Review: The Book of Broken Hearts

The Book of Broken Hearts by Sarah Ockler
Release Date: May 21, 2013
Genres: YA contemporary
Rating: 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟

Jude has learned a lot from her older sisters, but the most important thing is this: The Vargas brothers are notorious heartbreakers. She’s seen the tears and disasters that dating a Vargas boy can cause, and she swore an oath—with candles and a contract and everything—to never have anything to do with one.

Now Jude is the only sister still living at home, and she’s spending the summer helping her ailing father restore his vintage motorcycle—which means hiring a mechanic to help out. Is it Jude’s fault he happens to be cute? And surprisingly sweet? And a Vargas?

Jude tells herself it’s strictly bike business with Emilio. Her sisters will never find out, and Jude can spot those flirty little Vargas tricks a mile away—no way would she fall for them. But Jude’s defenses are crumbling, and if history is destined to repeat itself, she’s speeding toward some serious heartbreak…unless her sisters were wrong?

Jude may have taken an oath, but she’s beginning to think that when it comes to love, some promises might be worth breaking.

An amazing YA contemporary book. I thought I was going to get a light, fluffy, and romantic read. What I got? A punch to the stomach.

These characters were beautifully written. All of the different relationships in Jude’s life were so realistic.

Jude is a recent high school graduate who is using her summer to take care of her dad who has Alzheimers. Jude’s relationship with her father was one of my favorite things about the book. They loved each other so much, and they were both going through a lot, it brought tears to my eyes.  Jude was a great heroine. She was brave, and had a lot on her shoulders. Seeing her deal with her father slowly lose his memories was heartbreaking.

“They say you can never step into the same river twice. And maybe that’s how it was for Papi now, memories shifting and re-forming soundlessly beneath him while the rest of us sat on the shore and watched.”

Her relationship with her father was particularly special, but her entire family was amazing, funny, and extremely well written. Because her sisters got their hearts broken by some Vargas brothers, they made Jude take a blood oath (yes, actual blood was shed lol) to never even glance at a Vargas brother. Enter Emilio Vargas and Jude’s life gets a whole lot more complicated.

“My sisters were wrong to name the Varga boys in the oath. Names had nothing to do with it. All boys were destined to break your heart.”

Emilio was playful and flirty, which I loved. It’s always nice to not see a brooding jerk in a YA novel. He calls Jude princesa, WHICH IS SO CUTE I DIED. I loved the romance so much because it wasn’t the focal point of the book. We got just enough to fall in love with Jude and Emilio, but this book is primarily on Jude and how she’s dealing with her father’s illness.

“Don’t settle, okay? Not for anything. I mean it. You only get this one chance at life, far as I know. Take it. Even if its not with me.”

Overall, this was such an emotional read. Jude and her father will make you cry, the romance will make you swoon, and there’s some humor and lightness peppered in to make you smile uncontrollably.

five stars

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