Sunday, July 17, 2022

The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang: review

4/5 stars on Goodreads

The Heart Principle by Helen Hoang

The Heart Principle is the third book in The Kiss Quotient series of romances that follows three Vietnamese American men and their romances. It’s also the best of the three.

Anna Sun is a violinist suffering from burnout caused by sudden fame and lifelong masking of her autistic side to be good enough for her family. When her boyfriend of five years wants to see other people, she goes on a dating app and finds Quan Diep, a businessman recovering from cancer. It’s supposed to be a one-night stand, but they are having trouble in the bedroom, and so they keep rescheduling dates. Anna’s anxieties cause them some problems, but Quan has experience of autistic persons and knows how to give her space and support.

A true test of their budding relationship comes when Anna has to become a full-time caregiver of her father. The pressure of her family and the workload causes her to burn out even worse than before, and before she realises what’s happening, she’s managed to break Quan’s heart. Good thing he’s almost unbelievably understanding.

This was a great book. Unlike the other two, it was told in first person by Anna and Quan both, which gave the characters greater depth. The romance took a backseat towards the end of the book and Anna’s recovery became the focus. It wasn’t made easy or glossed over, but I would’ve liked Quan’s point of view to it too. After all, he was put in the same position as her caregiver Anna had been, and it would’ve been nice to see how he handled the pressure. And while the emotional payoff wasn’t about the romance in the end, it was sweet and satisfying. A good ending for the trilogy.

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