Monday, April 13, 2015

Review: Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby

Things We Know by Heart by Jessi Kirby
When Quinn Sullivan meets the recipient of her boyfriend’s donated heart, the two form an unexpected connection.
After Quinn loses her boyfriend, Trent, in an accident their junior year, she reaches out to the recipients of his donated organs in hopes of picking up the pieces of her now-unrecognizable life. She hears back from some of them, but the person who received Trent’s heart has remained silent. The essence of a person, she has always believed, is in the heart. If she finds Trent’s, then maybe she can have peace once and for all.
Risking everything in order to finally lay her memories to rest, Quinn goes outside the system to track down nineteen-year-old Colton Thomas—a guy whose life has been forever changed by this priceless gift. But what starts as an accidental run-in quickly develops into more, sparking an undeniable attraction. She doesn't want to give in to it—especially since he has no idea how they're connected—but their time together has made Quinn feel alive again. No matter how hard she’s falling for Colton, each beat of his heart reminds her of all she’s lost…and all that remains at stake.


Publishes in US: April 21st 2015 by HarperTeen
Genre: ya contemp
Source: Harper Teen via Edelweiss
Series? no

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    I wanted to read this one because I am drawn to books about organ donation and especially the newer ones that focus on the cellular memory aspect. There is so much that can be done with the subject and I have liked Kirby's previous books, so it was a sure thing to try.

   Quinn is the main character and she is shrouded in grief even after a year of losing her boyfriend Trent. Through flashbacks I got to see the beginning of their relationship, the comfort and familiarity that they built together in their relationship. There were also views back to the day he passed as well as the days leading up to her reaching out to his organ recipients.

    But Colton, the heart recipient hasn't gotten back to her and she is desperate for some sort of closure, or hopefully peace upon seeing him. So she breaks a few rules and researches him. Once she finds out his town and his name from a blog post from his sister while he was sick and putting together dates and times, she convinces herself it won't hurt if she goes and just gets a look at him, his life, the guy who now has her deceased boyfriend's heart beating in his chest.

   But she doesn't exactly make the most smooth under cover. She manages to get his attention in all sorts of ways, and she is drawn even more to him. He feels a familiarity with her and they end up on each others' radars and in the others' space more and more. There is an undeniable chemistry and magnetism. You have to wonder if its cell memory for how deeply Quinn and Trent felt for one another, and now upon seeing her, Colton is drawn to her, feeling like he knows and has a deep connection to her. Or if its just simple attraction and chemistry of a nice guy and girl who click and keep finding and thinking of the other.

    It was great though to watch Quinn begin to live again and learn that she can be happy and she doesn't have to daily be aware of Trent and his death. She had neglected a lot, her school work, and her family relationships. But her sister is in town unexpectedly for the summer and between Ryan (the sister) and their Gran, they help even further to pull Quinn out of herself. They also encourage her time at the beach and suspect a boy may be behind it even though Quinn of course, doesn't tell them much about him because even though she is loving the time they spend together, she is still the only one who knows the connection with Colton.

    I liked the way their relationship progressed, and even though there was the secret hanging between them, Quinn hiding how she knows him and Colton that he has physical limitations, they somehow formed a deep connection. The truth of course ends up coming out at a really hard time, and it seemed like it might break them. It added a lot to the suspense and both of them had to face some really hard truths and wonder if the secrets are enough to keep them apart.

    It was a realistic ending, but I was pleased with it. I liked the growth of both of the characters and the arc of their friendship and romance.

Bottom Line: Emotional story of Quinn who has lost her first love and who ends up meeting and falling for the recipient of his heart.

My question to you, my lovely readers:
Are you an organ donor?

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