Jesse and Scarlett have been through a lot. Jesse’s warm, loving gran, who raised him after his flighty mother was murdered, lost her fight with cancer and is now residing inside an urn that lives atop the heater in his dilapidated trailer. In the huge mansion across the way from Jesse’s farmland, Scarlett’s forbidding dad is controlling and physically abusive, but her timid mum is insistent that this is all perfectly normal. Once, Jesse and Scarlet were the best of friends. Of course, they haven’t spoken in 3 years… Not since Jesse froze her out at the start of high school and began spreading rumours about her.
Don’t worry about not liking or relating to these characters, you’ll like them just fine; I’m so glad this was written with a dual POV. You’d think Jesse would be at least a little unlikable, considering he did ignore Scarlett for 3 years, but he’s actually swoon worthy… You might also think you’d get frustrated that Scarlett doesn’t speaking out immediately about her abusive dad, especially with a vulnerable younger sister to consider, but that wasn’t my reaction at all. All I felt was empathy. The fact is, Katie McGarry might write baggage like nobody’s business, but her characters are so well drawn that you can’t help loving them despite their weaknesses – they might make silly choices, but you always end up thinking, “I probably would have done that too…”
Finally, I loved the southern-gothic vibes of this story – from the magical realism in the cursed land, to the quiet horrors of abusive families, and the psychic, distantly-related cousin who lives amid endless woods and predicts fates. This setting, combined with a wickedly twisty plot and slow burn romance, make this a great YA contemporary that has a heavy dose of suspense. I found this a difficult read to put down and spent my entire Saturday reading it… I’m sort of hoping that Leo and Veronica get their own spin off story. (Hint, hint! Miss McGarry…)
Edition read: Hardback (January 2019)
Age recommendation: 14+
Triggers: physical and emotional abuse
Rating: 5 yummy cupcakes!!!!!
is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings
, to spotlight and discuss books you’re excited about that you have yet to read. Generally they’re books that have yet to be released.
What am I waiting on this week?
Only a Breath Apart by Katie McGarry.
Why am I waiting?
Firstly, Tor Teen isn’t publishing this book until the 22nd January! Secondly, I love the sound of the tragic ‘curse’ – this book has Maggie Steifvater vibes written all over it… (Another favourite author of mine.)
What do you need to know about its author?
Ever since I read Katie McGarry’s debut novel ‘Pushing the Limits
‘ this author has been blowing me away with her YA romances. Sadly, for family reasons
, she won’t be able to do much promotion for this book on her own in the coming months…
Okay, so what does the publisher’s synopsis say?
Jesse Lachlin is cursed…
So the town folklore says, but while Jesse’s had his fair share of tragedy, the only curse he believes is in his grandmother’s will: in order to inherit his family farm he must win the approval of his childhood best friend, the girl he froze out his freshman year, Scarlett Copeland.
Scarlett Copeland is psychic…
Glory Gardner tells Scarlett she has hidden psychic abilities, but Scarlett thinks Glory is delusional. What is real is Scarlett’s father’s irrational fears, controlling attitude, and the dark secrets at home. Scarlett may have a way to escape, but there’s a hitch: she’ll have to rely on the one person she used to trust, the same boy who broke her heart, Jesse Lachlin.
I really love this series!! (I wasn’t that happy with the Noah/Ecco sequel though, so let’s just pretend that book never happened…) And ‘Chasing Impossible‘ was no exception. It’s got romance, intrigue, thriller-bits, giggly comedic-bits, young people trying to figure out who they are bits and great friendships.
Being inside of Abby’s world and rather original mind was something else.
“If horses were easy to get back on, then cars would have never been invented and we’d all have a huge family pet that lived in the garage. But that’s not how the world turned out.”
Abby’s just as fun an MC as I always thought she would be and just as complicated.
Her sassy banter kept me smiling, even in the darkest parts of the novel:
“[Speak] English, boys. Preferably full sentences with nouns and verbs. They teach it in school. Every year. No matter how much it blows.”
I liked the dual Logan-Abby POV chapters and ‘daredevil’ Logan is pretty much ‘crazy’ Abby’s perfect match. Logan has own super-secret and his feelings for Abby actually help him to deal with it – now as I’m keeping this a spoiler free review, I shall say no more on the topic.
I did appreciate how important family was to Logan, but he clearly needed to take charge of himself… and he does that over the course of the story.
Logan: “Not liking who I’ve become [dad] and telling me I don’t know who I am are two different things.”
These two gave me all the feels.
Read it! Read it!