The Secret of a Heart Note by Stacey Lee


An evocative novel about a teen aroma expert who uses her extrasensitive sense of smell to mix perfumes that help others fall in love while protecting her own heart at all costs

Sometimes love is right under your nose. As one of only two aromateurs left on the planet, sixteen-year-old Mimosa knows what her future holds: a lifetime of weeding, mixing love elixirs, and matchmaking—all while remaining incurably alone. For Mim, the rules are clear: falling in love would render her nose useless, taking away her one great talent. Still, Mimosa doesn’t want to spend her life elbow-deep in soil and begonias. She dreams of a normal high school experience with friends, sports practices, debate club, and even a boyfriend. But when she accidentally gives an elixir to the wrong woman and has to rely on the lovesick woman’s son, the school soccer star, to help fix the situation, Mim quickly begins to realize that falling in love isn’t always a choice you can make.

At once hopeful, funny, and romantic, Stacey Lee’s The Secret of a Heart Note is a richly evocative coming-of-age story that gives a fresh perspective on falling in love and finding one’s place in the world.

My heart is about to explode. You know that feeling you get when you’re happy–really happy? Your throat knots up, your chest constricts, and it’s like floating on whimsy. Reading this book felt like that. It’s the sort of magical realism I love, the sort that doesn’t leave you broken or destroyed, but the one that means something absolutely beautiful.

Oh my word, guys. Where do I even start here? The writing was gorgeous, like eating whipped cream. Fluffy and sweet and creamy and light. This book felt like a fairytale. I loved how everything was so vivid, because we not only got to imagine what Mim felt and saw, we got to see imagine what she smelled. It was like being immersed in a whole new world.

The romance was sweet and slow and wonderful. As it developed it didn’t feel cheesy or cliche, just… wonderful.

The charactersssss. Omw people the characters. Everyone was so vivid on the page, partially because of how we got to see them, but also because they were crafted skillfully and carefully.

While the plot isn’t the most important part about this novel, it was still very well done, but simple. I appreciated that, because these days authors are asking how they can complicate things more and more when sometimes you just need a simple boy-meets-girl story. A palate cleanser, so to speak.

I loved how Mim and her mother were witches, but they still felt inherently human, not like some otherworldly beings. It was super refreshing.


Initimacy – mild kissing, maybe innuendos

Drugs/drinking – none that I remember

Cursing – not a ton, maybe a few instances of sh**

Violence – none


1 thought on “The Secret of a Heart Note by Stacey Lee”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s