BEA Spotlight and Review: Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott
Emma would give anything to talk to her mother one last time. Tell her about her slipping grades, her anger with her stepfather, and the boy with the bad reputation who might be the only one Emma can be herself with.
But Emma can’t tell her mother anything. Because her mother is brain-dead and being kept alive by machines for the baby growing inside her.
Meeting bad-boy Caleb Harrison wouldn’t have interested Old Emma. But New Emma-the one who exists in a fog of grief, who no longer cares about school, whose only social outlet is her best friend Olivia-New Emma is startled by the connection she and Caleb forge.
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?
What did I think?
I am going to try very hard to properly express just how deeply and profoundly Heartbeat affected me. Let’s begin with Emma. It’s difficult enough to lose a parent, let alone both of them within a very short time frame. But Emma isn’t really able to deal with the loss of her mother, because she’s being kept alive with machines. This decision was made by her stepfather, so the baby growing inside her mother has a chance at being born. Emma isn’t sure where she belongs in her new life, one with neither biological parent. The only thing she has to connect her to the past is her best friend Olivia.
Why are girls like Emma always drawn to bad boys like Caleb? Because they are usually fun and take their minds off of their issues. That wasn’t true in this story. Caleb is the only one who understands what Emma feels. He is an emotional support in a way that no one else can be.
Caleb and Emma’s relationship hurt my heart. Between them, there was a need and a hunger for a connection that was undeniable.
I can’t and won’t give away the ending, but it was perfect. I laughed and cried while reading Heartbeat. Elizabeth Scott totally gets what it’s like to be lost and find your way back. This is probably the best contemporary book I’ve read this year and I can’t wait for others to get their hands on Heartbeat in January!