Young Adult Book Review: A Heart in a Body in the World by Deb Caletti

By Chelsea Rodriguez | Springville Road Regional Branch Library 

A Heart in a Body in the World by Deb Caletti is a novel about a girl who decides to run across the country to heal something in her. Annabelle has to run. When the book starts, she has gone through some kind of trauma, but we the reader don't know what sort of grave emotional injury. All we know is that she has to run. Annabelle decides to run from Seattle to Washington, D.C., to process her trauma and hopefully make a difference.

The story is told in a third person narrative. It often felt like Annabelle wanted to keep the reader on the outside of her feelings; that's why the third person narrative felt like a perfect choice. Also, the way her mind would drift to memories while she was running lets us see the tragedy unfold until everything comes together.

I like spending time with Annabelle on her journey. I enjoyed how she didn't realize that her mission was inspiring others until she crossed her first state line. The topics in this book are very timely in that the significant issues are addressed, but I think what makes it enjoyable is not the cause of the trauma or why she is running. I believe that what makes this book excellent and relatable is how the trauma manifests within Annabelle and seeing how she acted before it all happened through her memories. Uplifting and beautiful. If you are interested in YA novels, this one is definitely worth checking out. 

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