Sally John’s “Heart Echoes” begins with a massive earthquake which shakes up the life of Teal, a successful lawyer and mother. She witnesses the collapse of a freeway overpass and the sure deaths of those below. As she deals with that trauma she must deal with trauma on the home front as well. Her daughter Maiya, who is now 16, is demanding to know who her biological father is. Teal never wanted to share this information. Her husband, River, who is devoted to her and Maiya both, thinks that she should reveal the bio-dad’s identity.
When Maiya is suspended from school for misbehavior, Teal decides to take her back to her hometown, Cedar Pointe, Oregon for the duration of the suspension. There Teal faces the secrets and people that she has been avoiding since she left town for college. The separation exacerbates the strain in her marriage.
Jones has created a complex character in Teal. She is both strong and soft at the same time. There were points where I just wanted to shake her for not seeing the obvious, but that is what makes her seem so real. Real people are great at ignoring the signs in front of them. It’s an inspiring read about dealing with change and having courage.