Publication Date: April 21, 2015
Page Count: 304
Published by: Harper Teen
Source: eArc received from publisher in exchange for an honest review
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Quinn Sullivan lost the love of her life when her boyfriend, Trent, died in an accident their junior year. In an attempt to get closure, she reached out to the recipients of his donated organs. Though some answered her letters, the one Quinn feels matters most--the person who received Trent's heart--has been silent.
Nineteen-year-old Colton Thomas has spent the last several years in and out of hospitals waiting for a heart transplant. Now that he's finally received a new heart, Colton is regaining strength, and he's walking away from his bedridden past with no intention of looking back. He doesn't want to know about the person who had to die so that he could live. He only wants to move forward.
But Quinn can't let it go. Venturing outside the system to find Colton, Quinn takes a risk in hopes of finally laying her memories to rest. But what begins as an innocent conversation quickly becomes an attraction--and to make matters worse, Colton has no idea how they're connected. His zest for life pulls Quinn from her months of sorrow but leaves her torn between honesty and utter betrayal. Because no matter how hard she's falling for Colton, each beat of his heart reminds her of all she's lost.
I really enjoyed Jessi Kirby's In Honor and Golden, and I am happy to say that I liked Things We Know by Heart just as much. This was a heartfelt story with 2 really great characters that I am very fond of. There's a major sticking point that bothered me while reading, and it's the reason why I didn't completely love, love, love this book.
Things We Know by Heart was an emotional read for me. I knew it was going to be one of those books when I had the urge to cry on the second page! There were also several moments throughout the story where I got a little teary eyed, but I managed to keep myself together. I had a moment when I thought something catastrophic had happened, but luckily the author didn't go there, and my Kindle was (thankfully) spared my tears.
Colton was such a wonderful character. Swoony perhaps? He was really sweet and kind, and I liked his adventurous spirit and his ability to look deeper into everyday life. Quinn was just okay for me, and I never really warmed up to her character. While I did like that they took their relationship slowly, I was too anxious waiting for the truth to come out to enjoy them as a couple. The romance in this story is complicated and messy at times. Love is never simple (especially in YA) and this was like a love triangle with a girl, a boy, and a heart. Then throw in the memory of Trent, who I will freely admit that I loved and wished I could have known better. All of it together made for an unforgettable story.
As much as I enjoyed this book - and I really did enjoy it - I had a problem with the lies and deceit between Colton and Quinn. There, I said it. I wanted them to be honest with each other and not just escape their reality by having a good time together. The truth ended up hanging over them like a black cloud, and what should have been an emotional journey for them felt really flat. Even with all the secrets between them, the potential was there for them to have a deep connection, but the story never really went there. And when the truth finally came out it was too little, too late for me.
Despite my problems with all of the lies, I really did enjoy this story. It was a little slow and predictable at times, but it still had an emotional impact on me. I definitely think it's worth taking the time to read. Especially if you enjoy more realistic YA contemporaries like I do.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars