Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Reason to Breathe by Rebecca Donovan

(Breathing series, book 1)
“No one tried to get involved with me, and I kept to myself. This was the place where everything was supposed to be safe and easy. How could Evan Mathews unravel my constant universe in just one day?”
He knows there’s something more to the girl in the back of the class the moment he sees her. She’s beautiful, intelligent, and athletic – but she slips quietly through the crowded halls, trying not to exist. Determined to get to know the elusive girl, Evan soon discovers…
Emma Thomas is hiding a terrible secret.
Reason to Breathe is an electrifying page turner from start to finish, a unique tale of life-changing love, unspeakable cruelty, and one girls’ fragile grasp of hope.

WHAT THE CLIFFHANGER?!? It’s a good thing I already downloaded the second book of the series or I would have probably lost my damn marbles!! Let me pull myself together real quick…

Okay, let’s try this again. I don’t know if I’ve ever read a book that made me cringe, smile, cry, and laugh from start to finish. I also don’t know if I’ve ever read a book where I absolutely, positively hated a character as much as her. (I don’t even want to type that witch’s name.) I had no idea just how terrible Emma’s secret would be, and I think my pulse sped up every time Carol was around. (Yes, unfortunately I felt like I had to type her name…ugh.)

Emma manages to walk around her high school without drawing much, if any, attention to herself. She’s a badass soccer player, basketball player, and track star, all while maintaining a perfect 4.0 GPA. She lives for school and sports because it’s her only way out of the nightmare of a life she lives in right now. The only person Emma confides in and knows the horror she lives with every day is her best friend, Sara; a beautiful, popular, rich red head. I just adored Sara. She was so wonderful to Emma, and for a girl who seemed to have everything, she never once let it go to her head.

Enter Evan. Tall, dark, and handsome athlete who has set his sights on shy Emma. I got slightly irritated when she kept pushing him away then pulling him back, then pushing him away…stop toying with his emotions, girl!! That being said, I admired Emma’s want to keep Leyla and Jack’s life in tact even if it meant hers being a living hell for the next two years…and keeping Evan at a distance. I fell in love with Evan a little bit. Okay, okay! I fell head over heels for Evan. He was just so sweet to Emma, and the fact that he was athletic AND artsy AND romantic?! Umm…where do I sign up for one of those boys??

Now, onto the cliffhanger; the ending completely threw my whole afternoon into a frenzy…yes, a frenzy. I had heard there was a cliffhanger, but never would I have imagined one THAT HUGE!! I couldn’t immediately start the second book considering I had to actually do some work, and it was killing me that I didn’t know what happened after that awful ending! Don’t worry y’all…I started the second book this afternoon after work and have managed to bring my heart rate back to normal.

This storyline was unique, flinch-worthy, heartwarming, and heartbreaking. Some of the things “Satan” did prevented me from making this a 4 or 5 star…it was almost too much for me to handle. Other than that, I loved the characters, the relationships, and the determination Emma had to turn lemons into lemonade. (I’m a sucker for a cute cliché…don’t judge me.) 

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