Heartless by Marissa Meyer (Teachers Read, Too!)
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As a teacher who works really hard to encourage my students to love reading, I always want to make sure I show them how much I love reading as well. That means, I don’t just tell them about books that I’m reading; I show them the book I am reading, and sometimes, during independent reading, I take a few minutes to read my book while they read theirs.
Sometimes I read books out of our class library. But sometimes I bring my own book, too.
I also think it’s important that teachers are reading. Whether it’s a book for professional development or just a fun read, teachers should be practicing what they preach. The more a person reads, the more he or she may come to love it!
I started this Teachers Read, Too! series to show books that I’m reading, and to hold myself accountable for reading books and talking about them. That’s what I ask my students to do so I’m making sure I do it too.
I just finished Heartless by Marissa Meyer. This book is basically a prequel to Alice in Wonderland. It tells the story of Catherine (Cath for short) who will go on to, one day, be the Queen of Hearts. Think about what you remember from Acice in Wonderland: the Queen is always angry – terribly angry – and always shouting ‘Off with her head!’ But why? This book gives life to the Queen’s late childhood, to her first love, to her desire to run her own life and find approval in her parents’ eyes. Plus, it includes all those interesting characters the Lewis Carroll developed to add whimsy and mystique to his books, and now to this one.
Heartless is technically a YA lit book, but it has enough plot and subplot to satisfy any adult reader as well.
My opinion: (I’m trying my best not to include spoilers!) I really enjoyed this book. It took me almost two months to finish, and I can’t figure out why! (I’m sure it had something to do with buying a house and moving, but still!) There is a lot going on in Catherine’s life, and as you read it, it is really fun to try to piece together who ends up where, and which pieces of her life lead to her later actions, based on what I remember from Alice in Wonderland.
The language wasn’t cliche, which I often find in YA literature. It was rich, interesting and varied. The characters weren’t cliched to me either, as long as you understand they were made to match their later equivalent in AiW.
I feel like Meyer did a fantastic job developing multiple plotlines, keeping them all going and interesting, and drawing them together at the end. She made me connect with the characters and I ran the gamut of emotions throughout the book: happiness, anger, disbelief, exhilaration, disgust, sadness, bitterness, etc.
If you are looking for an easy read this summer that will draw you in and keep you interested, I highly recommend Heartless by Marissa Meyer.
BONUS – You can download chapters 1-4 for free here and try it out! I guarantee, once you start it, you’ll have to finish it!
Have you read any of Marissa Meyer’s books? I’ve got 4 more waiting for me, but I haven’t had time to touch them?
What else are you reading? I’m always looking for recommendations, especially now that it’s almost summer! Let me know in the comments!