Heart on a Chain

With her second book, Heart on a Chain, Cindy C. Bennett proves she's an author to look out for. While all those big-time, big-name, authors are getting praised and adored, Bennett is writing works that will one day put her in the big leagues. In my opinion, Heart on a Chain is a fine, fine follow up to one of my favorite books of 2010, Geek Girl.

Staying in the realm of real life issues, Bennett's books are fast becoming motivational works to send to teenage girls. Those who've been through the ringer and those who should see that they can hope for something better. Kate, the protagonist of Heart on a Chain, has been dealt a terrible hand. She's suffered bullying and abuse from former friends, classmates, and even in the home. Her one and only exception is the sweet boy, Henry. With a name like Henry, how can he be anything but good for Kate? I think I loved Henry best of all.

Bennett's attention to detail is exceptional. From little glances, to hand gestures. Bennett gives the readers a full picture. Every emotion is covered, but sadly the one that is written about the most is heartache. How much should one girl take before enough is enough? Kate, wow, my heart broke for her and for everything she had to suffer. Her story goes from the lowest point of her life and it continues on until she's finally reached a point of hope. Bennett, with Heart on a Chain, wrote a journey. and all the in-betweens.

Told exclusively from Kate's point-of-view, except the very first and last chapters, Heart on a Chain is the perfect book for teenage girls to read. Okay, even older girls should read it too. We could all learn something from Kate's life. Especially, I think everyone will learn how to find their voices. Kate started off weak and beaten down, yet she ended up strong and able to control her own life.

Overall, Heart on a Chain is a great book to read. Some of the story arcs were unnecessary. There is such a thing as a little too much of a good thing. Sometimes, less is more. Not all of the dramatic events in Kate's life were needed. However, all the story lines melded nicely, and I definitely recommend this book.

Book Blurb for Heart on a Chain

17-year-old Kate has lived her whole life in abject poverty, with an alcoholic father and drug-addicted mother, who severely abuses Kate. At school, her second-hand clothing marks her as a target. Her refusal to stand up for herself makes her the recipient of her classmates taunts and bullying. That is, until Henry returns.

Henry Jamison moved away six years earlier, just as he and Kate had begun an to develop feelings for one another. He returns to find the bright, funny, outgoing girl he had known now timidly hiding in corners, barely speaking to anyone around her, suspicious of even him.

Kate can’t figure out what game Henry is playing with her - for surely it is a game. What else would the gorgeous, popular boy from her past want with her?

Kate finally decides to trust Henry’s intentions, opening her heart to him. Just when it seems he might be genuine in his friendship, tragedy strikes, threatening everything Kate has worked so hard to gain. Can Henry help her to overcome this new devastation, or will it tear them apart forever?

Night Owl Reviews Aug, 2011 4.00