Published by HarperCollins on February 10, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Love & Romance, Young Adult
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Sixteen-year-old physics nerd Aysel is obsessed with plotting her own death. With a mother who can barely look at her without wincing, classmates who whisper behind her back, and a father whose violent crime rocked her small town, Aysel is ready to turn her potential energy into nothingness.
There’s only one problem: she’s not sure she has the courage to do it alone. But once she discovers a website with a section called Suicide Partners, Aysel’s convinced she’s found her solution: a teen boy with the username FrozenRobot (aka Roman) who’s haunted by a family tragedy is looking for a partner.
Even though Aysel and Roman have nothing in common, they slowly start to fill in each other’s broken lives. But as their suicide pact becomes more concrete, Aysel begins to question whether she really wants to go through with it. Ultimately, she must choose between wanting to die or trying to convince Roman to live so they can discover the potential of their energy together. Except that Roman may not be so easy to convince.
A book with it’s own potential energy–and lived up to it.
I’ve been dying for what seems like forever for this book. Gritty and heartbreaking contemporaries are my thing, and the more tears I cry the better. (Yeah I’m a bit confused as to how that works too.) But this one just sounded like a me book. It sounded heartbreaking and beautiful and poignant and everything that I loved in my contemporaries–and love it I did.
Here’s the thing about this Suicide Partners thing–suicide is for those who feel alone. Who feel like there’s nothing that could pull them back from the edge, so it’s intriguing that this is what the book revolves around: a promise that almost contradicts itself. From that it’s already evident that they’ll fall in love and that maybe they’ll come back from rock bottom, but the question is will they realize it before they jump?
Aysel was a fantastic character. I’ll admit I had my doubts at first–she was bitter and it honestly seemed like there were some people who tried for her and she just tuned them out. But she grew on me with her bitter laughs and painful jokes and the way that she was so certain she was right when she ended up just fighting against herself. It turned out more heartbreaking than annoying when she told herself it was for the better and the more I read the more I hurt for this girl whose given up for so long.
Roman was even worse (or better?) We don’t know what he’s thinking throughout the book–he’s hurt, he’s broken, and he’s ready to give it all up to an unknown force. It’s agonizing as we watch him fall in love, and even worse when we have to accept that even with something else to live for, he’s determined to let the guilt, and himself go.
They’re both such agonizingly real characters who were far from perfect and far from where they wanted to be. We watch as Aysel slowly realizes the small things that she doesn’t want to give, the big things she wants to cling to, and the world she still wants to live in. It’s a gradual climb up a steep mountain, but it happens and she has doubts, but there’s still something inside her–that potential energy– that wants to be released. It’s a promise that wants to be fulfilled and a wish that she wishes she’d never wished.
My Heart and Other Black Holes is a gorgeous, gorgeous book that’s filled with that tragic kind of hope that we’re not sure will amount to anything but a regret that dies with the characters–characters who are as real as you or me, but shattered so much on the inside, there’s little to do except cross your fingers, your toes, and read on. It’s a terribly wonderful debut that combines two chaotically broken characters into a book that builds and builds. I’d definitely recommend this one, to anyone looking for a good cry or something a little more…thoughtful.