Thursday, 23 April 2015

Review: My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Publication Date: 10th February
My rating: 4 stars 


Aysel and Roman are practically strangers, but they've been drawn into an unthinkable partnership. In a month's time, they plan to commit suicide - together. Aysel knows why she wants to die: being the daughter of a murderer doesn't equal normal, well-adjusted teenager. But she can't figure out why handsome, popular Roman wants to end it all....and why he's even more determined than she is. With the deadline getting closer, something starts to grow between Aysel and Roman - a feeling she never thought she would experience. It seems there might be something to live for, after all - but is Aysel in so deep she can't turn back?

My Heart and Other Black Holes had been receiving various forms of praise from my blogging friends and readers I had been following. If you know me by mow you would know I love a good emotional read from time to time, one that has you sobbing your eyes out and is constantly on your mind days or even months later. So I was all prepared to be overcome with feels when I picked up this book. I even had my good friend Allie read this book with me, just in case it became too much for me. I don’t know if I was disappointed that the book didn’t end up evoking a strong emotional reaction within me as much as I was hoping, it was a beautiful read never the less, but not as hard hitting as I expected.

Aysel has had enough of life, after everything that happened with her dad, everyone just assumes the same is going to happen to her, Aysel is even starting to believe this for herself and she so doesn’t want to go there. Aysel is just passing her time until she stumbles across the perfect partner Roman, he also is done with life, they both agree on April 7th as the day that they will finally end it, Aysel and Roman have no way back now, but just to spend the days leading up to it the way they can, however no one expected that these six weeks would change everything especially not Aysel.

Warga dealt with the issue of depression really well in My Heart and Other Black Holes. She properly got into the minds of Aysel and was able to give us all the thoughts and feelings of a girl going through one of the hardest periods of her life. It was harder for Aysel as she didn’t really have anyone there for her. She had isolated herself from her friends after the stuff with her dad went down and didn’t feel as if she belonged to her mum’s family. She had also got to the point where she couldn’t be bothered to make the effort in class either, but as soon as Roman made an appearance in her life, everything didn’t change immediately, they started planning the ending straight away, but I liked how Warga incorporated little glimpses of hope along the way. They weren’t even things that could make the biggest change or make you stop and think about things, but they were things like a small smile from Roman, a last time visit to the fair or even going to the zoo which sort of snowballed in making Aysel want to live. Like I said it wasn’t a change that was immediate, especially the way Aysel’s feelings had become the past few years you can’t just expect to pull anyone out of that. But Warga worked in these small glimmers in really eloquently, some I didn’t even realise were happening, others had me grinning from ear to ear, because the more time I got to spend with Roman and Aysel the more I wanted them to live too, they had so much to experience, so much to offer the world that they hadn’t given the chance and to be honest I don’t think I could have dealt with another character I’d become hugely fond of dying (not after the last book I’d read). So as the day came nearer and nearer, I started hoping, that one of these characters would be enough to bring the other back from the brink. The last few days leading up to it really felt like an anxious time for me, I would at some point feel as if these characters could be possibly swayed and consider giving another shot at life, but then at times these feelings could be quickly smothered by a character reminding us why they had met in the first place and I would go to feeling all anxious all over.

I’m not going to say how things do turn out (you’re just going to have to read this book to find out for yourself). But let me say Warga wrote an incredibly beautiful story in My Heart and Other Black Holes. (Highlight to view spoiler) my only complaint was the blurting of I Love you just after 6 weeks, I don’t know if it was just me not realising they had progressed that far in their relationship. But that aside, I loved how Warga gave us Aysel’s and Roman’s relationship, there was so much I learnt about these two characters and was able to take away from their story. When they say time always seems to fly by when you’re having a good time, this I feel could be said about Roman and Aysel, although they hadn’t got to know each other with the best intention, the bringing together of these two characters was everything that they needed.




20 comments:

  1. I'm sorry you weren't all that emotionally invested in this one, Jasprit. :( I always hope to really immerse myself in the characters' feelings when I read something that promises lots of tears. But I love how you mentioned that there were these little tidbits of hope and happy times, and I'd love to see those develop. :) Lovely review, girl!

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  2. Aahh I read this one recently unfortunately, it wasn't the book for me :/ Atleast one us still liked it! I loved Roman's character in the novel too, his past was actually heart breaking. Wonderful review Jasprit.

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  3. I love a good emotional read, but I've seen this one around and I think it would really be an uncontrollable emotional read for and I would definitely need someone to read it with. Good call on that lol. I'm a bit anxious about this book to read but I may give this a read in the future. Great review, Jasprit!

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  4. I've heard so much praise for this one too, though I've been avoiding a lot of suicide books recently as there seem to be so many of them. Heavy emotional books usually freak me out, so I'm glad you found it to be manageable. That's a plus for me, actually! I may end up giving this one a try sometime then. I really like that you say the depression was handled well and that their relationship builds over time and doesn't make everything perfect immediately. Great review, Jasprit!

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  5. I'm glad you enjoyed this one, Jasprit. I agree that it's not the most emotional book, but it's so beautifully written and I love that it gives you hope more than anything, which is what made it stand out for me when compared to other YA suicide/depression books. I did really enjoy the characters. I'm happy you gave it a shot! :)
    Lovely review!

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  6. i don't know how i feel about reading this book with such a hard topic but then not evoking much emotions out of it… however great review Jasprit!

    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

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  7. Awwww, I'm sorry this didn't evoke a stronger emotional reaction from you, babe! :( That's sad because I know how much you expected to be bombareded by the feels, but hey, four stars still ain't bad. The fact that it's beautifully written and still conveys the feelings of our characters effectively in words make up for that, definitely. CAn't wait to dive into it myself.

    Faye at The Social Potato

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  8. Sounds intense. I can't wait to read it myself! :)

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  9. This book is also getting a lot of mixed reviews. I think even though you loved it to a point, I am going to past, I can't do another emotional/suicide type book.

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  10. I've heard a lot about this one and am glad that the praise it has received is warranted. I've been avoiding these heavy issue books lately, though, so if I ever do pick this one up, it won't be for awhile. Still, I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Jasprit! Gorgeous review, as always dear!(:

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  11. Sorry you didn't get all the feelings you were expecting but glad to hear you also thought the aspect of depression was handled well

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  12. I'm still on the fence about this book. I think I just need a break from teens killing themselves, thinking about killing themselves, and just. Hey, let's read a book about teens wanting to live? How about that? Lol. Sorry. Weird mood today. :(

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  13. I've heard so many good things about this story but I don't know if I'm emotionally prepared to read it just yet. I've somehow read a lot of rather depressing stories lately...but it's on the in-the-future list!

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  14. I hear this book is really emotional and captures depression really well. I wish the ending were more hard-hitting though! I'm glad it wraps up nicely. lovely review <33

    Rachel @ A Perfection Called Books

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  15. Awesome review Jasprit :D I'm so glad you liked this book a whole lot. <3 I'm a bit curious about it, but don't think I would like it, so staying away from it for now, lol :p but you do make it seem pretty awesome. Sigh. Thank you for sharing :)

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  16. Awesome review, lady! I loved this book so, so much. It took a little bit of time for me to feel fully connected, but by the halfway point I was in love. The writing is just so pretty, and I really liked both characters. Not always an easy book to read, but like you said there were enough moments of hope for me.

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  17. I have been seeing this one around a lot lately, and it sounds like a great read. I'm glad you liked it. Nice review!

    Sarika @ The Readdicts

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  18. I'm so behind with YA books- waaah! This one looks so great, though. Alarm bells always go off with subjects like this (sometimes I find them gimmicky...) but the author seems to handle it pretty well.

    Great review, love! I'll have to add it to my (ever growing) list of books to read!

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  19. My heart hurts just from reading your review and I haven't even got over Mr Before You by J. Moyes yet. I love this type of emotional books because they make you appreciate life more and the people around you. I definitely plan to read it in the near future. Wonderful review, Jasprit!

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  20. Yet another great review, Jasprit! I’ve seen this book before but I thought that it’s a heavy and very emotional book which will make me a crying mess and will be cause of my depression. Now that you've mentioned that this book was not as hard hitting as you’ve expected, I think, I’ll give it a try. Thank you for helpful review.

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