Blog Tour Review: The Code for Love and Heartbreak

Title: The Code for Love and Heartbreak
Author: Jillian Cantor
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: October 6, 2020
Rating: ★★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

From bestselling author Jillian Cantor comes a smart, edgy update of Jane Austen’s beloved classic Emma.

Emma Woodhouse is a genius at math, but clueless about people. After all, people are unreliable. They let you down—just like Emma’s sister, Izzy, did this year, when she moved to California for college. But numbers…those you can count on. (No pun intended.)

Emma’s senior year is going to be all about numbers, and seeing how far they can take her. When she and George, her Coding Club co-president, are tasked with brainstorming a new project, The Code for Love is born—a matchmaking app that goes far beyond swiping, using algorithms to calculate compatibility. George disapproves of Emma’s idea, accusing her of meddling in people’s lives. But all the happy new couples at school are proof that the app works. At least at first.

Emma’s code is flawless. So why is it that perfectly matched couples start breaking up, the wrong people keep falling for each other and her own feelings defy any algorithm? Emma thought math could solve everything. But there’s nothing more complex—or unpredictable—than love.


Emma Woodhouse loves numbers and coding. She is co-president of the coding club at school with George Knightley. Emma comes up with the idea to create a dating app for their competition project. Though George doesn’t agree with that idea, they create the app and start matching up students in their school with their ideal partner using a special algorithm. Most of the matches seem to work out at first, until they discover some problems with the algorithm. Despite the successful matches, Emma is reluctant to make a match for herself, because her love code may not give her the result she wants.

Emma is one of my favourite classic books, so I was so excited to read this adaptation. This story works perfectly as a modern adaptation. The original Emma liked to match her friends and acquaintances in her town with who she thought would be a good romantic match for them. In this story, Emma is also a matchmaker, but using a modern matchmaking app, rather than just doing it herself. Both of the Emma characters are clueless to her own love interest who is right in front of her the whole time.

I loved the coding theme to this book. I don’t know much about coding, and I find it fascinating to read about. Emma embraces her nerdy side by working hard in her school work and activities, such as coding club and playing the piano. She was a hardworking and intelligent character, even if she didn’t always catch on to the social cues around her.

This is a great Emma retelling!

Thank you Inkyard Press for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord

The Dead Queens Club by Hannah Capin

About the author:

Jillian Cantor is the author of award-winning and bestselling novels for adults and teens, including In Another Time, The Hours Count, Margot, and The Lost Letter, which was a USA Today bestseller. She has a BA in English from Penn State University and an MFA from the University of Arizona. Cantor lives in Arizona with her husband and two sons.

Have you read The Code for Love and Heartbreak? What did you think of it?

Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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