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A Beholden Heart by [M. L. Steinbrunn]
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A Beholden Heart Kindle Edition

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Length: 186 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product description

Product Description

Have you ever looked around at your life and thought to yourself, this can’t be what the universe had planned for me?

This thought enters my brain…Every. Single. Day.

I have no clue what I’m supposed to be doing, but this isn’t it.

I don’t want extraordinary. I’ve never wanted extraordinary. I just want normal…whatever that is.

When I enrolled in Middleton High School, I was just looking to find some resemblance to the typical high school experience.

Then I met Matt Rhodes. He lives the life of envy: popular, athletic, top of his class. Yet he wants none of it; he would gladly give it all up to gain back everything that he’s lost.

Together we will redefine normal.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1332 KB
  • Print Length: 186 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B019VYG0P4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #730,844 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.8 out of 5 stars 28 reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Captivating 18 January 2016
By Stracey Charran Ishwar - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A Beholden Heart by M. L. Steinbrunn was simply captivating. The storyline was real and relatable. The author did a phenomenal job portraying the plights and uncertainties the characters experienced throughout the story. This is truly a remarkable story that will leave you in awe. Author Steinbrunn was able to weave an emotional story that will resonate deep in your heart. You will fall in love with the characters and experience their joy, sorrow, anger, self discovery, rebellion and forgiveness. If you are looking for a book to hold your interest till the very end, look no further this is the story for you. I can't wait for the next book this amazing author writes. Do not hesitate to one click five stars guaranteed.
5.0 out of 5 stars Touching YA Story 22 October 2016
By Angel Reviewer - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A warm and touching coming of age story, A Beholden Heart is a captivating read. Gwen is a teenage girl who has lived a sheltered life. After her father receives a promotion that includes moving to London, Gwen decides she doesn’t want to go. She just wants the typical high school experience. After some insistence and prodding, her dad finally allows her to stay with her grandmother for her last year of high school. With this decision comes a new school and the challenges that go with that. She is soon befriended by a girl named Sam. Not too long after, she meets Matt, the all-star athlete of the football team for Middleton High School. His best friend is Spencer. Although Matt seems to be the envy of all and living an extraordinary life, Gwen soon finds out not all is as it seems. He wants normalcy as much as she does. This book is an awesome YA story with a great hook and surprising turns. The characters, young and old, are well-developed, interesting, funny and even reminiscent of those in real life experiences and situations. It’s a surprising read that definitely keeps the reader hooked throughout the whole time.
5.0 out of 5 stars 4.5 emotional stars! 18 February 2016
By S. Butka - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have a confession. When I found out ML was putting out a new novel, I was excited. One, because I read her Redemption series and loved it. And two, I'm a YA reader. I did, however, assume I knew exactly the story I would get - high school kids, guy meets girl, a little angst, happily ever after, the end. And that was okay with me.


A Beholden Heart is told from both Gwen and Matt's POV. ML's characters speak in such a way that they give you just enough information to keep you guessing. What is the big secret between Spencer, Matt, and Sam? How can Matt's dad get away with being such a douche? Why do Gwen's parents have issues with Grandma Marnie? The answers to these questions are revealed, but in little bits and pieces that make you speed-read. I think what surprised me most is that A Beholden Heart isn't a high school love story. There's definitely love there, but it's a love of friends. Of family. Of accepting the things you cannot change, but finding a way to make them better.


I loved all the main characters. Spencer and Grandma Marnie are a hoot, Sam is a great friend (although I wanted to shake her a couple of times for shutting down in the info department), and Matt, while still the stereotypical smart athlete, has more depth to him than most male teen protags I've read. Gwen is pretty, smart, and wise beyond her years which normally bothers me, but not here. She has to live with one flaw that she cannot change, and she's been through enough to warrant her behavior and views on life. That said, I did struggle with a few things, such as Matt's dad's sudden 360 in behavior after one confrontation with Marnie and how almost every situation was wrapped up with a bow. I wish real life was so smooth!

Overall, A Beholden Heart grabbed me and wouldn't let go. I can't even talk about the end. Oh my god - the end. All I'll say is have tissues nearby. I'm so glad ML is continuing this series. I'll be one of the first in line to buy!
5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet, surprising, and undeniably heartfelt! 15 January 2016
By B from Prisoners of Print - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
4.5 Stars! - M.L. Steinbrunn’s foray into the young adult genre is a shining success. A Beholden Heart was sweet, hopeful, full of life, and incredibly poignant. The emotional weight of this story took me by surprise as M.L. Steinbrunn explored love, loss, and what it means to truly live. While Gwen and Matt were the main focus of the story, this book unquestionably also belonged to Sam and Spencer. These vibrant characters brought A Beholden Heart to life and made this story something truly special. I found myself effortlessly consumed by the world M.L. Steinbrunn has written; mesmerized by the familiar dynamics of life during the high school years and the teenage angst we’ve all experienced. M.L. Steinbrunn took this story in unexpected directions that pulled so many emotions from me, leaving me anxious for the next book in the series.

Gwen is the kind of character you can’t help but instantly love. Her fresh outlook on the world and enthusiasm for life is infectious. Her sheltered upbringing has left her feeling isolated and overlooked so when the opportunity to live like a regular teenager comes along, she jumps at the chance for a taste of normalcy. M.L. Steinbrunn allows readers to see the world anew through the eyes of the naïve and inexperienced Gwen, capturing the forgotten magic of football games, driving around with friends, and falling in love for the first time. As part of the popular crowd and a member of the football team, Matt’s high school experience was very different from Gwen’s but beneath the surface was that familiar feeling of no control. They connect in a way that is tangible to the reader, finding qualities in one another that allow them both to grow. Seeing Matt stand up for himself with Gwen’s support and encouragement was empowering and I found myself in awe of their incredible friendship and the courage to live they find in each other.

What I enjoyed most about this storyline was the way in which all of the characters were so carefully interconnected. The slow unraveling of the clearly complicated relationships between the characters and the subtle hints at hidden feelings made me all the more curious about the direction of the story and the series as a whole. M.L. Steinbrunn kept me intrigued by the secrets and lies that so clearly tainted the innocence and youthful naiveté of Gwen, Matt, Sam, and Spencer. Delving into the toxicity of anger and holding grudges, there were definitely some moments that made my heart ache, but M.L. Steinbrunn provides the perfect balance with her easy humor. Along with Sam and Spencer, Gwen’s grandmother provides the perfect comedic relief to this otherwise emotional story. As the book came to a close, M.L. Steinbrunn had me on an emotional rollercoaster. There was love, laughter, and some totally ugly crying, but most importantly there was an overwhelming sense of hope. A Beholden Heart is a fantastic journey and I look forward to seeing where these incredible characters eventually end up.
4.0 out of 5 stars A powerful and emotional story! 17 January 2016
By chrissycf - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
What a beautiful and emotional read!

In A Beholden Heart we meet Gwen, who hasn't really lived life, and is entering her senior year of high school. When she starts a new school, and has some freedom to finally live, and not be cooped up in the house, she embraces it fully. She's never really gotten to experience high-school, so her happy go lucky attitude doesn't help her with the cliques at her new school. She instantly befriends Sam, who I adored, and also becomes friends with Matt and Spencer.

Matt is "Mr. Popular" and lives behind the facade that he's happy being the football hero, but he wants so much more out of his life. When he becomes friends with Gwen, she helps him see he can realize his dreams and make himself happy. I loved watching Matt grow in this story and seeing how much he changed from when we first met him.

Sam, Spencer, and Matt were all really good friends growing up, but something happened a long time ago that tore Spence and Matt away from Sam. With the help of Gwen this group of friends find one another again, and the school itself changes because of this spark of life that is Gwen. Her character is beautiful, happy, and always looking for the positive in life. I really loved how she was able to bring peace to a group of people that deserved it after so long.

This book really isn't a love story at all. It's based in high school and is really about finding yourself, being happy, and embracing life to the fullest. Gwen seemed to have changed everyone's life she entered in this book, and I loved her character dearly. I hated that she had the condition that she did, but instead of letting it bring her down, she continued to move forward and decided to be happy.

This is a powerful story that definitely pulled at my heartstrings. I laughed, I cried, and I felt at peace (even if I was torn up) when this book ended. I definitely am looking forward to seeing where these characters end up after A Beholden Heart ends. Matt and Sam deserve more chances at repairing their broken relationship, and Spencer just needs to be around, because his character definitely brought the fun times in this book when we needed it!

A Beholden Heart by M.L. Steinbrunn is a story of love, loss, and learning to life life to the fullest! I highly suggest this beautiful read! Go one-click your copy today!