Saturday, May 28, 2011

Heart to Heart

McDaniel, Lurlene. Heart to Heart.
Elowyn Eden and Kassey are best friends even though they come from different backgrounds; Elowyn's father is a doctor and her family is well-off, while Kassey's father left years ago, and she and her mother struggle. The two aren't quite as close when Elowyn starts to date Wyatt. After a fight with Wyatt, Elowyn is in a terrible car accident and dies. Her parents donate her organs.

Arabeth's family also struggles, because her father died in Afghanistan and she has had a faulty heart for years. She and her mother are relieved when she gets a new heart. Her strength improves and she feels better than she has in years, but she also has strange desires for Chunky Monkey ice cream and French decor. When the hospital arranges for her to meet Elowyn's parents, it's awkward, but she is oddly drawn to them, as well as Kassey and Wyatt. She wants to date Wyatt, but her mother doesn't want her to. She hangs out with Kassey for a bit, and sees the Edens until she accidentally takes cold medication and has a rejection episode. How will she move on with her life?
Strengths: McDaniel is always a fast-paced read, and students who would like to read Jodi Picoult (who uses too much foul language for middle school) like her. The books are always adorably small, as well.
Weaknesses: A bit unrealistic, although McDaniel does mention the controversy over "cellular memory": it does make for a good story, if far-fetched.

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