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Head Over Heels

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  11,488 ratings  ·  1,854 reviews
The past seven years have been hard on Avery Abrams: After training her entire life to make the Olympic gymnastics team, a disastrous performance ended her athletic career for good. Her best friend and teammate, Jasmine, went on to become an Olympic champion, then committed the ultimate betrayal by marrying their emotionally abusive coach, Dimitri.

Now, reeling from a break
Paperback, 323 pages
Published June 23rd 2020 by Atria Books
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Amanda Nope not at all. There is one “sex” scene and some kissing, but nothing graphic at all!

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Average rating 3.70  · 
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 ·  11,488 ratings  ·  1,854 reviews

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Nilufer Ozmekik
Apr 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Avery Abrahams dreamed of being Olympic gymnast for her whole life and trained for it till one day her only breaks into smithereens with one fault, one disastrous performance ended with her injury.
And her best friend took over her place, becoming Olympic champion, succeeding everything she wanted. As a final nail in her coffin: she got married with their strict, abusive coach Dimitri: The very same man, she trained with for years and the man who never called and asked her if she was okay after
4.45/5 ⭐

Full review on my Blog: The Dacian She-Wolf 🐺


Hear me out, I love gymnastics too damn much and this was actually really good and even though I want to give it more stars, I think my rating is fair this way. But inside my heart, I gave it 5 stars ;)

Okay now. Moving on.
I cannot express how happy this synopsis made me when I first discovered this book.

I am a huge gymnastics fan, I’ve been in love with this sport for ages already and I am honestly bordering o
Val ⚓️ Shameless Non-Snowflake ⚓️
1.5 Stars

Like pretty much all other American girls who watched an injured Kerri Strug vault The Magnificent Seven to US Olympic gold in 1996, I had dreams of being an badass gymnast. 12 year old me had the dream and 38 year old me thought I has this book. We were both wrong.

Because the dream we all thought we had back then - about being a celebrated and loved gymnast who could fly - we all now know involved a lot of abuse. I now look at Kerri Strug's face in those 1996 Atlanta TouTube videos an
3.5 stars


Head Over Heels is my first book by Hannah Orenstein and I enjoyed it. I really loved the gymnastics aspect. When the Olympics would come on when I was younger, the only thing I ever wanted to watch was gymnastics and figure skating so it was really cool to see the behind the scenes stuff. 

Avery was meant to live her dream as an Olympic gymnast, but a career ending injury stopped her right before she got her shot. She’s now in her mid-twenties and doesn’t have the life she dreamed
I consider myself an Olympics junkie! I can’t get enough and become tied to the TV from opening ceremonies until closing. Being both 🇨🇦 and 🇺🇸 I have two countries to cheer for!
So when I learned this book centered around a former Olympic wannabe gymnast I was immediately all in!

Early on, Avery had her sights set on the Olympics. She’d competed in gymnastics her entire young life. An unfortunate performance and injury took away that dream, leaving her to lose all purpose in life. After a short s
Larry H
Jul 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I honestly never knew I was missing a gymnastics-related love story until I found Hannah Orenstein'a Head Over Heels , but boy, was I ever!

Avery spent her entire childhood training to be an Olympic gymnast. She sacrificed any chance at being a “normal” teenager, endured the emotional abuse of her famous coach, stressed about her weight, and dreamed of the Olympics. And in one moment, her dreams and her career ended, leaving her ill-prepared for what came next.

Now, 7 years later, on the heels
A gold medal read for all gymnastic fans! Are you bummed that there aren’t going to be Olympics this summer? This might be the perfect book to tie you over until next year (hopefully). Hannah Orenstein has spun a fun and uplifting tale. She also didn’t pull any punches when it came to some of the darker parts and scandals surrounding today’s gymnastics. Avery was an elite gymnast who just fell short of making it to the Olympics. Knowing nothing else bud gymnastics Avery went into a deep depressi ...more
Hannah Orenstein
May 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
If I don't think my own book is worth five stars, there's a problem. ...more
Sheyla ✎

I was excited to read about this gymnastics' romance. I've always liked watching gymnastics during the Olympics.

I remember when I was a kid, listening to the name Nadia Comăneci so many times. She was a true treasure. I remember watching her routines and to me, they felt flawless. I did gymnastics as a kid but don't remember much now about it. If I tried it now, I probably break something.

The Olympics has always been something I enjoy and look forward to. I also enjoy movies about it, Hock
Jennifer ~ TarHeelReader
Jun 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Looking for a new contemporary romance? Wanting to feel uplifted? Craving a new binge read? Check out Head Over Heels! Oh, and hello yellow cover!

Head Over Heels is about gymnast Avery Abrams. She was headed for the Olympics and with one performance, those hopes were dashed. Her best friend, Jasmine, went on to the Olympics and came home a champion. AND she married Dimitri, their coach.

Avery returns home to start over, and meets a coach at the gym named Ryan. He asks for her help in coaching a n
Aoife - Bookish_Babbling
I don't know if Hallmark have made a gymnastic film in recent years but if they did I imagine it would be similar to this book.

This was a light read with a nod to difficult subjects however I found the MCs a little bland. Avery and I didn't exactly get off on the right foot but as we get to know her i understand why and I did like her growth during the book & was ultimately happy with how it all shakes out for her (view spoiler)
Susanne  Strong
Jul 26, 2020 rated it it was ok
When opportunity knocks for Avery Abrams, a former gymnast, she takes it. The day her old friend (a/k/a crush, Ryan) calls and offers down and out Avery a job coaching Olympic hopeful, Hallie, Avery agrees.

Years after losing everything that meant something to her, Avery’s life finally has purpose. Training Hallie. It’s just a bonus that she gets to spend everyday with Ryan. Everything is going great, personally and professionally, until Ryan considers taking a job with Powerhouse and Avery’s fo
Olive Fellows (abookolive)
Eight years ago, Avery Abrams lost her chance of achieving her life-long dream in one instant. After training her whole life to become a part of the Olympic gymnastics team, a major injury that she sustained during the most important competition of her life, the Olympic trials, ended her career as an athlete. She was understandably devastated and when all her backup plans (primarily meaning college) didn’t pan out, she found her life tumbling out of control.

A years-long relationship with a famou
Head Over Heels is only my second book by Hannah Orenstein but I knew going into it that it was going to be a winner and I was right! This book is Romcom perfection and I would love to see it as a movie.

I can't even tell you in proper words how much I loved this book. My sister was in gymnastics when she was younger, but I never really took much interest in it, and that definitely changed reading Head Over Heels. I was fascinated by everything surrounding the gymnastics parts of the book, which
Jul 14, 2020 rated it liked it
This was my BOTM pick for July, and even though rom-com is so not my genre, when I read that this was a book about women's gymnastics, I couldn't pass it up. When I was young, my first-ever girl crush on Mary-Lou Retton, and I even took gymnastics for several years before realizing that Olympic gold was not in my future; but I have been a huge fan of women's gymnastics ever since. As I can't watch it this summer, I decided I might as well read about it!

The plot of this book is pretty standard,
May 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
🤸‍♂️🤸‍♀️ ARC received in exchange for an honest review.

3.5 stars.

Isn't it funny how the world works? When Hannah Orenstein wrote this novel, it never in a million years would have crossed anyone's minds that the 2020 Olympics would be postponed. In the history of the games, they have only been cancelled three times due to both World Wars. Hannah addresses this in her forward for her story, stating that no-one could have foreseen the advent of a global pandemic that would push back the greatest s
Chris  C - A Midlife Wife
This book is so amazing. I could not stop reading it and I just love how it champions women in sports. I simply consumed the story. I could not put it down.

I’m not sure what it was about this book that got to me. Whether it was the vulnerability of the characters or maybe it was the fact you’re connecting with someone who’s lost everything and is struggling to find a place in the world.

Maybe it was the fact it was written in first person so you just become a part of the stor
Head Over Heels by Hannah Orenstein was a novel I truly enjoyed. This book definitely was a lot different than her previous works, and I have seen such a difference in her writing - while this one took on more serious themes of emotional abuse and #metoo movement. This was a very important topic that I did see in the headlines about the gymnastics world, and the ongoing emotional and physical abuse from the people they most trusted and relied on. I felt that Orenstein wrote about this with such ...more
Jul 05, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: rom-com, chick-lit, sport
3.5 out of 5 stars.

A very quick, enjoyable summer read.

But the reason why I gave this book an average rating was because I was expecting a cute, fluffy and full of banter book (there was hardly any banter between the main character and the love interest), because it is indeed categorized as a chicklit/romance, and when you start reading that sort of a genre you expect unrealistic yet cute romantic gestures between the main characters, a never ending witty interactions and etc. But this book focu
May 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars
Jan 20, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chick-lit
This book is my first gymnastics read, and I was fascinated by the world, its dynamics, and the tireless effort required to win.
Avery was the main character, but the secondary characters have depths too. I was just as vested in Halle’s success as an athlete as I was in her coach, Avery.
Avery went into massive depression when she lost the chance to compete at the Olympics due to an injury, incidentally ending her career as a renowned gymnast. Faced with a recent breakup from a longtime relationsh
May 04, 2020 rated it it was ok
I received a copy of this title from NetGalley. It does not impact my review.

I always enjoy watching the Olympics and was pretty disappointed to hear that they are going to be postponed until next year. Head Over Heels looked like a good way to get a small Olympics fix in the mean time. However, it wasn’t really much more than that.

I was pretty bored throughout most of this book. I did enjoy the gymnastics included and reading about Hallie’s training routine as she prepared for the Olympic trial
Sep 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a great book for gymnastics lovers! The story of a former gymnast who missed the Olympics due to an injury, and after feeling directionless in life for a while, has returned to her hometown to coach a new prodigy. I really liked the coaching parts in this as well as the examination of abuse in coaching and sexual abuse in the sport. There was a romantic relationship in there that was a minor subplot, but the main thing I really enjoyed was the coaching and self-reflection aspect as well ...more
Sherwood Smith
Apr 19, 2020 added it
Shelves: fiction
While I have zero interest in team sports, I love those that combine music and grace, such as gymnastics and ballet, and also fencing. I'll gladly read fiction about these three.

In this novel that focuses on women's gymnastics, Avery is an ex-Olympic contender--that is, she didn't make it past Olympic trials. I thought Orenstein did an excellent job with the psychological damage of knowing that your professional life (which is going to be very short anyway) is over at age nineteen. After spendin
Oct 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
this is one of those books that toes the line between women fiction and romance.
I liked it!! it touches on some important issues in the gymnast and overall sports world.
3,5 stars
Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing

You know how some authors can write a romance with the perfect blend of lightness and depth? It doesn’t always work, but when it does it’s THE best and the author knocked it out of the park here. Avery is a former competitive gymnast who lost everything when she was severely injured and several years later she’s back in her hometown, living with her parents after a breakup. Poor girl, right?! The one bright spot is her new coaching job at her old gym alongside Ryan, a fellow gymnast who she
Lily Herman
Apr 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
All of you might've grown up in families that obsessively watched football, basketball, or baseball, but in my family, that sport was and still is gymnastics. (Simone Biles? We! Knew! Her! First!) So imagine my delight when Hannah Orenstein announced an entire book centered on the sport, one where she really got to show off all of her insider knowledge about how it works.

Head Over Heels is my favorite kind of book: It's got some lighter and more uplifting storylines while also addressing some of
Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell
I'm already obsessed with this book because not only is it about the Olympics, it seems like it's also one of those chick-lit books about finding yourself and I love that empowerment. ...more
Ambriehl Khalil
This was fine but I feel like it barely scratched the surface. I loved the idea and the plot but the execution was just ... meh. There was no chemistry between any of the characters at all and they were really surface level without much depth and I think if everything was developed better, I would have loved this so much. I’m disappointed because this could have been really great.
The Lit Bitch
Jul 04, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
At first glance this book wasn’t eye catching to me. I wasn’t really feeling the basic cover and there was nothing that stood out to me as a reader.

As I said the cover was just ok for me and the title wasn’t really unique but as I have said a million times before, I always read every pitch that comes across my desk because you just can’t judge a book by it’s cover, even though I think most of us are guilty of doing just that.

If I had gone just on first impression alone, I would have missed a rea
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Hannah Orenstein is the author of Playing with Matches and Love at First Like, and is the senior dating editor at Elite Daily. Previously, she was a writer and editor at She lives in Brooklyn.

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