American Wife: Love, War, Faith and Renewal
By Taya Kyle with Jim DeFelice
Publisher: William Morrow
Release Date: May 4, 2015
Genre: Memoir/Military Family
Length: 304 Pages
About the book:
The widow of “American Sniper” Chris Kyle shares her private story: an unforgettable testament to the power of love and faith in the face of war and unimaginable loss–and a moving tribute to a man whose true heroism ran even deeper than the legend.
In early 2013, Taya Kyle and her husband Chris were the happiest they ever had been. Their decade-long marriage had survived years of war that took Chris, a U.S. Navy SEAL, away from Taya and their two children for agonizingly long stretches while he put his life on the line in nearly every major battle of the Iraq War. After struggling to readjust to life out of the military, Chris had found new purpose in redirecting his lifelong dedication to service to supporting veterans and their families. Their love had deepened, and, most special of all, their family was whole, finally.
Then, the unthinkable. On February 2, 2013, Chris was killed while attempting to help a troubled vet. The life they fought so hard to build together was shattered. In an instant, Taya became a single parent of two. A widow. A young woman facing the rest of her life without the man she loved.
Chris and Taya’s remarkable story has captivated millions through Clint Eastwood’s blockbuster, Academy Award-nominated film American Sniper, starring Bradley Cooper as Chris and Sienna Miller as Taya, and because of Chris’s bestselling memoir, in which Taya contributed passages that formed the book’s emotional core. Now, with trusted collaborator Jim DeFelice, Taya writes in never-before-told detail about the hours, days, and months after his shocking death when grief threatened to overwhelm her. Then there were wearying battles to protect her husband’s legacy and reputation.
And yet throughout, friendship, family, and a deepening faith were lifelines that sustained her and the kids when the sorrow became too much. Two years after her husband’s death, Taya has found renewed meaning and connection to Chris by advancing their shared mission of “serving those who serve others,” particularly military and first-responder families. She and the children now are embracing a new future, one that honors the past but also looks forward with hope, gratitude, and joy.
American Wife is one of the most remarkable memoirs of the year — a universal chronicle of love and heartbreak, service and sacrifice, faith and purpose that will inspire every reader.
About Taya Kyle
Taya Kyle founded the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation in honor of her late husband Chris Kyle, legendary U.S. Navy SEAL and author of the bestsellers American Sniper and American Gun. The foundation is devoted to strengthening the marriages of veterans and first responders.
An active public speaker, Taya Kyle makes frequent appearances at fund-raisers and other events, inspiring others to find strength and persevere through struggles. She and her two children live in Texas.
A moving testimony of the love between a wife and her husband, American Wife: Love, War, Faith and Renewal by Taya Kyle is also a tale of survival. Told from a military wife’s point of view, Mrs. Kyle reminds us that while governments choose to go to war, soldiers fight the battles and their families deal with the fallout which can include mental and physical injury or death, the highest price. Her story reminds us all that someone has to pay the price for our freedoms, and that we should always stand in support of our military and their families.Since I didn’t have a chance to read American Sniper or watch the movie, I jumped at the chance to read American Wife, I thought it would be good to get to know the woman behind the highly decorated veteran. As Mrs. Kyle begins her story we meet her as a child and discover a girl who grew into a woman willing to pray that God would send her someone she could love, marry and raise a family with. Chris Kyle turned out to be the answer to her prayers.Recounting the early days of their courtship and then their marriage, it’s clear to see that Taya and Chris both understood the value of their love and took their vows seriously. A love Taya clearly still carries in her heart and now shares with their children. As Chris served in active combat, became a sniper, and then became a celebrated hero, Taya was by his side and supported her husband’s dreams. Throughout all of their experiences, both good and bad, Taya and Chris remained best friends and appeared to have a bright future. All of that changes when Chris is murdered by a young man he was trying to help.As Taya recounts the early days after her husband’s death, her grief and her children’s grief, you get a real sense of her loss and heartache (have the tissues handy). Yet, you also get a sense of Taya’s inner strength and faith as she works, with help from her family and real friends, at rebuilding her life. Forced to deal with two court cases, a ridiculous law suit involving Jesse Ventura and the criminal trial of her husband’s killer, Taya proves that she will defend her husband’s name and legacy for both herself and her children.Dedicated to helping families of veterans, and carrying on her husband’s patriotism, Taya Kyle is a woman we can be proud of and someone we will want to watch as she forms her own legacy. I was deeply touched by American Wife and want to thank Taya for her willingness to share so much of her personal story, it’s really worth reading and I’m definitely going to be picking up a copy of American Sniper next.My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Crowns
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for a fair and honest review.