A stunning novel about the transformative power of love, perfect for fans of Jay Asher and Laurie Halse Anderson.
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–Roman, a teenage boy 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.
Aysel cannot stop thinking about death, the physics of where energy goes after one has finally passed on. Her life now is factored around the horrible crime that her father committed. People fear her, thinking she could snap just like her father had. And Aysel is looking for sweet relief . . . only, she can’t do it alone. Teaming up with Frozen Robot, a boy she met online named Roman who she’s committed herself to as a suicide partner, Aysel slowly begins to unwind, open up, and understand the permanence of death and the tole it has on the people around her. And when feelings for the boy she’s promised to kill herself with arise, Aysel starts to see the world in a whole new light.
I take a breath and notice that the air has changed flavor from campfire smoke to sweet vanilla and there’s a soft sound in my head that I don’t quite recognize but reminds me of pennies being tossed into a fountain. The pitter-patter of wishes, desperate wishes.
Final Summation: A quick read with lovely prose, but an ending that left me unsatisfied and unimpressed. My Heart and Other Black Holes handles the troubles of depression on a deep level, but ultimately ends on what I found to be unrealistic and utilizes a deux ex machina that did nothing to the take away from the story. For a sensitive topic, I felt emotionally indifferent. It is sad and crazy and messed up that people go through troubled thoughts and are immersed in painful memories and events such as the ones that Aysel and Roman go through, but my take away from the novel was much greater than my emotional connection to the characters or their romantic story. I do enjoy reading novels that take on dark topics such as suicide and death, and I encourage those to give them a try, even this particular novel. You might enjoy it more than I did.