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    Comfort in the trials of life

    In Soldier On by Vanessa Rasanen, Meg and Charlie have been married for a few years, and Charlie is going to be deployed overseas for a year. Meg has a military wife friend, Piper, and her church to help her through this deployment. When tragedy strikes, past sins are remembered, and while living miles apart, the two work to save their marriage. With her past glaring at her, Meg runs from God, from her church, from her friends. Rasanen’s book takes a heart-felt look at the lives of military families. Her book helps the reader find comfort in the Gospel and see that forgiveness of sins can change lives. While the book deals with serious topics, such as deployment, fertility issues, mental health, and relationships that struggle, Rasanen adds humor to the story through many of the characters. I laughed and cried, sometimes while reading the same chapter! Such a great first book by Rasanen, and I look forward to reading the sequel. Due to its adult content, I do not recommend this book to children, but a mature adult can find the comfort of Christ amidst trial in Soldier On.
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    A tale of grace and forgiveness for all

    Soldier On is about marriage, life, friends, and deployment. Anybody could write a story with those themes, but what makes this book so special is that Rasanen has put faith in the foreground of the entire book. Now people may not have firsthand experience of a loved one being deployed, but we all experience doubts, and fears within our life as a Christian. That’s where she really connects even deeper with the reader. This book is fiction, but it reflects real life, real marriages, real struggles, real friendships, real faith. I especially appreciated how certain characters carried their faith and can be used as an example of how we in this world can witness to others, and pray for others. Overall, it was a refreshing tale of grace & forgiveness. Let me state that you cannot tell that this is Rasanen’s debut novel. Where I’m often stuck in awkward & forced storytelling within the first few pages of a book, Rasanen’s descriptive storytelling is effortless & had me feeling the feels of the highly likeable characters from page 1. Throughout the story, I cried, gnawed the tip of my fingernail, and laughed out loud. Even when I thought I could see what was coming, I was surprised. I am so pumped that there will be more books in this series. I am not ready to say goodbye to these characters.
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    Soldier On, home and abroad

    Meet Charlie Winters, a soldier in the Guard. He’s off to Afghanistan for a deployment, fighting for his country, when tragedy strikes. Dealing with tragedy makes his deployment all the worse. This is war; it’s to be expected, but it doesn’t make it any easier. Meet Meg Winters, a wife who is on her own after her husband has been deployed. Things are rough, as to be expected, but there’s a secret that is plaguing her. What is she to do? Charlie and Meg are both dealing with tragedies in their respective locations, all while trying to make sure their marriage doesn’t become a tragedy as well. Vanessa Rasanen writes a captivating story of happiness and sadness, all within the same chapter. Deployments can bring out the best or worst in people, and for Charlie and Meg, you see the good, the bad, and the ugly. They find themselves at an impasse of sorts: how much are they willing to preserve their marriage during arguably one of the most difficult times they have faced up to date? While a work of fiction, it gives a glimpse of what deployments can do for an individual and a marriage. When times are good, they’re really good. When times are bad, they’re really bad. Couples tend to grow distant or they tend to grow closer. In Soldier On, Meg and Charlie do both. The one thing keeping them together is their faith, even when it’s tested, and tested it is. Solder On provides the reader with an emotional rollercoaster ride, covering happiness, sadness, despair, hope, highs and lows, and everything in between. With a well-written plot and character development, the reader can easily find themselves in Charlie’s Humvee while on patrol or Meg’s living room chatting over a cup of coffee.
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    Moving story of military family struggles

    Vanessa Rasanen's story rings true as her characters face the joys and hardships of military family life. I appreciated the vivid and moving picture Rasanen painted of the day to day struggles of life during deployment for those who are sent and those who stay behind. On top of well-crafted main characters, she did an excellent job incorporating realistic side characters who struggled to find the "right" ways to show love and support. The story was skillfully written and plotted out. Hints of the shadows in Meg and Charlie's past kept me intrigued and waiting for the next reveal. Several of the twists caught me by surprise, and I ended up staying up reading later than I intended to! I also appreciated her realistic portrayal of faith under fire. Here characters were not just puppets on a stage to impart a spiritual truth. Instead,"Soldier On" walked the narrow line, which acknowledges real grief and suffering while still holding out hope in Christ.
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