Saturday, May 30, 2015

My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga Review

"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: a teen boy with the username FrozenRobot (aka Roman) 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. Except that Roman may not be so easy to convince."

YA Contemporary Romance, My Heart and Other Black Holes isn't the easiest story to read. Suicide isn't an easy topic, and when I think about it, my mother's old words come into mind. "Just shake it off," she would say to me. "Go out and walk in the park. Realize that there is more out there in the world than the heavy hole in your heart. There are children starving, and they would rather be in your shoes." But the problem is that depression is the world of the depressed. Your world, his world, her world, their world. It strikes into the hearts without mercy, and it carries a lot of weight. It forces out a lot of tears. One day, it is a nagging feeling at the bottom of the stomach. The next, a black hole in the heart. 

The narrator, Aysel is a girl who is easy to empathize with. She has a family, who doesn't really care for her. She has an insane father, who does care for her but is in jail for murder. She is an outsider in her town because of her father, and she is given nasty words from everyone. Brilliant in science, Aysel has many theories of energy. One of her morbid questions is this: Where would energy go after we die? (Not an exact quote, however.) She possesses many dark thoughts, and she has a well-fitting name for depression: The slug. 

Roman (username: FrozenRobot), suffering from grief over the accidental death of his younger sister, plans to die on April 7. That is the exact same day his younger sister died. He and Aysel develop a sweet and wonderful bond together. The more time they spend together, the more Aysel wants to live, the more Roman wants to disappear forever. Her hope is stunning, but it is faced against Roman's sadness. 

The writing style is easy to understand, the descriptions are excellent, and the plot goes by super-fast. There are some parts where logic doesn't make sense (ex: "one plus one equals eight" logic), but the emotional parts of the book make up for it. Like what has been said before, it is simple to understand My Heart and Other Black Holes. 

The ending is of hope, of potential energy, which is perhaps one of the most beautiful and heartfelt endings the author can give. 

Overall, My Heart and Other Black Holes is a story where light and dark are constantly at war against each other. It has two great characters, who share a wonderful though also morbid and deathly connection. It has internal journey. It has issues. It has complexity. My Heart and Other Black Holes, which is an awesome and extraordinary title, is best recommended to those who want to see a little bit of hope and more hope. 

Rating: Four out of Five

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