Review: Broken Heart by Tammy Faith

Title: Broken Heart
Author: Tammy Faith

Genre: YA, Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Tammy Faith

Pub Date: July 2015
Rating: 3 Stars

Our thoughts...
Potential ~ Potential ~ Potential

The key word for this book is potential. There is so much potential and I say that in the best way possible. The subject matter is bold, especially for a debut novel, but represents an important perspective on a difficult subject matter (Big trigger warning! Click on the Goodreads link below for the synopsis). It’s a perspective that is often represented in a flouncy sort of way instead of one of realistic strength and inner-growth. Tammy Faith does a great job with the latter representation. Her main character fights to conquer major life challenges in an honorable way.

The greatest detriment to this novel lies with the beta readers (or whoever read this prior to publishing). Someone, somewhere down the line, should have called attention to some significant issues. This book has so much potential but that potential was suppressed by the early readers. Select readers get read the story early so that problems can be fixed before publishing. Not everyone is meant to take on that responsibility. I would make a horrible beta reader because I am far better at being supportive and nurturing. I know this about myself and therefore never volunteer for the job. I like reading to enjoy and, unless things really stand out, I try to let issues slide. It’s great to have supporters in your corner but a critical eye can take a novel from ‘okay’ to great.

I’m not going to go too far into the issues I had with the story because a little editing could really make this story something special. I would like to give a few examples so my complaints can be better understood. My biggest issue was the timeline. This story would have greatly benefited from a tighter timeline as opposed to stretching the story out over years. Some stories need to span years but this one doesn’t gain much from it. It is also hard to get a clear picture of just how long the story spans because events are discussed as happening “yesterday” but then quickly jumps to months later without notice. Transitions in time are weak and subtly announced. This same story could have happened over a shorter period of time, allowing for a more consistent, less-confusing flow.

The jumps in time also cause the reader to miss out on major events. I am all for summarizing some events instead of over-stretching the story but there were some pretty hefty topics that only garnered a sentence or two. I wanted to know how these characters felt in the moment, not months later. Some of these events were life-altering and the way a person feels months after an event is generally different from in the moment. I was invested in these characters and wanted to experience why they felt a certain way and see their journey to their decisions.

If there were betas or early readers, they let the author down. Proofreaders exist because everyone makes mistakes and can get trapped in their own head. Betas aren’t there to blow smoke but to point out important issues such as plot holes, inconsistencies, flow problems, and issues with the timeline. This book has real potential; it could have garnered an honest five stars if, and only if, someone had been honest and critical instead of just flattering. This book could have been big. I look forward to reading more from this author, I really do. Faith has an interesting and strong perspective that is worth hearing. Her characters are unique and she isn’t afraid to take them to dangerous places.

Broken Heart on Goodreads
Broken Heart on Amazon

1 comment:

  1. It is a shame when a book could be great but isn't due to not having the proper people beta read-its like any job, a carpenter is only as good as his tools are, a teacher is always better if she herself takes a class to understand better what she will be teaching, and a beta reader is really a necessity, not friends! Greaat review Jenny Vee!