Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Book #Review Breathe Into Me by Sara Fawkes .@sarafawkes

Book Title: Breathe Into Me
Author:  Sara Fawkes |WebsiteTwitterFacebook|
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Genre: New Adult Romance
Series/Standalone: Standalone
Format: ebook
Cost: $14.99
Pages: 288
How I got it: NetGalley
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks
Publication Date: April 8, 2014
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How did my life get so broken? It’s a question Lacey St. James asks herself every day. Stuck raising her little brother in a trailer park while she works a dead end job at a grocery store, she has a stalker ex-boyfriend, a bad reputation, and no way out. And then, she meets Everett, who changes her entire existence. Everett is an outsider who’s housesitting his family’s mansion off the coast, and for reasons Lacey can’t understand, he’s completely transfixed by her. He seems determined to show her that life can offer more than she’d ever hoped for, if only she believes in herself. She desperately yearns to trust him, but what happens when she finds out that everything he’s told her is a lie?
It was a good story, but at times seemed to be missing that extra factor to make it a wow knock out.  I loved the characters and the story being told, but at times it seemed a little scattered.   As a mandatory reporter, I didn't understand why the teacher went to the parent instead of the state, which she's required to do, but then I thought about small towns and how they worked and realized the system only works when people actually do their jobs, so this small town teacher failed at doing her job, but excelled at small town gossip When her past is unveiled I wanted to kick everything and was so mad for so long. I hated her Grandmother, and wanted to yell at her mother, but most of all I just loved that unlike some of the new adult women, Lacey rescued herself.  It says it's a stand alone but there are story lines that aren't fleshed out in this one and I wish Sara would give us more, there are parts of this story that we never got full answers on and it felt a little like it ended too quickly.

Lacey's life has gone down hill fast and she's still trying to figure out just when it went wrong.  As the story unfolds you see why she's where she is and what led to it being this way, and you get invested in her life.  You started off in the middle of what is her going out with friends, who you quickly realize aren't the best and her trying to escape a boyfriend who really is just the worst and as the story progresses you see why Lacey ended up with them, and how she plans to get away.  Lacey's friend in the beginning should be no one's friend she's literally the worst ever.  When they go out she uses Lacey and sets Lacey up and when called out for it, throws the biggest bitchfest ever, she wouldn't have survived for long as my friend because I would have kicked her teeth down her throat.  I kept having to remind myself that small town lives are different in many ways (as I have lived both I know this to be true) so I know why Lacey stays with her horrible friend, considering she has no others, as everyone in town knows her past and uses it against her.

Given a glimpse of what could be Lacey embraces change and goes for what she wants, and needs.  She uses her new love interest to further her goal while giving them a chance to get to know each other.  This isn't insta love as Lacey is too wary for that, but the characters have a connection that they decide to explore while giving themselves time to learn about each other.  I loved that Everett let Lacey set the pace, that he gave them a chance to get to know each other and that for her he became a safe place to be. He was first her friend then became more.  Everett, however had his own secrets, his own agenda and fears, which of course became a source of their drama.  Boy does he have some secrets, even I wasn't prepared for a major one, and kinda had the worst in mind when it started to unravel and came out, in the end it wasn't what I feared but it did make Lacey look at him differently for a while.

Lacey goes out of her way to maintain two jobs to maintain their home, because at one job she has a nutty boss who is breaking all kinds of laws because she is Lacey's grandmother's friend and she constantly pushes her opinions and her own agenda.  Lacey however needs to stay because she has not just herself but her brother to think about. And when it becomes clear that someone is abusing her brother, she has to decide whether her pride or her brother's well being in the end is worth more to her.  Her Grandmother is a horrible human being and when you realize just how horribly she has treated Lacey, I will say that if I met her in a dark alley with no repercussions for what happens, I might have kicked her teeth down her throat and beat her with a broomstick, just might have.  I need this woman to know that you don't punish children for their parentage, they didn't pick the parents and punishing Lacey because you didn't like who her father was, is a pathetic excuse. No you're just a horrible less than human being who deserves to eat dry dusty half burnt biscuits with no water or gravy for the rest of your life ( a really bad thing in the south or I should think anywhere, dry a** biscuits will be the last time you're invited to cook for the church potluck).

In this book we realize justice doesn't always come when a crime is reported ( as a Black woman living in the United States, this I already knew)  sometimes the system especially ones in small towns fail the victims miserably.  I wanted more from this point in the story, I felt more could have been done but then you realize this too is way more realistic and sadly true for many.

This story shows that family isn't always blood, nor does family always mean anything good.  That the disgusting example that Lacey had in the form of her Grandmother isn't all she had, and that the bitter woman's words shouldn't mean more to Lacey than those of the people who have always loved her.  She only had to reach past the fear to be embraced by the love and support.  I loved reading the blooming of Lacey as a character, and eventually as a love interest.  I liked that this new adult focused so much on Lacey as a woman finding herself and her strengths, and not just on her as a lover.  It allowed her to find some understanding with her past, embrace the future and revel in the present with someone who was willing to listen and go to bat for her when needed.

Overall even though I liked the characters, and I really liked that even though she'd been dealt a bad hand Lacey refused to be kept down,, this wasn't an emotional read for me, because I didn't feel as connected to the characters as I could have been, at times they weren't as fleshed out and sometimes they were inconsistent with how they were written a few pages before.  It could also be the fact that I read this over a period of a few months, or that I was in the worst reading slump of my life, and that I wasn't interested in reading at all.  I liked the book, but overall felt like too many questions weren't answered and too many plot lines where left untouched and holes were left unfilled.

This is a good read for those looking for a romance about second chances, and about unconventional heroines,  Way better than White Trash Beautiful.  This one handled the subject to abusive relationships better, it also handled relationships after abuse way better.  I still want to kick the Grandmother, and I need Macon to drive off a cliff, and Ashley to find a few seats and sit in them.
It's a good read, and I liked it, even though I read it last year, I still remember quite a bit of it and that would have made it a four star read, however as I stated there are a few inconsistencies, and few things left untouched that made me drop the stars, I still like it, and I still recommend it as a good read, but just be aware of the few issues.

Happy Reading

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