Review: Alive

Chandler Baker - Alive
Published: June 9, 2015 by Disney-Hyperion
Pages: 368
Genres: Contemporary, Horror, Young Adult
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads, Book Depository
Rating: 2.5/5

Stella Cross's heart is poisoned.

After years on the transplant waiting list, she's running out of hope that she'll ever see her eighteenth birthday. Then, miraculously, Stella receives the transplant she needs to survive.

Determined to embrace everything she came so close to losing, Stella throws herself into her new life. But her recovery is marred by strange side effects: Nightmares. Hallucinations. A recurring pain that flares every day at the exact same moment. Then Stella meets Levi Zin, the new boy on everyone's radar at her Seattle prep school. Stella has never felt more drawn to anyone in her life, and soon she and Levi are inseparable.

Stella is convinced that Levi is her soul mate. Why else would she literally ache for him when they are apart?

After all, the heart never lies...does it?

WARNING: Beware the spoilers. They may be deemed potentially uncool.

Y'all have no idea how many GIFs from Selena Gomez's "The Heart Wants What It Wants" I had to hold off on.

Stella Cross is dying. Literally. Her heart has failed her, and after being on the organ donor list for so long, she has since lost hope at living a full life. So when a new heart unexpectedly arrives, she and her family are gracious and Stella is wanting only to return to school. Her friends are welcoming. Her parents worry after "the Replacement Child," their toddler, Elsie. All is well in the world. So when the mysterious Levi Zim moves to town, every girl in school is immediately enamored by him and Stella is one of them. However, Levi only has eyes for Stella and feelings are mutual, obviously. Soon, they begin a relationship.

During one of my reading updates, I classified this as instalove, but I'll take it back because it really isn't. It's more of an infatuation. Stella is monstrously obsessed with Levi. Her heart physically aches when she sees him. (Keep that little fact in mind.)

Stella is also occasionally attracted to her good friend, Henry. He protected her from fuckboys and I honestly didn't think she deserved him. He was so nice. Stella was so wild and batshit manic, trying to jump into his window in the middle of the night and popping off on him for no reason, and he'd still be like, “Wassup?”

I hate love-triangles. Back in the day, I was a big fan of Twilight. I remember how obsessed everyone was with the Edward/Jacob/Bella mess. I was crazy about Edward myself. Other reviewers claimed how this love-triangle was something so vital, so important, but it wasn't. It was messy and something not. One minute, Stella would be all, “Levi is so sexysexy. I need him all day, every day.” And in the next, she’d been pawing after Henry.

So Stella believes her heart is possessed. She faints and sweats and and has gory, Carrie-esque hallucinations, which were legitimately terrifying. But instead of doing the right thing and telling her doctor, she tells Henry and, after a predictable plot-twist, Levi is discovered to be the previous owner of her heart, who is dead and wants his heart back pronto.
And Stella is all too willing to hand it over. If we were to flash-forward through the unimportant bits, we wouldn't have a book. The ending was irritating. Stella, who experienced hallucinations and sweats and mood swings, was miraculously fine after a casual cliff dive? Why? An uncool, vague mess. Really, I only liked Brynn, but she couldn't even save this trainwreck for me. Definitely a read to pass up on.


  1. Oh yikes, I'm so sorry you didn't like this one! This book took a 180 genre switch. I actually really liked that aspect, but yeah the love triangle was a bit annoying...

    Rachel @ A Perfection Called Books

    1. Yeah, the love-triangle irked me some. It had some interesting Carrie-esque moments in it, so that was cool!


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