Monday, August 18, 2014

Review: The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler

Title: The Book of Broken Hearts
Author: Sarah Ockler
Series: No
Finished or ARC: Finished
Source: I won it (I think)

Goodreads: 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.

When I read the summary, I thought it sounded good, but wondered what this “Book of Broken Hearts” was and what it had to do with the overall plot. After reading it, I understood. The whole story revolves around it.

Jude’s dad is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s. Jude found his old motorcycle, which she hopes to fix up to restore some of his memories. Now, how does that involve the “book”? Well, it does by who helps fix up the bike.

1) This book is extremely sad. Okay, I’m exaggerating, but it is sad. I knew Alzheimer’s was bad (who hasn’t seen the Notebook), but reading about it through Jude makes it worse. This book is a heartwrencher.

2) The romance between Emilio and Jude is a true summer whirlwind romance. It was great reading about Jude’s struggle to follow her heart and to keep her promise to her sisters. And it’s one of those promises that could be very real between any sisters, which makes it great.

3) The Book of Broken Hearts. How is it involved? Spoilers: it revolves around sisters and their relationship to Emilio’s family. It also was about Jude finding herself instead of being her sisters.
And the book had a lot of Jude finding herself. Not the cheesy “I don’t know who I am”; more of the fact she has live in her sisters’ shadows and clothing and influence for so long that she doesn’t have a sense to follow her heart instead of her sisters’ influence.

All the characters are strong in their own way. Jude is strong in her quest to get her dad to remember. Emilio is strong by helping Jude and not being a total jerk like his brothers. The older sisters are older sisters in the sense they believe they know what is good for Jude, yet each have stood on their own by finding their way through the world despite what they have encountered (which is in their Book). Christina and Zoe were the only characters I didn’t like. And of course, they were the characters that were the ones that were incapable of understanding Jude’s need to help her dad and thought of only their summer trip before college.

The ending was great. Period.


How could you not love that cover?


  1. I've heard so many wonderful things about this book, and I actually won a copy, but it's still been just sitting on my shelf. I'm not sure why. This is one I'll definitely need to remember to pick up.

    Cassie @ Happy Book Lovers