Heartstopper (Volume 1)
Story and Art: Alice Oseman
Summary from Amazon:
Nick and Charlie are best friends, but one kiss has changed everything. In the aftermath, Charlie is sure that Nick isn’t interested, but Nick is more confused than ever.
Love works in surprising ways, and Nick comes to see the world from a new perspective. He discovers all sorts of things about his friends, his family… and himself.
I just have a dopey smile after finishing this book. Come on, if you’ve basked on the cuteness and fluffiness that was Nick and Charlie for an entire book, I bet you’ll have the same look on your face as I did. Alice Oseman maintained that laid-back pace from the first book which I enjoyed. There were some emotional and tense scenes here and there, but they were all handled in a way that didn’t make them melodramatic. I looked forward to picking up this book when I’m winding down so that kind of feel made me relax.
While this book showed the honeymoon phase of the two, this was also all about Nick — his struggles as he navigated this change on himself. Learning and adjusting to how you see things, especially how you view yourself was not an easy thing. Nick went through that with baby steps, and I cheered him as I read. He wasn’t the character I expected him to be. When I started reading this, I was like, “Okay, Nick was cute.” But then again, there were a whole lot of other charming, sweet, and cute love interests like him. But Nick wasn’t just some eye candy whose sole purpose was to give the flutters for the other lead and the readers as well. He grew as the story progressed and that was endearing to see.
I love the main leads, that’s for sure, but the secondary characters came in a close second. Not just one or two side characters but the rest of the cast like Nick’s mother, Charlie’s family, and Charlie’s friends. It warmed my heart to see this kind of support system because not everyone was lucky to have those, even if everyone deserved them. Take Tao, for example, he seemed like a drama queen and overprotective of Charlie when he was just as scared and worried for his friend. Charlie’s family had been really accepting of him, but I was touched by the scene where his father wanted Charlie to call him if his son needed anything. And, of course, Nick’s mom. She’s awesome.
The second book also introduced some side pairings that I’m already rooting for like Tao and Elle – ugh, cute, and Tara and Darcy. I’m crossing my fingers for more developments for the former and more backstories for the latter in the next volumes. The mini-story at the back of the book about Tara and Darcy’s story was not enough.
I’m excited for the next volume on how the two will navigate the world around them. Also, I hope there are more snippets of diary entries from the two of them because those were really cute and fun to read.
Have you read this book? If not, do you plan on reading this? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!