The Book of Broken Hearts
by Sarah Ockler
Genre: YA Contemporary
Format: ARC received from Around the World ARC Tours in exchange for my honest review, I do get to keep a copy of the book.
Midnight Minute: The summer before college Jude isn’t acting in a play or hanging out with her friends, instead she’s taking care of her beloved Papi and being tempted by the one boy she’s sworn to hate.
Expected Publication: 05.21.13 (the day before my birthday. Coincidence? I think not!)
When all signs point to heartbreak, can love still be a rule of the road? A poignant and romantic novel from the author of Bittersweet and Twenty Boy Summer.
Jude has learned a lot from her older sisters, but the most important thing is this: The Vargas brothers are notorious heartbreakers. She’s seen the tears and disasters that dating a Vargas boy can cause, and she swore an oath—with candles and a contract and everything—to never have anything to do with one.
Now Jude is the only sister still living at home, and she’s spending the summer helping her ailing father restore his vintage motorcycle—which means hiring a mechanic to help out. Is it Jude’s fault he happens to be cute? And surprisingly sweet? And a Vargas?
Jude tells herself it’s strictly bike business with Emilio. Her sisters will never find out, and Jude can spot those flirty little Vargas tricks a mile away—no way would she fall for them. But Jude’s defenses are crumbling, and if history is destined to repeat itself, she’s speeding toward some serious heartbreak…unless her sisters were wrong?
Jude may have taken an oath, but she’s beginning to think that when it comes to love, some promises might be worth breaking.
~ Jude is the youngest of four girls, and the only left at home. I loved the relationship she had with her sisters and her parents, how close they all are despite the differences in ages.
~ Papi has early on-set Alzheimers, which is heart-breaking, and especially meaningful to me because I work with so many clients with cognitive impairment. I’m so glad to see it featured in books, because I really feel that it’s easy to dismiss people who suffer from this disease. Ockler does an amazing job of making Papi a real person, and not just a caricature.
~ Jude’s parents are originally from Argentina, and it’s very much a part of this novel. It made me realize how rarely I read books that deal with different ethnic backgrounds. I kind of fell in love with the Hernandez family.
~ Oh, the Book of Broken Hearts, it’s the real deal! The whole scene with the sisters, and the pledge they make against the Vargas boys felt very Practical Magic-ish and I loved every minute of it. I would die for a peek of this book!
~ Jude and Papi call his disease El Demonio, which is the perfect way to describe it.
~ Although this book does deal with Jude’s evolving feelings for Emilio, it’s so much more than a romance. It’s really more about Jude coming to terms with her father’s illness and her identity separate from her sisters.
~ Emilio won my heart when he helps Jude calm Papi down during an episode. He’s not afraid or embarrassed by Papi’s melt down, and it was wonderful.
~ LOL moment: when Jude says that the Vargas boys were like Hernandez Lady Kyrptonite.
~ Sad moment: How in denial Jude is in the beginning about her father’s illness. Although it’s completely understandable, wanting your loved one to beat an incurable disease.
~ A girl teaching a guy to drive stick shift is dead sexy!
~ My favorite line in the book is about family tragedies, how they smash everything up, but glue it back together at the same time. It was so true that it made me tear up.
~ I only have brothers, but everything I know from friends and books only confirms that sisters are extremely complicated. I both envy and am scared of Jude’s relationship with her sisters. Mostly afraid.
~ Early on-set Alzheimers is genetic, and there are tests that can determine if you carry the genes. Jude and her sisters have a 50/50 chance of getting the same disease. I wish this storyline had featured a bit more, but I get that it would have definitely changed the tone of the book.
~ I also wanted more of the Vargas boys. I wanted to know what Emilio’s older brothers were up to, but we don’t really get to see them. I wanted to know the reasons behind their decisions to break the Hernandez sister’s hearts.
~ The cover of the book is cute, but a bit generic. I think showing an actual beat up book with the title of Broken Hearts would have been better. However, this current cover should appeal to all us book lovers, right?
~ The ending was so good, bittersweet, but so good. I would love to see a sequel a few years down the road to see how the Hernandez family is, but if I don’t get it I won’t be upset.
Emilio- hot Vargas brother, knows his way around a motorcycle and melts hearts on a daily basis.
Papi- an amazing man losing his memories.
Rita- Jude’s wonderful mother.
The Hernandez Sisters: Lourdes, Araceli and Mariposa.
Pancake- Jude’s golden retriever, her interpretations of what he’s thinking are a much needed comic relief.
Zoe and Christina- Jude’s friends, living the summer Jude thought she’d be having too.
Duke- Emilio’s boss at Duchess Custom Cycles.
Valentina- Papi’s bike.
Samuel- Emilio’s friend, he calls Jude a drama llama, which cracked me up.
I own Twenty Boy Summer but haven’t read beyond the first chapter, but I already knew I loved her writing, and this book only confirmed that love. I can’t imagine anyone not liking this book!
Sarah Ockler— Website | Sarah Ockler
The Book of Broken Hearts gets a Midnight Book Rating of: