Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Heartbeat {by Elizabeth Scott}

Title: Heartbeat
Author: Elizabeth Scott
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Life. Death. And...Love?
Emma would give anything to talk to her mother one last time. Tell her about her slipping grades, her anger with her stepfather, and the boy with the bad reputation who might be the only one Emma can be herself with.
But Emma can't tell her mother anything. Because her mother is brain-dead and being kept alive by machines for the baby growing inside her.
Meeting bad-boy Caleb Harrison wouldn't have interested Old Emma. But New Emma-the one who exists in a fog of grief, who no longer cares about school, whose only social outlet is her best friend Olivia-New Emma is startled by the connection she and Caleb forge.
Feeling her own heart beat again wakes Emma from the grief that has grayed her existence. Is there hope for life after death-and maybe, for love?

I wanted to really like this one, because I had heard great things about this book and Elizabeth Scott's books in general. But I just could not get into it. There were quite a few moments when DNF-ing it would cross my mind, but the book was so short, it didn't seem worth it.

I will say, I do not regret finishing it. It did mostly redeem itself towards the end, and it was still a pretty good story. The issue I had was with the main character, Emma. 

I would also like to start off by saying, I could never imagine what Emma has gone through. Losing your mother, only to have her still there for the sake of the baby inside her. Seeing her, never getting closure. I can also understand why she would be so upset that Dan never asked her opinion on any of the choices made concerning her mom, because she was all her mother had until Dan came along. 

That said, I just couldn't stand how bitter and hateful she was towards Dan, the baby, the world. I tried to understand that she was coming from a place of grief, but it still didn't help things. She's so caught up in herself, she fails to see that Dan is grieving too. But now, instead of grieving just his wife, he's also grieving the family he once used to have, now that Emma has turned into who she is. The things she would say to Dan were, I felt, unforgivable. 

Most of the book was spent with Emma repeating the same things about how this isn't what her mother would have wanted, how Dan only cares about himself and the baby, how Dan only does what he wants, how no one understands, etc. But everything she said about her mother, how kind and loving she was, directly contradicts her firm belief that this isn't what her mother would have wanted. I felt that her mother would have wanted the baby to live, especially considering all she went through to simply conceive him. 

I realize that high school is a tough time. I realize that teenager's emotions are really screwed up. I can't even imagine what it would be like to have to go through what Emma did. But there were still times when I wanted to slap her. 

Caleb as the love interest was...okay. He wasn't particularly swoony or anything. He has his scars too, and I liked how he helped Emma with what she was dealing with, and she helped him. His family was pretty horrendous, and although I couldn't evoke much emotion for Emma, I could for Caleb.

However, the writing was very well-done. Even as much as I disliked the characters, I have to agree with that. It flowed very smoothly, and kept even me interested enough to keep reading. It is for this reason that I will definitely check out more of Elizabeth Scott's work.

This review can also be found on   Rachel Marie's book recommendations, liked quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

Elizabeth Scott:

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  1. I really loved this one. Maybe because I related to Emma more, and the reviews are 50/50, so it's fun to see different points from different people.. I said in my review the main problem between Emma and Dan was miscommunication, but it wasn't just all Emma's fault either, Dan wouldn't see her side either. And I get it, the baby, but it was her mother first, and she should have a choice, an involvement, which he cut her out of. Some of the things she said and thought were unforgiveable, but some of the things he done were exactly the same. (The part where only one of them could see her). Again, he didn't give her a choice. It was a hard one to read, but it was worth it. It's actually the first Elizabeth Scott I've actually liked. Great review! :)

    Kirsty @ StudioReads

    1. Yeah, I saw a lot of mixed reviews on this one, but unfortunately, I was one of the ones that didn't like it :( And I agree that it wasn't all Emma's fault, and they definitely should have communicated better, but I felt Dan was at least trying to get somewhere with Emma, but she would completely shut him down. Idk, I can't imagine losing someone like that. Who knows how I would act either lol. Thanks for visiting!