Karen Gregory is now one of those authors who, when their publisher sends an email to say advance proofs of their new novel is out I could easily break the world record for hitting reply, typing SEND ME THIS IMMEDIATELY I NEED THIS IN MY LIFE, and hitting send. Thank the publishing gods, or Emily at Bloomsbury specifically, for getting this book into my eager hands, because oh my, is this one rollercoaster ride of brilliant YA writing.
Gemma is a confident, country music singing, girl with a solid group of (bloody excellent) friends. Then Aaron enters the picture. With his beautiful face, and his adorable dog, and his ability to always say the right thing and totally sweep Gemma off her feet.
I HOLD YOUR HEART is a YA thriller that had me gripped from page one and left me desperate to find out what was going to happen next. There were times I sat reading it in open mouthed shock, and my heart broke when the truth started to ease its way into the story.
Whilst most of the book is told from Gemma’s perspective, the addition of chapters told by Aaron really gave a deeper dimension to the story, allowing us an insight into his mind. This is easily one of the best YA books of 2019, and brilliantly delves into the hidden truths of obsessive, controlling, relationships.
This is the perfect book for teenagers (of all genders) who are starting to explore relationships. Karen crafts a story that at no point felt preachy, but still has an incredibly important message for us all – of what love is, and how it should never ask us to give up parts of ourselves.
Also, my deep love for realistic bisexual representation on the page was realised fully throughout the book, which gives it extra points in my book!
I received a copy of I Hold Your Heart by request to the publishers, Bloomsbury Children’s Books. It is released in the UK and Ireland on 11th July and you can buy a copy now