C.p. Bialois's Reviews > Open Heart

Open Heart by Emlyn Chand
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Mar 07, 2012

really liked it
Read in May, 2012

I was overjoyed at being able to review a copy of Emlyn Chand’s Open Heart in preparation for its release on May 25th (today hint, hint). In the sequel to her first published work, Farsighted, the author took us into the depths of a teenage girl’s insecurities and struggles with her love life and high school drama.

Told through the eyes of Simmi, an Indian girl with the psychic ability clairsentience. Following her and her friends adventures in New York the previous year, Simmi’s abilities seem to have left her after she realized the danger she could pose to others. While her own abilities are changing, she begins to hate herself. Feeling she’s ugly and fat, Simmi develops an eating disorder that she’s able to hide from everyone in her life except for one person.

When Simmi finally comes into contact with the one person she’s been shielded from by her boyfriend Alex, the world opens up before her and everything begins feeling right for the first time in a long while. Of course things have to go wrong afterwards.

I have to say I found this book very engaging and understandable as I have my own dark side, but that’s a story for another time. For anyone that has ever dealt with an insecurity or self loathing, this book may be difficult but it’s also a breath of fresh air by showing others have felt much the same and that no one’s perfect. It’s written in a soft and gentle style that eases you into the character’s suffering while wanting to reach out and shake her for thinking so negatively about herself.

On a personal note, I took more from the underlying story in regards to the eating disorder and teenage angst than I would‘ve expected. To me, and I could be wrong (wouldn‘t be the first time), I felt all of Simmi‘s actions and reactions were all byproducts of her experience in New York. After using her powers to help her friends when first confronting Dax, Simmi spends a great deal of time struggling with her powers, even going so far as to avoid learning to control them better. For those of you that read the first book in the series (if you didn’t, never fear. I’ve got you covered) you’ll remember how Simmi was the one member of the group that always practiced and worked with her power without fail. After witnessing some of what she was capable of, Simmi shut it off form the rest of the world and used it as the key into hurting herself.

By the end of the story I have to admit I have a soft spot for Simmi and it’s not because of what she had to deal with on her journey, but for what her future may hold. Whether good or bad you can bet I’ll be in line for the next book in the series.
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