Book Review

Book Review: Once Upon a Broken Heart (Once Upon a Broken Heart #1) by Stephanie Garber

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: YA Fantasy
Length: 408 pages
Author: Stephanie Garber
Publisher: Flatiron
Release Date: September 28th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads


How far would you go for happily ever after?

For as long as she can remember, Evangeline Fox has believed in true love and happy endings…until she learns that the love of her life will marry another.

Desperate to stop the wedding and to heal her wounded heart, Evangeline strikes a deal with the charismatic but wicked Prince of Hearts. In exchange for his help, he asks for three kisses, to be given at the time and place of his choosing.

But after Evangeline’s first promised kiss, she learns that bargaining with an immortal is a dangerous game—and that the Prince of Hearts wants far more from her than she’d pledged. He has plans for Evangeline, plans that will either end in the greatest happily ever after or the most exquisite tragedy.


I admittedly let myself hype this one up because I love Garber’s Caraval series. It did let me down a little, but not enough to even suggest I won’t pick up the next book.

Who did I miss most? JACKS. I felt that he wasn’t in it as much as he should have been as the supposed main love interest. He popped in and out until the second half where I finally saw more of him. There wasn’t enough active chemistry between Jacks and Eva for me to fully be on board. I’m interested, I’m testing the waters, but I’m not convinced they are a romantic duo. A lot remains to be seen.

A bit of a wild story moving all over the Northern lands of the Caraval world. I liked that it was in a different location so that things didn’t overlap with previous characters too much and that this could be its own series. There’s A LOT of lore and little stories throughout to tell the background of what’s happening around Eva and what Jacks is trying to accomplish. It was easy to follow and I love Garber’s writing style. While it wasn’t everything I hoped for, I’m excited to see the story continue. JUST GIVE ME MORE JACKS.

Eva has a lot of growth to hopefully look forward to as well. She just seemed to naïve and trusting of every single person. I’m actually hoping she becomes a bit more bitter and gray to see another side of her.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Fantasy Romance
  • Language: very little
  • Romance: make-outs
  • Violence: physical altercations, magical attacks
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: murder, blood depiction

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