Books

Review | Heartstopper: Volume 4 by Alice Oseman

It’s been a long time since I adored a book series but, over the last couple of years, Heartstopper has taken over my fangirl mind! If you’ve never read Heartstopper or any of Alice Oseman’s books, it’s never too late!! This particular series is all about two teenagers called Charlie Spring and Nick Nelson.

They’re not only trying to get through their GCSEs and school, but also understanding themselves. These two are so special to me! They chat about their sexuality, their mental health and more. Alice doesn’t just focus on Nick and Charlie. She has a cast of characters that are going through their own problems:

  • Abuse
  • Homophobia
  • Depression
  • Family troubles

You name it, Alice has given it a platform to discuss!

I’ve been reading her Heartstopper comics on Tumblr for a few years now and was so happy when she had them published into books! It’s even going to have its own Netflix series in 2022! I’m chatting about Volume 4 because it’s out today and I’ve been sitting on this book for a week to chat about it with you!

Heartstopper

This is going to be a spoiler-free review because the best part of reading is discovering all the surprises yourself! I will be fangirling though so good luck! I’d recommend starting with Volume 1 to get you into the lives of Nick and Charlie but I reckon you could read this alone too!

Plot

Charlie didn’t think Nick could ever like him back, but now they’re officially boyfriends. Charlie’s beginning to feel ready to say those three little words:I love you.

Nick’s been feeling the same, but he’s got a lot on his mind – not least coming out to his dad, and the fact that Charlie might have an (SPOILER).

As summer turns to autumn and a new school year begins, Charlie and Nick are about to learn a lot about what love means.

Heartstopper is about love, friendship, loyalty and mental illness. It encompasses all the small stories of Nick and Charlie’s lives that together make up something larger, which speaks to all of us.

Review

Where can I even start with Volume 4?!

I guess I want to thank Alice Oseman for not only an incredible volume but also for the trigger warnings at the start. So little books contain warnings for what they will discuss and every time I’m triggered. Thankfully we got one here and I’m really glad. One of the topics a character goes through hits very close for me and, even knowing what might be discussed, I still had to put it down for a night.

If you want to know what it is, it’s pretty easy to find out! Haha!

Volume 4 starts with a handy overview of Volume 3 in the form of a diary entry! It’s always adorable to see the different writing styles of the boys! Charlie has a dilemma: is it too early in their relationship to tell Nick that he loves him? It might seem a little thing but don’t forget that Charlie is 15 so this is as big as it gets!

I think more characters should write diary entries! They make scenes even more powerful and really help you connect with whatever that person is going through. Thought that might be just me and my love for visual cues! If Adrien Mole could do it, so can Charlie and Nick!

Just when I thought my heart couldn’t break for these boys more, it shatters! They really go through so much and literally have no idea how to talk it through with anyone. You have one trying to understand something they’ve never thought about before and another battling with themselves. Let’s just say that I’m super glad that they have each other and their friends.

The problems are just linked to the main characters. You also see difficulties with Darcy and Tori too. That’s one of the many things I love about Alice’s universe and her style of writing. None of the characters are perfect and feel both real and very relatable. It doesn’t matter what you’ve gone through. There will be something that you relate to one way or another.

You tend to forget that you’re reading a book and feel as if you’re peeking over the shoulder of different people.

I adore Alice’s art style too! You get so many little details adding to each scene that you always find something new every time you re-read a page. Whether it’s in what a character wears, the texts or even what they’re holding. There is always something new! I’m one of those weird people who love seeing what exam results a character gets or what their Instagram picture is like!

If you’ve never read a graphic novel before, then the Heartstopper series is the perfect set of books to start on! You won’t be disappointed!!

Have you read any of the Heartstopper books before? If not, have you read a graphic novel?

 

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3 Comments

  • Reply
    Rosie Ireland
    7th May 2021 at 10:30 am

    I love the sound of the narrative on this book. Your description of feeling like you’re peeking over someone’s shoulders is amazing!

    Rosie

  • Reply
    Cristina Rosano
    7th May 2021 at 11:38 am

    I actually wanted to pick this series forever and never did! But when I have seen that the fourth was coming out I had to push it on my reading list. I love the sound of this graphic novel. I just started again reading them so hope to pick this up asap! Great review x

  • Reply
    Jodie | That Happy Reader
    8th May 2021 at 2:35 pm

    This sounds like an interesting series for the younger people in my life! Great review. Thanks for sharing.

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