Book Review: My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

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Aysel is obsessed with her own death. If energy is neither created nor destroyed, where will her energy go when she’s gone? But she doesn’t have the energy to actually kill herself alone, so she finds a website to look for a suicide partner, aka FrozenRobot. Despite the fact the two teens have nothing in common, they begin to make life feel less black and smiles more natural for each other. But they’re just suicide partners. After a while, Aysel wants to be more, but she doesn’t want to flake on him, either.

I’ve been wanting to read this book for so long based solely on the beauty of its cover. And the concept did seem quite interesting. A perfectly planned out suicide? Two teens who sought for support, not to live, but to get the courage to die? Very interesting.

I enjoyed the book. I’ve never been depressed, but I thought the author uses a lot of description that everyone can understand in order to show Aysel’s feelings. Aysel is relatable with a classic teenage voice that has definite moments of clarity regarding depression and suicide and treatment.

There is the usual YA romance (sigh) between Aysel and her suicide partner Roman, but that is in the description of the book. The theme shifts toward love cures all, and the only thing I didn’t like was that the author focused on romantic love rather than the love of Aysel or Roman’s family. I do think this romance was warranted because it showed how two people can help each other through difficult times and overcome depression.

I liked the characters and setting of this book. It’s in a small town in the middle of nowhere with really nothing that happens. I think the setting kind of reflects Aysel being stuck in her own mind, worried that her depression will overtake her. It also allows for her depression to fester because it begins when her father is convicted of killing an Olympic-bound athlete of the town, and the quietness of the area allows for the rumors to continue and her name to be connected forever with the murder.

The characters are very real. Sometimes young adult novels have problems making teen voices seem authentic, but both Roman and Aysel and the other minor characters had real conversations and thoughts. The actions of Roman and Aysel seemed congruent to depressed teens, and their home life with worried mothers or frustrated sisters was also accurate.

Overall, it’s a classic contemporary young adult novel. The writing style is perfectly tailored to the plot with beautiful descriptions of their feelings. I can’t say it made me cry or anything, and I don’t think the ending was very surprising, but I did enjoy reading it and think that it demonstrated a solid depiction of depression.

4 Stars

 

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One thought on “Book Review: My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

  1. Pingback: Top Ten Books if You Like John Green | Stealing Pages

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