Our Crooked Hearts

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Our Crooked Hearts
Age Range
14+
Release Date
June 28, 2022
ISBN
978-1250826367
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The suburbs, right now . . . Seventeen-year-old Ivy’s summer break kicks off with an accident, a punishment, and a mystery: a stranger whose appearance in the middle of the road, in the middle of the night, heralds a string of increasingly unsettling events. As the days pass, Ivy grapples with eerie offerings, corroded memories, and a secret she’s always known―that there's more to her mother than meets the eye. The city, back then . . . Dana has always been perceptive. And the summer she turns sixteen, with the help of her best friend and an ambitious older girl, her gifts bloom into a heady fling with the supernatural. As the trio’s aspirations darken, they find themselves speeding toward a violent breaking point. Years after it began, Ivy and Dana's shared story will come down to a reckoning among a daughter, a mother, and the dark forces they never should’ve messed with.

Editor reviews

3 reviews
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0(2)
Characters
 
5.0(2)
Writing Style
 
5.0(2)
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
N/A(0)
delightfully dark YA fantasy
(Updated: June 19, 2022)
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
N/A
OUR CROOKED HEARTS is a delicious, dark YA fantasy read. The book takes place in dual timelines, following Ivy in the present, and her mother in the past. Ivy's story begins quickly as she and her boyfriend almost get into a car accident when they swerved to avoid crashing into a naked girl in the road. The encounter seems strange, and things begin getting stranger when Ivy finds something disturbing in the driveway and all the secrets seem to revolve around her mother.

In the before, Dana was 16 and felt like there should be something more. When she and her BFF Fee meet Marion, who is a little older and a lot more mysterious. Marion has found a pathway to magic, and she opens Dana and Fee to their abilities. As things escalate, they will find themselves in the middle of something bigger and more dangerous than they ever could have imagined.

What I loved: This is such a layered and twisty read. The start of the book hooks the reader with the characters and mystery and pulls them into something absolutely riveting and deliciously dark. The plot was endlessly fascinating with surprising turns that were hard to see coming. Both Ivy and Dana's stories held equal sway in pulling us toward the hidden secrets that had the power to change lives. Later, the story again evolves to show another perspective that brings the reader even further into the mire.

Both Ivy and Dana were compelling characters whose lives were easy to get lost in. Ivy is trying to understand what happened to her, why the boy next door dislikes her so much, and why she feels like something is missing, while also trying to figure out what her mother is hiding. Dana is looking for something bigger than herself and the world that she lives in with her volatile father and consuming friendship with Fee. Marion gives her something that feels like she regains the power that she had lost and gives her something more from the world. They were each complex characters who come to life with each chapter.

This is not a book to be read at nighttime - it is haunting, chilling, and deliciously creepy. As a page-turner, this will keep you up late with all the lights on. The pace is just perfect, building slowly at first and escalating as the story builds. The switches between timelines were seamless and just the right length to keep you invested in both without getting too distant so that you forget one before turning to the other.

Themes around power, friendship, family, betrayal, secrets, memory, dreams, and honesty make this a really consuming read. The use of magic and multiple perspectives really makes these come to life, with key messages around secrets, honesty, and the power of the lies.

Final verdict: Twisty, haunting, and deliciously dark, OUR CROOKED HEARTS is a compelling YA fantasy that is sure to haunt and consume readers.
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Our Crooked Hearts
(Updated: February 11, 2022)
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
N/A
What worked: Mesmerizing paranormal where dual timelines of secrets convey into a nightmare. I'm usually not a fan of stories that jump back and forth in time, but this one works. Readers first meet seventeen-year-old Ivy when her boyfriend Nate nearly hits a mysterious woman on the road. What's strange is she feels familiar to Ivy, but she's never seen her in her life. Or so she thinks. One thing is certain. Life in Ivy's home is filled with secrets, including a huge one that her mother has.

The story jumps back and forth from the perspective of Ivy and Dana, her mother, some twenty-five years ago. Readers learn that Dana's secret involves darkness from her days as part of a group of friends who practiced spells and dark magic. Dana's secret not only involves something sinister she did as a teen but to Ivy as well.

Haunting and chilling this paranormal thriller will keep readers under its spell as Ivy searches for her missing mother and a secret that will have serious ramifications.

Fast-paced with spooky tellings that not only involve dark magic but betrayal. A betrayal in the past that comes back to haunt Ivy and her mother. There are a number of animal sacrifices that are a little gruesome and incantations throughout.

The Craft meets Charmed this thriller will cast a hypnotic spell on readers until the very last page.
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