January 6, 2014

Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott: Book Review

Genre: YA Contemporary (Romance) 
Release Date: January 28th 2014 by Harlequin Teen
Series: Stand-alone
Source: Netgalley (I participated in a promo tour & hosts got a review copy, thanks!)
Life. Death. And...Love?

Emma would give anything to talk to her mother one last time. Tell her about her slipping grades, her anger with her stepfather, and the boy with the bad reputation who might be the only one Emma can be herself with.

But Emma can't tell her mother anything. Because her mother is brain-dead and being kept alive by machines for the baby growing inside her.
Meeting bad-boy Caleb Harrison wouldn't have interested Old Emma. But New Emma-the one who exists in a fog of grief, who no longer cares about school, whose only social outlet is her best friend Olivia-New Emma is startled by the connection she and Caleb forge.

Feeling her own heart beat again wakes Emma from the grief that has grayed her existence. Is there hope for life after death-and maybe, for love?
My Thoughts: I’ve read several reviews about Heartbeat and I was iffy about reading it because it seems like a hit or a miss. For me, this one was a clear hit!

Emma is a nice mean complex and interesting character. After her pregnant mother passes away, her stepfather keeps her alive in the hospital so that the baby has a chance to live. Obviously, Emma is very upset with the decision. She often struggles to make sense of her feelings for her stepdad and for his decision, something that she doesn’t agree with. I understand where Emma is coming from, although she may have seemed selfish at certain times (which is why other bloggers may have disliked Heartbeat), Emma is a teenager going through grief for her mother and she’s being forced to see her body every day. I get it, I wouldn’t want to be in that situation and her actions/feeling seem justified.

Caleb is a whole other story. Basically, he’s the bad boy we all want to know and love. But of course, we find out he’s not really the bad boy we thought he was and he’s actually really sweet (which sounds typical but it was actually well-executed in Heartbeat). But because of the messy personalities that Emma and Caleb have, their relationship is also messy and complicated. I’ll admit, their budding romance was very cute and warmed my heart (sometimes) but I felt that it was a little quick. By that, I mean that the slow burn lead up to their romance is nice and well thought out but I felt that at the end of the book, things escalated very quickly.

In addition to Emma and Caleb, the other characters were also very interesting. I really enjoyed reading about Dan, Emma’s stepdad, and his personal struggle. I honestly felt so bad for him. He had to make a tough choice and he stuck to his actions, even if other people didn’t agree with him. He was an awesome character and he was also very unique. Besides an amazing set of characters, the plot and premise of Heartbeat was also very original and unique. I enjoyed reading a YA book that actually involves the protagonists’ family. The plot flowed smoothly and it was very fast paced and entertaining to read. In addition, there is also the moral dilemma in this novel. Is it right for Dan to keep the mother’s body alive for the baby? What would the mother want? What about Emma’s needs? There’s a lot of elements that make this novel a thought-provoking novel.

Despite all these amazing attributes, Heartbeat was a little predictable and times and Emma annoyed me at the beginning of the novel. Emma’s actions were justified but that doesn’t mean that I didn’t get annoyed with them.

Overall, Heartbeat was a unique and interesting character-driven novel. I definitely recommend it to people looking for a thought-provoking novel with interesting characters and a captivating romance. four stars Have you read Heartbeat? Did you enjoy it? If you haven’t read it, are you excited for it? Does it seem like your kind of novel? Let me know!

No comments:

Post a Comment

I'd love to read your opinion. Comment away!