3.66 (3,461 ratings by Goodreads)

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oes life go on when your heart is broken?

Since her mother's sudden death, Emma has existed in a fog of grief, unable to let go, unable to move forward--because her mother is, in a way, still there. She's being kept alive on machines for the sake of the baby growing inside her.
Estranged from her stepfather and letting go of things that no longer seem important--grades, crushes, college plans--Emma has only her best friend to remind her to breathe. Until she meets a boy with a bad reputation who sparks something in her--Caleb Harrison, whose anger and loss might just match Emma's own. Feeling her own heart beat again wakes Emma from the grief that has grayed her existence. Is there hope for life after death--and maybe, for love?
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 137 x 208 x 33mm | 363g
  • Don Mills, Ont.
  • English
  • Original ed.
  • 0373210965
  • 9780373210961
  • 1,287,369

Review quote

"An intense examination of a family coping with grief, this absorbing character study easily keeps pages turning." -Kirkus Reviews
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Rating details

3,461 ratings
3.66 out of 5 stars
5 27% (927)
4 31% (1,070)
3 28% (968)
2 10% (352)
1 4% (144)

Our customer reviews

www.booksforcompany.com In Short - Heartbeat is a book with conflicting emotions. - Although I disliked the main character is still really enjoyed the book. - The storyline is a touching and emotional one. In Long Heartbeat is a unique book which took me by surprise in a few ways. There are so many conflicting emotions and actions to deal with these emotions. It's quite a full on read in those ways. Heartbeat has to be the first book I have read where although I disliked the main character I still really enjoyed the book. Well, I don't know if dislike is the right word, it's hard to express my feelings for Emma in even a few words. She's a character who is struggling with the loss of her mother so therefore I definitely gave her the benefit of the doubt for most part of the book. However at some points I found myself falling out with her and feeling very negative towards her. I found her actions very much focused on what she believed and felt instead of opening her mind to her step dad's thoughts. I think this is one of the main reason I became to enjoy Heartbeat, although it isn't gripping in a thriller sense it's engrossing as Elizabeth makes Emma's actions so unpredictable you want to see how she's going to act next. The storyline itself is a touching one. I put myself in Emma's position a few times and this is the times I felt I understood her actions more. Her grief was overwhelming and definitely had a big influence on her actions throughout the read. Final Thoughts Heartbeat is a touching read which will leave you with conflicting feelings as well as holding your loved ones that bit closer.show more
by Jodie Lane
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Harlequin Teen and Netgalley.) 17-year-old Emma sees her dead mother every day - at the hospital where her body is kept alive by machines in order to incubate the baby she was pregnant with when she died. Emma blames her step-father Dan for the situation, because she believes that he chose to keep her mother alive for the sake of his son, something that Emma doesn't agree with. Will the baby survive? Can Emma live with her mother being dead but not dead? And can she ever forgive her step-father for the difficult decision that he was forced to make? This was an unusual story, which raised moral questions, explored grief, and was ultimately very sad. Emma was a character that I both loved and hated. At times I understood where she was coming from, and the grief and anger that she was feeling, whilst at other times I just hated her for wanting her brother to die. The storyline in this book was really quite heart breaking. I understood the difficult decision that Emma's stepfather had had to make, but I just didn't get why Emma was so angry about it. I understood that her anger was part of her grief, but I just felt like her anger was misdirected. She continually blamed Dan for choosing 'his son' over her mother, when in reality it wasn't a choice of one or the other! The choice was whether to let her mother die, or let both of them die, and I was just so upset by the way that Emma would rather her brother die, than have her mother kept alive for a few weeks to allow him to live. To be honest this book upset me. A lot. Why Emma thought that her brother should die, and why she thought that her mother wouldn't have wanted her baby to survive I don't know, but the thought that if it had been up to Emma she would have just switched the machines off and let both her mother and her brother die made me feel physically sick. Especially when she had been told that it wasn't the pregnancy that caused her mother's death. I don't really want to think about this book anymore because I find it really quite depressing and sad. The ending was good, and we were left with hope that things would be better, but this whole story just makes me want to cry, and not in a good way. The idea that Emma would kill her little brother as some sort of retribution or revenge for her mother's death was just sickening. Overall; emotional story about a girl overtaken by grief. 6.5 out of 10.show more
by Sarah Elizabeth
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