Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Breathe, Annie, Breathe by Miranda Kenneally

Author: Miranda Kenneally
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: July 16, 2014
Number of Pages: 306
Source of Book: egalley from publisher

        Annie hates running. No matter how far she jogs, she can’t escape the guilt that if she hadn’t broken up with Kyle, he might still be alive. So to honor his memory, she starts preparing for the marathon he intended to race.
        But the training is even more grueling than Annie could have imagined. Despite her coaching, she’s at war with her body, her mind—and her heart. With every mile that athletic Jeremiah cheers her on, she grows more conflicted. She wants to run into his arms…and sprint in the opposite direction. For Annie, opening up to love again may be even more of a challenge than crossing the finish line.

There is just something about Miranda Kenneally's books that hooks me into reading them start to finish without wanting to stop...and Breathe, Annie, Breathe was no exception. This story again takes place in the world of Hundred Oaks as her previous four books do, but this one edges toward the older end of YA with an 18 year old main character heading off to college and a 20 year old romantic interest. Annie is a character I emphathized with as she is struggling with her feelings and guilt over the loss of her longtime boyfriend in an accident. She decides to train to run a marathon that he was going to do but never got the chance to, and during that time meets another guy. Her fear of losing someone close to her again makes her hesitate to get involved, even as she gets closer to him. This is a book about grief and finding the strength and peace to be able to let someone else in after losing the one she thought she'd be with forever. But it's also a story of family and friendships and romance. It felt like an honest book, and it was enjoyable to read. I also appreciated how characters from Kenneally's previous books make appearances in Breathe, Annie, Breathe allowing loyal readers to get an update of sorts on where they've ended up as well.

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