Header Image

Review: The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang

Title: The Heart Principle

Author: Helen Hoang

Year Published: 2021

Category: Adult fiction
Pages: 352
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Location (my 2021 Google Reading map)USA (CA)

Summary (from Amazon): When violinist Anna Sun accidentally achieves career success with a viral YouTube video, she finds herself incapacitated and burned out from her attempts to replicate that moment. And when her longtime boyfriend announces he wants an open relationship before making a final commitment, a hurt and angry Anna decides that if he wants an open relationship, then she does, too. Translation: She's going to embark on a string of one-night stands. The more unacceptable the men, the better.

That’s where tattooed, motorcycle-riding Quan Diep comes in. Their first attempt at a one-night stand fails, as does their second, and their third, because being with Quan is more than sex—he accepts Anna on an unconditional level that she herself has just started to understand. However, when tragedy strikes Anna’s family she takes on a role that she is ill-suited for, until the burden of expectations threatens to destroy her. Anna and Quan have to fight for their chance at love, but to do that, they also have to fight for themselves.

Review: The next book facing me was long and I heard it had a slow start. So, instead I reached for this novel and it was the perfect choice. I read it in 2 days and thoroughly enjoyed it! I also really enjoyed Hoang's The Bride Test when I read it a while back.

Yes, Hoang's books are contemporary romance, but there is much more to them that just girl meets boy, they have sex (and there are a few steamy scenes in this novel), and end up together. I don't think I've spoiled anything by telling you that much of the plot. 

As an adult, Hoang discovered that she is on the autism spectrum. She is up front about this and her characters reflect this reality as well. She writes from the heart, understands how it affects them and the characters around them. This adds a really interesting dimension to the stories. Anna's diagnosis in the midst of a mental health and family crisis brings everything to a head, explains a lot to herself, and helps her to navigate the world around her.

This book deals with romance, family illness, family conflict, self confidence and finding one's voice, and more. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Challenges for which this counts: 
  • Diversity--Asian American characters and author as well as a main character and author who are on the autism spectrum

No comments