Instructions for a Broken Heart

Instructions for a Broken Heart

by Kim Culbertson

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781402243028
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Publication date: 05/01/2011
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)
Lexile: 800L (what's this?)
Age Range: 13 - 17 Years

About the Author

Kim Culbertson has taught high school English, creative writing, and drama for over ten years and sees her writing as an extension of her teaching. She lives in the Northern California foothills with her husband and daughter, where she loves to drink coffee and look at the clouds. Visit kimculbertson.com

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Instructions for a Broken Heart 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 28 reviews.
BooksWithBite More than 1 year ago
I started this book and BAM! I was hooked and heart broken. Written exceptionally well, Ms. Culberston captures her readers with a great story line that we all experience. What I liked most about this book is the great plot line. Getting over a breakup/cheating significant others is hard. And it even harder when you have to watch them on a school trip! How messed up is that?? I like that through out the plot line the main character, Jessa, grows so much and learns so much. I like how she saw things differently. Some of the things she said made sense. I adored that she stood strong and got some revenge. Though she learn some of those thing did not make her feel better. The characters of this book are very well develop. I adored the Jessa's friends who help her along the way. There were some other nasty secrets that were revealed that made me gasp so much. I am not sure how Jessa is able to handle everything but really this girl got her some back bone. I think I would have had a break down if that were me. The love interest in this book isn't all developed but I like it like that. It left hope for the reader and hope for Jessa that their could be another love. Not all is lost, but that Jessa gain knowledge and experience. I can say that the ending of this book did leave me smiling. I adore that Jessa grew up. She never thought she see the light at the end of the tunnel but she made it. This is a great book a love that is once had but lost. A love that she thought would stand the test of times and didn't. A great coming of age story about love and it's experiences. What is true love anyway? As Jessa begins her new life, she answers many questions she never thought she get.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am reading this book right now an I think it rocks so far!!
_Lily_ on LibraryThing 21 days ago
Instructions for a broken heart by Kim CulbertsonReviewed by Moirae the fates book reviewsThree days before her drama club's trip to Italy, Jessa Gardner discovers her boyfriend in the costume barn with another girl. Jessa is left with a care package from her best friend titled "Top Twenty Reasons He's a Slimy Jerk Bastard," instructing her to do one un-Jessa-like thing each day of the trip. At turns hilarious and heartwrenching, Instructions for a Broken Heart paints a magical Italy in which Jessa learns she must figure out life-and romance-for herself. (Synopsis provided by goodreads)I first heard about this book on another book blog, it sounded like a lot of fun. I found Jessa to be a very fun and very believable character. The different instructions that her friend had her do ranged from the simple to the outrageous. However they were all fun.This book was a very fast light fun read a good beach read. The interactions between all of the characters felt real and the dialog was witty. I loved the conversation towards the end of the book that Jessa has with Natalie. The book had a wonderful ending and I enjoyed the whole thing.I had an issue with an inappropriate interaction with Jessa and one of her teachers. But Culbertson never made it seem okay, she made it very clear that it was inappropriate, so that made me feel a little bit better about it.The images of Italy were very vivid and made me want to visit. I'd read this one again. * Paperback: 304 pages * Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire (May 1, 2011) * Author: Kim Culbertson * Overall rating: *** 3 out of 5 stars * Cover art: I love the cover art. * Obtained: My personal bookshelf.
mrsjason on LibraryThing 21 days ago
Kim Culbertson's first book, Songs for a Teenage Nomad, made my Best Reads of 2010 so I was really looking forward to her next book. She writes in style that I really enjoy and gives insight to characters that most YA writers tend to skim over. I really enjoy how her books are more about what the characters are feeling as opposed to just things that happen to them. This story is about about teenage love, drama, friendship and everything in between mixed in with an armchair vacation to Italy.Jessa's had the worse thing that could happen to a teen girl. She catches her boyfriend in the act of cheating with her right before they are set to go on a school trip to Italy together. You can't run away from the pain and hurt and have a good cry or recover when your ex-boyfriend is down the aisle with his new girlfriend. In order to help Jessa get through this time, her best friend Carissa has written instructions on what to do to get over Sean. Through these instructions, Jessa learns more about Sean, Carissa, and her own self.I feel as if Carissa is at sort of a disadvantage in this story because we only get to know her character from the letters she's written Jessa as well as conversations other characters have about her. We don't get to her personally from her and she's not there to defend her actions or viewpoints. Sometimes it even seemed as if the things she was getting Jessa to do towards Sean are things that Carissa wanted to do herself but couldn't. I personally would have like to read a book from her point of view of the whole situation as well.There's a scene that happens with Jessa and her teacher that thankfully does not go further than it does. I've seen this type of seen happen quite a bit in other YA books and while I know that it can happen, I really don't like it because of all the trouble it causes (among other issues). Things don't get too awkward between them afterward and it's almost forgotten about by the end of the book. One plot that I did wish have more closer involved "Cruella" because I didn't feel as if we got full justification of why she acted the way she did.All the scenes involving the actual trip were fun to read and it made me feel like I really was traveling along with the group. Italy is one of the places that I would love to see before I die so every little bit I discover in stories is a joy to read. What I got most out of this book is remembering all the pain from past heartbreaks when I was in high school and college. It just made me remember that even though you feel like you're never going to heal your broken heart again, that eventually it will happen.This is one of the reasons why I love contemporary YA fiction. I like realism in my books and authors like Culbertson make me feel as if I'm reading a real story about a teen girl who I can empathize with. Jessa doesn't always make the right decisions but she does everything with her heart. And I can totally relate to it. I am looking forward to see what Culbertson will put out next.
Bookswithbite on LibraryThing 21 days ago
I started this book and BAM! I was hooked and heart broken. Written exceptionally well, Ms. Culberston captures her readers with a great story line that we all experience.What I liked most about this book is the great plot line. Getting over a breakup/cheating significant others is hard. And it even harder when you have to watch them on a school trip! How messed up is that?? I like that through out the plot line the main character, Jessa, grows so much and learns so much. I like how she saw things differently. Some of the things she said made sense. I adored that she stood strong and got some revenge. Though she learn some of those thing did not make her feel better.The characters of this book are very well develop. I adored the Jessa's friends who help her along the way. There were some other nasty secrets that were revealed that made me gasp so much. I am not sure how Jessa is able to handle everything but really this girl got her some back bone. I think I would have had a break down if that were me.The love interest in this book isn't all developed but I like it like that. It left hope for the reader and hope for Jessa that their could be another love. Not all is lost, but that Jessa gain knowledge and experience. I can say that the ending of this book did leave me smiling. I adore that Jessa grew up. She never thought she see the light at the end of the tunnel but she made it.This is a great book a love that is once had but lost. A love that she thought would stand the test of times and didn't. A great coming of age story about love and it's experiences. What is true love anyway? As Jessa begins her new life, she answers many questions she never thought she get.
dasuzuki on LibraryThing 21 days ago
I hate when I read a book and feel really dense for not getting it. I feel like I should have felt sympathetic towards Jessa and relate to her heart break after having her heart crushed by a slime ball boyfriend but I really couldn't and found it hard to figure out why I should like her at all. If you know why please let me know. I know she's a teenager and just caught her boyfriend rolling around in a tongue lock with another girl but from what we begin to see maybe she did bring it upon herself. She gets so caught up in herself and what's going on in her life that she's oblivious to what's going on around her even with those who are her supposed best friends. Then she obsesses so much over the break up she can't even enjoy herself the tiniest bit even though she is traveling to all these amazing destinations, seeing places I can only dream of and meeting wonderful people like Dylan Thomas, a funny, nice guy, from another school. She even has the nerve at one point to accuse one of her best friends of being distant because he meets someone else on the trip and stops paying her attention 24/7. Then there are all these little things she finds out about her relationship with her boyfriend and best friend that gives you the impression that she was pretty self-absorbed even before the break up.The other part that wierded me out was her relationship with one of the chaperones Mr. Campbell. Maybe it's the way I read it but some of their interactions seemed totally inappropriate for a teacher/student relationship even if the teacher is young and cool. It would not have been so bad if amidst all of her misery and confusion Jessa acts rashly and does something she knows is totally inappropriate but I got the impression that even though the teacher knows it's wrong he wishes he could pursue it. The only part that I found fun in reading this book was the wife of one of the chaperones from the school that joins Jessa's school on the tour. The comments that come out of her mouth are so unbelievable that you just have to laugh. She's the epitome of the ugly American tourist and you can't help but feel sorry for everyone that has to travel with her. Other than that this book was quite the let down for me. There are several other things that bothered me but I don't want to get into as it would start giving away bits and pieces of the story but they just did not flow well in my opinion and never came together in the end.
blodeuedd on LibraryThing 21 days ago
My thoughts:This was another lovely book by Culbertson, and with this one she has become one of my favourite authors of YA books. She has a way of putting that extra into a tale.Jessa Gardner is a young girl with a lot on her plate, all different clubs and projects. She knows what she wants, but she is also an artist, something she forgets at times. I liked her, and how she found herself again. Because just before leaving for Rome she gets her heart broken by a cheating boyfriend. This is all about her journey, finding who she is, what happened, and what has been going on. She travels through Rome with her drama group, tensions run high, and she follows the instructions from her best friend. And this leads to funny situations, and sad ones too.This is how contemporary YA should be. Warm, funny, thoughtful and it just leaves you happy. Because there is always a rainbow after the rain, and sunshine. It leaves you whole. The writing is good too, it's easy, it flows, and when built around a good story there is nothing to complain about. To be honest the only negative thing I could think of is that Jessa reads The Portrait of the artist as a young man and thinks the book rocks (while I think the book is the most boring book ever written), so there you go, nothing bad to say about it.Conclusion:Like I said, this is how contemporary YA should be according to me. No one too bitchy, not too much drama or angst. But it's still there but not in abundance. I could close this book with a smile on my face and wish Jessa all the best. It's a book I would recommend to all, and I will read more by this author.Rating:Very good.
vampiregirl76 on LibraryThing 21 days ago
Days before she is to leave for Italy with her drama club Jessa catches her boyfriend Sean cheating on her. Now she's stuck watching them cuddle and make-out on the trip. She thinks this trip will be torture. But her bff Carissa, has devised a cleaver way to help her get over her jerk of an ex-boyfriend.Plain and simple this is a very good story. I'm not a big fan of contemporary settings. Mostly I love spending time in fantasy and paranormal worlds. But there is something about Ms. Culbertson writing that I absolutely love. Her characters pull me in and don't let go until I know everything about their journey. Jessa was a great character, someone I could relate to. She starts off stunned and broken hearted but she is still able to find herself in all the hurt. Anyone who has ever been cheated on or dumped should read this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good but the main character really annoyed me.....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I liked this story
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really loved this story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book, and who she ends up with is who I was hoping she would (thats a first)! I recommend this book to anyone who likes realistic fiction and loves reading. If you don't like realistic fiction and reading, don't write a review, nobody cares if you don't like the book, because to me, thats not possible with these books! Please read!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I do not recommend this book. I thought it would be something fun and cute, but it was just boring and dumb. If the best friend could have actually had some creative instructions, it might have been worth it. But the instructions were in no way helpful or innovative, just the usual "list the reasons he doesn't deserve you" cliche stuff. The characters were boring and unrealistic- all of their emotions and actions were so exagerated. The girl was so pathetic, I mean I understand she was sad about her boyfriend cheating, but why would that lead you to extremes like kissing your teacher? or keep letting the whole class know how you're feeling? And the best friend really wasn't much of a friend, how could she have kissed her boyfriend and never have let her know? Basically, it was all a bunch of exagerated silliness. Nothing like Sarah Dessen whose characters are so real and believable.
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