Hello all! Today I’m here with a review of one of the sweetest books I’ve read so far this year. That book, or graphic novel if I’m being accurate, is Heartstopper by Alice Oseman. It took me far too long to pick this up, and it was after an event at my local Waterstones that I decided to finally do it – I’m so glad that I did! Keep on reading for my spoiler free review.
Charlie Spring is in Year 10 at Truham Grammar School for Boys. The past year hasn’t been too great, but at least he’s not being bullied anymore, and he’s sort of got a boyfriend, even if he’s kind of mean and only wants to meet up in secret.
Nick Nelson is in Year 11 and on the school rugby team. He’s heard a little about Charlie – the kid who was outed last year and bullied for a few months – but he’s never had the opportunity to talk to him. That is, until the start of January, in which Nick and Charlie are placed in the same form group and made to sit together.
They quickly become friends, and soon Charlie is falling hard for Nick, even though he doesn’t think he has a chance. But love works in surprising ways, and sometimes good things are waiting just around the corner…
It was an early Saturday the morning, the first morning of the Easter Readathon in fact, that I picked up Heartstopper. The sun was shining through the window, the birds were tweeting (I’m being serious) and I was tucked up in bed; it was the perfect atmosphere for this book.
From page one I was totally engrossed. Honestly it only took me around 25 minutes to finish the entire graphic novel because, well, it’s a graphic novel and some pages had no speech at all, just Alice’s beautiful illustrations.
Filled with diversity, from characters of different races to our main characters being gay and bisexual, it was a really refreshing and inclusive read. I cannot comment on the accuracy of the representation but it was definitely something I enjoyed reading about and would love to see more of it in literature.
Moving on to the actual plot and characters… where do I even start?! Nick and Charlie are just the loveliest of main characters. Even in such a short book with more illustrations than words, the character development was just so good. Their growth is what made the story so special for me, along with the sweet romance too of course. I really enjoyed getting to see the pair get to know one another, hanging around in school, at home and even instant messaging. It totally had that ‘first love’ feeling which made me “awww” out loud on several occasions and gave me those warm fuzzy feelings.
Heartstopper was super sweet and lovely but at the same time dealt with some serious topics such as homophobia so trigger warning there. I am so happy that I have finally finished this comic; I would definitely have loved this graphic novel to have been longer just so that I could spend more time with Nick and Charlie, but it’s not long until volume two is released later this year. Alice does post the webcomic online but I much prefer to hold a physical copy and read it that way but if you can’t wait, definitely check her Tumblr out. This was a fluffy 4/5 star read for me!
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