This book doesn’t pull off its ending effectively, but it does have a unique premise. It’s one of the most unique premises I’ve ever encountered in YA. That only makes it worth the read.
One day demons decided to reveal themselves to the world. The unveiling was for a reason…one Dee finds out, when she becomes desperate enough to make a deal with one of the demons.
The book, truthfully, didn’t sound all that interesting. I expected the typical fantasy-lite YA experience with a lackluster romance…the summary has the signs of being one of those…and was surprised with something different. It’s not a great book–it has a lot of weaknesses–but it’s true despite that to say The Hearts We Sold is unlike anything I’ve ever read before.
It’s not really a fantasy. The demons are there to make deals, and there is certainly a magic quality to their existance, but the book radiates contemporary vibes more than anything else.
It touches on heavy themes in a way most YA books fail to do. Dee’s parents are abusive, though more so in an emotional way than in a physical way. It is realistic and gut-wrenching in unexpected ways.
The side characters are interesting and diverse, in such a natural way its a wonder why more books aren’t able to the same. There are several shocking scenes in this book, and not all are main character focused.
The failing point for me was the romance. It was sweet, but didn’t have enough time to develop. So when we get that spoiler-y, shocking ending…I felt nothing but indifference. It was enough that I had to knock a star off on my Goodreads rating. I was engaged with the book from beginning until that end…it was only the ending that lost me as a reader.
I’ve never reading anything by Emily Lloyd-Jones, nor heard of any of the other books she has written, but it’s clear to me from The Hearts We Sold that she has talent. This one may not have all the trappings of a great YA, but it is still worth the read…and worth keeping an eye on Emily Lloyd-Jones’s publishing deals.