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Taking Heart
     

Taking Heart

4.5 19
by T. J. Kline
 

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T. J. Kline's Healing Harts series continues as a soldier suffering from PTSD and a therapy dog trainer find that some scars can only be healed by love

Julia Hart knows how much good she does training therapy dogs—it's what helped her overcome her own trials after a relationship turned unexpectedly violent. But moving beyond her

Overview

T. J. Kline's Healing Harts series continues as a soldier suffering from PTSD and a therapy dog trainer find that some scars can only be healed by love

Julia Hart knows how much good she does training therapy dogs—it's what helped her overcome her own trials after a relationship turned unexpectedly violent. But moving beyond her mistakes meant trusting only her family with her heart.

Dylan, a former soldier, has run out of hope for recovery. Plagued by nightmares and flashbacks, he doubts anything will help him overcome his PTSD. When his brother convinces him to try one last time, he agrees to get a therapy dog.

Dylan didn't expect to find Julia or a chance for a "normal" future again. But when Julia's attacker is released from prison, Dylan and Julia will have to face the past together.

Editorial Reviews

Jennifer Ryan
“T. J. Kline combines a heartwarming romance, suspense, and sweet rescue dogs into a touching tale.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062396549
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/02/2015
Series:
Healing Harts , #2
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
25,023
File size:
433 KB

Meet the Author

T. J. Kline was bitten by the horse bug early and began training horses at fourteen—as well as competing in rodeos and winning several rodeo queen competitions—but has always known writing was her first love. She also writes under the name Tina Klinesmith. In her spare time, she can be found spending as many hours as possible laughing hysterically with her husband, teens, and their menagerie of pets in Northern California. That is, when she isn't running around the California Gold Country researching new stories.

Customer Reviews

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Taking Heart 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
BooksAndSpoons More than 1 year ago
A heartfelt, emotional and suspenseful story, that captured my mind. What Dylan has experienced, and lost, is devastating and overwhelming. The love and devotion between Dylan and his brother is admirable, and what Gage has given up to take care of Dylan, just mind blowing. The PTSD Dylan has, and the description of the hell he lives with, is very vivid. I am a big believer of the therapy dogs, and love reading stories about them. The bond between Dylan and Roscoe forms fast and deep. The connection between them is nearly supernatural, and Dylan's improvement with Roscoe by his side, is absolutely adorable. Julia and Dylan have chemistry and charisma. They are drawn to each other from the first moment, like the two broken pieces that together forms a whole. They both have their issues, wounds, and past, they have to recover from, and accept. The road to recovery is not easy, and will never be full, but together they are able to take bigger steps towards more 'normal' existence, that Dylan has known, since he came back from the war. But the inner demons, nightmares, and flashbacks are not the only thing Julia and Dylan has to fight, soon Julia's ex, Evan, who was recently released from prison, comes for a visit, despite the restriction order, stalking and harassing Julia. The tension builds on the farm, the suspense, bringing a strain and stress on Dylan and Julia, whom already both have PTSD. The story is well built from all the sides of the tale. The suspense is intense, the mystery of Evan's whereabouts is straining the small town's police force, and the cat and mouse type teasing from Evan is nerve racking. This poignant and touching tale has many elements, that bring even more depth, feelings, and perception to the story. It makes an impact, makes you think, appreciate even more all that the military personnel have to experience when in battle, the love and romance between Dylan and Julie is tender, fragile, and sweet, that gives hope and optimism for a better tomorrow, and the many lovely, sweet service dogs in the story, and the work they do, just melts the heart, thrilling tale indeed! ~ Five Spoons!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good book, enjoyed the romance, suspense and family. 230 pages.
Anonymous 6 months ago
Very good book with an interesting story. Kept me wanting to stay home from work and read! T. J. - keep the stories coming.
PollyBennett More than 1 year ago
An excellent second addition to the series. In this book Ms. Kline studies PTSD, fear, kidnapping, and Service Dogs. I loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent!!!!! Highly recommend!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Enjoying this Author!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Suspense,love,fear,courage, and happiness.
ReneeEntress More than 1 year ago
4.5 star I was pulled right into this story. The story has laughs, betrayal, lies, secrets, second chances, kidnapping, and heartbreak. If you have not read the below I would recommend reading those books(s) first Heart's Desire (Healing Harts #1) This is Julia and Dylan’s story. Julia knows a little about PTSD and has a training center for people to bond and connect with a dog to help them with their PTSD. Dylan a former soldier with PTSD does not like dogs and does not believe Julia can help him. He agrees to come and get a dog but thinks there is no way it will work. Julia knows Dylan does not think her methods will work but she is not only the owner but has a dog that helps her. Can she prove to Dylan it will work? When Julia’s past comes back for her can Dylan push aside his misgivings and listen to what the animals are telling him? Will Julia come out of the ordeal worst off? Or will Dylan be able to help her while she helps him? Or will he leave Julia unprotected and lose her forever? I felt I was able to connect with the characters and the story was a great read. I recommend this book and can’t wait for the next story from this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Not a bad read, but I was expecting a little more
ahlewis32 More than 1 year ago
T.J. Kline continues her Healing Harts series with her latest book, TAKING HEART, in which two people overcome their traumatic pasts with the help of their dogs and each other. It's an emotional book, full of anxiety, danger and love.  The story centers mainly on our heroine Julia's work, training dogs to help people suffering from post traumatic stress disorder. Enter Dylan, a recent returnee from the war, injured in body and soul. Dylan doesn't want a dog but in last ditch effort to heal his troubled mind, he consents to try Julia's therapy. He finds much more than he thought he'd find in her program. Based upon real-life therapy programs that help PTSD victims from all walks of life, TAKING HEART is uplifting and delightful. The characters are richly drawn and believable.  The stars of the story are the dogs themselves, described accurately and with such detail that you can see them as you read. No mean fete to accomplish. As a PTSD sufferer myself, I cannot begin to tell anyone of the comfort my own dog gave me as I dealt with feelings of fear and anxiety that threatened to take over my life in the aftermath of a serious accident. I'm writing this today because of the devotion of my dog, now gone from my life forever.  I can't recommend TAKING HEART enough. It's on my best of 2015 list and it's more than worth your time.
CrisConquers More than 1 year ago
Romantic, Suspenseful & Full of Adorable Dogs! I'm already a big fan of T.J. Kline and TAKING HEART is just as amazing as her previous novels. You get so drawn in by the spark between Julia and Dylan, two wounded souls struggling with the enduring effects of PTSD. Though they both suffered very different traumas, they have a unique bond and an understanding of what it means to be pulled back into a pit of fear and anger at the drop of a hat. The attraction between Dylan and Julia seems to leap off the page from their very first encounter and is only strengthened as they work to heal each other with the help of some trusty canine companions.  I think TAKING HEART was even better than the first book in the series, HEART'S DESIRE. There's a suspenseful, psychological element to the story which was really intriguing, but I also really enjoyed learning more about the struggles of PTSD and how animals can help alleviate negative emotions and keep someone centered. It was so interesting to learn how service dogs are trained for different purposes and that fascination I felt made me much more invested in the characters and their story.  One of the amazing things about this series is the way in which T.J. Kline creates complex, developed personalities for the animals in the books, giving them the same attention most authors give human characters. Not only does this really allow you to connect with their emotions and the love and devotion they feel for their owners, but it gives you a greater understanding of the connection which Julia shares with the dogs she trains. Tango is almost an extension of Julia that helps her remain grounded and calm when fear and anxiety threaten to swallow her whole. Some of the strongest emotions I felt were caused by the actions of the dogs in the story. When Julia relives the moment in which Misty is killed protecting her from Evan's vicious attack, and later when Tango is shot in an attempt to protect her, I couldn't help but tear up. Those moments were just gut-wrenching.  Julia and Dylan's romance developed quickly but their love felt genuine. They shared a great balance of sweet and sultry moments, with some laughs thrown in along the way. I loved the running joke of Dylan's brother, Gage, constantly walking in at inopportune moments, catching them in a heated embrace. I also laughed out loud when Julia and Bailey had to orchestrate a covert operation just to get a condom. I really appreciated the addition of Chase as a secondary character and hope to see him finally get the girl in a future novel.  Go read this book. It's touching, funny, sexy and romantic, with a good dose of suspense thrown into the mix to keep you on your toes. The characters (both human and canine) are well-developed and really pull you in. Plus, who doesn't love watching two scarred, wonderful people find love despite thinking it would never happen for them? I know I do! Disclaimer: I received this book free in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions shared are my own.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
very good story
JensReadingObsession More than 1 year ago
Loved it! Beautifully written with so much emotion, I was in tears in a few places. Both Dylan and Julia struggle with PTSD and are using dogs to help them cope. The dogs were such an important part to their story, and really put a spotlight on service dogs. Highly recommend this book and the series, can't wait for Julia's brother Justin's story! ARC via Edelweiss
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this author knows how to write a story and draw you in and won't let you go,sweet romance with some suspenseand danger.This is Dylan and Julia's story.Dylan has PTSD his brother talks Dylan into getting a service dog to help him.they have to travel To Julia's home where she fits dogs to the soldier.Julia has problems of her own an ex that is stalking her. Now can these two wounded people find their way to each other? And along with Jessie Nathan and Justin it makes for a wonderful story you will have to read to find out what happens I highly recommend this book you will love it!!!!
AllisiaWysong More than 1 year ago
When I read a romance book, it is for many reasons. To escape into another world, place, or time. I have read them cause I am a romantic and love seeing love win out over all. I have even read them to write reviews and ended up not being able to put the book down. Taking Heart was one of my top reads because I NEEDED to read it, I was invested in the world T.J. had created and I couldn’t not read it. I had read teasers, blurbs and excerpts, all making it a dire thing that not another day go by before I read this book. Suffice it to say I couldn’t put it done, I started it at 11pm Tuesday night, put my girls down for naps and kept reading today. After diner and bed I sat to finish, it was an emotional book that had my full attention. Julia Heart thinks she is broken after surviving a horrible incident in her past. He has invested all her time and energy into making her dog-training portion of the ranch a success. She trains dogs for all types of people including people suffering from PTSD. This leads to her meeting the Gage and Dylan. Gage wants his Brother Dylan to heal and be his old self or at least leave sleep through the night. He contacts Julia and she tells him to come check her ranch out, see if she can help. Dylan out main tough guy wants to end his life, he is the only one to survive his team in Afghanistan and can’t figure out why. His life is hell and nothing he does has made it better. To appease his brother he goes to meet Julia and try to see if a dog will help. With both lead characters having emotional pasts, this book is full of the heartstrings being pulled. You want them together so bad but honestly don’t know if they can move forward and leave the baggage behind. In a lot of T.J.’s books you have a lighter note mixed with emotion, this one was emotion with some well-earned laughs. You know the kind when you wait for the hearts to heal enough to allow the things we take for granted to seep in. Laughter, smiling, love, kindness without an ulterior motive. Dylan suffers from survivor’s guilt and doesn’t think he deserves to have anything good. Please don’t misunderstand my review, there are light and happy moments, heat between Dylan and Julia, protectiveness from Julia’s brother and a lot more. I hope you love this book as much as I did!
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
This was a beautifully written story that captured my attention from the first page, it was a very thought provoking story for me, and really opened my eyes to the struggles associated with PTSD. It was very evident to me that Ms. Kline really put a lot of time and care into developing the characters and the story line. I felt as though she really did her research in order to produce an accurate portrayal of what life is like for soldiers returning home from war. It was also refreshing to read a story where the characters were utilizing the animals abilities in their healing process, and see the dogs help someone who is stuggling with easy day to day tasks reclaim some semblance to a normal life again. It is known that animals have the power to reach the unreachable, and for me it was beautiful thing to see firsthand how the powerful bond between the dogs and their owners helped them heal and rediscover their losts lives. T.J. Kline has truly hit the mark with this one! Taking Heart is a poignant story, that will capture your heart, make you think, smile, and possibly shed a few tears. Highly recommend this book, definitely a can't miss addition to the Healing Hearts series
MoniqueD More than 1 year ago
Dylan is a broken man because of what happened to him in Afghanistan; he suffers from PTSD; animal therapy is the last resort. He sees no hope for his future, and even though he is attracted to Julia, he is convinced no one will ever want him. Julia feels for the first time in four years but Dylan is not exactly easy to know, and she is afraid to get close to anyone because of a horrific experience.  How wonderful it was to see Dylan and Julia get closer to each other while he is training his dog, it feels seamless and natural, and we get to know them as well. Ms. Kline knows how to set the mood and describe settings in such a way that they become real to the reader, and the characters are even more compelling than in the first book, Heart’s Desire. Details of how animal therapy works are woven in the narrative and the dogs are secondary characters, but realistically so; they’re not there for the “cute” factor.  PTSD and animal therapy are the basis for this romance, and they are what make TAKING HEART such a powerful book and extraordinary book, as well as watching Dylan and Julia interact, with each other and their families. And when Julia’s stalker re-enters her life, be prepared to read uninterrupted: the suspense is almost crushing.  TAKING HEART is a frightening, beautiful, difficult, wonderful, romantic and emotional book that will fill your heart with hope. T. J. Kline demonstrates again what an extraordinary writer she is. Not to be missed! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a very dirty sexual book. Not worth the paper it is written on. This author has no imagination if all she can write about is sex and how tingly the girl feels every time she is around the guy. Good grief .... grow up! It has very little about PTSD or about the dogs.