In this ode to all the things we gain and lose and gain again, seventeen-year-old Penelope Marx curates her own mini-museum to deal with all the heartbreaks of love, friendship, and growing up.
Welcome to the Museum of Heartbreak.
Well, actually, to Penelope Marx’s personal museum. The one she creates after coming face to face with the devastating, lonely-making butt-kicking phenomenon known as heartbreak.
Heartbreak comes in all forms: There’s Keats, the charmingly handsome new guy who couldn’t be more perfect for her. There’s possibly the worst person in the world, Cherisse, whose mission in life is to make Penelope miserable. There’s Penelope’s increasingly distant best friend Audrey. And then there’s Penelope’s other best friend, the equal-parts-infuriating-and-yet-somehow-amazing Eph, who has been all kinds of confusing lately.
But sometimes the biggest heartbreak of all is learning to let go of that wondrous time before you ever knew things could be broken.
“-and his grin was sly and handsome, like a fox, or a character from a Wes Anderson movie, or that fox character from that Wes Anderson movie, and at that moment, I would have given all my future birthday and four-leaf-clover and stray-eyelash and falling-star wishes to get someone like him to smile like that at me.” (best quote ever)
Meg Leder has written one of the most amazing books ever, museum of heartbreak is a coming of age book, it’s filled with jokes, friendship, dinosaurs, and as the title says, heartbreak, all forms of heartbreak, friends growing apart, love, it’s funny yet heartwarming, easy-going yet deep. Eph is hands down my favorite character, he’s so sweet and talented and funny I just absolutely fell in love specially with how I made him up in my head, it was just amazing.
As Penelope’s friends start growing out of their social triangle, Pen is left behind with childhood memories and traditions she doesn’t want to let go of… until life makes her and she starts, maybe not growing out of this like her friends, but definitely getting over the friend breakup they left her with. As Keats charms Pen with his existence, Audrey and Eph bail on the yearly Fall Festival and Pen’s dad falling head over heels for a dinosaur… Pen’s life becomes a personal adventure and her very own museum of heartbreak.
I would recommend this book to pretty much anyone, yes it is a young adult, yes it is coming of age, but it’s just so good! Maybe it’s just because I, as a teenager, really related to it with the growing up and specially growing out of things and realizing the worst heartbreak is getting over something you never thought could be broken.