Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Heart Sister” as Want to Read:
Heart Sister
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Heart Sister

4.20  ·  Rating details ·  79 ratings  ·  48 reviews
After Emmitt's twin sister, Minnie, dies in an accident, his world goes sideways. He's lost his best friend and it feels like his family is falling apart without her. But Minnie was an organ donor and Emmitt soon receives an anonymous thank you letter from one of the transplant recipients. Inspiration strikes, and he decides to try and put his sister back together, in spir ...more
Paperback, 336 pages
Published September 22nd 2020 by Orca Book Publishers
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Heart Sister, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Heart Sister

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.20  · 
Rating details
 ·  79 ratings  ·  48 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Heart Sister
Aug 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing an eARC of Heart Sister in exhcnage for an honest review.

“The power in the view from the mountaintop is from the climb.”

Heart Sister is an emotionally raw but hopeful story. It discovers powerful messages of the impact of healing through love, to be grateful for life, and that there is always light although everything seems dark. This book made me cry so much. I love books that make me cry, hence the 5 stars and a spot on my faves shelf yay.
Paula M
"I will look for the beautiful in every ugly thing."

Heart Sister is a little difficult to review. Not because its a bad book, quite the opposite actually. I am afraid that I will not use the right words. Beautiful may be overused for this review, just to set your expectation. So let me try to share my thoughts and tell you the reason why you should have this book on your shelf.

The book has been compared to Five Feet Apart which I will not entirely agree with. Yes, they both touches t
Jul 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 16-and-up
Thanks to the publisher for providing an eARC of Heart Sister in exchange for an honest review.

This book tore me apart. I found myself tearing up over and over again but I'm not quite sure if this book is sad. Which is saying a lot considering it centers on a 16 year old boy who just lost his twin sister, but Heart Sister is just such a raw, emotional, hopeful story.

Emmitt's sister, Minnie, was so full of life that her favorite hobby was shoving bits and pieces of it into others. Minnie was a 1
Sherry Fundin
Jul 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I love the cover and it definitely relates to the book and means so much more after reading Heart Sister by Michael F Stewart. Michael speaks from the heart in this fabulous story of a young boy that searches for the people that received his sister’s organs.

The characters are fully developed, richly detailed and I love how Michael F Stewart shows them growing and changing. Emmitt steals the show. It’s not awful enough that he lost his sister, but he lost his twin sister.

The movie that Emmitt is
Michael Stewart
Feb 24, 2020 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
I hope this one gives you ALL the feels...

“Raw, real, and riveting. In Heart Sister, Stewart masterfully takes us on Emmitt’s poignant search for what might be found when all seems lost. Heartfelt and heart-wrenching, it is a powerful story of hope.” Caroline Pignat, two-time Governor General’s Award–winning author of Shooter, Greener Grass, and The Gospel Truth.
Aug 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing


Get ready to have a box of tissues ready because this book will definitely make you cry. It is beautiful, funny, emotional, and a wonderful read!

Emmitt is a wonderful character, and the perfect protagonist for the plot. While the story shows how he is trying to help others, we see that he also has unresolved feelings that he must face. Moreover, he does something so nice in each chapter that makes you root for him. Firstly, I
Rukaiya Mustafa
Aug 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What do I say? This book tore me up in every chapter. It’s been a long time since I’ve read such a beautiful book on siblings. The cover is creative and gives the sense of the story in one page. The title is perfect and I love how each and every aspect of the book fits perfectly together.

I picked up the book not knowing how this story will play out, but I was blown out of my senses. Emmit, our protagonist is a twin brother who loses his sister in an accident. What Minnie does is an exceptional g
Joanna Bennett
Jul 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for this e-copy to review. All opinions are my own.

One thing I love about books from this publishing company is that usually the topic of the book is one that isn’t usually discussed. For this book, the subject is about being an organ donor and what that’s like as someone who lost a person who was a organ donor and someone who received an organ.

Emmitt is trying to hold on to his sister in any way he can. His mother cannot cope with what happened to her da
Jan 09, 2021 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lelia Taylor
Aug 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: full-reviews
There’s very little one can do to ease the pain when a person you love passes away but how much harder must it be for a teen when that person is his twin. Emmitt is having a hard time dealing with this but he really worries that his mom can’t seem to recover even a bit. Perhaps finding and filming each person who received an organ from Minnie will help, maybe even make his dad speak Minnie’s name again.

Emmitt’s quest starts out well when he tracks down the man who got Minnie’s corneas and, as he
Dec 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Another great YA read. I’ve had a good streak lately.

Heart Sister is heart warming and heart breaking. It walks a fine line between not reading like a book for kids and not straying into material to old for teens. Emmitt has lost his twin sister and seeks out the recipients of her donor organs. What he finds is not what he expected but it might be what he needs.

The secondary characters are diverse and multi-faceted without taking over the story but it is Emmitt who really draws you in. He is st
Oct 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Lovely novel that is one of those YA but appropriate for all.
When someone you love dies, you lose a piece of yourself (or at least that's my experience.) When Emmitt's twin sister dies, he tries to find her again by tracking down the recipients whose lives were changed by receiving a donor organ from her.
There is so much to love about this novel, from the personalities of the twins, through the insights gained in the hunt. Told with a deft hand, and skillful handling of a most difficult subjec
Aug 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Oh my heart. *sigh* There are stories that just break you emotionally, and then there is this story that slowly breaks you before piecing you back together. I realize that is what Emmett is trying to do in this story and I’m sure that is why it feels that way.

If you’re looking for a light read, this is not it. This is a profound story about grief, hope, love, and learning. Stewart does an excellent job balancing the seriousness of a broken family devastated by the loss of their daughter/sister w
Oct 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cried, favourites
Oh my God.

Oh my God.

This is, hands down, the best standalone I've ever read, and is underrated as heck. It isn't very frequent that I've felt so close to a character as I've felt to Emmitt, and the grief him and his family faced was portrayed to beautifully, hurtfully well that I found myself crying at school multiple times while reading. Every time a memory with Minnie came up, I honestly just couldn't handle it.😅

Everyone should read this book, even if I have to put a major trigger warning for
Jim Gleason
Let me say upfront, “I loved this book!” Let me put that into perspective. As a heart transplant recipient myself, heavily engaged in all things organ donation and organ transplant for 26 years with a hobby of reading and publishing reviews for over 150 transplant-related books including novels and biographical stories, I have a lot of experience with which to approach reading HEART SISTER. Add to that my being married to a ‘donor mom’ who honored her 13-year-old son’s wishes to be an organ dono ...more
A heartwarming and sorrowful tale, Heart Sister tells the story of Emmitt, a boy who has to put the pieces of his family back together after his sister's tragic death. Emmitt decides that the way to help his family is to meet all the people who got their organs because of Minnie's death, trying to make his sister whole once more. The story shares an important message of the struggles of loss and the extreme measures we sometimes go to find closure, but we can't always be satisfied with what we t ...more
Cheryl (I Heart Fictional People)
Review originally posted on my blog: I Heart Fictional People


First of all, that cover is eye-catching. I just had to see what this book was about. And then I read the book blurb. OMG. I have never read anything like this. I was so excited to get the opportunity to read it.


The story, the plot. This story is heartbreakingly beautiful. This is just a boy who lost his twin sister, his best friend, and he’s grieving while also trying to help his parents move on. To do that
Aug 10, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: blog-tours
CHECK OUT MY STOP ON THE HEART SISTER TOUR! https://sarainbooklandblog.blogspot.c...

Heart Sister has been a really original read for me. From the moment I signed up for the tour, I know that the book was going to be about an intense subject, but I really couldn't imagine how the author was going to touch it.

As soon as I started the book, I couldn't ignore the Extremely Loud, Incredibly Close's vibe: there was a tragic death, a protagonist who survives this death and that goes on a mission to ela
Casia Courtier
Aug 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received a free copy via Xpresso Book Tours for an honest review. What follows is my opinion and mine alone. There was no compensation made for this review.

You know the videos, the ones circulating in your social media feed, a grieving family member leans to a stranger's chest, a stethoscope in their ears. They place the circle on the chest and listen. They listen to the heartbeat of their lost husband or son, mother or daughter, sister or brother. Tears start flowing from the organ recipient,
Rebecca June
Aug 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc

"But I also envy people who have courage. I think envy tells us a lot about who we are and what is important to us. I envy the brave. In some ways, I'm still searching for my heart"
(p. 45)

Thank you to Michael F. Stewart, Orca Books, and Xpresso Tours for a free eARC of Heart Sister in exchange for an honest review. You can pre-order it now to read it as soon as it releases in September! This review was originally posted on my blog, June Reads Books.

I inhaled this book in 24 hours, and can honest
J Aislynn d'Merricksson
Jun 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Heart Sister by Michael Stewart is a poignant testimony to the power of connection to heal, and that learning to let go is an intensely personal thing.

Emmit's sister Minnie died in a tragic accident. Her death gave life/ health to eight others. You see, Minnie was an organ donor. In an effort to help his mother heal, Emmit decides to create a virtual reality film of Minnie 'talking with' each of her organ recipients. But to do that, he needs to track them down and those names are kept confident
Heidi Lynn’s BookReviews
Aug 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
First, I want to thank Michael F. Stewart and Xpresso Tours for providing me with this book so I may bring you this review.

Heart Sister by Michael F. Stewart is one the most interesting books I have read of 2020 (and I have read/reviewed 131 books to date). It is a book that will make you think, pull on your heart strings, and stick with you long after the book is finished.

Brilliant job on the graphics on the cover! It is so colorful and stands out as unlike all the rest that is out there. It
Aug 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
What a fabulous story about a twin brother who is determined to find the people who have received his late sister’s donor organs.

Emmitt is an incredible character. His unimaginable and difficult mission to find and videotape his twin sister’s organ recipients in a virtual reality setting featuring his deceased sister, Minnie, is an extraordinary idea. In addition, his selfless and loving gesture in creating this film to help his mother come out of her depression of losing her daughter is a test
Ashley Hubbard
I received a copy of Heart Sister in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are, of course, my own.

I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover and I don't typically, but I think it's worth mentioning – this cover is beautiful and it definitely caught my attention.

Emmitt is Minnie's twin brother and after her untimely death, he begins the mission of tracking down all of his "brothers" and "sisters." (aka the people who received his sister's organs).  One, in particular, holds most of his
Aug 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is really heart-touching. The story sets after Minnie Highland had deceased and she donated her organs to all suitable donors. Her twin brother, Emmit Highland wants to find all the donor for a video of how a piece of Minnie changed their lives. Everyone joined but the heart receipent. The heart sister.

The plot was really fast-paced. With a little bit flashback about how's Minnie when she's still a healty living girl, that one slowed me down for a few pages but still it is fun! I love
Aug 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
I think I picked yet avoided this book for so long because of the intense subject matter of grief and organ donation.
• I was wanting to read this book because the subject matter is not something I have read before in a young adult novel.
• There's taxidermy and VR systems in this story as well which was very fascinating but if those don't interest you do not read this.
• The pros and cons of meeting organ recipients to families are also presented realistically in my opinion(sorry im trying not t
Cracked Spines
Aug 23, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arcs
*If you'd like to see my original review, please head to my Instagram, @crackedspines_*
Okay so after thinking about it a lot, I've decided to change my review for Heart Sister. I've dropped it by one star. This is not because my original post was a tour post; Xpresso Book Tours informs all reviewers that if they cannot honestly give a book a rating of 3 stars or higher, they can reach out to the company and get an excerpt to post instead. I gave it 3 stars because at that time, that was an hones
Bookish Heidi
Aug 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
If you're looking for a book that will kick you in all of the feels, then look no further. This book took me down a road that I wasn't expecting and I loved it.

Through this book, you travel along with Emmitt while he deals with the grief of losing his twin sister, Minnie. She died and donated her organs and he is on a mission to find out who got them. The National Donor Registry doesn't want him to find them so he uses social media and clues in the letters from the recipients. While searching f
Kasey Connors-Beron
Aug 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
*deep breath in* *deep breath out*

I just finished HEART SISTER and I am so NOT OKAY! My heart is somehow warm and fuzzy and bleeding and shattered.

Minnie, who we never meet, is completely alive through her twin brother’s memories of her. She was so full of life it is no wonder there was a gaping whole left in everyone who knew her when she died.

But Emmitt is hoping to fill that hole for his mother through collecting the pieces of Minnie scattered through the people who received her donated organ
Paula Ratcliffe
Aug 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The King of Jam Sandwiches
  • The Greats
  • Gutter Child
  • I Hope You're Listening
  • Hatch (The Overthrow, #2)
  • Barry Squires, Full Tilt
  • Heired Lines
  • Something Happened to Ali Greenleaf (Something Happened to Ali Greenleaf, #1)
  • Amelia Unabridged
  • Magic Dark and Strange
  • My Summer of Love and Misfortune
  • Messenger 93
  • Escaping Eleven (Eleven Trilogy, #1)
  • The Barren Grounds (The Misewa Saga, #1)
  • A Lie for a Lie (All In, #1)
  • Lost Boy: The True Story of Captain Hook
  • You Deserve Each Other
  • Charming as a Verb
See similar books…
Michael F. Stewart is an award-winning author of many books for young people in various genres, including Ray Vs. the Meaning of Life, Heart Sister, and the forthcoming The Momentous Expiration of Tremmy Sinclair. (Summer 2021). Michael lives in Ottawa.

To learn more about Michael and his next projects visit his website at or connect via Twitter @MichaelFStewart.

Related Articles

  Mateo Askaripour is a Brooklyn-based writer whose debut novel, Black Buck—which Colson Whitehead calls a “mesmerizing novel, executing a high...
75 likes · 9 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »