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Monday, February 8, 2010

In a Heartbeat

In a Heartbeat by Loretta Ellsworth (Feburary 2nd 2010—Walker )

Grade: 3.5 stars out of 5

Summary: A touching novel of last regrets and second chances in
the tradition of Lurlene McDaniel and Gabrielle Zevin.

When a small mistake costs sixteen-year-old Eagan her life during a figure-skating competition, she leaves many things unreconciled, including her troubled relationship with her mother. From her vantage point in the afterlife, Eagan reflects back on her memories, and what she could have done differently, through her still-beating heart.

When fourteen-year-old Amelia learns she will be getting a heart transplant, her fear and guilt battle with her joy at this new chance at life. And afterwards when she starts to feel different — dreaming about figure skating, craving grape candy —her need to learn about her donor leads her to discover and explore Eagan’s life,meeting her grieving loved ones and trying to bring the closure they all need to move on.

Told in alternating viewpoints, In a Heartbeat tells the emotional and compelling story of two girls sharing one heart.”

Review: I was pleasantly surprised by how well I liked the book. I initially believed that…well I honestly did not know what I was getting myself into. I typically shy away from contemporary fictions after several bad run-ins because I find them a) too boring; b) too dramatic; c) just not my taste. While In a Heartbeat is not something I plan to reread 10 times a week (though I’ve done that with some books) I do foresee reading some scenes again by the end of the year.

In a Heartbeat had a rather slow start. I began reading the book sometime in late January and reached the high tens—70 of so pages. Then I just abruptly stopped. Something didn’t compel me enough to finish those last 110~ pages. With the deadline looming oh so very close (less than 24 hours!) I needed to finish the book and write my review. The novel eventually picked up fast enough for me to breeze through the rest in about an hour or so. I would definitely recommend sticking with it until the end for this book.

Eagan’s POV I struggled through with in the beginning. I had a hard time coping with the flashbacks. It was a shift from the limbo to Eagan’s past that that did not sit well with me. I also had a hard time with Eagan in the beginning. I felt disconnected and a bit weary of her. This changed as well from the middle to the end with the introduction of several other characters. She grew on me.

Amelia, for some reason, I’ve always like from the start. Case closed.

Overall: Like with a car in winter, it takes a while before you start driving, but once it warms up, you’re breezing by with your favorite radio on.

Cover B
What can I say, I love the typography.

ftc: review copy was provided in return for a review.
go here for the schedule for Loretta's blog tour!


  1. LOVED your overall comments that's great :) Lovely review!

  2. Thank you for your review, it was great!
    I'm looking forward to reading this book =)

  3. Nice honest review. Eagen bugged me too- she was so hateful to her mom with no real reason for it which did bug me but I ended up loving this book by the end. =)