Love Hurts [Book Review]

Love Hurts is a collection of short stories and extracts curated by Malorie Blackman, author of Noughts and Crosses.

I loved this part in her introduction:


“Love hurts. Sometimes. If it didn’t, a significant portion of the stories throughout the world would disappear.”

I adore this. It is rare to read a book that does not encompass love in some form or another. Even if it is for inanimate objects. Even in my encounters with patients, it is not hard to see who or what they love. You don’t even have to like romance to notice that.

True to its form, this anthology has a little something for everybody. I cannot say that I enjoyed every story, but I loved quite a few of them.

My biggest beef was the amount of extracts – and you should be warned about it before you start reading this book. 17 of the stories are extracts from existing novels, only seven are original stories.

A quick round-up of my thoughts about the original stories:

  1. Humming Through My Fingers by Malorie Blackman

I loved that the protagonist is disabled, and it is a very cutesie story, but I don’t enjoy the dialogue and the protagonist does one VERY stereotyped moved that annoys me a lot (and my dad is blind, so I am familiar with the blind community).

  1. Tumbling by Susie Day

This one MADE MY DAY and is probably my all-time favourite. LGBTQIA romance with geek girls. It’s so awesome, I can’t even.


  1. Gentlewoman by Laura Dockrill

Another gorgeous LGBTQIA tale of love, family and friendship. I love the journey Dockrill takes the reader on here.

  1. Miss Lucy had a Steamboat by David Levithan

ANOTHER LGBTQIA, but wholly different from regular love stories. I love that this one is real and stark and not the usual idyllic treacle.

  1. Endless Love: The Valentine of Daniel and Lucinda by Kate Lauren

This is a side-story to the Fallen-series. I never finished this series so I had some trouble following, but overall I enjoyed it a lot more than I enjoyed Fallen itself, so that was a pleasant surprise.

  1. The Liar’s Girl by Catherine Johnson

Jamaican protagonist with some magic and deception thrown in the mix. Wicked!

  1. The Unicorn by James Dawson

A story set in the Navy! Sweet and sad.

Some books that I decided to read based on the excerpts in this book:

  • More Than This by Patrick Ness
  • Trouble by Non Pratt
  • I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak
  • Echo Boy by Matt Haig

So that’s four out of seventeen excerpts… and I can’t help but wonder what the incentive is for a book that mostly made up of excerpts. I would have loved it infinitely more had it had more original stories because they were generally of EXCELLENT quality.

The cover is cute too, and depending on the cost I might actually purchase this book – either for myself or for a lovestruck teenager.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and Random House Children’s in exchange for an honest review.


  1. Read Robyn says:

    Jamaican protagonist? Intriguing. 🙂

    1. barefootmegz says:

      YES! And she has some other books that sound like pure wonder! Do you have any books with Jamaican protagonists to recommend?

      1. Read Robyn says:

        Not any medical ones :\ But The Lonely Londoners by Samuel Selvon is a nice Caribbean mix.

      2. barefootmegz says:

        Oh, it doesn’t have to be medical – I’ll check out The Lonely Londoners, then!

  2. harveylisam says:

    I read Noughts & Crosses when I was a lot younger and loved it. 🙂

  3. lissiet says:

    I need a book of short stories for my Popsugar challenge – I should check this one out
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

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