Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker

From Amazon

Just breathe, Kacey. Ten tiny breaths. Seize them. Feel them. Love them.

Four years ago, Kacey Cleary’s life imploded when her car was hit by a drunk driver, killing her parents, boyfriend, and best friend. Still haunted by memories of being trapped inside, listening to her mother take her last breath, Kacey wants to leave her past behind. Armed with two bus tickets, Kacey and her fifteen-year-old sister, Livie, escape Grand Rapids, Michigan, to start over in Miami. They’re struggling to make ends meet at first, but Kacey’s not worried. She can handle anything—anything but her mysterious neighbor in apartment 1D.

Trent Emerson has smoldering blue eyes and deep dimples, and perfectly skates that irresistible line between nice guy and bad boy. Hardened by her tragic past, Kacey is determined to keep everyone at a distance, but their mutual attraction is undeniable, and Trent is desperate to find a way into Kacey’s guarded heart—even if it means revealing an explosive secret that could shatter both their worlds.


When Ten Tiny Breaths was first published, my facebook feed was flooded with praise for the book & the author.  Curious, I picked it up.  I remember reading it then, but for some reason, it didn't really stick with me at the time.  I enjoyed it, and immediately put the sequel on my watch list to read, but by the time One Tiny Lie came out, I had moved on.  Now, in anticipation of actually meeting K.A. Tucker at Book Bash in a couple of weeks, I decided to re-read Ten Tiny Breaths & finally read One Tiny Lie, and I am glad I did!

Kacey Cleary is a mess.  Her life was destroyed four years earlier when the car she was riding in was hit by a drunk driver.  Both of her parents along with her best friend & boyfriend were killed that day.  Haunted by the feeling of her boyfriend's life slipping out of his body while she held his hand along with listening to her mother's final breaths, Kacey is left emotionally scarred and physically unable to touch anyone.  She has tried every coping method she can imagine & most often leaned on actions meant to make her forget.  The one thing that has kept her from completely giving up is her sister Livie.  When Kacey catches their uncle/guardian trying to sneak into Livie's room one night, she knows that things have to change.

Leaving everything behind, Kacey & Livie board a bus to Miami to start a new life.  Where this is essentially Kacey's story, the whole cast of characters we meet are fun & compelling.  At moments, I struggled with connecting with Kacey, but then again, so did everyone else that met her.  When we meet Trent, it is obvious why she is drawn to him...what is less obvious is why she trusts him. I often struggle with the idea of "insta-love" and where this isn't exactly that, it is close enough for me to question.  If it had been solely a love story between Kacey & Trent, I probably would have set it aside & forgotten it again.  However, the side relationships between Kacey & Livie as well as the friendship that developed between them & their neighbor Storm really pulled me in.  The message of finding hope & forgiveness after tragedy is heartwarming & a good reminder that we don't have to do everything alone.

Where I wasn't completely drawn in by this book & there were several things that bothered me with the story, it is a good start to a series & there are some great supporting characters that I look forward to getting to know better.  Having waited as long as I did to pick this series back up, there are now three more books to read! Now, I'll be heading off to college with Livie!

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