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What is the movie Purple Hearts based on?

Cassie and Luke embrace and smile
What is the movie Purple Hearts based on? We have the answers! (Image credit: Netflix)

Warning! Contains spoilers for Purple Hearts!

Purple Hearts is a Netflix romance that has captured the hearts of movie-goers everywhere.

The emotional film follows struggling singer-songwriter Cassie (Sofia Carson) and troubled marine Luke (Nicholas Galitzine), who agree to marry purely for military benefits. However, their pretend marriage soon becomes complicated when real feelings soon blossom between the pair (check out our Purple Hearts ending explained if you want to know how it finishes!).

Throughout the movie, we see the couple go through a rollercoaster of emotions and explosive showdowns...

But what is Purple Hearts based on? Who came up with the idea of the romantic drama? Read below to find out!

What is the movie Purple Hearts based on?

Nicholas Galitzine as Luke, Sofia Carson as Cassie

Purple Hearts is based on a book written by Tess Wakefield. (Image credit: Mark Fellman/Netflix)

Purple Hearts is based on the book of the same name by Tess Wakefield.  (opens in new tab)

The official plot of the novel reads: “When a soldier with a troubled past and a struggling songwriter agree to a marriage of convenience for the military benefits, neither expects much after saying ‘I do.’ Then tragedy strikes, and the line between what’s real and what’s pretend begins to blur in this smart and surprising romance perfect for fans of Nicholas Sparks and Jojo Moyes.”

Purple Hearts is the author’s first novel for adults and it has received rave reviews from readers. 

What is a Purple Heart?

Cassie and Luke get married

Luke was awarded the Purple Heart medal after being injured in combat. (Image credit: Mark Fellman/Netflix)

The title Purple Hearts is named after the Purple Heart medal, which is given to US military service members who have been injured or killed during battle.

During the movie, Luke reveals that his father, Jacob received the Purple Heart medal after he was wounded in action.

Later on, Luke is also given the Purple Heart medal after his legs are shattered by an IED bomb while fighting in Iraq.

He's stunned to discover that he was still awarded the medal, despite being arrested for his false marriage.

Purple Hearts is available to stream on Netflix now.

Grace Morris
Grace Morris

Grace is a digital writer with WhatToWatch.com, where she writes series guides for must-watch shows and the latest TV news. She graduated from Anglia Ruskin University in 2020 with a degree in Writing and Film Studies, which only made her love for creative writing, film and TV grow stronger.


You'll usually find her watching the drama unfold in the latest reality series and much-loved soaps (usually with chocolate by her side!). Grace also likes to explore new places with her friends and family and, of course, watch and read about the latest films and TV series.