Tin Heart, written by Shivaun Plozza, is a young adult book that look at grief, health, friendship, difference and the fragility of life. Marlowe has had a heart transplant and is desperate to meet with the donor family. Her heart belonged to a 16 year old male. Marlowe eventually finds his sister and befriends her, however doesn’t divulge her intentions.
Marlowe is from a single mum family, and has a brother, both adore her and want to protect her from the health issues she has had in the past. Her mother, a staunch vegan is over protective and stifles Marlowe in many ways. Her brother has chosen humour to help her sister get through, and he dresses up daily – from a Cyborg to the Princess of Whales. The family is an eccentric unit, and this is a lovely story line of fierceness, loyalty and individuality.
The grief and transition Marlowe experiences throughout the book is an insight into transplant and what its like to receive an organ. The comparison Marlowe has made about Frankenstein and being built of other peoples bits is confronting. The subject is dealt with honestly and openly.
I enjoyed Tin Heart and this is would appeal to lots of adults as well as young adults as it’s well written and deals with real life issues.