“Eagan is a teenager whose passion is ice skating and whose dream is to skate professionally. She has the support of both parents. However, her mother’s support is stifling to Eagan due to secrets and lies; in turn, their relationship is a constant battle. Eagan makes a wrong move during one of her competitions and dies from a head injury.
“Amelia, who is in desperate need of a heart transplant in order to live, gets Eagan’s heart. Once on her way to recovery after the transplant, Amelia begins to notice changes in herself; she notices changes in her attitude, her likes and dislikes, even the things that she gets emotional over that would not have fazed her before. Amelia meets Ari, the brother of a transplant patient, who explains to her that it is not uncommon for patients to become part of the person from whom the organ came. Because of the connection Amelia now feels to her donor, she is determined to meet Eagan’s family; and Ari helps her. Eagan’s mother is resistant at first, but when Amelia gets sick, Eagan’s mother visits her in the hospital and makes a peace with her daughter and her death. Eagan, in an afterlife experience, watches as the whole story plays out.
“Heartwarming and compassionate describe the magnificent work Loretta Ellsworth has done in her book In a Heartbeat. The style in which she writes this story allows the reader to keep up with each individual character’s story and anticipate connections between and among them. Ellsworth has created two heart wrenching stories and intertwined each into the other.”