Friday, June 08, 2012

Unbreak My Heart (YA)

Unbreak My Heart. Melissa Walker. 2012. Bloomsbury. 240 pages.

I definitely enjoyed Melissa Walker's Unbreak My Heart. I thought it was a wonderful way to spend a summer afternoon. Clementine, the heroine, is an emotional mess when the novel opens. All will come to light as the story unfolds chapter by chapter, but, essentially she's lost someone really super-close to her, her best friend, Amanda, someone she's known and loved since grade school. Why are these two friends no longer speaking? (Or at least with words that can be repeated?!) Well, it has a little something to do with the notion of being betrayed. It's up to readers to decide just how much betrayal was involved and if Clementine is deserving (or not) of a second chance.

Unbreak My Heart is an intriguing YA book in that there are two stories unfolding at once. 1) The present summer (the summer before her senior year) where she is on a three month sailing trip with her parents and her younger sister, Olive. 2) The previous school year (her sophomore year) where readers see Amanda and Clementine and their friends and boyfriends. Readers, of course, know this is building to something allegedly BIG and SHATTERING.

The summer might be lonely, incredibly lonely, for Clementine, if it wasn't for meeting James, a cute red-haired guy with issues of his own. James and his Dad are sailing for the whole summer too. With James and tag-along Olive, Clementine does stop moping occasionally. And James does awaken something in her...

Read Unbreak My Heart
  • If you're a fan of Melissa Walker, Sarah Dessen, Elizabeth Scott, Deb Caletti, Susane Colasanti, etc.
  • If you're a fan of YA Romance, particularly YA Romances with an emphasis on music and playlists.
  • If you're looking for YA novels with complexly drawn characters, particularly if you're looking for well-drawn families. Truth be told, it's rare for parents, sisters, etc. to get fleshed out. But I think she did a great job making this feel like a real family on a real vacation. 
  • If you're looking for YA novels that explore the tension of friendships and relationships.

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
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4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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