HEART’S DELIGHT by Per Nilsson


Age Range: 14 & up
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For any teenage girl who has ever wondered if boys have souls, and for any teenage boy without the words for his anguish, this remarkably tender story chronicles a first love. The unnamed narrator is replaying in his head the movie of his relationship with Ann-Katrin (Anka means “duck” in Swedish, and there’s a delightful play on that). From the first sight of her red hair on the school bus, to the scent of the lemon balm (also the “heart’s delight” of the title) on her skin, he plays the movie of his longing and sometimes offers alternative scenes to the way it actually happened. The punctuation is his methodical destruction of all the talismans of their relationship: bus pass, lemon-balm plant, condoms. And he cries. A lot. Their first (and only) sexual encounter is funny, sweet, and true, and graphic only in the intensity of its emotions. Sure to be devoured by its target audience. This is Nilsson’s first US publication, although he has won a number of awards in his native Sweden. (Fiction. YA)

Pub Date: Oct. 15th, 2003
ISBN: 1-886910-92-8
Page count: 160pp
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2003


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