Heart-Shaped Hack by Tracey Garvis-Graves – Jenn’s Review

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On The Island is one of my all-time favorite books, and I really enjoy Tracey’s writing.


off the charts


When Kate Watts abandoned her law career to open a food pantry in Northeast Minneapolis, she never dreamed it would be this difficult. Facing the heartbreaking prospect of turning hungry people away, she is grateful for the anonymous donations that begin appearing at the end of each month. Determined to identify and thank her secret benefactor, she launches a plan and catches Ian —a charismatic hacker with a Robin Hood complex—in the act.

Ian intrigues Kate in a way no man ever has. But after learning he’s snooped around on her personal computer, she demands retribution. Impressed with her tolerance and captivated by her spirit, he complies and begins to slowly charm his way past her defenses. Time spent with Ian is never boring, and Kate soon finds herself falling for the mysterious hacker.

But Ian has enemies and they’re growing restless. In the hacking world, exploiting a target’s weakness is paramount, and no price is too high to stop an attack. And when Kate learns exactly how much Ian has paid, she’ll discover just how strong her love is for the man who has hacked his way into her heart.

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Well, this book came out of nowhere and lit up my whole world. I am a huge Tracey fan, and I pre-ordered this, planning to read it on release day. Sadly, it sat on my kindle for months, until I decided to read a few chapters before going to bed. Before I could blink, a few chapters turned into reading the entire book in one sitting. I just couldn’t walk away from Ian and Kate. To be honest, 3 days later, I’m STILL thinking about them.

I tried to sum up Ian in just one word, but that was simply impossible. He’s intelligent and witty. He’s confident, composed and incredibly charming. But, perhaps the best word to describe Ian is persistent. The man knows what he wants and he will use any means necessary to gain the advantage. While this could come across with a creepy stalker vibe, it’s actually cute and endearing.

“You tracked my credit card”?
“Shh, Katie Long Legs. That information is for your ears only. How’s your coffee? Would you like a refill?
“Are you some kind of cyberthief?”
“I did not steal your credit card number. I simply accessed your account to see where and when you’d used it last. Then I came here.”

Katie is a really enjoyable character. I love reading smart, self-assured, positive women. Giving up her job as a high powered attorney to run a food pantry gave her vulnerability, but also helped to make her relatable.  Kate is definitely a favorite character of mine.

This book had so many outstanding elements, but for me, what stood out was the dialogue. There was not a lot of scene set up, or long descriptions about what each person was feeling, or what a room looked like. What we were treated to, was a heavy dose of smart, engaging dialogue. You learned everything you needed to about Kate and Ian from the way they communicated with each other. They never held back and were always open and honest.

The story moves along at a quick pace, due in part to Tracey’s superb storytelling. The writing was fresh and the words flowed effortlessly. The storyline was different and engaging. There was no forced drama, just a beautiful story about two people falling in love, and what comes with that. I found myself  quickly turning the pages to see what they would say next. This wasn’t just a five star read, but one of the best books of 2015.

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