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!