Title: Breathe, Annie, Breathe
Author: Miranda Kenneally
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Date Published: July 15th, 2014
Pages: 320 (hardcover)
Age Range: 15+ (language, some mature content)
Annie hates running. No matter how far she jogs, she can’t escape the guilt that if she hadn't broken up with Kyle, he might still be alive. So to honor his memory, she starts preparing for the marathon he intended to race.
But the training is even more grueling than Annie could have imagined. Despite her coaching, she’s at war with her body, her mind—and her heart. With every mile that athletic Jeremiah cheers her on, she grows more conflicted. She wants to run into his arms…and sprint in the opposite direction. For Annie, opening up to love again may be even more of a challenge than crossing the finish line.
Annie is a young girl who is trying to honor her boyfriend's memory by running his marathon. Yes, a marathon. Miranda Kenneally did an amazing job of enveloping the many, many stages of running. I have run two half marathons, and this book pretty much went through all of the stages: the blindness of signing up to run, the denial, cursing your stupidity, actually thinking that you are SUPER SPEEDY, the denial, cursing your turtle-like pace, the denial, getting used to it, more denial, then instant death. YAY, RUNNING!
Anyway the emotions throughout this book were extremely relatable and raw. They were a very prominent theme through the story, and eventually, they ended up taking a backseat. And that's what was supposed to happen! The book is about Annie growing through her pain, and kind of pushing it back.
I liked Jeremiah. Liked. I didn't love him. "WHAT KIND OF FOUL, HEARTLESS CREATURE ARE YOU?!" I know you are probably screaming right now. Maybe you are even screaming it out loud. He sorta came across as a creeper in the beginning. I'm not gonna spoil the story so I will just say that the scene near the beginning on the edges of the lake... yeah, that one... that one was a little weird. It just didn't sit well. Yes, it showed weakness on Annie and Jeremiah's part... but still. Sorry, please don't kill me.
Moving on. I liked the bit with Kelsey and Annie. It added more depth to Annie, showing that she isn't just some love-sick girl. I liked Vanessa and Iggy, and their adventures in college because- let's face it- college is scary, and the book made it seem fun and adventurous. I liked all of the characters and their growth.
Now, Jeremiah's BIG FLAW was a HUGE FLAW, and Miranda Kenneally did a good job of realizing that and utilizing as such. I knew what was going to happen with Jeremiah as soon as we learn about his FLAW (which is actually pretty early on). I like how Miranda Kenneally left Jeremiah's flaw as a flaw, and not some huge secret. If it had been played with as a secret, I would've been mad because it's a obvious, not very good, secret.
All in all, this was a really cute book. It was a book that I used as fluff between two heavy books and it's great for that. Now, I'm gonna read Miranda Kenneally's other stuff because she has excellent reviews.