One book immediately came to mind when I heard the word “beach.” It was The Heart Mender: A Story of Second Chances, by Andy Andrews.
Imagine that you are a newlywed, deeply in love with your husband. It is wartime, and your husband is a military pilot. He heads over to Europe soon after your wedding to train Allied pilots, where he is shot down and killed by enemy fire. Somehow, you manage to struggle on, but you are filled with rage and hatred for those who killed your husband. One day, you are walking on the beach, and you find a man facedown in the sand by the shore. You lean down to see if he’s alive and find a bullet wound in his shoulder. Slowly, you manage to roll him over onto his back … and recoil in horror. He is wearing the uniform of the enemy, the same country that is responsible for your beloved husband’s death. What do you do? Leave him on the beach where he’ll probably bleed to death? Finish him off yourself? Call the authorities to deal with him? Or take him home, in spite of your hatred for him, and nurse him back to health? I loved this story based on true events, and I hope that you’ll pick up a copy for your next beach read!
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