Title: In A Heartbeat
By: Loretta Ellsworth
Reading Level: Young Adult (Ages 12-up)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Books (Released Feb 2010)
When a small mistake costs sixteen-year-old Eagan her life during a figure-skating competition, she leaves many things unreconciled, including her troubled relationship with her mother. From her vantage point in the afterlife, Eagan reflects back on her memories, and what she could have done differently, through her still-beating heart.
When fourteen-year-old Amelia learns she will be getting a heart transplant, her fear and guilt battle with her joy at this new chance at life. And afterwards when she starts to feel different—dreaming about figure skating, craving grape candy—her need to learn about her donor leads her to discover and explore Eagan’s life, meeting her grieving loved ones and trying to bring the closure they all need to move on.
In a Heartbeat is an incredibly heart wrenching tale from cover to cover. I was captured by this story in the first chapter. Eagan is an incredibly talented character with her life laid out before just awaiting the taking. While Amelia is a sweet innocent character that any reader can love. I enjoyed each chapter alternating between Amelia and Eagan. Following Amelia’s struggle through accepting her new heart, and the changes that she is experiencing after the transplant. Then jumping to Eagan experiences on the other side, and accepting what has happened and that her life is truly over. This novel with capture your heart, and you will feel conflicted which character to offer your sympathy. Never knowing whom you are really rooting for in the end.