I fell in love with this wonderful contemporary YA novel from Meg Leder so much that I can easily say it has made it into my top reads of this year already. Everything about this was just so perfect and I felt that angst of school friendships and crushes all over again.
Whereas I loved Eleanor and Park last year (after the hype), this year The Museum of Heartbreak was one of my favourite contemporary reads. It has managed to be unlike any other contemporary read I have ever read, full of a fantastic cast of characters and little surprises thrown in, The Museum of Heartbreak teaches us that sometimes we may have to get our heart broken in order to grow and learn from our experiences.
This isn't just about romantic heartbreak, but also friendship heartbreak and growing up. Penelope our protagonist believes in romance and happy ever afters, and she wants the same in real life, but real life isn't like it is in books or movies. I love the honesty and authenticity of this story. The characters are so convincing and real and I felt like I was going through exactly what Pen was going through with her pain and angst of crushing on someone, her best friend wanting to do different things now they are growing up and her first break up. Pen quickly became one of my favourite YA characters with her wit and humour and standing up for herself. She manages to keep a positive attitude despite the things happening around her.
I adored the chapter headings with the different objects that Pen picks up and adds to her museum curation and detail her heartbreak along the way. What also made this book the special book that it was was Meg's eloquent and brilliant writing style. Meg is definitely one my favourite writers and I will definitely be looking out for more from her.
Even though The Museum of Heartbreak's main theme is heartbreak, this still managed to be uplifting and entertaining and I could not recommend this book more.