Be still my beating heart. The long-awaited fifth volume of Alice Oseman‘s graphic novel Heartstopper — at least if you’re a, uh, what is the fandom called? stoppertops? well, that works for me! — finally has a release date in the United States, and it will arrive just in time for the holidays on December 12, 2023. 

The news was announced via Graphix Books on Wednesday, April 5. In response to Oseman’s announcement that Heartstopper, Volume 5, will be released on November 9, 2023, in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand, Graphix tweeted that the U.S. edition will go on sale on December 12. 

According to Oseman’s tweet, there will also be Volume 6, the final Heartstopper volume!

Originally a webcomic on Tumblr and Tapas, Heartstopper tells the story of two high school boys, Charlie and Nick, who become friends and eventually fall in love. The story explores themes of identity, self-discovery, friendship, and love. Not only has Heartstopper received critical acclaim for its realistic representation of queer characters and relationships, but it has also amassed a large fanbase with over 52.1 million views to date

Oseman first crowdfunded the series to bring a limited edition to print, and the project reached its goal within two hours, ultimately earning £58,925 on Kickstarter. In the Spring of 2019, Hachette Children’s Group published the first volume more widely, followed by Volume 2 in the same year. Since then, the publisher has published the remaining volumes of the book. The outpouring of love for the books inspired the Heartstopper series on Netflix.

Oseman has said that Heartstopper was inspired by her desire to tell stories with all kinds of queer characters. In an interview with The Beat‘s Avery Kaplan, she stated, “I always knew I wanted to fill the Heartstopper world with all kinds of LGBTQ+ characters. I felt that it was important to have a really wonderful group of LGBTQ+ friends at the heart of the story because, contrary to what some TV shows and movies seem to believe, LGBTQ+ people often find each other and enjoy hanging out in groups!”

The creator continued, “It was very important to me that transgender characters were a part of that, and I hope there is room to introduce more trans characters – most likely in the fifth volume!”

Overall, Heartstopper has been widely praised for its authentic and relatable representation of LGBTQ+ characters and relationships. And here at The Beat, we can’t wait for Volume 5’s trans characters! You can preorder Heartstopper Volume 5 now.