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Learn what happens in the book. Explore this Heart Bones summary to savor this utterly addictive and compelling CoHo book. You’ll get all your questions answered here, so let’s get literary!

heart bones by colleen hoover in front of bookshelves.

Quick Details

Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover follows Beyah Grim, a young woman grappling with the aftermath of a tragic childhood, as she finds solace and unexpected love during a summer at her estranged father’s beach house. The novel explores love, resilience, and the power of healing, as the couple navigates both their complicated pasts and their uncertain futures.

Recommended for: Heart Bones would be the perfect book for someone just getting into Colleen Hoover books or for any fan of Colleen Hoover, beachy romances and/or fast-paced books. Fans of Reminders of Him by Colleen Hoover and/or Without Merit by Colleen Hoover, will also likely connect with this one too, as it has similar content and themes.

Age Rating

  • Trigger Warnings: addiction, overdose, sexual assault
  • Spice Level: 2 out of 5
  • Age Recommendation: Technically, Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover is categorized as a Young Adult novel rated for ages 14 and over. However, maturity should be considered before reading this book under age 18 due to some sexual content and adult topics and themes, including drugs, incarceration, sexual assault, and death.

Characters

  • Beyah: recent high school graduate who moves from an impoverished Kentucky home with her mother to a luxurious Texas home with her father
  • Samson: Beyah’s mysterious neighbor in Texas, with whom she forms a friendship
  • Sara: Beyah’s new stepsister in Texas, who becomes one of Beyah’s closest friends
  • Marcos: Sara’s boyfriend, who is trying to start up a clothing line
  • Brian: Beyah’s father, who has little to do with her life as she grew up
  • Alana: Brian’s wife, Beyah’s stepmother, and Sara’s mother, who is a local dentist
  • Marjorie: Beyah and Samson’s neighbor, an older woman with some health issues whom Samson helps with house projects

Heart Bones Summary

Heart Bones is the story of Beyah, a 19-year-old high school graduate who lives in a Kentucky trailer home with her mother, Janean, who is an addict.  Beyah has not seen her father, who lives in Washington, in three years. 

Beyah has essentially raised herself and everything that she has in life, including her full ride to Penn State in the fall, she has gotten on her own accord. 

So, when she finds her mother dead on the couch from a drug overdose, she is completely devoid of emotion.

With nowhere to go and no other relatives to call upon, Beyah hesitantly phones her father, Brian, who has since moved to Texas, and he buys Beyah a one-way plane ticket there. So, Beyah packs up a couple of bags of her only belongings and leaves Kentucky behind.

In Texas, Beyah’s father and stepmother, Alana, “Summer” on the Bolivar Peninsula in a beautiful oceanfront home, and her new stepsister, Sara, is lovely.    

Sara takes Beyah under her wing and recommends that Beyah connect with their hot, rich, and single neighbor, Samson, who is friends with Sara’s boyfriend, Marcos

Beyah, who already had a run-in with Samson on the ferry, could not be less interested.  Samson, however, is immediately drawn to Beyah. 

Then, as she and Sara attend nightly bonfires on the beach, Beyah becomes intrigued by Samson.  In each other, they see similar damage and depth, but each of them still has their guard up.

They often play a game in which they answer one another’s questions and, in doing so, Beyah finds out some basic information about Samson:

His mother passed away when he was young. His father owns five rental properties on the Peninsula, which Samson manages. He lives in the home next door to Beyah most often because it’s the most expensive to rent and is, therefore, often vacant. His friend Rake died during Hurricane Ike. And, he does odd jobs around town, namely his elderly neighbor Marjorie, for which he doesn’t payment. 

Yet, there are several questions that he refuses to answer. Since he’s headed to the Air Force Academy in the Fall, he promises to give Beyah answers at the end of the Summer.

One day, Samson invites Beyah on their first “real” date — a golf cart tour of the beach. 

Their date takes an eerie turn, though, when the two discover the bones of a dead body in the dunes. Samson realizes, via the shirt fabric, that the bones are of his friend Rake, whose boat capsized there.  He tells Beyah that Rake would want to be buried at sea and that he needs to take care of this himself.

To take their relationship to the next level, Beyah gets her father’s permission to spend the night with Samson at his house next door. 


Ending

Warning: There are spoilers of the ending in this section.

Beyah and Samsom spend the night together, but she is awoken from her peaceful post-coital slumber at 2:30 a.m. as multiple police officers take Samson away in handcuffs.  Beyah is also taken to the police station for questioning.  

Beyah is told that Samson’s real name is Shawn Samson Bennett and that the home at which he was staying was really another family’s home in which he was trespassing.  He had been in prison in the past for auto theft, and he had a parole violation, as well as two warrants out for his arrest for arson at another home at which he was trespassing.  He is looking at quite a bit of jail time.

Beyah is completely shocked, but when she visits Samson, he is finally willing to answer her questions. First, he apologizes profusely for his repeated lies and omissions.  Then, he explains that his mother really did die when he was young, but that Rake was actually his father.

Samson had been alone and on the streets since he was 13 years old, trying to make ends meet.  He was, in many ways, just like Beyah.

Samson explains that, when he was younger, he did some stupid things with an old friend, which led to his prison time, but also that the arson wasn’t fully his fault, as there was faulty electrical in the house where he was squatting.

Lastly, Samson was also never going to attend the Air Force Academy, but rather he was preparing to turn himself in.

Samson begs Beyah to go to Penn State and to forget about him.  Initially, Beyah’s hesitant, but she finally heads up to Pennsylvania. 

Samson stops taking her phone calls and removes her from his visitor list, making his decision final.

Still, Beyah sees the good in Samson. So, she contacts Marjorie, the elderly woman for whom Samson did some work, and Marjorie, in turn, contacts her son, Kevin, who’s a lawyer, to take on Samson’s case. 

Samson is sentenced to four years in prison and Beyah calls Kevin monthly, but she doesn’t get much by way of updates.  After four years pass, Beyah’s college years end, and Kevin lets her know Samson will be released. 

Beyah waits at the prison for hours.  When Samson emerges, he heads for the bus stop, then looks back and runs to her.  After a kiss, the two head to the beach, stare at the ocean, and finally feel ready to be the couple they were always meant to be. 

They call Kevin, who informs them that Marjorie recently passed away and left her beach house to Samson.  Shocked, but grateful, the two embark on their journey of life, love, and whatever the future holds for their damaged, yet in many ways repaired, souls.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a summary of Heart Bones?

Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover follows Beyah Grim, a young woman grappling with the aftermath of a tragic childhood, as she finds solace and unexpected love during a summer at her estranged father’s beach house. The novel explores love, resilience, and the power of healing, as the couple navigates both their complicated pasts and their uncertain futures.

Is Heart Bones a spicy book?

Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover has some spicy scenes, but overall, it focuses more on the emotional relationship between the characters.

Is Heart Bones a YA book?

Technically, Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover is categorized as a Young Adult novel rated for ages 14 and over. However, maturity should be considered before reading this book under age 18 due to some sexual content and adult topics and themes, including drugs, incarceration, sexual assault, and death.

Is Heart Bones a happy ending?

Yes. Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover does have a happy ending, as Beyah and Samson end up together and start a new life as a couple.

Does Heart Bones have inappropriate content?

Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover deals with some difficult topics, including addiction, overdose, and sexual assault. It also has some spicy scenes.

Conclusion

This Heart Bones summary explored one of Colleen Hoover’s best books. This story of Samson’s and Beyah’s love and the power of healing can be read by mature young adults and adults, as it has some sexual content, as well as adult themes. It works especially well for fans of Hoover’s crowd-pleaser, Reminders of Him, which also tackles second chances in a fast-paced, yet emotional way.


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