Over his fourteen years of age, Alex McGregor’s world has thrived inside the borders of his rural Pennsylvania town; to an outsider, his life is as picturesque as the rolling hills and peaceful farms surrounding his home. His father, Michael, and mother, Lauren, attempt to correct the mistakes of their pasts through the auspiciousness of their son. The family’s pristine appearance is shattered, however, when Michael falls ill to a strange lung infection. The internal tension of the family, building for years, explodes as Michael and Lauren separate, heading for a divorce. Alex can only watch as Michael’s health fades, Lauren becomes estranged, and his entire world collapses around him. What none of them could’ve expected is that a more sinister illness might be hiding underneath Michael’s ailments, one which threatens to take the life the family built and shatter it into a million pieces. Through resilience, love, maturity, and the undying perseverance of the human spirit, The Hard Way Back to Heaven serves as a testament to the power of hope.
“Dehmelt does not deal in stick figures. The characters of The Hard Way Back to Heaven are very real, and you will laugh alongside of them, cry alongside of them, and want to bash them over the head for their repetitive stubbornness. These moving, realistic individuals are a testament to the ability of this young writer with a promising career ahead.”
—Wes Peters, Author of Between The Doors