A Real Life Story of Heroic Virtue
Parts of this memoir appeared on ESPN and in Rosie Warsaw, Indiana July 08, 2015 Award-winning and best-selling author, Michelle Weidenbenner, announces the release of Kelly Schaefer’s memoir, Fractured Not Broken.
Years ago, parts of Kelly’s story appeared on ESPN and in Rosie, but now Kelly reveals the rest of the story in her new book, Fractured Not Broken. Nineteen-year-old Kelly had it all—a healthy and athletic body, a star basketball-player boyfriend, and a fun college life with close friends. But everything changed when a drunk driver rendered her a quadriplegic. Kelly was left with arms and legs that couldn’t move. She couldn’t walk, write, feed herself or comb her hair. When she thought she couldn’t lose anything more—her boyfriend left her, unwilling to endure a life with a quad. Through her darkest days of loss and pain, her family and community gathered together to push her forward, to help her persevere. With their help, Kelly moved closer to God and toward a faith she’d never had.
“Miracles come in many obscure moments,” Kelly said. “I spent most of my life awaiting my big break. I expected my miracle to be in the form of a pill, injection, or surgery that would enable my spine to heal and give me the mobile freedom I prayed for, but that didn’t happen.
“Kristen Jongen’s quote says it all: “‘My miracle came unannounced, and in an odd package. It looked different from what I imagined--untimely, unexpected, unpretentious--yet it fit perfectly. Divinely constructed solely for me.’"
Fractured Not Broken is a memoir of loss and faith, but it’s also a love story that sounds like fiction.
“Life has its tragic moments of defeat, setbacks, and fracturing for everyone. Kelly's story proves, however, that individual momentum, personal progress, and genuine achievement can still be attained. Her courage and optimism are uplifting. Open these pages and experience the joy of ultimate victory.” —Dr. Dennis E. Hensley, Author of Jesus in All Four Seasons
“This book has been a true encouragement to me. Thank you Kelly for sharing your story— the loss and the unexpected joy— so that each reader can be uplifted knowing there is a full, rich life available to those who lean in to our Lord Jesus.” —Renee Bondi, Award-Winning Singer and Songwriter
“This is a real life story of heroic virtue—especially of courage, humility, and generosity—a triumph of faith, hope and love. This story involves the very essence of the human spirit, family, and community. To know Kelly and her journey of miracles is to know that with God all things are possible.” —Most Reverend Charles C. Thompson Bishop of Evansville
This book will fracture the paradigms of the goals and expectations we set for ourselves and others. Kelly’s words will change how readers think of people with disabilities and bring hope to readers who have lost faith in finding true love.
Weidenbenner’s other novels include Cache a Predator, Scattered Links, and an early chapter book series for girls called Éclair.
Kelly is a teacher, speaker, Young Life mentor and a Skittles lover. She brings fun to her classroom and inspires others every day with her faith and positive attitude.
Michelle, her aunt, feels blessed to be the one to write and share Kelly’s story. Although this is Michelle’s first nonfiction project, it was heart-felt inspired like her novels.
Rating: 5 stars
My Review: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
I cannot say enough good things about this book. Rarely do I give out a 5 star rating, simply because I think that a 5 star rating really has to be a life-changing book. This is one of those books that I am still telling people about two weeks after I finished the book. I can see me still talking about this book a year later.
This book is a biographical look at Kelly Craig, the victim of a drunk driving accident, whose life was changed irrevocably the day of the accident. It is written by her cousin, Michelle Weidenbenner, whose books I have read before and enjoyed. The author has a gift for writing a story, either fiction or non-fiction, and letting the reader feel as if they are right there in the story. This book is no different. I felt connected to Kelly in a way I never have before when reading any other biography. The amount of strength, faith and resiliency she has shown in this book is inspiring.
Kelly’s faith, arguably, was shattered in the beginning of this book right after the accident. I have experienced that in my own life, when I have felt God turned away from me and rejected me. The difference between Kelly and I though, is that Kelly didn’t reject God; her faith, though shaky and tenuous, was still there. And like the mustard seed in the Bible, her faith has been able to grow back, stronger than ever, and far-reaching, especially with this book.
If you have ever found yourself in a situation asking God why He has put you there, you need to read this book. It is definitely one that stays with you long after you have turned the last page and put it away.