- File Size: 571 KB
- Print Length: 184 pages
- Publisher: Harlequin Teen (December 1, 2013)
- Publication Date: December 1, 2013
- Sold by: Harlequin Digital Sales Corp.
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00FBZKZKY
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #848,604 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Another Little Piece of My Heart Kindle Edition
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I lost sleep reading this book. The characters were very engaging and realistic. It was easy to feel the emotions that Claire was experiencing. One of the unrealistic things is I would imagine there would have been paparazzi around if Jared was as famous as he was. One of the townspeople would have let it slip that he was in town.
I struggled between 3 and 4 stars because I feel that there were elements that could have been left out of the story and it would have been just as entertaining. There is a lot of underage drinking, some drug use by secondary characters and some mention of sex (nothing is really described just mention of who may have had sex with whom). I don't think this appropriate for a YA novel. That aside the story itself was wonderful!
This is published by Harlequin Teen, but I would recommend it for older teens or adults due to the references to alcohol, drugs and sex. Despite these topics (which are only mentioned briefly) and a few curse words, this is a fun read and Austen fans will enjoy it.
Now everyone knows who Jared is, and because of a certain pop hit, everyone also knows that he had a girlfriend who dumped him because of her snobby parents. What the song doesn't say is that her mother was dying of cancer, and due to the fact that they didn't think Jared was good enough for Claire, it caused her mom undue stress. The song also doesn't say that Claire instantly regretted it and tried to undo what she'd done in haste.
Since the Winslow family has no funds, they are staying with their aunt, uncle and family for a month at the beach in New Hampshire. Even thought they've had to sell their house and downsize, Claire's father is trying desperately to keep up appearances so he can snag another high-paying job. And Claire's tired of it, so she decides that she's going to listen to her gut instead of her parents this time.
How can she move on from someone who is standing right in front of her?
I first read this book last October, and because I had yet to write my review, I needed to re-read it. Unfortunately, it did not improve upon a second reading. Claire, despite all of her regret, comes across as cold and detached. She is accountable only to herself and is in such a funk about her life that she's downright drab. Though she tells the reader all about her band, guitar prowess, best friend, snobby father, annoying sister (etc. etc. etc.), in reality, all we "see" her do is sit around and mope at home or stand around and mope at the grocery store where she is working while at the beach. While it's good to flesh out a character with a backstory, it was so different from the one in the present-day part of the tale that it was like I was reading about two different people. It seemed calculated, like it was an effort to make her seem deep.
Claire makes everyone else work really hard to like her, much less get to know her on a more intimate level. I didn't read one thing that would draw me to her. Instead of creating the action, she's one of those characters that things happen to, like a plastic grocery bag being blown around. Claire is the personification of a "poor me" sigh that has its fists up and ready to punch the next person who speaks to her.
You know how this story is going to end, and perhaps it is supposed to feel more real because it takes a long time to get there. Honestly, I found her sister to be a much more compelling figure, though none of the secondary characters (or the lead male, for that matter) are more than two dimensional. Maybe I would have cared more about what happened to Claire if the people surrounding her were more fleshed out.
And don't get me started on the classic rock that is peppered throughout the book. It feels like product placement; something else that is meant to make Claire seem deep? It would have made sense if her parents listened to it or someone she loved/cared about (a former musician boyfriend, perhaps?), but it just seems tacked on. Like this paragraph.
Another Little Piece of My Heart by Tracey Martin was be published December 1, 2013 by Harlequin Teen. A free copy of this book was given to Ink and Page in return for an honest review. Big thanks to NetGalley, the Publisher and the Author.
Genre: Young Adult/New Adult Fiction Contemporary Romance
Ages: 13 and up
I'm happy to say that this in indeed quite different from Audrey, Wait! but I still think Audrey, Wait! is a superior book. I did enjoy Another Little Piece of My Heart even if I didn't love it. This book is also supposed to be a retelling of Jane Austen's Persuasion, but I've never read that so I can't comment on it.
When the story starts Claire (it took a strange number of pages for us to learn her name which kind of threw me off a little) is hanging out with her best friend when they hear the pop song of the moment come on, a song called Daddy's Girl which was written by Claire's ex-boyfriend, Jared, about Claire. See Claire broke up with him at her dying mother's request. Her rich, snobby parents didn't think this poor musician boy was good enough for Claire and even though Claire loved Jared she went along with it thinking if she took some of the stress out of her mother's life she might get better.
Isn't that so sad? Both that her mom hated Jared so much and that Claire loved her mom so much she did it. But it happened and two years later Claire is about to graduate from high school and she's sad and alone. It's ok though because she's going to go away to college and she has her band and it will all work out. Then Claire finds out that her dad, who's a total idiot, has lost her college funds to bad investments and she can't start college in the fall.
Fast forward about a month and Claire, pissed off that she's not going to college, is on her way to New Hampshire with her little sister to spend the summer at her aunt and uncle's beach house along with her dad and his hot secretary. Shortly after they arrive in NH, on Claire's first day at her new job at the grocery store (she has to start pulling her weight now that her dad's not rich), Jared and a friend come in and Claire is obviously shocked to see him in this small NH town. Claire finds out that by some strange coincidence Jared is staying with his friend Mike, who goes to UNH with Claire's cousin.
This obviously brings up a lot of feelings in Claire and her and Jared running into each other and the anger and tension between them make up most of the story. See, no one knows that Claire is the one the songs were about, well Claire knows and her sister and best friend know, but that's about it. So everyone is super excited to be hanging out with his rockstar while Claire is just trying to keep herself together.
It took me a little while to settle into the story. Quite a bit of it takes place inside Claire's head and I often found myself wishing for some more action. But I did like Claire. She's been dealt a tough hand the last few years: a sick mom, breaking up with someone she loves (which was her choice, but still not an easy one), her mom dying, being stuck with her crappy dad, and not being able to go away to college (I'm not saying she was entitled to have her dad pay for her to go away, but when that's the expectation and it's ripped out from under her that's tough). I really appreciated how Claire never wallowed too much. Sometimes she wallowed about Jared, but mostly she was all about action. She got a job to try to be fiscally responsible, she tried to be nicer to her annoying little sister to be the good adult in her sister's life, and even when she was upset about something her dad or Jared did she tried to be proactive and turn it into a song.
As the book went on I really appreciated how this came to be a story about Claire finding herself. It's not the most complete or interesting finding yourself story I've read, but I was entertained by it and I liked the journey that Claire went on and the person she managed to become in the end.
Bottom Line: I think this is a perfectly entertaining book. It starts off kind of slow, but I eventually got into it and found myself enjoying the story and getting to know Claire. I appreciated the music references and I liked how even though a lot of the story was about Claire dealing with a break up, it was more about Claire figuring out what she wants, not only romantically, but also from her family and from herself.
I received an electronic review copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley (thank you!). All opinions are my own.