Published: February 10, 2015
Publisher: HarperCollins/ Balzer + Bray
Genre: YA Realistic Fiction
My Rating: 4/5
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.
I have a love/hate relationship with books like this. I love the emotion that such books can evoke but at the same time the emotions truly sucks! This book makes me feel depressed!
Which I think is the point because this book is after all about two teenagers trying to commit suicide. So, it hit the point right there.
Music, especially classical music, especially Mozart’s Requiem Mass in D minor, has kinetic energy. If you listen hard enough, you can hear the violin’s bow trembling above the strings, ready to ignite the notes. To set them in motion. And once the notes are in the air, they collide against one another. They spark. They burst.
Usually, books that centers around things depressing will be written as depressingly as the plot so I usually don't get much enjoyment from such books. However, My Heart and Other Black Holes starts off with an almost normal manner (well, as normal as you can get with physics related introduction) without any hint of black clouds looming. So, I wasn't weighed down by any feelings yet which is rare in books of such topics. Usually, the very first sentence can already starting to weigh me down. The light and airy introduction quickly sucked me into reading it. (See what I did there? :D)
I spend a lot of time wondering what dying feels like. What dying sounds like. If I’ll burst like those notes, let out my last cries of pain, and then go silent forever. Or maybe I’ll turn into a shadowy static that’s barely there, if you just listen hard enough. And if I wasn’t already fantasizing about dying, working at the phone bank at Tucker’s Marketing Concepts would definitely do the trick.
Okay, the introduction may not be all light and airy but the words really captivated me. As soon as I started reading, I know it's going to be a good one because the writing is oh so good!
Most of the time, the topic of depression and humor don't usually go hand in hand. It's an unbefitting relationship. However, amazingly, the author managed to marry the two elements together into a flawless rendition of a macabre tale. The story can be depressing at times but it never reaches the low point because it will soon be uplifted by the humor.
Aysel is one of the character who wanted to commit suicide because of an event that changes the trajectory of her life. (Using physics phrases in light of the physics element in the story. :D) I found her to be very realistic and believable in her struggle.
“Anyone who has actually been that sad can tell you that there's nothing beautiful or literary or mysterious about depression.”
She was struggling to deal with the repercussion of her father's action. Roman on the other hand wants to die because he was being weigh down by a tragedy that happened almost a year ago. He was suffering from a "what could have been" moment and that is definitely the worst of all.
“I wish I could draw you how I see you. I'd draw a boy with the most magnetic smile, and the kindest hands, and eyes that are gloomy, but can sometimes be bright. I'd draw a boy who deserves to see the ocean.”
The story brings out a lot of sadness but also hope. Hopes of things to come, of when it will be better and can be better. Aysel and Roman found in each other places to let go and not hold things back. The outcome only depends on how they are going to act on it.
I love how the author portrays the social environment of Aysel and Roman. It shows the supporting, caring and loving family and friends that were misunderstood and blurred by the guilt that were clouding up Aysel and Roman's eyes. It just goes to show that things can change and be better if only you let them in.
This might not be much worthy of mention but I truly enjoyed the physics mentions in the story. In fact, the title of the book was the first thing that make me want to read it. I was expecting more of a science related story but oh well.
In all, this book offers the point of view of persons that are depressed. It highlights important points that comes along with such issues. I truly enjoyed the journey of the characters from self-admonition to finally accepting. You should really read this book, if you haven't already. If you are not a fan of the topic than read it to experience the writing. I truly enjoyed the style of writing immensely.