Review: Ten Tiny Breaths (#1, Ten Tiny Breaths) by K.A. Tucker

My Thoughts

Gripping and emotional.
A moving story about a girl submerged in the depths of tragedy, drowning in her own emotional turmoil as she struggles to breathe again… to love again… and to forgive in order to find life again.

4halfstars

Synopsis

ten tiny breaths coverKacey Cleary’s whole life imploded four years ago in a drunk-driving accident. Now she’s working hard to bury the pieces left behind—all but one. Her little sister, Livie. Kacey can swallow the constant disapproval from her born-again aunt Darla over her self-destructive lifestyle; she can stop herself from going kick-boxer crazy on Uncle Raymond when he loses the girls’ college funds at a blackjack table. She just needs to keep it together until Livie is no longer a minor, and then they can get the hell out of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

But when Uncle Raymond slides into bed next to Livie one night, Kacey decides it’s time to run. Armed with two bus tickets and dreams of living near the coast, Kacey and Livie start their new lives in a Miami apartment complex, complete with a grumpy landlord, a pervert upstairs, and a neighbor with a stage name perfectly matched to her chosen “profession.” But Kacey’s not worried. She can handle all of them. What she can’t handle is Trent Emerson in apartment 1D.

Kacey doesn’t want to feel. She doesn’t. It’s safer that way. For everyone. But sexy Trent finds a way into her numb heart, reigniting her ability to love again. She starts to believe that maybe she can leave the past where it belongs and start over. Maybe she’s not beyond repair.

But Kacey isn’t the only one who’s broken. Seemingly perfect Trent has an unforgiveable past of his own; one that, when discovered, will shatter Kacey’s newly constructed life and send her back into suffocating darkness.

My Review

“I’m falling. Falling backward into the deep, dark water. It’s pouring over me, into me, through my mouth, up my nose, filling my lungs, seizing my will to breath, to live. I accept it. I welcome it.”

Lost. Listless. Lifeless. Endlessly drowning amidst nightmares. Unceasingly gripped by the vises of tragedy. Submerged in her own thoughts… in her anger… in her inability to relinquish the memory of death. Kacey Clearly has been internally and externally scarred by a horrific tragedy that occurred four years prior. She can’t get past it. She can’t face it. She’s stuck in an endless replay of what happened, engulfed in fear and barely living. She’s harbors a deluge of feeling, but channels her emotions into angry punches in instead of facing the battles she should be fighting to find her life again.

“Just breathe. Ten tiny breaths … Seize them. Feel them. Love them.”

Those are the words her mother used to tell her when trying to quell the rush of emotions she would feel. And now, she repeats them without really understanding them, without benefiting from their hidden wisdom. When Kacey lost her parents, best friend and boyfriend in a drunk driving accident, she was shattered to pieces. Vivid memories of holding her boyfriend’s hand and hearing final breaths perpetually permeate her thoughts and haunt her dreams. Her coping mechanisms have morphed over the years… ranging from drugs to men to boxing, but truly, her way of dealing is to bury her feelings and live life in a continual state of numbness and controlled anger.

“I’m used to having things under control. I fight to stay numb. That’s how I get through each day and it’s worked well for me.”

Thankfully, she has her 15-year-old sister Livie, who is good and kind to the core, but when the situation with their born-again Aunt Darla and vile Uncle Raymond becomes unbearable and threatening, they pack their bags, flee and move into a run-down apartment in Miami. But life has a way of disrupting well-made plans and when Kacey meets her gorgeous, blue-eyed neighbor with drool-inducing 8-pack abs, desire and feeling surge unexpectedly. He’s a mix of kindness, smugness and irresistible charm. In typical Kacey fashion, she fights him off with a two-punch of snark and feigned indifference. Kacey is a great protagonist, a blend of brokenness and strength, always teetering between the edge of numbness and the brink of emotional explosion. But the truth is, she can’t help but feel drawn to her hunky neighbor, Trent, despite her efforts to stay away. Surprisingly, each time she is near him, life begins to once again thrum through her veins and she begins to see the darkness slowly lift.

“Something’s just different with Trent. He’s like ripe watermelon after a lifetime of thirst. He’s like air after years underwater. He’s like life.”

As Kacey and Livie settle in Miami, they unexpectedly find themselves surrounded by new friends like their neighbor Storm and her daughter Mia, as well a motley crew of characters from Kacey’s new job. Before she knows it, Kacey’s walls slowly continue to come down and that’s terrifying in more ways than one because having people you care about in your life means you have the opportunity to lose them as she had before. But there’s something more to Trent. It’s evident he’s hiding behind his own pain, his own secrets — something that impedes him from becoming intimate with Kacey (much to Kacey’s mounting frustration).

It’s so easy to fall in love with Trent, however, not only because of how good he is to Kacey, and how he wants to help her, but he’s determined, almost obsessively so, to make her smile… to make her laugh… to fix her.

“I want to make you smile. For real. Always. We’re going to go for dinners, and see movies, and walk on the beach. We’ll go hang-gliding, or bungee jumping, or whatever you want to do. Whatever makes you smile and laugh more. Let me make you smile.”

There are secrets revealed that affect the direction of the story line and some events that simultaneously had my pulse pumping and my heart breaking all at once. I think there are scenes that are very poignant in the book, and although I didn’t cry, I was definitely affected. To be honest, I think K.A. Tucker could’ve pushed us even more emotionally because the foundation was there for that emotional depth the book innately called for. The one other small thing I’ll mention is that there is a build-up to Kacey and Trent being intimate and once it happened, it was a bit glossed over. I kind of wanted to revel in that moment. 🙂 That being said, I truly loved the book. This is the first K.A. Tucker book I read and I think it was expert storytelling. I was gripped and addicted and I desperately wanted to see what would happen. The characters were all well-developed and the writing style is crisp, yet vivid and expressive. I loved the way it ended and can’t wait to read One Tiny Lie, which is Livie’s story.

“I barrel into his arms, my mouth connecting with his. Seizing him. Feeling him. Loving him.”

addseriestogoodreads

In Her Wake Ten-Tiny-Breaths Tucker_One-Tiny-Lie-cover four seconds to lose cover five ways to fall

About K.A. Tucker

KathleenTuckerBorn in small-town Ontario, Kathleen published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She is a voracious reader and the farthest thing from a genre-snob, loving everything from High Fantasy to Chick Lit. Kathleen currently resides in a quaint small town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.

Blog | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

 

Related Reads:

Comments

  1. I’ve read Ten Tiny Breaths and loved it. I would love to own a paperback copy!

  2. I am most looking forward to falling in love with the characters and their story

  3. Maria Malaveci says:

    The beautiful story….!

  4. Claudia Blagbrough says:

    Thanks for the Giveaway.I look forward to read the book.Greets from Germany

  5. thanks for the giveaway! I am just starting with this series!

  6. I have read so many wonderful things about this series. I am dying to read them. They have been put on my TBR! And now I’m moving them on up the list. 🙂 Awesome giveaway! Thanks!!

  7. I’ve read the book and loved it. I wanted to know how it all played out. What happens to her, and how does she get through it. I loved the story, and fell in love with the characters. I try to put myself in the same situation, but I don’t think I’m that strong. I probably would have fallen apart.

  8. I already read it! I can’t wait for the third book to come out!!!!

  9. I’ve read the book. Thanks for the giveaway!

  10. Bekah Smith says:

    I can’t wait to find out how she get through it.

  11. I love the escape the story and characters provide. 🙂 Love K.A. Tucker

  12. Patricia Lee says:

    Looking forward to meeting these characters and falling in love with their story.

  13. Kelly Tannacore says:

    I actually just read this story pretty recently, and even though I was late to read it, knowing that Kacey went through a terrible car accident, but not really knowing what happened, I was really looking forward to learning what happened and how she dealt with it. Oh wow, I was in for an emotional ride. I loved it so much! So beautifully written…

  14. I haven’t read the book yet but I’m planning to buy a copy and seriously, I can’t wait to have one! The book cover is so beautiful and the title is intriguing.. plus the reviews of this book are good. I;m looking forward to everything about it! <3

  15. Can’t wait to know the characters and experience Tucker’s writing!

  16. Interesting story 🙂

    Thanks for the giveaway 🙂

  17. haven’t yet gotten to read this, but is on my tbr list

  18. Thanks for the giveaway would love to read this beautiful story.

  19. kgagnon2013 says:

    I’m looking forward to a wonderfully written story that doesn’t have a cliffhanger! Thanks for the post and the chance to win.

  20. I’m looking forward to a HEA.

  21. Jen B (@Scrapingirl16) says:

    I’ve read this, but I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to own a signed copy!!!

  22. I’d love to win this!!

  23. mlyn peters says:

    SWEET Giveaway !!

  24. Being a romantic, I look forward to their love story…how they met, the hurdles they overcome, how they finally get to together…I love it all <3

  25. Reading her next book about Cain in 4 seconds to lose!!!!!! She is one of my fav authors 🙂

  26. im looking for something new to read

  27. I’m looking forward to just getting lost in a world that’s different from mine. I haven’t gotten the chance to read this series yet but I really want too. Thank you so much for the chance.

  28. What caught my attention was the story. I want to read not only Kacey’s, but Trent’s story also. The book sounds like a very good read.

  29. I’ve already read this book and it was so good!! I would love to have the paperback as well!

  30. i’m so curious about this book haha everyone talks too much good things about it btw thanks for the chance 🙂

  31. I think finding out what Trent demons are and how Kacey will let them effect how they go on with their lives.

  32. Lisa Jackson says:

    I’ve read it already, but want the signed copy to add to my favorite books of all time shelf!

  33. I’m looking forward to a Binge Read of course! I like to wait for a few books in a series to be published so I don’t have to wait for the next book!
    😉

Leave a Reply