• Booktastically Amazing

Once Upon a Broken Heart (book review)

by Stephanie Garber


"Whenever you feel dumb, remember, I went into this fully aware that my heart was going to get stomped on at some point. Did that stop me? Pfft, heeeeck no."


Spoiler- Free Synopsis:


Evangeline Fox was raised in her beloved father’s curiosity shop, where she grew up on legends about immortals, like the tragic Prince of Hearts. She knows his powers are mythic, his kiss is worth dying for, and that bargains with him rarely end well.


But when Evangeline learns that the love of her life is about to marry another, she becomes desperate enough to offer the Prince of Hearts whatever he wants in exchange for his help to stop the wedding. The prince only asks for three kisses. But after Evangeline’s first promised kiss, she learns that the Prince of Hearts wants far more from her than she’s pledged. And he has plans for Evangeline that will either end in the greatest happily ever after, or the most exquisite tragedy…


A new series about love, curses, and the lengths that people will go to for happily ever after.

Why did I feel like my soul was being taken from my chest and willingly left in Jacks's hands? Oh that's right, BECAUSE I PUT IT THERE.

I thought I was done with this book, AHAHAHAHAHAHA.

This book was so not done with me.


Rating: 💔💔💔💔💔 4.7

I've been waiting and waiting... and waiting, for the right words to come out of my mouth and splatter across the keyboard, to describe all the different emotions this book brought out of me.

I felt loved, hated, tearful, frustrated, blessed, infatuated, obsessed, sad, angry and if I had all the time in the world (let's face it, even if I did, I would be all, THIS BOOK WAS IUGFCDXERFTGYHUIJKJNHBGVFCDXERTFGYHUJI. The sacred language of fangirling everywhere)I could explain all of those emotions one by one. Alas, I do not have enough time, nor the necessary brain cells to bestow upon my charcoal masked face the ability to express myself with something akin to intelligence.

Needing to fangirl and screech and scream, I shall start this all, with the following:

OH MY GAWD, OH MY GOODNESS, BLOODY HEARTS ON A SCREWDRIVER. WHAT IS HAPPENING, AHH, IT HURTS. MY HEART, WHERE IS IT?? GFTFGYIHUOBYVGFCDXSZREDTGYUHJN I CANNOT CONTINUE WITH LIFE. I GIVE UP. I CAN'T NO MO-

Hello, and welcometh yallselves to my humble abode of tears and rereading a certain chapter where a certain someone almost got turned into a certain bloodsucking something. (if you understood that, we're either the same person or soulmates) And of course, without forgetting that um... someone in the room *looks directly at you, yes, I can see you through the screen. My telepathy abilities are too strong* squealed like a maniac on about- let's calculate... oh that's right! THE WHOLE BOOK. Okay, fine! It was me=. I was the creepy 3 am voice that woke you up and made you think that a chair with clothes was an actual human. And it was also me that, with that act, made you burrow beneath the covers in search of a book to binge while the terror coursed through your body. So now, this is me, telling you to pretty please read this book so I can stop hunting you and coercing you (however gently) to read it.

Jacks is a freaking blessing, and come on, don't you want to stop bleaching your eyes after reading about a bad love interest? Oh wait, is that just me?


*speshul snowflake syndrome selected*

I know, I know, I sound half-insane- but get this, I haven't stopped thinking about this book for about three days. I need to get all the creepy and crazy Booksy out of my system. And with that, let's continue All The Ways Booksy Can Fangirl Without Giving The Neighbors Pure Nosebleeds Because Of The High Celine Dion Notes.

"Psst, go read Caraval first, though." -only sane brain cell.

The plot of this story, moved at the pace of me trying to go to the bathroom in a socially awkward situation. It jumped, hurdled, didn't miss anything, flew, outright told me to clear my schedule BECAUSE I WAS FINISHING THE BOOK IN ONE SITTING and I absolutely followed its instructions. The world was so magical, the chapters arrested my attention and held it hostage for the majority of the book. I adored the premise of how grandiose everything was. I was smiling and giggling whenever the characters would go from mystery to mystery, trying to solve it all. The scent of candied apples and oh, so delicious vials of poison made me all the more interested in the book and my goodness, I didn't regret a thing (okay, maybe I did, but that's not the point). I was on the edge of my seat for everything occurring, swooning into a mount of pillows every five seconds, basically dying over all the new characters and AHHHH, it was beautiful.

And you know what? I just thought of the perfect word for this, ish= mefallingforeverythingin400pagesofnearperfection

(I'm so smart-)

The writing... It's Stephanie Garber, y'all. She could describe a man with pale rock skin and vampires with glowing muscles and I would believe that ish like it was hot chocolate and I was, well, me. There is no way, and I mean this sincerely, no way at all that any other author would've been able to describe Jacks as a fallen angel in such a way that I would want to die early so he could carry me to paradise. I'm not dead, but I might as well have been with all the help my respiratory system gave me when dresses were described.

Want a candy apple, ruffled, knee-length dress with the scent of baby powder and dandruff? Yeah, me neither. But Garber tells me that THAT is the fashion in the 'magic' world? HAHAHAHAAHA, does anybody have some dandruff to spare?

It was mouthwatering, and honestly... boo, teach me how to write like that, because hot dang! I need some of that 'SPWICE'.

(have you gotten tired of me yet? Oh well, because now you're really going to. Pfft)

Unto the characters because my peace of mind has been on edge lately and I have to exorcise them from my memory. All but one, of course. I liked the Bell.

The MC was just as expected. Annoying and very kind. I suppose I should've started with kind, but ugh, her decisions made me question if I was actually as dumb as I thought. Hi, hello, my name's Evangeline and I have like, pink hair and like, let's just free my ex from the clutches of a supernatural creature and like, pretend he's not going to kill me or anything. Oh! And pretend he loved me as much as I loved him, so I could pray to a vicious Fate in return of making Luc with Luve love me again. And also, I truly believe in love at first sight.

Bruh, nuh-uh. I can stand you being all whiny because of Luc, I truly understood half of what you were feeling. But you were expecting a PRINCE, to fall for you, (and no, I don't mean Prince of Hearts) just because of a kiss? Technically he did, but that's not what I mean- Do I believe she could've been a smarter, better MC? Absolutely. However, she was actually pretty nice at times and I liked her for the majority of the story. Yes, I'm aware I contradicted myself. It's part of my charm, *snort*.

The background characters, as always with Garber, were flawless. And flawfull, but that's okay too. I loved them either way and would break them down one by one, but I need to get to my future husband real quick-

JACKS. Oh dear, that was loud. Jackkkksssssssss. Hello, dahling. I bet you're feeling mighty bored with Eva so if you could, maybe, give me a call? I don't mind Fates, and I certainly don't mind you... CAN I HEAR A 'YES, DUDE' FROM THE BACK? The amount of fangirling comments, and status updates I made throughout the whole book, made me really appreciate those people that have stayed with me for this long. This man, gorgeous being, ethereal monster, delicious buffet, everything spicy and oh so very nice, was just what my heart needed. You, Jacks, are living in my brain rent-free. You've changed my genetic code, you blubicious moron. Instead of DNA, I have INJ (I need Jacks). Now my blood type isn't vcfty7, now it's YRUSOINFURIATINGLYPERFECT. You've ruined me, Prince of Hearts.

And I would willingly let you do it all over again- CUT CUT, LET'S MOVE ON, PEOPLE.

Okay, okay, he was perfect. Swoony, and I adored how we got to see this new side of him. The caring, albeit crueler side. The side that made me understand him so much better and made me fall for him ever so quickly. Books and letters and paragraphs don't do him justice. He just is, and he exists in his own world of Magic.


"This close, he was undeniably attractive, and taller than she’d realized. He gave her a real smile, revealing a pair of dimples that briefly made him look more angel than devil. But she imagined even angels would need to beware of him. She could picture him flashing those deceptive dimples as he tricked an angel into losing its wings just so he could play with the feathers. “It’s you,” she whispered. “You’re the Prince of Hearts.”

(no crap, Sherlock) *crying in the distance*

On a closing note, this review has been long enough, I think. Long enough for me to understand that I'm just not getting over it, anytime soon. AHAHAHAHA, I'm hurting right now. The plot was amazing, it had flaws, yes, but I accepted them nonetheless. The writing was tearfully shocking, worldbuilding= delightful, characters= life-threatening. And guess what! NO ROMANCE IN THE FIRST BOOK.


Those steamy scenes really did make up for them because oh hollyyyyy nighhhhttttt- I was drenched in sweat.


“Liar. I’m not hurting you or kissing you.” He moved the hand at her neck to toy with her racing pulse, softly dragging his fingers up and down over the frantic beat-beat-beat, making her heart pound even faster. “I think this excites you.”
“You’re delusional!” Evangeline finally pulled away. Her heart was racing, but it wasn’t from excitement, she was sure. Although, maybe, there was just a tiny hint of it, but she couldn’t fathom why.
Jacks laughed under his breath. “Relax, Little Fox. I’m not trying to ruin you.”

Oh, bloody Hades-

HONORABLE MENTIONS:

  • Freaking everything.

  • The friendships.

  • The mysteries.

  • The bloody door that I don't know what the heck it's supposed to do yet.

  • Jacks.

  • Jacks.

  • Did I mention Jacks?

  • Oh, I didn't?

  • Jacks.

  • The second book. Where is it? Hahaha, I DON'T KNOW.

P.S: Do you want to read it yet?