Book Title:
Our Chemical Hearts
Book Author:
Krystal Sutherland
Publishing Date:
October 4th, 2016
G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Date Read:
October 6th, 2016
ARC from publisher - Thank you!


John Green meets Rainbow Rowell in this irresistible story of first love, broken hearts, and the golden seams that put them back together again.

Henry Page has never been in love. He fancies himself a hopeless romantic, but the slo-mo, heart palpitating, can't-eat-can't-sleep kind of love that he's been hoping for just hasn't been in the cards for him—at least not yet. Instead, he's been happy to focus on his grades, on getting into a semi-decent college and finally becoming editor of his school newspaper. Then Grace Town walks into his first period class on the third Tuesday of senior year and he knows everything's about to change.

Grace isn't who Henry pictured as his dream girl—she walks with a cane, wears oversized boys' clothes, and rarely seems to shower. But when Grace and Henry are both chosen to edit the school paper, he quickly finds himself falling for her. It's obvious there's something broken about Grace, but it seems to make her even more beautiful to Henry, and he wants nothing more than to help her put the pieces back together again. And yet, this isn't your average story of boy meets girl. Krystal Sutherland's brilliant debut is equal parts wit and heartbreak, a potent reminder of the bittersweet bliss that is first love.

My Review

I don’t give too many 5 star reviews, but if any a book deserves it, Our Chemical Hearts is the one.

Our Chemical Hearts is a heart wrenching story of first love and the happiness and grief it often brings, told by a witty and awkward narrator who is easy to relate to.  I couldn’t put this book down once I started reading it – not only was it an incredibly fun read, it was completely addictive.

“I always thought the moment you met the great love of your life would be more like the movies.”

Henry Page has never felt about a girl the way he is about to when he meets Grace Town.  She comes into school one day, dressed in boy’s clothes, her hair all messy, and walking with a cane.  No one knows what to make of her – especially Henry.  When Henry and Grace are both called into the school newspaper office and offered the position of editor, which Henry has been working for for  years, Grace turns it down and leaves the office quickly.  Henry catches up to her, asking why she would turn down such a great position – and quickly finds himself drawn to her mysterious, reclusive ways.

As time goes by, and Henry and Grace spend more time getting to know each other, they find themselves drawn together.  Soon, Henry realizes that he has more than just friendly feelings toward Grace – in fact, he might be in love with her.

“One thing was clear: only five short weeks after I’d met her, Grace Town was already stuck on repeat in my head.”

However, when he finds Grace’s profile on Facebook, things start to feel a little off to him – Grace goes around dressed in boy’s clothes with messy hair and no makeup, but in her photos on Facebook, Grace is a happy girl – dressed in pretty clothes, with her hair and makeup done, and she smiles.  So who is this girl that entered into Henry’s life such a short time ago?  The Grace that Henry knows is either hot or cold – she wants to laugh and talk with him, or she doesn’t want to be bothered at all.  Henry has a hard time figuring things out, until Grace begins letting on small pieces of what has been going on in her life to lead her to this – including the car accident that changed everything for her.  Henry and Grace need to figure out exactly what they want from each other, and whether or not

“She was grieving and broken and it would almost definitely end in or both of us getting destroyed.  But some things were worth fighting for, right?”

Okay, Our Chemical Hearts is probably one of the most heartwarming and heartbreaking books that I have read in such a long time, and to be honest, parts of it frustrated me so bad because it made me cry and yet I loved it with all my heart.  It was full of so many emotions it felt like I was getting torn in multiple directions at once.  It was such a bittersweet read.

If you love character driven books (I know I do!), then this is a fantastic read.  Henry’s character is witty, and the way he talks and narrates the book will definitely make you laugh (I can relate to the whole awkward teenager thing, that’s for sure…I’m an adult now and still awkward as can be).  Grace’s character is deeply broken over a tragedy that struck before she came to Henry’s school, and my heart broke for her once it was revealed (not spilling any info on that).  The character development in this book was exceptional, as well – Henry and Grace both grew into different people after walking into each others’ lives, and watching them grow as people and deal with their issues together and separately was interesting.  The book gives a gentle reminder that true love does exist, whether it is meant to last a few short months or a lifetime.

“‘Sometimes you don’t know things are going to be extraordinary until they are.”

This is probably one of the most real feeling books that I’ve read this year.  Not only were the main characters written well, but the secondary characters, Henry’s best friends and his sister, were well developed and interesting as well.  Nothing in this book fell flat – everything was beautifully rounded out to create an instant hit of a novel.

If you are looking for a light, fluffy read, Our Chemical Hearts really isn’t it – it’s deep, emotional, and thought provoking, and is sure to stick with you for a long time after you’ve read it.  Krystal Sutherland’s writing is captivating and engaging, and the story will remind of you of the sweet feelings of your own first love.

Also, check out my blog tour post for Our Chemical Hearts, where I created some pretty nifty book-themed cupcakes!

5 stars
This entry was posted in Contemporary, Reviews, Romance, Young Adult and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland

  1. Susan Dyer says:

    I have this one to read and after reading this I’m moving it up in the pile!

    Great review!!

  2. Deanna says:

    I’ve seen this one around and I’ve been curious about it. After reading your review, I’m sold. I need to read it! 🙂

  3. This review (and the book) sounds like it would give me a lot of feels! I love the sound of Henry’s character and Grace as well and how they connect with each other. This is such a wonderful review Kelly!
    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence recently posted…Crooked Kingdom Review: My Heart Will Never Be The Same AgainMy Profile

  4. Susan Dyer says:

    I’m moving it up on my TBR mountain as well!

    Great review!!

  5. Susan Dyer says:

    Okay I responded twice!! And I still haven’t read it! Sad……

  6. ptc says:

    I relate to grace town on a deep level. I read this book looking for a good romance novel. Which it was. but i got something completely different…the author did a great job of showing emotions, she embraced them, and as a teen i really need that. i was going through a period of time where i didnt want to be okay, or fixed, i just wanted to feel the way i felt and be left alone. people never really know how to handle deep emotional stuff, they kinda awkwardly pat you, or say itll all be okay. it was nice to find a character i could finally relate to.

    • Kelly says:

      Thanks for stopping by! I thought it was going to be mostly a romance novel too, so I was a bit skeptical about reading it at first, but I loved the characters and the darker stories that were behind them. This was a complex novel but it was so important and there was so much that made it easy for others to relate to. Krystal Sutherland really has a great talent for making her characters come to life. I’m glad that you felt that you could relate to Grace, and I’m really glad that you enjoyed the book!

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