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May 11, 2015

Review: My Heart & Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

May 11, 2015
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Review: My Heart & Other Black Holes by Jasmine WargaMy Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga
Published by Harper Collins on February 10th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Depression & Mental Illness, Love & Romance, Suicide, Young Adult
Format: Hardcover
Buy The Book:  Amazon  Barnes & Noble

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.

My Heart and Other Black Holes explores the hard topics of teen suicide and grief with two depressed teenagers: Aysel and Roman. Both of them want to die, both of them have their reasons, and both of them aren’t fully sure if they can go through with it. They are trying to make what is deemed a “selfish act” not so selfish by becoming Suicide Partners.

I knew instantly that this book was going to break my heart in some way or another, small or big. The relationship of Suicide Partners that’s explored in this book shows the intimacy of such a relationship when you’re spending time with the last person you will ever see with your own eyes, the last person who feels your skin and knows your breath, the last person that sees you before a gravestone has your name on it.

Aysel and Roman’s relationship was so complicated. They wanted to share things with each other–but both of them didn’t want to get too close. They always hovered right around saying something beautiful or true or intimate, but only stumbled across that line a few times, as if fearing that they were giving one another more reasons to stay in this world.

I loved watching the character development, uncovering Aysel and Roman’s pasts, and reading moments between them that made me want to live, and gave me hope that they would, too. Truly, Warga captures teenagers perfectly: reckless, lonely, and confused, but also strong, beautiful, and so alive.

This book has so much life breathed into it–so many moments, so many realistic details, so many relatable characters and beautiful experiences. It makes you believe in the power of human connection, in the power of being there for one another, in the power of hope and life. Jasmine Warga maps out such a beautiful story shared between characters who don’t know that life is right in front of them, giving them all the reasons they should live when they can only find all the reasons they should die. I dare you to venture into this book and find the beauty buried under each page, and become as refreshed as I was after reading. This is such a talented debut from a new author that has me waiting to see what she does next.

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