Friday, May 4, 2012

Barely Breathing Review

Date Published: April 30, 2012

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Number of pages:  420

Publisher: Self-published

First Thoughts:

This book took place 6 months after the ending of “Reason to Breathe” and immediately the reader was sucked right back into Emma’s life. So much more happened in this book; both emotionally and physically. There were a lot of rough edges to the emotions that makes me seriously consider why I put myself through these kinds of books but then I slowly remember why; they inspire me. This book will test your limits and see how far it takes till you reach your breaking point; it will bring you to understand a little bit more about Emma and what’s running through her mind. This was a book that I didn’t want to put down; be prepared for an emotional journey once again.


The plot was good, it had all of the elements that you expect to be there and it kept my interest throughout the entire length. One thing I felt unsure of was that parts of the story felt a little random, like a few scenes didn’t blend in well with the rest of the story, like some of the transitioning between days were rough and needs a little tweaking. Don’t get me wrong I loved the story, we were privileged more into Emma’s mind it’s just some of the transitions between scenes seemed off and it took me awhile to adjust to the style. But overall the rest of the plot seemed really good, the conflicts seemed to be explained and allowed time to soak in all the new information and reactions. The ending in this one wasn’t near as bad as in “Reason to Breathe”. I think I can seriously wait for this next book without being so anxious; the cliffhanger was so much more gentle (thank you Donovan). The pace of this book was intense at times and smooth at others, there wasn’t really one set pace, it varied off and on depending on what point of the book you were at. And as far as the story itself went it was really good and had some deep lining issues being addressed, this isn’t a book to read if you’re just wanting to have fun and chill, this is something to read if you want to be inspired and to experience what’s its like to be Emma…to see exactly why she ended up living with her Aunt and Uncle and what led to her deep lining emotions; this book will really open your eyes to the world around you and see exactly what happened to Emma. So overall with just a few minor issues with the plot I really did enjoy the story.


There isn’t much I can go into in this book in this department without ruining the book for you but I can assure you the romance is definitely amped up in this book so be prepared for the ride of your life. Be prepared to shout, yell and scream because if you’re like me you’ll going to want to. But overall I loved the scenes between Emma and Evan and really could feel the love and attachment between the two; it’ll melt your hearts.


The characters were created perfectly, it was easy to connect with them and follow alongside them. Emma didn’t seem to be different from the first book, of course she might be a little more emotional in this book (but I think you’ll understand why). Evan and Sara are just as adorable as they were in the previous book and I still love them! As far as new characters introduced I found Jonathon to be a little creepy; there’s so many layers to him that I think it’ll be a long time before I’ll ever calm down about him. And as far as the other minor characters like Jill and her other various friends, I found they fit perfectly where they were placed, so overall the characters did this book some great justice.

Transformation of the Character:

There was a major transformation in this book and I was blown away, it was so perfect and so amazing to experience and watch. The changes slowly built on top of one another till the breaking point and all of the changes came into one and the beginning of the transformation took place, I still think there’s going to be more added to the transformation in the last book to come but being able to see the beginnings of it was fun and amazing to see. So overall the transformation aspect of this book was beautiful.


The descriptions in this book did a great job on allowing the reader to really feel all the crazy emotions this book evoked in the reader. I loved the use of language the author chose to describe the inner mind of Emma, it was amazing to see how she really felt and all the crazy things she was thinking not only about herself but about the people and things around her. As far as the way the author chose to describe the landscape I really loved the way she used to images to contrast with the inner feelings of the main character. The use of the color yellow on the house she was staying at was really symbolic and clever. And as far as dialogue goes, though it seemed awkward at times it was an overall good aspect to the story because there was both outer and inner dialogue; it allowed the reader to better connect with the characters. So overall I really enjoyed the description.


The author’s style didn’t really change from the first book; her writing is just as beautiful and intoxicating as the first book. I liked only seeing from one POV (Emma’s) because it allowed us to be able to perceive the conflicts better through her eyes. But overall the author’s style was just as good and nothing really changed.

Quote of the Book:

“Sometimes people hurt more than they can handle…And sometimes they don’t know how to ask for help. They’re so caught up in their own pain; they end up hurting everyone around them. I wish you didn’t keep getting hurt.”

Goodreads Summary:

Emma’s struggle with an abusive home life came to a heart pounding conclusion in the final chapters of Reason to Breathe. Now everyone in Weslyn knows Emma’s secret, but Carol can’t hurt Emma anymore. Some are still haunted by the horror of that night, and some must face the repercussions of their choices. Fans of Rebecca Donovan’s debut novel will discover there’s still much to learn about Emma’s life.

Last Thoughts:

I would recommend this to fans of “Reason to Breathe” and to anyone who is in need of an inspiring and eye-opening read. This book is for a somewhat mature audience so I advise going to it with care…some of these issues are hard to see. But overall though I felt “Reason to Breathe” was a little better than this book, I will still keep this book in my heart and continue to keep re-reading it for years to come.
My Rating:

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