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  • Writer's picturePodcast Librarian

Broken Harts: The kind of true crime that stays with you long after you've listened

The Premise (from Apple Podcasts): 

Markis, Hannah, Devonte, Abigail, Jeremiah, and Sierra Hart—six beautiful black children, ranging in age from 12 to 19—were all adopted by Sarah and Jennifer Hart, both white. On Jen’s Facebook page, it looked as if they were the perfect blended family, even earning the nickname “Hart Tribe” from friends. Then, on March 26, 2018, the family’s GMC Yukon was found belly-up on the rocks below California’s Highway 1. The news of the murder-suicide shocked their friends and made national headlines, leaving many wondering what possibly led to the fatal crash. Could these lives have been saved? Broken Harts, a new podcast from Glamour and HowStuffWorks, investigates this question with more than 30 never-before-heard interviews. Cohosts and Glamour editors Justine Harman and Elisabeth Egan and reporter Lauren Smiley follow the family’s journey from South Dakota through Minnesota, Oregon, and Washington, and finally to that 100-foot cliff in California.

Series or standalone:


Begin listening to:

Episode 1: Fear


Investigative reporting with interviews 


Glamour editors Justine Harman and Elisabeth Egan and reporter Lauren Smiley 

Sound/production quality: 


Rating/age suitability: 

Not all of the episodes have an Explicit warning, but the overall subject matter (abuse, negligence, and filicide) makes this a better podcast for adults

Approximate length of episodes: 

30-40 minutes

Curricular ties: 

None, unless you teach law and want to use this podcast as a teaching tool.

The Podcast Librarian’s Review:

Broken Harts is the most heartbreaking kind of true crime. In March 2018, Jennifer and Sarah Hart, the mothers of six adopted children, drove off a cliff in California. I remember reading about that story when it happened and, like many people, assumed it was just a tragic accident. The truth is much sadder and more fascinating, though. This podcast interviews neighbors and friends who reveal the darker side of the family, including allegations of abuse, racism, and Jennifer’s addiction to looking like the perfect family social media. As the evidence unfolds, it becomes clear that the crash was far from accidental. You can read articles about the story now, but I highly recommend listening to the podcast.

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