Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin
Date of publication: October 29th, 2019
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Ailsa Rae is learning how to live.
She’s only a few months past the heart transplant that – just in time – saved her life. Life should be a joyful adventure. But . . .
Her relationship with her mother is at breaking point.
She knows she needs to find her father.
She’s missed so much that her friends have left her behind.
She’s felt so helpless for so long that she’s let polls on her blog make her decisions for her. And now she barely knows where to start on her own.
And then there’s Lennox. Her best friend and one time lover. He was sick too. He didn’t make it. And now she’s supposed to face all of this without him.
But her new heart is a bold heart.
She just needs to learn to listen to it . . .
It’s 3 a.m. here in cardio-thoracic.The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland
I wasn’t expecting how emotional The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae made me. I knew, going into it that it was a book about life after a transplant. The physical limitations, the medications that need to be taken, and don’t forget, the mental adjustment is enormous. The author did a fantastic job of showing that all.
The plotline for The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae was well written and well researched. There were a few times where I wished that there was a glossary for different medical terms. I liked the pacing of the book too. It wasn’t too fast, and it wasn’t too slow. It was just right for me to get settled in and read.
I liked Ailsa. The strength that she showed during the book was unbelievable. I mean, she had a heart transplant!! I loved her sense of humor and her determination to have a healthy life. There were things about her I didn’t like. She was too trusting and wore her heart on her sleeve. She battled her mother about her biological father. And then there was Seb….sigh.
I wasn’t a fan of the blog inserts. I get why the author wrote them. It gave additional insight into how Ailsa’s mind worked. It showed how her mindset evolved from right before the transplant to the end of the book. Still, I wasn’t a fan. I had an issue transitioning between the POV. It went from 2nd person (the blog posts) to 3rd person. Also, while I am on it, I wasn’t a fan of the articles written about Ailsa and Seb. To me, those articles show everything that is wrong with today’s society. No wonder Ailsa freaked out. I would have too.
Ailsa’s relationship with Seb was cute until the end. Then it got confusing. After that sound bit was released (and yes, it sounded awful), I wasn’t sure what they were. That last email between them only muddied the waters for me. I hate being confused!!!
I do want to mention that a lot of British and Scottish slang is used. I did have an issue with the Scottish slang. Mainly being that I only read historical Scottish romances and modern-day slang isn’t allowed. Again, it would have been handy to have a glossary included.
The storyline with Hayley, Ailsa, and her biological father broke my heart. I was with Ailsa at first. She had every right to learn about her biological father. I couldn’t understand why Hayley wasn’t so forthcoming. Then, at the end of the book, everything was revealed, and I understood. I won’t say much more about it except that Hayley handled everything like a BOSS!!! I loved her!!
The end of The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae was emotional for me. There was confusion about Seb and Ailsa. But it was the final chapter that had me sobbing. I loved it!!
I would give The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae an Older teen rating. There is a mention of sex. There is mild language. There is no violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.
I would reread The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae. I would recommend it to family and friends.
**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**