Monday, February 3, 2014

Review: THE BOOK OF BROKEN HEARTS by Sarah Ockler

Title: THE BOOK OF BROKEN HEARTS
Author: Sarah Ockler
Published: May 2013
Series: N/A
Genre: YA contemporary
Pages: 352
POV: 1st person
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Rating: The Royal Library, Top Shelf
Jude has learned a lot from her older sisters, but the most important thing is this: The Vargas brothers are notorious heartbreakers. She’s seen the tears and disasters that dating a Vargas boy can cause, and she swore an oath—with candles and a contract and everything—to never have anything to do with one.

Now Jude is the only sister still living at home, and she’s spending the summer helping her ailing father restore his vintage motorcycle—which means hiring a mechanic to help out. Is it Jude’s fault he happens to be cute? And surprisingly sweet? And a Vargas?

Jude tells herself it’s strictly bike business with Emilio. Her sisters will never find out, and Jude can spot those flirty little Vargas tricks a mile away—no way would she fall for them. But Jude’s defenses are crumbling, and if history is destined to repeat itself, she’s speeding toward some serious heartbreak…unless her sisters were wrong?

Jude may have taken an oath, but she’s beginning to think that when it comes to love, some promises might be worth breaking.

Sarah Ockler is an author that could be easily missed when strolling through a bookstore or when browsing online. If you're one of those people who strolls on by her stories, I can honestly say you are making a mistake. Her books have these cute and utterly adorable covers that fit the lighter moments, but they fail to capture the intensity of emotions Ockler will put you and her characters through by the time the final page has arrived. That intensity is one aspect I have grown to love regarding Ockler's novels, because her books always prove to be more heartfelt than you may originally suspect. Jude Hernandez's story is no exception, and The Book of Broken Hearts deserves a chance to be on your to-read pile.

A girl, a boy, a vintage motorcycle, a struggling family, and a star-crossed romance. Ockler's books begin with familiarity, and she breaks it down wonderfully. The characters are authentic, the problems are down to earth, and the overall meaning is something you take with you wherever you go. The Book of Broken Hearts explores what it means to be family, the struggles of friendship, as well as the complications that come from falling in love with the "wrong" sort of person. Bittersweet, playful, and memorable, The Book of Broken Hearts captured my heart entirely.

Highlights: Family is emphasized, and I loved Jude's relationship with her father. It's sweet and heartbreaking as Ockler portrays the slow descent into Alzheimer's. All of the character's were realistic and easy to imagine. There's a lot of levity mixed in with the more serious situations, and Ockler balances each emotion realistically. 

Lowlights: I think it would have been nice to learn a bit more about Emilio. Just a little.

Rating: The Royal Library, Top Shelf. The Book of Broken Hearts is emotional, amusing, and worth every penny. This book is a must-read.



 


14 comments:

  1. I loved Twenty Boy Summer but I haven't read this one yet. I like books that feature family so maybe I'd like this one too.

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    1. TBS was so great. You should definitely check out TBoBH, it's fantastic!

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  2. You have completely convinced me that I need to get my hands on a copy of this book. I love that family plays an important role as well as Alzheimer's…which I feel like isn't in YA literature as much as it should be. I really liked Twenty Boy Summer…so I should definitely check out this book. Thanks for the great review!

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    1. I think this was the first time I've read a story involving Alzheimer's, and it should definitely be in more YA books (along with family - it drives me crazy when YA novels feature absent families). If you check it out, I hope you like it!

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  3. I like Ockler as an author; her stories seem genuine and heartfelt, which makes me like her characters a lot, too.

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    1. Agreed! She makes it easy to like her characters :)

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  4. I haven't picked up anything by this author yet since I don't read much contemp, but I hear she is one of the best at it! Your review definitely tempts me! Glad to hear you loved it, Lea!

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    1. Ockler's books are really good - especially TWENTY BOY SUMMER and THE BOOK OF BROKEN HEARTS. You should check them out sometime :)

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  5. I've read her first two books and Lea you explained it perfectly of why I love Sarah Ockler's books and also that I need to catch up on her recent releases.

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    1. She's a great writer! Very good at portraying her teenager heroines in a realistic way. You definitely need to catch up - her books are always fabulous :)

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  6. I've only read Bittersweet! All her other books are on my TBR pile. Looks like I need to get to them!

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    1. You absolutely need to check out her other novels. I liked Bittersweet, but I feel all of her other novels are much better.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  7. I've been wanting to read this one! And I love that it has an emphasis on family. Great review.

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    1. Family is such a huge part of the story. You should check it out!

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