Review – The Anatomical Shape of a Heart

anatomical shape of a heart

Title: The Anatomical Shape of a Heart
Author: Jenn Bennett
Publication: November 3, 2015 by Feiwel & Friends
Genre: YA, contemporary, romance
Pages: 304 pages
Format: Library book
Rating: 4/5

About the book:

Beatrix Adams knows exactly how she’s spending the summer before her senior year. Determined to follow in Da Vinci’s footsteps, she’s ready to tackle the one thing that will give her an advantage in a museum-sponsored scholarship contest: drawing actual cadavers. But when she tries to sneak her way into the hospital’s Willed Body program and misses the last metro train home, she meets a boy who turns her summer plans upside down.

Jack is charming, wildly attractive, and possibly one of San Francisco’s most notorious graffiti artists. On midnight buses and city rooftops, Beatrix begins to see who Jack really is—and tries to uncover what he’s hiding that leaves him so wounded. But will these secrets come back to haunt him? Or will the skeletons in her family’s closet tear them apart?


So here’s the alphabetical run down:


Oh Bex (Beatrix’s super awesome nickname) and Jack, I love you both. Bex and Jack are both well developed characters with unique character traits that make them memorable and interesting. I love a good physical description of a character and since Bex is an artist who draws bodies, her descriptions of Jack’s physical character traits are both beautifully written and exhaustive (in a good way). Bennett also takes time to make sure we know what Bex looks like and how much Jack is attracted to her. The secondary characters are also well developed and really varied, from Bex’s older brother and his beefy engineer boyfriend to Panandler Will, the homeless man who lives in the hospital parking deck and seems to know everyone. If Bex and Jack are the foreground of this literary picture, the background is definitely not throw-away characters, they demand attention as well.


Eh, this cover doesn’t impress me. It’s not at all why I picked up the book, but I don’t dislike it. I’m typically not a fan of covers with actual people on them, so I’m glad that this cover doesn’t have people on it, that would be disappointing.


Seriously swoon-worthy romance. My favorite part is Jack relentlessly pursuing Bex even when she seems to be uninterested. And their honesty, they are both very open, honest, and even blunt with each other at times. The physical relationship in this book is very detailed and for mature YA audiences, but is very well written.


If you are someone who has to have twists and turns, lots of conflict, and a big surprising climax, this book might not be for you. Fortunately, I love a well written character and a good romance and could live in the daily description of their lives with just the everyday conflicts to push the story along. I also love when you get to just live in the love story for a good portion of the book and the two characters don’t just fall in love and then the book ends.


“Hey Bex?” Jack said as he grated. “Just so we’re clear, if we were alone, I’d probably kiss you right now.” I gave him a swift glance as the hallway laughter made its way back to the kitchen. “Just so we’re clear, I’d probably let you.”

“What do I want?” His fingers brushed over loose strands of hair near my temple. “I want to call you every five minutes. I want to text you good night every night. I want to make you laugh. And I want you to look at me like you did that first night on the bus.”


Overall, there’s not quite enough magic for this book to warrant five hearts, but it is definitely a solid four heart in my opinion.




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