Thursday, October 8, 2015

Heart-Shaped Hack by Tracey Garvis Graves

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. 

Heart-shaped hack was far more HEA than I was anticipating. I know I'm making it sound like it's a bad thing but for me it was a little too cut and dry. I was expecting more build-up, more resistance, more romance growth, and sadly I didn't get too much of that. I wanted it for this kind of story.

Here's a brief run down of what the story is about:

Hot lawyer-woman turned philanthropic food pantry owner is struggling to keep the pantry afloat. When suddenly, in comes random donations from someone who has chosen to keep their identity secret. Determined to catch him--because we at least know it's a him--she hatches a plan to do just that, and meeting him changes her life. But of course, he's not that simple--and neither is his lifestyle. This causes Kate to question whether loving him is worth it. Etc, etc, etc, HEA. 

When I seen that the love interest was a hacker I jumped all over this book. I love computers and the idea of someone being a hacker in a book is total yes for me. But when I think of someone being a hacker I think of someone, hard to pin down, tricky, sly, and obviously very smart. I don't think of anyone like Ian. Ian is a hacking genius but he's gorgeous, well-off, and nothing like what you'd imagine. This could be both good and bad, I'll let you decide. 

I liked Ian. He had a charismatic way about him, that left me with a smile or four. He could sometimes rub you the wrong way, but I think my issue with him was he was far too into it--into Kate, before I had the chance to see what he can really do. If that makes any sense. I wanted him to be harder to get. I was expecting for him to randomly hack into Kate's things. Be clever, irritating, and just outright irresistible--in a mysterious kind of way. He was, somewhat, but it was all pretty lightweight. 

Kate was a cool MC, I didn't hate her, but I wasn't in love her. My feelings toward her were pretty neutral. Ian was the star. Maybe that's just the woman in me talking, drawn to the not-so-illusive hacker. Her life was interesting, rewarding, but it wasn't all that exciting. 

All in all this is a really good read, it was just too easy, too fast. Did I mention that there is pretty much no build-up? I don't want to say insta-love but it was fairly close. I'm not too much into easy love that way. Their love had a setback, of course, but it was minute, like running over a rock in the road, as opposed to hitting a tree or something more dramatic.

I'm blathering but, to put it blankly--yes this book is cute, yes you'll like it, but I wanted more, I needed more. I honestly expected more and I didn't get it. So I'm not totally satisfied. But I'm not wholly disappointed so I'd say that's a win. 

Yeah, I got this making sense of this review thing down pat. :P

Three and a half stars for the smiles I smiled, the readability, and Ian's charm.


  1. I really want to read this because I enjoyed some of her other books. I also like the idea of a hacker in the story. Sorry it left you a little unsatisfied. Great review(and it did make sense :) )!

    1. Haha thanks! I hope you like it. I want to read On The Island next!

  2. Boo for there not being as much growth as you would have liked, that is so important whether in a character, plot, or in romance. But, yay for the story being a good one. ;)

  3. awww.. sad that it didn't actually make you heaps happy after reading it.

  4. Aw. I know you didn't quite enjoy this and all, but man, I can never get enough of feel good stories such as this! thanks for the heads up, anyway, jaz. :)

  5. If there's no build up I can't read this book. I'm glad you liked it but no build up in a relationship is one of my biggest book pet peeve

    1. Yeah but you might still like it, it's something to borrow :)

  6. I know what you mean about it being too easy. But I also hate when there's too much drama and it's too hard. That nice in between is when it really works for me. Great review! ~Pam