The Heartbeat Hypothesis
by Lindsey Frydman
Publication Date: March 20, 2017
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Embrace, New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Rating: 4 Stars
Told in the first person.
Rating: 4 Stars
Told in the first person.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book for review from IndieSage PR and the author. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am posting this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising".
Audra Madison simply wanted to walk in the shoes of Emily Cavanaugh, a free-spirited teenager who died too young. After all, Audra wasn’t supposed to be here.
Thanks to Emily, Audra has a second chance at life. She’s doing all the things that seemed impossible just two years ago: Go to college. Date. Stargaze in the Rocky Mountains. Maybe get a tattoo. You know, live.
Jake Cavanaugh, a photographer with mysterious, brooding gray eyes, agrees to help chronicle her newfound experiences. She makes him laugh, one of the only people who can these days. As they delve into each other’s pasts – and secrets – the closer they become.
But she’s guarded and feels like she can’t trust anyone, including herself.
And he’s struggling with the fact that his beloved sister’s heart beats inside her.
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Audra Madison has a second chance at having a life for herself. Jake is willing to help Audra realize her dream. Almost from the beginning I loved the concept of this book. But then I started to question who Jake was. He seemed so much of a mystery, compared to Audra who seemed such a free spirit.
I surprised myself by thinking that because of what Audra is trying to accomplish that would be the reason for following this story. But it turned out that the page-turner was actually Jake. His life was like a riddle that I wanted to find out if I could solve it. Sometimes I had to remind myself that these characters are in college. They seemed so mature at times but then things would happen to remind you that they are still in school.
This author also had me wondering how far I would go in order to really know someone. Also had me thinking about how college life seems to have changed since I was in school. But she’s good at not bogging down the story with too much of their college activities. There are also reminders of how tough life is for them nowadays. So at times emotions may run high – which was true for me with a family tragedy that recently occurred. For some readers this may be considered more Young Adult than New Adult but in the end only you can decide. It’s not a book that’s always happy – there are some sad moments there as well. The ending is a perfect example. It starts off sad and some would say it has a happy ending but I found it to be more like a to be continued ending.
I pulled out my phone and set it on the table. Sixty daunting seconds later, I’d found Emily’s page and twisted the display so he could see.
Jake tapped on the phone, scrolling for only a moment before removing his finger and looking at me. “Why would you think these are mine?”
“Most of them share the same hashtag: my favorite photographer Jake. That’s you. Right?”
He returned his attention to the phone, this time picking it up, interest lighting his face. “Oh. Yeah, I took these. There’s so many damn hashtags, I didn’t even see my name.”
“Well, her whole page, it’s a done-it list.”
His gaze lifted, along with the corners of his lips. “A what?”
“According to her, she never understood why people made lists of the things they were going to do, so she made a page dedicated to all the things she did do.”
“Sounds like Emily.”
Now that is a smile. “Well, it’s inspired me to start my own done-it list, but I want to start by re-creating her list.”
Jake set the phone down and slid it across the table. “Re-create it?”
“Yes. Like this one…” I scrolled until I found the photograph. “She threw glow sticks in a pool and went swimming.” I assumed he remembered, since he’d been behind the camera. “I’m going to do that, then put it on my own done-it Tumblr list. Emily only had sixteen done-its, so I plan on redoing all of them.”
After taking a slow sip of coffee, he leaned forward like he was going to share a secret. “Can I make a suggestion?”
I winced, instilled with a burning desire to flee from the coffee shop. There I was, alive and well—with a perfectly functioning heart—and Emily lay six feet under, dead and gone. Jake probably thought—
“You should name it something else,” he said. “Done-its sounds like Cheez-Its, and that’s a little weird, don’t you think? Don’t get me wrong, kudos to my sister for the idea, but uh, she could’ve been more original with the name.” His smile grew, crooked and adorable.
Relief washed over me, and I smiled, too. “I agree done-it is unoriginal, but I can’t think of anything better that isn’t also weirder. Can you?”
With a considering expression, Jake leaned back in the booth, and while he thought, I took a sip of my coffee and cream mixture.
“See. Not as easy as it sounds.” I laughed, warming my fingers around the mug.
Jake chuckled, shaking his head. “Guess I’ll have to get back to you on that one. But where do I come into this?”
I let go of the ceramic and splayed my hands across the tabletop. “I want you to photograph my…poorly named list.”
Lindsey has been writing since she was nine years old, when she discovered the awesomeness that is Harriet the Spy. Her books always include a romance, though sometimes there’s an added sci-fi or magical realism twist. She lives in Columbus, Ohio (where the weather is never quite right). Her BFA in Photography and Graphic Design has granted her a wide assortment of creative knowledge that serves as inspiration (and not much else). When she’s not crafting YA and NA stories, you’ll likely find her spending waaay too much time on Pinterest, playing a video game, singing show-tunes, or performing in a burlesque show—because she enjoys giving her introversion a worthy adversary. (Plus, it’s the closest to Broadway she’ll ever get.) Lindsey was a proud 2016 Pitch Wars Mentee and thoroughly adores being a part of the wonderful writing community. THE HEARTBEAT HYPOTHESIS is her debut novel.
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