Tuesday, 14 January 2014

ARC Review: Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott


Author: Elizabeth Scott
Series: -
Pages: 304
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release date: 28th January 2014

Synopsis. (Goodreads)

Life. Death. And...Love?

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?

Review: 3 ½ out of 5 stars

This is the first book I have read by Elizabeth Scott and it won’t be my last, Heartbeat is a poignant tale about love, loss and grief which kept me engrossed from the very first page.

Heartbeat follows the story of Emma who is grieving the death of her mother who she still sees daily because she is being kept alive by machines for the baby inside of her; a decision made by her step-father without Emma’s input which understandably she is incredibly distraught over. I don’t think I have encountered a character most recently who had so much anger, I honestly felt for her but at times I also wanted to smack her upside the head for her behaviour and treatment of others.

Caleb Harrison is the school outcast, once popular and social, he is now known for stealing cars and taking drugs; Caleb’s past is so terribly sad and his parents cold and unfeeling, I was saddened by his story and his pain and I found myself more intrigued by him.

Because both Emma and Caleb have experienced grief and loss, they come to form an understanding and a close bond; there is romance but it definitely isn’t the focus of this story, it’s more about them finding a common ground and supporting one another through their sorrow and loss.

My biggest gripe with this book was the way in which Emma was treating her step-father without stopping for one moment to think of what he was going through and how difficult the decision was that he had to make; his wife who he loved dearly had just died suddenly and there was an opportunity to save his son, her brother – it was a difficult and extremely sad situation but Emma’s hatred really overtook logical thinking.

I did really like her step-father Dan, he tolerated a lot and was trying to make an effort, I also adored Emma’s best-friend Olivia who is the type of friend everyone needs, I loved her support and her kindness.

Elizabeth Scott’s writing flows beautifully, the sensitive subject matter was written with understanding and compassion and the characters emotions were portrayed well.

Overall, Heartbeat is a book filled with hope; it is an emotional, thought provoking and touching book that I quite enjoyed and recommend.

Thank-you kindly to Harlequin Teen for the opportunity to read and review Heartbeat.


Elizabeth ScottAbout the author (Goodreads): Hey there, I'm Elizabeth. I write young adult novels. I live just outside Washington DC with my husband and dog, and am unable to pass a bookstore without stopping and going inside.

All right, and I can't leave without buying at least one book.

Usually two. (Or more!)

My website and blog are at elizabethwrites.com, and I'm also on twitter, tumblr, and facebook


  1. Sucks about the step-dad part but this book does sound good. Thanks.

  2. The whole premise makes me tear up and I am glad you enjoyed this. I love discovering new authors.


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