Hey all! I’m back again with my last stop on the Three Scoops of Summer blog tour! Today is all about Meg Leder’s and book, The Museum of Heartbreak.
The Museum of Heartbreak
Author: Meg Leder
Release Date: June 7, 2016
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Source: Simon & Schuster Canada
Summary: In this ode to all the things we gain and lose and gain again, seventeen-year-old Penelope Marx curates her own mini-museum to deal with all the heartbreaks of love, friendship, and growing up.
Welcome to the Museum of Heartbreak.
Well, actually, to Penelope Marx’s personal museum. The one she creates after coming face to face with the devastating, lonely-making butt-kicking phenomenon known as heartbreak.
Heartbreak comes in all forms: There’s Keats, the charmingly handsome new guy who couldn’t be more perfect for her. There’s possibly the worst person in the world, Cherisse, whose mission in life is to make Penelope miserable. There’s Penelope’s increasingly distant best friend Audrey. And then there’s Penelope’s other best friend, the equal-parts-infuriating-and-yet-somehow-amazing Eph, who has been all kinds of confusing lately.
But sometimes the biggest heartbreak of all is learning to let go of that wondrous time before you ever knew things could be broken. (Goodreads)
My neck flushed hot, and a large part of me wanted to get up and scream, I am terrible at talking to boys! I am terrible at life! and then run away as far as I could, to some solitary research station at the North or South Pole (whichever one has penguins), where I would never have to interact with another human being for the rest of my life. (ARC pg. 11)
I feel you, girl! I also approve of the penguin thing. Penguins are the best.
I rolled my eyes, wishing at least for the five billionth time that there was a moratorium on dad humour on the weekends. (ARC pg. 56)
Cheesy, parent humour never rests. Just ask my mom. No matter what sport and what teams I’m watching, she pulls out a steady stream of ridiculous jokes!
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in now way affects my opinion or review*
Another home run from my summer TBR! The Museum of Heartbreak was a great mix of friendships, love, heartbreak, self-exploration, and growth; much like the perfect iced tea – not too sweet, not too bitter, not too warm.
From pretty close to the start, we see Meg exploring the rough waters that are sometimes high-school friendships. As much as we remember our days in school fondly, there were days or even weeks that I’m sure sucked for all of us. Friendship is hard at the best of times and even harder in a time like your teenage years, when you’re really figuring out who you are and what you like. The same way Eph, Audrey, and Penelope start to discover new groups that cater to hobbies that their BFFs don’t necessarily share, I moved from a music-focused group in grade 9 to the world of high-school sports at the end of grade 10. I too grew apart from some of that original friend-group. We didn’t dislike each other, we just didn’t have overlapping social lives as much anymore. I love how that growth and change is dealt with in this book; a little bit messy but not a bad occurrence in the slightest. It’s something that the characters ultimately need, they just don’t necessarily figure out how or why right away.
The characters themselves are also incredibly well done. I loved Audrey, Penelope, and Eph right away. I also really disliked Keats right away. It made it fun to have people to root for and against right from the beginning. I knew what was coming pretty early on but in this case, it didn’t ruin the story for me. I’m not sure if the author intended for it to be obvious what things were going to happen – the clues were incredibly clear to me throughout – but I took hints while reading this book way better/faster than I usually do in day-to-day life 😛 I almost felt like I was watching One Tree Hill again; pulling for certain pairing SO hard that I was *almost* yelling. I’m happy to say that my ships survived this book. I get heartbroken a lot thanks to the pairs I ship. (Hahaha see what I did there?)
The formatting of this book was also really well done. Following the theme of museum, each chapter was centred on a specific artifact and how Penelope came to possess it. There’s enough information given to understand why she cares so deeply about the item and then we move on to the next. What is really great is how they all come together at the end of the book to close out the story which gave it a very satisfying ending.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Even though it doesn’t take place during the summer, I do think that it makes a great summer read. I also love the idea of curating something like a Museum of Heartbreak. We make scrapbooks of all the good times but it’s interesting to look back on the not-so-happy things and see how they’ve shaped us.
Guest Piece: Meg Leder on Dealing with Heartbreak
Hi! I’m Meg Leder, the author of The Museum of Heartbreak. I’m so honored to be guest writing for Amanda @ Brains, Books, and Brawn. My book deals with the ins and ours of heartbreak—from your first break up to changing friendships to simply growing up. So today, I thought I’d share some of my favorite strategies for getting through heartbreak in all its forms:
- Remember to honor your sadness. Heartbreak can be hard to manage, but I like toremind myself that the fact that I had my heart broken means I have a big heart—onethat’s full of love. That’s not a bad thing!
- Ask your friends and family for help. Let them what you’re going through, and as muchas you want to stay home and hibernate, accept their invites. Go roller skating! Go outfor ice cream! Stay busy and surround yourself with the people who love you.
- Treat yourself. After a particularly bad breakup, I splurged on a pair of boots I’d had myeye on. They made me feel tall and powerful and kick-ass. Remember to be nice toyourself and to treat yourself, whether it’s a bubble bath or a fancy dinner out or thatnew pair of shoes.
- Be patient. Each time I get my heart broken, I think I’ll never be happy again. But itpasses. It always does. Heartbreak gets easier to manage over time, until eventuallyyou’ll realize you’ve gone a few days and then weeks without thinking about theheartbreak.
- Surround yourself with books. After one of my first major breakups, I delved intoCharles Baxter’s Feast of Love. After my cat died, I lost myself in the world of JennyHan’s It’s Not Summer Without You. There’s nothing quite like a book to take you out ofyour own head and heart, and to give you a welcome reprieve from sadness.