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I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway Once I started reading, I couldn t put this book down It tells a great story of love and loss I didn t expect to read so much about the family dynamics and drama, but it couldn t have been written any other way As I kept reading the story, theI became invested into it This is the first book I have read from this author and I will be looking forafter reading this book I would recommend this book to anyone. This book had me captured from the beginning as I emotionally invested in the characters The mysterious plot kept me wondering what was going to happen to Tyler Ahls in his journey I highly recommend this book Everyone will be able to relate in some manner. In Our Other Lives is a very modern story of the effects of terrorism on a culture and loss on an individual The book takes lace mostly in Nebraska where Elizabeth Holland lives She is a single mom after her husband abandoned her and their son shortly after his birth And her brother disappeared in Pakistan some time ago Then her brother, Tyler Ahls, show up on a propaganda video bringing the FBI to town.FBI Special Agent Frank Schwaller arrives in Omaha, Nebraska, to investigate the family o In Our Other Lives is a very modern story of the effects of terrorism on a culture and loss on an individual The book takes lace mostly in Nebraska where Elizabeth Holland lives She is a single mom after her husband abandoned her and their son shortly after his birth And her brother disappeared in Pakistan some time ago Then her brother, Tyler Ahls, show up on a propaganda video bringing the FBI to town.FBI Special Agent Frank Schwaller arrives in Omaha, Nebraska, to investigate the family of Tyler Ahls, a young man who disappeared in Pakistan but has now shown up in a terrorist propaganda video Schwaller s task is to determine if Tyler is a hostage or a traitor who poses a threat to American people.The novel is told in a series of 12 files which detail the information gathered through interviews and surveillance The book emphasizes the trail of information that each of us leaves behind every day Elizabeth lived a quiet life off the radar before her brother s activities and yet the FBI agent builds an extensive file on her.Elizabeth is a stoic woman who seems to have taken everything in stride She is simply and quietly moving on with life, not trying to understand the actions of her brother or her husband Unfortunately, the FBI agent wants to understand everything He is easily frustrated when he thinks people are uncooperative.The interesting dichotomy here is that despite all the ways each of us is surveilled on a daily basis people remain mysterious and unknowable Even though Elizabeth loved her brother she doesn t understand what his motive was to travel to Pakistan, or her husband s for leaving her.I think this is a smart and interesting story, but have a couple complaint 1 This is a completely American book It is based on America s laws, culture, fears It relies heavily and assumes you have the knowledge before opening the cover on the Patriot Act and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act I found it ethnocentric and a bit jingoistic.2 None of the characters inspired much compassion or empathy I didn t particularly connect with any of them or care what happened.2.5 stars rounded up.Thank you to Netgalley, Little A publishers and the author for the digital ARC in exchange for my review A video has surfaced of an American missionary ROTC cadet who has been captured in Pakistan Is he a target or a traitor Is he dead or alive Captive Tyler Ahls is less the focus of this novel than his sister, Elisabeth, who sits at the center of the story Her husband has left, her dreams of motherhood have been shattered and she s rebuilt her life from an evangelical Christian upbringing to a nurse in Omaha Nebraska FBI agent Frank Schwaller has arrived in the heartland with his surveillanc A video has surfaced of an American missionary ROTC cadet who has been captured in Pakistan Is he a target or a traitor Is he dead or alive Captive Tyler Ahls is less the focus of this novel than his sister, Elisabeth, who sits at the center of the story Her husband has left, her dreams of motherhood have been shattered and she s rebuilt her life from an evangelical Christian upbringing to a nurse in Omaha Nebraska FBI agent Frank Schwaller has arrived in the heartland with his surveillance and video equipment to learn all he can about the captured American and determine what Elisabeth really knows about her brother s potential secrets The result, laced together in chapters that focus on each character, is a book that finally cinches it all together with an exploration of lost love, human frailty and the trespassing of privacy in the name of war FBI Special Agent Frank Schwaller arrives in Omaha, Nebraska, to investigate the family of Tyler Ahls, a young man who disappeared in Pakistan but has now shown up in a terrorist propaganda video Schwaller s task is to determine if Tyler is a hostage or a traitor who poses a threat to American people Much of the investigation focuses on Elisabeth Holland, Tyler s sister We learn of her marriage to Nick Holland Nick abandoned the marriage soon after the birth of their son Caleb who then died FBI Special Agent Frank Schwaller arrives in Omaha, Nebraska, to investigate the family of Tyler Ahls, a young man who disappeared in Pakistan but has now shown up in a terrorist propaganda video Schwaller s task is to determine if Tyler is a hostage or a traitor who poses a threat to American people Much of the investigation focuses on Elisabeth Holland, Tyler s sister We learn of her marriage to Nick Holland Nick abandoned the marriage soon after the birth of their son Caleb who then died shortly after Nick s disappearance Elisabeth then decided to leave Chicago and pursue a nursing career in Omaha She claims not to know where either her brother or husband is or what their reasons for disappearing were.The novel consists of twelve files detailing information gathered through surveillance and interviews Everything that happened could be recorded and coded Everything that could be known and filed was known and filed The book emphasizes how all Americans are under surveillance Inany big city, that s millions of peopleand nearly every minute of their lives was recorded, their phone calls, any digital activity, all metadata, their stories Even someone like Elisabeth Holland, who was off the radarbefore her brother s activities made everyone in her family a person of interest, she still wandered in front of surveilling eyes hundreds of times Her file built frame by frame, byte by byte Schwaller s case is considered counterterrorism and he admits That loosens the rules of what we can do so he can do virtually whatever he likes and Worst case, I m caught poking where I m not supposed to throw the Patriot Act in their face Elisabeth is a foil for Frank Her way of coping is simply to stoically move on because trying to understand others or God s plan if there is one isn t always possible and doesn t help Some families fall apart and some stay together, and it doesn t always make sense why one is one and another the other Frank, on the other hand, wants to understand everything Was there any point in tracking the every gesture and disgrace of these people Sure there was He becomes frustrated when people are not co operative These people, they couldn t just answer his questions, they always wanted to take something from him instead Even after the investigation is over, Frank kept tabs on them, from time to time because he came to see them as his people That s the way it went after an investigation The theme of the novel seems to be that despite all the surveillance and information gathering, there are mysteries that cannot be solved People often remain mysteries even to those who love them and should know them best Elisabeth and her parents do not know what Tyler s motivation was in travelling to Pakistan Likewise, she does not know why Nick left her without any explanation A man dies and investigators cannot determine whether his death was an accident or suicide Why would a man abandon nine children The style of the book, especially its long sentences, is sometimes annoying It would have been suspicious that Tyler went missing, given what Nick knew that Tyler was aware of the geopolitical danger of moving to Peshawar and hiking the Hindu Khush, that Tyler s emails were increasingly erratic, made frequent references to David Koresh and John the Baptist, and how Tyler wanted to be part of their tradition, his own destiny as a missionary, a revolutionary as he saw it , though Tyler had trouble explaining how three trips to Pakistan fit in his vision or how hiking foothills there made him either insurgent or evangelist Yikes Meaning is lost in such verbiage.This book is very much American, so it is sometimes confusing to this Canadian reader References to things like the Patriot Act, and FISA mandates and warrants mean little to me There s FISA, you know what that is There s mandate Before, if I wasn t sure it was okay to access a file here or there, I had to get permission from a prosecutor, then they talk to a judge Each time Now there s no prosecutor involved There s hardly a judge, just a signature to request and then I get carte blanche for ninety days How many people, even Americans, are going to be familiar with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, its amendments and its constitutionality The book was in some ways an uncomfortable read I kept looking over my shoulder wondering who was recording my activities and whether they would be considered normal or not.Note I received a digital galley from the publisher via NetGalley.Please check out my reader s blog and follow me on Twitter DCYakabuski This is one of those stories with multiple timelines where I am really wishing there was a table of contents so I can go back and piece together the various events of the characters.I liked the Nebraska connections including the Safe Haven Law story.It s overall a sad story but intriguing I admire the author s tackling of some complex contemporary issues. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here This is an incredible book I round it up to 4.5 The story is intriguing deep It draws you in and the writing is fabulous I was especially drawn into Elizabeth s story as there are so many parallels to my own I live in Omaha and previously lived in Chicago I was reading this just after a visit to Chicago and an L ride through Elisabeth s neighborhood so I could vividly imagine the streets described In Omaha, the author describes streets I frequently use and I felt like I was in the car w This is an incredible book I round it up to 4.5 The story is intriguing deep It draws you in and the writing is fabulous I was especially drawn into Elizabeth s story as there are so many parallels to my own I live in Omaha and previously lived in Chicago I was reading this just after a visit to Chicago and an L ride through Elisabeth s neighborhood so I could vividly imagine the streets described In Omaha, the author describes streets I frequently use and I felt like I was in the car with Elisabeth when she was looking for the Junger s home I liked how he drew in the story of the Safe Haven law it brought back a lot of memories as we lived in Omaha during the time people were dropping older kids off at hospitals And like Elisabeth I too lost an infant son so could relate to that piece of the story The parallel drawing and introspection around the loss of a healthy and loved child and the survival of abused and neglected children was familiar Even without these parallels this book is an incredible read With them it is a little eerie I really enjoyed this story it ropped me in from the beginning It is a story about love, loss, and family drama It reminds us that family isn t always what they seem and some get mixed up in things they shouldn t It also tells a story about how sometimes people you love don t turn out to be the people you thought they were and coming to terms with that I would recommend this story to others Thank you to netgalley for this advance copy.I received this advance copy free for an honest review. Thank you to Little A and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.This book left me feeling unsettled On the surface, you think, or rather are told, it s a story about a young, naive American evangelical proselytizer who disappears in Pakistan Afghanistan and then suddenly reappears in an Islamic propaganda video, and the federal investigation that ensues But really, it s a story about the young man s sister, and how she deals with a series of shattering blows and events in her Thank you to Little A and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.This book left me feeling unsettled On the surface, you think, or rather are told, it s a story about a young, naive American evangelical proselytizer who disappears in Pakistan Afghanistan and then suddenly reappears in an Islamic propaganda video, and the federal investigation that ensues But really, it s a story about the young man s sister, and how she deals with a series of shattering blows and events in her life The story unfolds through the recounting of surveillance and interview data collected by a federal agent, who tries to unravel the connections between the brother and sister, the sister and her husband, the siblings and their parents What emerges is a portrait of a strong, stoic woman who has had to learn to get on with her life, regardless of her circumstances Some of the elements didn t gel for me, particularly in terms of the surveillance of private citizens but then again, what do I know ^DOWNLOAD ✐ In Our Other Lives ⇷ A Provocative Novel About Abandoned Faith, Heartbreaking Loss, And Inescapable Government Scrutiny In The Heartland Of A Post NationAmerican Missionary And ROTC Cadet Tyler Ahls, Long Missing In Pakistan, Has Just Surfaced, Proselytizing In An Afghani Terrorist Propaganda Video For Omaha Nurse Elisabeth Holland, It S A Shock That Her Brother Is Even Alive Now She Must Ask Herself A Grave Question Is He A Hostage Or A Traitor Seasoned FBI Special Agent Frank Schwaller Is Asking This Too He S Come To Nebraska Armed With Countless Hours Of Video, Audio, And Email Surveillance The Object Of His Unyielding Gaze Is Elisabeth But The Schwaller Uncovers About Her From Her And Tyler S Evangelical Christian Upbringing To Her Shattered Youthful Dreams To Her Broken Marriage To A Drifter The Mystifying Elisabeth And The Two Men In Her Life BecomeTo Find Out The Truth About These Entwined Lives And The Desperation That Comes From Love, Fear, And The Need To Disappear Agent Schwaller Will Discover How Even The Most Lonesome Corners Of The Plains Can Be Darkened By The Long Shadow Of WarFrom Kings Of Broken Things Author Theodore Wheeler Comes An Exploration Of Love Lost, The Failure Of Humanism, And The Revelations Of How Deeply The US Government Spies On The Personal Lives Of Its Citizens