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Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things

3.37  ·  Rating details ·  1,217 ratings  ·  329 reviews
In this charming debut about first love and second chances, a young girl gets caught between the boy next door and a playboy. Perfect for fans of To All The Boys I've Loved Before.

Mansfield, Massachusetts is the last place seventeen-year-old Edie Price wants to spend her final summer before college. It’s the home of wealthy suburbanites and prima donnas like Edie’s cousins
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published December 17th 2019 by HMH Books for Young Readers
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Jessica Laddaga School Library Journal says grades 9 and up - stating, "Alcohol use and sexual activity make this most suitable for older teens." Publishers Weekly al…moreSchool Library Journal says grades 9 and up - stating, "Alcohol use and sexual activity make this most suitable for older teens." Publishers Weekly also agrees with ages "Ages 14–up."

Hope that helps :) (less)

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Nenia ✨️ I yeet my books back and forth ✨️ Campbell

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DNF @ p. 25

Reading this book was like the visual equivalent of hearing nails on a chalkboard. It's so saccharine and is trying way too hard. I picked this up because I heard it was supposed to be a Jane Austen retelling, but if Jane Austen is a gourmet wedding cake, this book is a plastic-wrapped Hostess cupcake.

Maybe if you like Morgan Matson and Stephanie Perkins, and the legion of other YA books featuring idiotic and ditzy leads whos
Stay Fetters
Dec 08, 2019 rated it it was ok
"Either Henry had hugged a tree recently or Lucifer endorsed cologne after all."

Everyone who knows me knows that there is one thing that will make me dislike a book and that’s for the author to make it seem like cheating is okay. This book made me think that and I almost gave up reading this book a few times but I powered through. That was such a bad idea and a waste of my time.

Edie, the female protagonist made out with her best friend's boyfriend, knowing that it was wrong. She also expected h
Nov 17, 2020 rated it it was ok
My rating/score: 2 out of 5 stars on Goodreads / 4 out of 10 on my own scoring system.
Well that was just... Not for me. I feel like it's my own fault for not reading the synopsis because I don't think I would have picked it up knowing about the completely cliché and just full of over the top cheating, bitchy girls and way too many love triangles.

I think the only reason I'm not giving this one star is because I liked some of the songs Edie wrote and think they would actually make great songs.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Samantha Hastings
Jul 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
‘The whole delightful and astonishing truth’ is this modern retelling of Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park is a must read!

Edie (Fanny) Price is a foster kid who is spending the last few months of her senior year with her wealthy Aunt Norah and her two daughters. Maria and Julia (the cousins) aren’t necessarily likable but they are relatable and more complex than Austen’s original characters. Edie quotes women’s authors including Edith Wharton for whom she was named (loved that!). Sebastian, the boy
Yna the Mood Reader
Dec 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things is a (sickeningly) sweet YA contemporary retelling that reminds of TATBILB and a mellowed-down version of Gossip Girl. It is also linked to be a retelling of Mansfield Park by Jane Austen, which I do not have a clue about because your girl has not read any classics at all.

Anyway, for a quick warning about the story, you must be prepared to deal with a love traingle, and rich teenagers managing their rich people problems and one little outsider in the c
Oct 15, 2019 rated it it was ok
Looks like I’m going to have an unpopular opinion here, but I wasn’t a big fan of this book. First off, there are a lot of female characters in this book, and none of them are terribly likable. Edie, the main, is really hard to get behind. She supposedly has this “unbreakable” string of attachment to Sebastian, but let’s be real here. She hasn’t seen him in YEARS. They haven’t kept in touch, and their last interaction was as children. But the first time she sees him, she’s irreversibly attached ...more
Ali D
May 01, 2020 rated it did not like it
Madness- noun
1. An awful state of insanity
2. Losing all relationship with logic and reason
3. The suffering of my consciousness while reading this book

Oof. I rate this book two wobbly Edie's learning to walk in heels out of 10 stringless guitars.

There's a lot to discuss but, like always, let's try and stay away from spoilers.

First of all, I really don't like how no one acts their age in this book. I find it hard to believe that a bunch of high school kids or around that age are all planning the
I think this is more of a 3.5 out of 5. Goodreads it is 2020, please let us have half stars. ANYWAY

This was a very solid debut and I’d love to read more from Firkins.

** I received an arc of this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review **

It is hard to do a love triangle that is a) believable b) interesting and c) hard to have a "winner"
Personally, I didn't love this one. Maybe it's because I really believed in the couple that I felt like they were meant to be.

I did love the writing and t
May 30, 2018 marked it as to-read-so-bad-it-hurts  ·  review of another edition
Another Jane Austen retelling that I'd like to read because it sounds so good? Unprecedented pt. 2 ...more
I wanted to love this book so badly. It sounded like the exact kind of cute contemporary that would have me shouting from the rooftops for everyone to pick this up. Unfortunately, that didn't happen.

My main issue with this book were the characters. There was not a single female character worth rooting for. They were all so catty and mean and had zero concept of what a relationship/commitment was. The moment someone would look at their man they'd turn into a cast member of Mean Girls but god forb
Jessica C Writes
Mar 16, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya-contemporary
This book was one big nope from me. From the very start, we find out that our main character, Edie, kissed her best friend's boyfriend and was caught. Red flag number one.

The rest of the book was full of emotional cheating, a very cringe-y hate to love that resulted in manipulation and borderline emotional abuse, constant girl hate, and just an overall very unlikeable protagonist.

The entire time I found myself so confused by how our main character was attracting two really nice boys, after ever
Dec 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things is a young adult contemporary romance by Jacqueline Firkins. This book was so stinking cute. I absolutely loved it! it is a retelling of Mansfield Park by Jane Austen. I have read almost all of Austen’s books, but Mansfield Park is one that has escaped my attention. Regardless of the fact that I have yet to read it, I was very much able to enjoy Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things, and in fact it made me want to pick up Mansfield Park to see if ...more
Amanda Lawford
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’m quite surprised at how much I enjoyed this. I only read it because of my bookclub, otherwise I’d have never picked it up. This is a retelling of Mansfield Park..I actually had to be told that is a Jane Austen novel...that should tell you how little interest I had in reading this. Let’s be real, I only voted to read this book this month because it was the least worst of the available selections.

I loved this book from the first page. The Cinderella trope will get me every time. I love me a di
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Edie Price has been rescued from foster care by her wealthy aunt and uncle who care more about looking like do-gooders than they do about her. She moves in with them for the end of her senior year, right next door to her childhood best friend and first crush, Sebastian. Unfortunately, he's got a girlfriend. Despite the fact that Edie can't stop thinking about him, she's absolutely not going to come between him and Claire. She distracts herself with Claire's brother, Henry, who leaves a trail of ...more
T. S.
It’s good, it’s cheesy, and it’s good BECAUSE it’s cheesy, but honestly, rating-wise, it’s tricky to gauge just how good this was.

It’s addicting, for sure. Edie is a fine lead - she’s easy to understand, and while some of her decisions are questionable, she’s realistically messy and that, I think, is the exact point that HEARTS, STRINGS, AND OTHER BREAKABLE THINGS is trying to bring across. Did it succeed? Yep. I get it. I get its message. We’re good on that front.

On the plus side, this is add
Laura Namey
Jul 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I came for Jane Austen, but stayed for Jacquline Firkins and her beautiful Mansfield Park retelling. Witty dialogue, lovely prose, well drawn characters and plenty of swoon worthy moments make this a winner on my shelf, and this talented debut author a must-buy from now on. Well done!
Carrie (The Butterfly Reader)
Jan 20, 2020 marked it as did-not-finish
Shelves: january-2020
I won't rate this book because I DNFed it at around 130 pages BUT I do have thoughts on what I read. So before I tear into this book, I want to say that if you loved this book, good for you. You might not want to read this review because I HATED it. I don't often have such strong emotions towards a book but this one just ruffled my feathers.

Now onto my thoughts.

Every single person in this book is a Grade A piece of shit. Edie wanted to kiss her best friend's boyfriend because she wanted to be
Kali Cole
Dec 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars,

Although this story was filled with romantic quirks and well developed characters. I really disliked how Edie’s thoughts were kind of manipulative without her really being aware of them. I kind of connected to this love triangle thing on a deep level in terms of my previous ex and how our relationship felt like Edie’s and Henry’s and how trusting your partner and being confused in a relationship is normal and you should end it before it progresses. This book would definitely have helpe
Feb 17, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: own-and-read, ya, botm
I have been a book of the month member since last September and I must admit this is the first book I have actually finished from them. It's sad, I know.

I really enjoyed Edie's character in this YA/New Adult book. She clearly has some inner conflicts with herself. Watching her find out who she is, and wants to be, was such a validating thing. Obviously boys had a heavy influence in the novel, but I feel the underlying message of accepting yourself was also pretty clear.
The Nerd Daily
Dec 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Nathalie DeFelice

There’s nothing better than love-hating a book to the point of shouting it to the skies, which was my exact reaction to this book. Did I absolutely fall in love with it? YES. Did I also hate the way that it ended? ABSOLUTELY, and I would read it all over again just to experience the agony of the ending, with the hope that it might be a little different each time. Like any good romantic comedy, it’s fun, dramatic, and full of che
Dec 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, arc
This was a delightfully light and romantic read! It’s loosely based on Jane Austen’s novel Mansfield Park.

A lot is modernized obviously, including a few bits I wish hadn’t been, but I appreciated the addition of a sort of slow burn family relationship. It was sweet and genuine and heart-warming.

Some of the changes from the original story involved the romance, and those - to me - were the most clunky and disappointing. I think the end was rushed into trying to get the right people together, whic
Sharon Conty
Nov 04, 2020 rated it liked it
She should have stayed with Henry!
Nov 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Joke time. So, a girl walks into a bar ... which hurt because she had her nose stuck in this book and couldn't see where she was going. I know what you're thinking and I disagree with you. Because I'm hilarious and delighted with this book.

Full review and blog tour stop at Write, Read, Repeat.

I realize I sound like a broken record in saying this, but contemporary YA romances are a hard sell for me. I rarely relate, get irritated by how irritating the main characters tend to be, and the predictab
Guylou (Two Dogs and a Book)
Dec 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things

This book was exactly what I needed right now. I have been reading emotionally charged novels lately and needed something on the lighter side. This is a retelling of Mansfield Park. After spending three years in foster care after the death of her mother, Edie is moving in with her uncle, aunt, and two cousins. She knows that this is only temporary until she graduates high school and heads out to college in the fall. Soon after moving in, she rekindles her friendship with Sebastian, the cute next
Cassie | Lost In Tomes
Jan 17, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: did-not-finish
DNF @ Chapter 10 / 25%
This reads like it's written by someone whose only knowledge of what it's like to be in high school comes from watching bad teen movies.


Cliche, in the worst kind of way. I can't get behind any of the love interests or our MC. There's no chemistry. It all just feels so... fake. None of our characters have any redeeming qualities and are riddled with "rich kid" stereotypes. It was hard to like anyone. Our cast didn't "mesh" well together, which is strange because they also a
Alyson Grauer
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Jacqueline Firkins’ sweet, awkward, brilliant heroine Edie is a painfully real reminder of my own uncertain teenage years and even those early college times where Things Are Just Complicated and nobody tells anybody a straight answer. Meanwhile the world charges on, demanding that you keep up even if you haven’t effectively figured out the rules of play yet.

“Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things” is a retelling of Jane Austen’s “Mansfield Park” set in modern day Massachusetts and filled w
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Many thanks to HMH for sending me a free ARC in exchange for an honest review

This book was basically like a sponge cake. All the fun and fluff and sweetness, but no real substance. Objectively I would consider it to be pretty average, not exceptionally great but not bad either, but in terms of enjoyment, this was super cute and so enjoyable!

It's no secret that I love retellings, so when I saw this retelling of Jane Austen's Mansfield Park, one of her books that I've actually read, I knew that I
Rida Quraishi
Jan 28, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: contemporary
This went from being so good that it would get 5 stars to - oh-God-Whyyy kinda bad in the last 10% of the book...
You ruined the ending for me Jacqueline
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Jacqueline's a writer, costume designer, and lover of beautiful things. She's on the fulltime faculty in the Department of Theatre & Film at the University of British Columbia where she also takes any writing class they’ll let her into. When not obsessing about where to put the buttons or the commas, she can be found running by the ocean, eating excessive amounts of gluten, listening to earnest lo ...more

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As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of...
41 likes · 7 comments
“I envy my words once spoken, for they're closer to your ear, closer to your heart, than I am. They live, inked in your memory, when I'm absent. They tiptoe through your dreams when you sleep, and if you speak my words, they'll lie more softly on your lips, where I have yet to dwell. My words go where I cannot and I'll never forgive them for their trespasses.” 0 likes
“Edie's hand rose to her locker, turning her mind to hearts, strings, and other broken things.” 0 likes
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