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Irene Watson

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Giving My Heart: Love in a Military Family by L.H. Farber-Silk:Book Review
by Irene Watson   
Not "rated" by the Author.
Last edited: Thursday, January 31, 2008
Posted: Thursday, January 31, 2008

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"Giving My Heart" is the true story of a New England wife's struggle to find hope and help for a soldier, friend, and lover after his return from Operation Iraqi Freedom. Before the war, he was an outgoing and affable man with a can-do attitude. Meanwhile, Lisa has sacrificed everything including a marriage of two decades, to be with a man who is no longer interested in relationships with anyone. Her quest to find healing for her friend with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) will take more love, patience, and persistence than she ever knew she had. Lisa provides a personal and heart-rending perspective that only a military wife and mother can share.

Giving My Heart: Love in a Military Family

Lisa H. Farber-Silk
Modern History Press (2008)
ISBN 9781932690446
Reviewed by Vicki Landes for Reader Views (12/07)

First-time author Lisa H. Farber-Silk releases her autobiography “Giving My Heart: Love in a Military Family.”  Open, honest, and full of details, the book gives a glimpse into one woman’s connection to the armed forces. 

“Giving My Heart: Love in a Military Family” details Farber-Silk’s personal journey from childhood to marriage and motherhood, then on through businesswoman, mistress, and divorcee.  The three men in her life – her husband, his friend, and eventually her son – are all in the military.  As her story progresses, she describes how it felt to see them off to war and how it felt to transition them back.  She concludes with her unsuccessful attempt at helping her lover adjust and deal with his Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). 

“Giving My Heart: Love in a Military Family” isn’t your typical ‘military wife perspective’ book.  Instead, the story is an autobiographical account of Farber-Silk’s love affair with two military men.  Further, the book ends on a rather sad note as she never did get through to her second love as he struggled with PTSD.  The book seems to be a last attempt to get him to see what he’s put her through and how he can help himself. 

As a military wife myself, I expected to read more of her activities on the home front and less of her background or affair with another man (something obviously frowned on by the US Army).  I also expected to read about more PTSD experiences.  Farber-Silk doesn’t note the first hints of PTSD behavior from her lover until page 62; her entire story is only 89 pages.  Further, the story has a bit of a juvenile tone; phrases such as “NOT!” and “I was so pissed” really don’t read well in a book meant for mature adults dealing with post-war trauma.  “Giving My Heart” is not for those looking to read the more traditional ‘triumph over PTSD’-type book. 

Farber-Silk does write from her heart.  She lives and loves from deep within and her book serves as a historical account of her life and her experiences as a military family member.  She holds a strong devotion to her country as well as her fellow spouses enduring the separation of loved ones deployed to war zones.  “Giving My Heart” is simply Lisa Farber-Silk’s life story.

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