- Hardcover: 368 pages
- Publisher: Tor Books (22 January 2019)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1250193850
- ISBN-13: 978-1250193858
- Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 3.3 x 21.5 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 417 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 95,742 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Only a Breath Apart Hardcover – 22 Jan 2019
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"Beyond a haunted teen romance is a beautiful, moving exploration of domestic violence, forgiveness, and self-love. ...Simultaneously heartbreaking and heartwarming." --Kirkus, starred review
"McGarry ably captures the feeling of desperately wanting to come home to a friendship that has radically changed. The novel manages to tackle domestic violence in a way that never feels clichéd, and the romance is sure to win over even the most cynical reader. This is a story you'll want to read slowly, just to be able to stay with the characters for a moment longer."--Booklist
"A gorgeous, heartfelt journey of redemption and love." --Wendy Higgins, New York Times bestselling author
"Powerful, emotional, and ultimately hopeful. An unforgettable story that will leave its mark on your heart." --C. J. Redwine, New York Times bestselling author
"Gritty and real, Only a Breath Apart is a story of hope conjured from pain, strength drawn from innocence, and love earned from self-respect. Beautiful, poignant, and fierce." --Kristen Simmons, critically acclaimed author of the Article 5 series
"Meticulously weaves a fragile love story through a minefield of loss, broken trust, and familial curses both real and imagined. Haunting, authentic, and ultimately hopeful." --Tammara Webber, New York Times bestselling author
"A painful, beautiful, and utterly magical story about the family you're born into versus the family you choose." --Trish Doller, author of In a Perfect World
"A touching tale of love and fate straight from the heartland." --Mindy McGinnis, author of The Female of the Species
"Scarlett and Jesse's story will stay in your heart long after you finish the book." --Simone Elkeles, New York Times bestselling author
"Southern Gothic at its finest, this is Katie McGarry's best book to date!" --Miranda Kenneally, author of Catching Jordan and Breathe, Annie, Breathe
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Books about childhood friends who find their way back to each other are without a doubt my absolute favorite, but Only A Breath Apart is more than reconciling friendships and romance. It's about family secrets and domestic abuse in its many forms and what it's like to grow up in a home where that occurs. Through Scarlett, we see that it takes courage to make the tough decisions, to accept the help and to also help herself.
What I loved:
I loved the rural setting and the gorgeous descriptions of the land and Jesse and Scarlett's connection to it. It is their lifeline. It's where they feel most themselves. It's where they are most free.
I loved reading scenes that included Jesse's cousin, Glory. She is definitely a favorite character. Is she a con? Is she intuitive? Does she see (or sense) dead people? Maybe, but I think yes to all. She reads people and understands what they need to hear. She gives them a small push. She's not all-knowing, but she knows enough.
Some Favorite Quotes:
My cheeks burn under his continued inspection. Jesse has done this a handful of times since our freshman year. Glance at me as if I’m someone worth looking at, someone worth laughing with a little too loud and smiling with a little too much. Then he remembers who I am and snaps his gaze to someone else. - This alludes to Scarlett and Jesse's history - what they once had and the possibility of what might still be there.
"You've been asleep for a very long time,” she whispers. “It’s time to wake up, Scarlett. There’s a whole world of possibility waiting for you.” - This is what Glory says when Scarlett goes to have her palm read.
There is so much beauty and hope in this story and I want readers to embrace it just as I have. Like Noah and Echo from Pushing the Limits, Beth and Ryan from Dare You To and Emily and Oz in Nowhere But Here, Scarlett and Jesse are characters that I will continue to hold in my heart and imagine their beautiful future together.
Katie doesn’t write light and cute contemporary, but emotional books with boys who are rough on the outside and solid gold on the inside. They aren’t easy to read, but not because of the writing, but because of the emotions, the pain the characters go through. Some of the violence in the book can be a bit much, but it’s an integral part of the story. About learning to trust, learning to love, and trying to heal.
I love that this book has a tiny bit extrasensory perception, and I don’t think that is the right way to explain it. More like psychics, spirits, curses and a spiritual connection to the land. I can’t even explain it, but it is a part of the story that has importance, but it doesn’t take anything away from the plot, only adds to it. I loved this chance that Katie took, as it isn’t something she ever wrote before.
Let’s talk about the characters, because I love character driven books and Katie writes the best characters. Jesse has recently lost his grandmother, one of his last remaining relatives. He is the inheritor of a large farmland, but his grandmother had created a sort of trust to determine how he should inherit the property when he turns 18 in less than a year. He believes his family is cursed, his mother swore that he couldn’t leave their families land, and everytime he has gone far away, very bad things have happened to him. Jesse has got a bad reputation around town, but all of his shortcomings are based his heart of gold. He gets in trouble for helping his friends, or his farm, or his family.
Scarlett was the girl Jesse grew up with, she was always closed off, but they were always close. Of course Jesse pushed her away and hurt her a few years ago. Now his future depends on her, and he has never stopped caring for her. Scarlett and Jesse start rekindling their friendship. Her life and Jesse’s are interwined, for better or worse.
I love when audiobooks have dual narrators when the book is told in that format. Nothing makes me happier than having a male and female narrator, so yay! The production is great, and I enjoyed listening to this story. Y’all know I love audiobooks more than anything so yeah I got lost in this one.
If you like your characters with a bit of a rough edge, complexity, and ultimately flawed, I can guarantee you will be completely consumed with Only a Breath Apart.
*Trigger warnings for violence, domestic abuse, verbal abuse.