August 7, 2011

Review: Instructions For a Broken Heart by Kim Culbertson

PhotobucketSynopsis (from Goodreads): Three days before her drama club's trip to Italy, Jessa Gardner discovers her boyfriend in the costume barn with another girl. Jessa is left with a care package from her best friend titled "Top Twenty Reasons He's a Slimy Jerk Bastard," instructing her to do one un-Jessa-like thing each day of the trip. At turns hilarious and heartwrenching, Instructions for a Broken Heart paints a magical Italy in which Jessa learns she must figure out life-and romance-for herself.

Review: So. My first one star review. And on a book I thought I would love, no less. I feel really bad giving Instructions For A Broken Heart such a low rating - I tried so hard to find something, anything, I liked, but ultimately I drew a blank.
Reading that synopsis, I was expecting a light, fluffy novel, probably in the same vein as Anna and the French Kiss. Instead, I got an annoying main character that squanders a trip to beautiful Italy by being the most petty, pathetic and just downright annoying female lead that I have read in a long while. I mean, I understood that Jessa was upset, she had every right to be. But her actions were just unbelievable. The things that should have made her mad, she completely ignored and things that were inconsequential had her in tears or performing a completely irrational response. I just could not relate or comprehend it at all.
The synopsis gave a hint that there’d be a romance with a cute Italian guy, but that never happened. Did I read a different book? Because the only romance (I use the word romance loosely here) I saw came in the last 10 pages and was utterly pointless and confusing. There was an Italian guy, but he was involved in some ridiculous sub-plot that had nothing to do with the main story and seemed totally out of place.
I honestly felt perpetually confused while reading this book. There was no rhyme or reason to any of the character’s actions and none of them were particularly likable. I kept reading only for the fact that I thought it must get better. Unfortunately, it starts badly and just continues going down-hill. A disappointing read that I had such high hopes for.
Rating: 1 out of 5


  1. It's a one-star kind of day today I think! This is the 3rd one star review I've come across. It's always hard to give such low ratings, but Jessa does sound like a difficult character to relate too and if you can't connect to the protagonist it's difficult to get into the story at all. Thanks for your thoughts on this one Rachel!

  2. Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts and opinions about the book.

    Sherry Soule Official Website

    Author of the Spellbound Series