Unbreak My Heart
May 22, 2012
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A summer on her family's boat, away from internet access, away from everyone else she knows, away from her hometown, away from cell phone reception, suddenly doesn't seem like the worst idea in the world. Three months in a confined space with her parents and ten-year-old little sister might not be a picnic, but Clem doesn't really care. In fact, Clem doesn't really care about anything.
Maybe James - who, with his dad is sailing the same route as Clem and her family - the boy she meets at their first stop, will be just the thing she needs. Maybe he'll finally get her mind off last spring. And unbreak her heart.
Unbreak My Heart is Melissa Walker's fabulous new contemporary YA novel. With a fantastically original setting and her (always) fresh characters, this one is a perfect summer read.
A summer trip that Clem normally would have seen as being exiled and avoided at any and all possible costs, she now sees as a bit of a refuge instead. At home she's the bad guy and quite literally sailing away from her problems doesn't seem like such a bad idea at the moment. We don't know just exactly what happens when the story starts, at least not the details. It's better, though, that those unfold as the story does. To learn more of the past details as Clem's present also develops works very nicely.
Through little flashbacks - things happening in the present or things she thinks about bring up memories - readers see how things developed between Clem and her best friend's boyfriend, Ethan. The way things happen feels very realistic and true to life. It doesn't feel sensationalized for fiction or to make the story better - in fact, it's much better because it's not. The way things develop feels almost logical. Of course, there are times you want to kind of shake Clem a bit, but that's an outside perspective.
The parts of the story on the boat are not at all cramped feeling. There is the containment and isolation at times, but there's also the sense of the open water, the freedom. They characters also stop in different towns, Clem and her family have James and his father - and their boat - to visit with.
Unbreak My Heart is a fun (early) summertime read that also has some depth to it as we see Clem's struggle to maybe forgive herself.
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Thank you to Bloomsbury and NetGalley for my egalley of this title :)