Author: Sara Fawkes
Category: Contemporary Romance
Genre: New Adult
Rating: 3.5/4 stars out of 5
*received from NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review*
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 exboyfriend, a bad reputation, and no way out.
And then she meets Everett, whose presence changes her entire existence.
Everett is an outsider to her small community, in town for the summer housesitting one of the grand mansions off the Mississippi coast. When he saves her in a bar one night, she’s grateful but wary of his intentions. Lacey doesn’t trust most men in her life, but for reasons Lacey can't understand, Everett is completely captivated by her. He’s determined to show her that life can offer more than she’d ever hoped for, if only she believes in herself. As she works with him to free herself, Lacey desperately yearns to trust him, to move on and perhaps start fresh.
But what happens when she finds out that everything he’s told her about himself was a lie?
Breathe Into Me was definitely a book I am glad I picked up. It was a heartfelt, raw, and dark read, but it also showed that anyone can find love and can gain a second chance in life. I think that is why I enjoyed it so much. Plus, I really do love raw, dark reads. To me, the emotions are that much more real and can be felt on a much different level. And I definitely felt the emotions in this book.
My life was nothing but a huge lie, one big hellhole that never ended.
Lacey is a character that I loved watching grow. She’s the kind of character that really has to strive to gain what she wants. Her situation is one I would never want to find myself in. Lacey is stuck at two dead-end jobs trying to support herself and her younger brother while her mother wastes away and her grandmother constantly berates her. At first, Lacey was a very timid and scared person, stuck in the very bad situation. She was back and forth with the feeling of that she can’t have a better life and that she doesn't deserve one. But, as I said, she is a character that really has to fight, to strive, to gain what she wants and to be better. Lacey definitely did that. Though her growth was slow at first, and at times, I wanted to shake her. She grew and she became a better person in the end. Lacey did become a strong character at the end of the book and was able to be that better person she wanted to be.
Everett was the main push that Lacey really needed to move off the path she was. I enjoyed Everett. He, too, has a dark past like Lacey and though he was hiding a few big secrets, he was a good person. Just the kind of person Lacey needed to walk into her life. He definitely had that dark allure about him, which I love in my male characters. What I enjoyed a lot about him was that he too had a lot of development to go through in the book. And not only did he help Lacey, but Lacey, in a way, helped him.
There were also a few side characters that I enjoyed and that really helped the main characters. The bad characters were great obstacles for each character to overcome. The book also had a few surprises. I enjoyed those few twists; though I did figure most of them out. They brought in new layers to the characters and the story-line. I felt the pacing of the story flowed well and that it worked for the progress of the book. Though the character growth was a bit slow for Lacey, it was still evident and still enjoyable. The POV also switched about half way through in the book, and though it took me by surprise, I actually liked it.
I saw it in Everett's eyes: I wasn't a toy to be used and tossed aside. There was respect in his eyes when he looked at me, more so than even my family bothered to show.
The only issue I personally had with the book is that the attraction, the chemistry, between Lacey and Everett wasn’t that powerful. It took me awhile to feel their connection. To me, they just didn’t connect as characters, as romantic interests. However, they did have their sweet and swoony moments. Eventually I did start to feel a connection between them, though it wasn’t as powerful as I hoped.
Breathe Into Me was an enjoyable read; a book that gives the readers a glimpse into a darker reality. It definitely isn’t’ for the white picket fence readers. I recommend this one to readers who love a book that is filled with raw real life sadness, tragic events, but shows that anyone can find love and start over.