Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Review: Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott

Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Pages: 304
Received: Received a copy from the publisher through Netgalley

Release Date: January 28, 2014
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Goodreads Synopsis:

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 Review:

I really wanted to like this book, the whole controversial issue of keeping someone breathing so that you can deliver the baby was what caught my attention in the beginning. I have been slowly getting into contemporary books, and I thought that this one would be a great story, but I think the characters turned me off at times.

I understand that Emma is upset, she has lost her mother and was not part of the decision in keeping her breathing so that the baby can live. I went into this expecting more of a family dynamic with a little romance thrown in, and a lot of growth. But what I found was that Emma has a lot of anger (understandably), but it becomes too much at times. The way she treats people around her started to get on my nerves and I wanted her to actually grow up and attempt to talk to someone instead of sulking the entire time.

I did enjoy the way that Caleb helps Emma through things, and their relationship makes sense in a way, and yet at the same time, I felt like it became very intense very quickly. I enjoyed the fact that she was able to find someone who in a way could understand her pain, but I think it takes too long for Emma to grow and actually try to understand what her step-father is going through.

I think that Elizabeth Scott hits it on the head with the grief Emma feels and how her entire life changes after her mother's death, especially being that they were close. That was actually a huge part of the book that really kept me going, I loved reading about Emma's memories and the relationship between her and her mom. I also enjoyed the relationship Emma has with her best friend, Olivia (someone who refuses to use technology, which I found difficult to believe). Olivia attempts to be there for Emma, and she is really Emma's connection to reality, otherwise anger would destroy her.

I enjoyed the book at times, but for the most part I just had problems really connecting with the characters and the story. I just had trouble getting behind Emma's actions sometimes and I just wanted to yell at her to actually try talking things out instead of letting everything stew. 


  1. This sounds like such an intriguing book! It's too bad that the characters got on your nerves after a while!

  2. I've seen this one around but haven't really looked into it. It actually sounds interesting. Fantastic and helpful review, Andrea!



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