In the affluent town of Weslyn, Connecticut, where most people worry about what to be seen in and who to be seen with, Emma Thomas would rather not be seen at all. She’s more concerned with feigning perfection while pulling down her sleeves to conceal the bruises – not wanting anyone to know how far from perfect her life truly is. Without expecting it, she finds love. It challenges her to recognize her own worth – but at the risk of revealing the terrible secret she’s desperate to hide.  

 Reason to Breathe is an electrifying page turner from start to finish, a unique tale of life-changing love, unspeakable cruelty, and one girl’s fragile grasp of hope.

Reason To Breathe
I read this book a couple of months ago and absolutely loved it, but in the most disturbing way. I couldn’t stop turning the pages both fascinated by Emma’s instinct to survive and horrified by the cruelty described within the book. Carol lived up to the classic evil stepmother and then some.  I really enjoyed the way Rebecca Donovan developed the characters and shortly after starting the book I already had strong feelings of compassion or intense dislike for some of the characters.
The books ending shocked me…… I got to the last page and kept going back to make sure I hadn’t missed the actual ending. Surely it couldn’t end like that??? No no no! Not on such a cliffhanger???
Then I discovered that Reason To Breathe is part of a trilogy of books and I bought the second one, which I’m busy reading at the moment – Barely Breathing. While not as intense as the first book, I am still enjoying the read, dying to know what is going to become of Emma.
Barely Breathing

“I’ve spent most of my life trying to make it to a future that still hasn’t happened, or avoid a past that won’t let me go. I don’t remember when I’ve ever just stopped to live in the present, to hold on to the seconds I’m in.”

 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.

I also really love Rebecca Donovan’s website, which gives a lot of detail on characters in the books as well as soundtracks for each book. This is something that Cupcake Mummy and I have often discussed, both of us are music lovers and always discuss what music would fit the books we’re reading, what should each books soundtrack be? Well Rebecca Donovan has soundtracks for all of her books and I loved it. I was especially chuffed when I saw that one of my all time fav Seether songs was featured in Reason to Breathe!

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