- Published in 2020 by Hodder Children’s Books
- Format: Paperback
- Reading Time: 1 day of cuteness overload
- Leading the New Year’s Resolution Reading Challenge with the next volume of Heartstopper. Heartstopper definitely fits the definition of a happy book though this volume deal with some pretty heavy topics. Nick and Charlie may be together and they may have found the courage to be open about their relationship with their families but they still have their friends to deal with. They have no idea how the rest of their circle is going to react, especially when Charlie has had a terrible experience coming out the first time and when their friends have their own relationship worries to think about. Perhaps, a school trip to Paris might help things along?
- Original plot twists. Every time I thought that hijinks were going to ensue any minute, I was taken by surprise. Either the author cleverly avoided all the obvious plot twists or took it in a direction I didn’t expect. I certainly didn’t expect one of the characters to turn over a new leaf like that. It was a very nice surprise though I’m glad Oseman didn’t make it a full redemption just yet. One thing you can expect from a Heartstopper book, however, is lots of cute scenes full of kissing, sweet talk and some great advice about being comfortable with coming out to other people.
- Verily, I can only describe this book as a gay romance overload and I absolutely love it. As Nick and Charlie start growing in confidence as a couple enough to let other people know, more of their circle start coming forward about their sexuality. Even the two male teachers accompanying them on the schooltrip get rather close. We also see new sides of the existing characters. We see more emotion from Tao than we have in all the previous volumes combined as he gets closer with Elle and Tara and Darcy turn out to be really supportive friends. Once again, I couldn’t read this without a great big smile on my face.
- Excellent examples of using the panels and the space around the panels to tell the story. I love the way the panels shatter as one of the characters break down, the way the unsaid words are repeated in the background and the way the panel edges become sloshy when a character is feeling faint. I’ve said it before but never let the simplistic art style fool you. The artist really knows how to make the most of each picture. Another good example is when a nasty character is introduced. In that one horror-film-like panel, you can immediately tell they’re going to be trouble without throwing it in your face with a nasty comment or a flashback.
- Leading towards some rather tough topics in this one. Not just biphobia and the gamble that takes place every time a gay character comes out to someone but also self harm, old trauma and eating disorders. All of the issues are properly represented in this one and I love the fact that the book didn’t get tempted to sort them all out with just one heart-to-heart or one apology.
- Yep, that was a good ending with a great little sequel hook in the last few pages. Not all the big issues were solved but it still felt like a full story. I can’t wait for the next volume to find out what will happen next!
Goodreads Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
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