , is an affluent middle-aged mother (to step-son), Oliver, and appears to have it all together--gleaming luxury SUV and attractive husband, nice home. But she doesn't have her daughter. She would do anything to get her back. We fall down a grim hole of mysterious interest and sinister intentions. Grief is a strange thing--it will cause even the most 'typical' person to come unraveled.Told in alternating POVs--between that of Alison and the donor girl's mother, Iselin, the narrative flow is intriguing and raw. The pace is somewhat slower than your 'typical' thriller and I probably wouldn't classify this as 'Scandinavian Noir,' but there are definitely elements of psych suspense, literary fiction, and medical mysteries. The writing is raw, authentic, and I felt a deep visceral and emotional pull. For me, the ending came a little abruptly but all events coalesced in an inevitable manner. I was particularly drawn to the sections of the human heart, and overall science of organ donation--though this is a small portion of the book. The focus is on how far will one grieving mother go to recapture the love and connection she once had with her daughter. Alex Dahl wow-ed me and has me wanting to her more of her work. 4.5 stars rounded up.Others may find some similarities between THE HEART KEEPER and Sharon Guskin's THE FORGETTING TIME meets YES MY DARLING DAUGHTER (Margaret Leroy), though these stories are largely based on childhood reincarnation, elements in writing and mother-daughter relationships cross-over. Others, still might find some connection with this work and that of Jodi Picoult, but I found THE HEART KEEPER more raw and mysterious. For all my reviews, including author interviews, please see: www.leslielindsay.com|Always with a BookSpecial thanks to Berkley for this review copy. All thoughts are my own.
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  • Kathleen Kelly
    January 1, 1970
    The Heart Keeper by Alex Dahl is one of those books that hits you at the end and does not let go. Alison is the mother of Amalie who drowned. Alison is consumed with grief that won't let go. She has a hard time moving on because she feels guilty as her daughter died on her watch. They were at the beach, Amalie was in the water and Alison fell asleep so Amalie went too far out and no one saw her. So now that Amalie's organs have been donated, one of those recipients, Kaia, who had been very sick The Heart Keeper by Alex Dahl is one of those books that hits you at the end and does not let go. Alison is the mother of Amalie who drowned. Alison is consumed with grief that won't let go. She has a hard time moving on because she feels guilty as her daughter died on her watch. They were at the beach, Amalie was in the water and Alison fell asleep so Amalie went too far out and no one saw her. So now that Amalie's organs have been donated, one of those recipients, Kaia, who had been very sick received the heart.Alison's marriage to Sindre is disintegrating, they are both grieving in their own way. Sindre, a former soldier, is grieving in a different way than his wife. He appears to have PTSD from his service military service. With the help of her stepson Oliver, Alison is able to find Kaia and her mother Iselin. She has not been able to work due to her daughter's illness. Even after the surgery, Kaia still needs medical monitoring. There are certain things she is not allowed to do. Iselin has a younger sister who is a Dj in Paris. Alison becomes obsessed with Kaia after meeting her. Her stepson, Oliver, was key to finding Kaia and her mother. He tells her that he has learned, in his class, about transplants and the phenomenon known as cellular memory. Alison is looking for any cellular memory and on the lookout for this phenomenon, like certain things she says, her movements that are similar to Amalie. Alison spends a lot of time with Kaia and Iselin, taking Kaia shopping, picking her up at school and even babysitting. The story is told in alternating chapters, we learn more about Alison and her marriage to Sindre. As well as Iselin's life. A single mother, no father in the picture, who has lived 7 years for her only child. They lived in the same house for the whole time with a nosy landlady. By nosy I mean, her peeping in the windows and coming to conclusions as to why a young girl would scream out in the night with nightmares. Iselin, even after the surgery feels like she needs to 'hover' over her daughter. As she gets closer to Alison, she feels emboldened to do something with her life. She is an artist and with Alison's help, she starts getting orders for her paintings which helps her financially.I thoroughly enjoyed this book, I enjoyed the style of writing, the psychological aspect of the story was done extremely well. I liked how Dahl was able to tell a story of such loss and the consequences of grief and how some characters in the book handled it but with a compassion that is endearing. At times dark and scary, I did not see the ending coming and I like that, it keeps the suspense alive until the end. I would highly recommend this novel to anyone but to the reader who enjoys a psychological thriller!
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  • Breakaway Reviewers
    January 1, 1970
    Hearts are wild creatures, that's why our ribs are cages.What if memories, and the essence of a person, are held, not only in the brain, or the soul but in every single cell of the body? Would these cells then somehow influence or change their recipient in the event of organ donations? A study published in the online journal eLife suggests that traces of a lost memory might remain in a cell’s nucleus, perhaps enabling future recall or at least the easy formation of a new, related memory. Alison Hearts are wild creatures, that's why our ribs are cages.What if memories, and the essence of a person, are held, not only in the brain, or the soul but in every single cell of the body? Would these cells then somehow influence or change their recipient in the event of organ donations? A study published in the online journal eLife suggests that traces of a lost memory might remain in a cell’s nucleus, perhaps enabling future recall or at least the easy formation of a new, related memory. Alison and Sindre lost a daughter, Oliver a sister, a senseless accident that took the life of a six-year-old child. How does anyone recover from this kind of loss, especially a mother when it happened on her watch? Alison feels Amalie everywhere, in her room, in the soft evening breeze, in the impossible beauty of the tight pink rosebuds in the garden, in the shimmering light of the uncountable stars strewn across the infinite darkness of the night sky, but Amalie is gone, or is she? Her heart was transplanted into Kaia Berge and made a healthy life possible for her, so she can now go to school, play in the park and have a future. Alison's life has fallen apart, and she cannot move on until, with the help of Oliver, she discovers who the recipient of Amalie's heart is and befriends the family without them being aware that Kaia has her daughter's heart beating inside her chest. Then her life takes on a new meaning……..I thoroughly enjoyed the book, especially being a biology teacher, and it has given me a brilliant idea for a research project for my students. I always say to the children – mine as well as my students – listen to your heart. You instinctively know what is right for you, no one else can understand, only you.SaphiraBreakaway Reviewers received a copy of the book to review.
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  • Mckenna Jones
    January 1, 1970
    As a mother, if there is one single thought you could never fathom, it is your child being unexpectedly taken from you in the blink of an eye. The Heart Keeper is told from alternating points of view between Alison, a broken shell of a woman whose daughter has just recently drowned, and Iselin, a mother who is praying for another child to die so her daughter, Kaia, can finally have the life she always wished for her. 7-year-old Kaia is on the heart transplant list anxiously awaiting her new hear As a mother, if there is one single thought you could never fathom, it is your child being unexpectedly taken from you in the blink of an eye. The Heart Keeper is told from alternating points of view between Alison, a broken shell of a woman whose daughter has just recently drowned, and Iselin, a mother who is praying for another child to die so her daughter, Kaia, can finally have the life she always wished for her. 7-year-old Kaia is on the heart transplant list anxiously awaiting her new heart, never knowing which day will be her last. Being a mother myself, this book pulled at my heartstrings. I found myself putting my daughter’s face on the two little girls, imagining myself in the heartbreaking scenarios. I had hopes of this being a thriller as the summary made the book out to be but found that this book wasn’t entirely that - it was so much more. It is gut wrenching to read Alison’s point of view, living day in and day out in denial of her precious Amalie being gone. She is constantly asking for a sign, talking to her daughter and you want to just reach through the pages and hug her tightly. Equally as gut wrenching is Iselin. She is desperate for another child to die to give Kaia another chance at a normal life, living in the basement of someone’s home, accepting handouts from the government to aid in Kaia’s medical expenses and living expenses, this is not how she wants to live her life. Iselin is taken aback when a woman named Alison wants to buy some of her sketches for double what she made from the government in an entire month. But upon meeting Alison, she is going to set off down a path she is going to wish she had never set foot on. The Heart Keeper is sure to stick with you long after you’ve put it down.4/5 stars ✨
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  • Jeannette
    January 1, 1970
    Book blurb...What would you do to get your daughter back? It's been three months since Alison's world fell apart when her six-year-old daughter, Amalie, died in an accident. Three months of sympathy cards, grief counselling and gritting her teeth, but it's still only the vodka and pills that seem to help. Across town, Iselin's life is finally looking up. Her seven-year-old daughter, Kaia, has survived a life-changing operation. After years of doctors, medication and hope, they can now start thin Book blurb...What would you do to get your daughter back? It's been three months since Alison's world fell apart when her six-year-old daughter, Amalie, died in an accident. Three months of sympathy cards, grief counselling and gritting her teeth, but it's still only the vodka and pills that seem to help. Across town, Iselin's life is finally looking up. Her seven-year-old daughter, Kaia, has survived a life-changing operation. After years of doctors, medication and hope, they can now start thinking about the future. These two mothers couldn't be more different, but fate will bring them together. And when it does, the consequences will be devastating. My thoughts…I enjoyed this story. If the author intended the reader to be profoundly disturbed by the intense grief Alison experienced following the loss of her daughter (and the lengths she went to after the death to survive) well, ten points. I was rocked.I felt for Iselin and her daughter, but was a little surprised she could not see what was happening.Overall, the story kept me entertained. Not a ‘can’t wait to get back to it read’ but that’s not a bad thing.This review is also published on http://www.readroundoz.wordpress.com
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  • Rhonda Guttulsrod
    January 1, 1970
    When your world is irrevocably changed by a grief that stops you in your tracks, what would you do if fate seems to step in and offer something else? Alex Dahl’s The Heart Keeper is a gut wrenching thriller about an all too real grief born from the death of a child and an encounter that makes the impossible seem plausible. Alison, Amalie, Iselin and Kaia will become intertwined as only Dahl can manage in this spectacular, twisty, intricate and believable thriller that has left me salivating for When your world is irrevocably changed by a grief that stops you in your tracks, what would you do if fate seems to step in and offer something else? Alex Dahl’s The Heart Keeper is a gut wrenching thriller about an all too real grief born from the death of a child and an encounter that makes the impossible seem plausible. Alison, Amalie, Iselin and Kaia will become intertwined as only Dahl can manage in this spectacular, twisty, intricate and believable thriller that has left me salivating for her next book.
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  • Trine Bretteville
    January 1, 1970
    Loved this book - couldn't put it down. I got so attached to the main characters and kept wondering what would happen next. The story is gripping, powerful, raw. Alex Dahl writes really well - I love the way she builds her characters and the storyline, plausible yet unpredictable. Plus all the questions it raises within, I can't stop thinking about how I would deal, how I would react, if the story was my life. Highly recommended.
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  • Cassie-Traveling Sister-
    January 1, 1970
    Alison recently lost her five year old daughter Amalie who drowned in a lake. She’s depressed and it’s put a strain on her marriage she’s dealing with her guilt everyday, since she was the one who was watching her. Alison and her husband donated Amalies organs. Iselin a single mothers whose daughter Kaia who is seven received Amalies heart. One day while reading a magazine she discovers an article written about Kaia recovery and heart transplant. Wracked with guilt and missing her daughter she s Alison recently lost her five year old daughter Amalie who drowned in a lake. She’s depressed and it’s put a strain on her marriage she’s dealing with her guilt everyday, since she was the one who was watching her. Alison and her husband donated Amalies organs. Iselin a single mothers whose daughter Kaia who is seven received Amalies heart. One day while reading a magazine she discovers an article written about Kaia recovery and heart transplant. Wracked with guilt and missing her daughter she starts to wonder does Kaia have Amalies heart is there still apiece of her beating inside Kaia? Alison starts to drink and take pills and soon she comes up with an idea if she can get close to Kaia maybe she can reconnect with her own daughter again. She will stop at nothing to feel close to her daughter. This book was told in two POVS one of Iselin and the other in Alison’s. The book was a slow burner and the ending will definitely have you quickly turning the pages. I could feel each of the mothers pain the grief with Alison and the worry of Iselin. Highly recommend four stars! I didn’t want to give to much away!
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  • Autumn Chastain
    January 1, 1970
    Wow what an amazing story filled with so much emotional turmoil....what would a mother do to hear the sound of her child’s heartbeat? After a tragedy strikes the main character Allison, she goes to great lengths to find out. With a semi shocking ending, the reader comes to find out what happens when a mother who holds in her grief too long, what happens to those around her...highly recommended book
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  • Jessica
    January 1, 1970
    A very emotional and heartbreaking novel that shows what it is like for a family dealing with the death of a daughter and what it's like for a mother whose daughter gets a second chance at life. As a mother I felt this one deeply. The Authors note at the end is equally as moving. Thank you to Berkley Pub for the ARC via a Goodreads Giveaway.
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