The Brokenhearted by Amelia Kahaney
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Anthem Fleet has grown up in a world of privilege but things are changing. As the daughter of one of the most powerful men in town, she knows she has to be careful but one night she decides to go to a party with her friend Zahara and meets Gavin, the guy who changes her life.
Gavin is a Southsider and the opposite of everything Anthem is/represents. He is a little dangerous and Anthem finds herself adjusting her priorities to be with him. Instead of going to ballet she is meeting Gavin after school and their relationship moves very quickly. Anthem breaks up with Will and starts spending less time with her best friend Zahara and over the span of a few weeks, she is in (insta) love with Gavin.
After spending the night with Gavin at his place, Anthem finds that she and Gavin have been targeted by some syndicate members and Gavin ends up kidnapped. On her way to find help, Anthem finds herself in danger and after falling to what she believes is her death, eventually wakes up in a lab with people she doesn’t know. The jogger, Ford, who stopped her on the bridge and scared her, is the one that saved her. During his explanation of what happened, she also learns that her heart stopped and in order to keep her alive, she had to be given a to find she has a chimeric heart and along with the new heart comes some abilities she never had before.
As she comes to, Anthem finds she has been missing for 3 days – days she feels she should have been doing whatever she could to save Gavin. When she goes to her parents and they refuse to help her find him, she decides to do whatever she can on her own and with the help of some people she wasn’t expecting, Anthem becomes more than just a teenage girl trying to find the boy she loves. As she goes on this mission to find and save Gavin she finds out more about her city and the syndicate than she originally thought she would. As she comes to lose something she considered valuable, she decides that she will do whatever it takes to bring those who are guilty to justice.
Ford and Serge become her allies. Ford is the guy who inadvertently scares Anthem quite literally to her death and then takes her to a lab to be saved. He is also the guy who teaches her to fight and yes, they eventually come to mean more to each other. Serge is still a bit of a mystery to me. He is the bodyguard/driver for Anthem’s father/family and he recognizes there is something going on with her. He is the one who helps her with information and either protecting her from Will and others or even sometimes herself.
There were some things about this story that I enjoyed and others that I thought were fairly predictable. The way the relationship was developed between Anthem and Gavin went too quickly – they went from meeting once at a party to Anthem giving up her virginity to him about a week later. Probably not a big deal but she seemed to throw everything she valued (ballet) out the door once she met him and it felt a bit forced to me. With that in mind, I see why Kahaney felt it was necessary as the story progressed.
I do also wish we had gotten a bit more background of how things came to be. Kahaney alludes to the fact that things weren’t always as bad and with the introduction of The Hope story, we see people at one time believed in something. I would have also liked to have learned more about this sister of Anthem’s. She clearly is an important figure but we only get bits and pieces of her story and the fact that her death was the catalyst to Anthem’s birth.
Overall I enjoyed this story. Due to this new heart Anthem has unexplainable abilities and because of a clear betrayal, she is forever changed. The fact that she uses these abilities to make an impact on the population of the city is interesting to me and I am curious to see what happens next (really not sure – is this a series or not. It appears not but the end definitely left this open.) with Anthem, her family and Ford. This was a quick read and fairly fast paced. If you enjoy a story with a bit of mystery, a bit of action and some interesting characters, you might also enjoy this one.
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