Title: Jack of Hearts (and Other Parts)
Authors: Lev A.C. Rosen
Genre: YA, Contemporary, LGBT
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Date published: October 30, 2018
Physical copies of this book were kindly provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Pretty Little Liars meets Dan Savage in this modern, fresh, YA debut about an unapologetically queer teen working to uncover a blackmailer threatening him back into the closet.
Jack has a lot of sex–and he’s not ashamed of it. While he’s sometimes ostracized, and gossip constantly rages about his sex life, Jack always believes that “it could be worse.”
But then, the worse unexpectedly strikes: When Jack starts writing a teen sex advice column for an online site, he begins to receive creepy and threatening love letters that attempt to force Jack to curb his sexuality and personality. Now it’s up to Jack an his best friends to uncover the stalker–before their love becomes dangerous.
Ground-breaking and page-turning, Jack of Hearts (and other parts) celebrates the freedom to be oneself, especially in the face of adversity.
I’m not sure why, but I thought that this book would be a fun and sexy YA contemporary about a gay teen living in NYC. What Jack of Hearts ended up being was just as thrilling as what I had expected, though it ended up being darker and more sombre. There was a lot of sexual content (and I just want to note here that some of it was explicit), as expected from the synopsis, but it also dealt with some of the darker aspects of high school such as gossip, bullying, and stalking. Jack of Hearts was a fast read, and it read even faster the more intense the plot became (especially after the midway point)!
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This book is written from the main character’s (Jack’s) perspective, and the author wrote it quite convincingly. The character development was very interesting to observe in this book, because Jack starts off confident and happy (I would even say his best self), but then becomes less so because of the negative things that he has to deal with. Jack of Hearts was also quite eye-opening to what many LGBT people deal with simply for being LGBT and trying to live their lives. Regarding the stalker, I was unable to predict who it was, which was exciting, and kept things interesting rather than predictable for me! So, while this book turned out being different from what I expected, it did turn out being an eye-opening, sometimes steamy, dark-themed page-turner.
LEV AC ROSEN is the author of books for all ages. Two for adults: All Men of Genius (Amazon Best of the Month, Audie Award Finalist) and Depth (Amazon Best of the Year, Shamus Award Finalist, Kirkus Best Science Fiction for April). Two middle-grade books: Woundabout (illustrated by his brother, Ellis Rosen), and The Memory Wall … Lev is originally from lower Manhattan and now lives in even lower Manhattan, right at the edge, with his husband and very small cat.
THANK YOU FOR READING MY REVIEW! HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK? AND IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT YET, DO YOU WANT TO, OR NOT? HOW COME? LET ME KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS!