Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. TUcker
Elizabeth - 4 crowns
10 tiny breaths I am taking..... I lie. I am taking 10 deep breaths at finishing this book.... It is deep, and personal and sooo tragic, and tragically happy! Breathing now.....
Kelly - 4.5 crowns
”I’m seven layers of fucked up with a side of batshit crazy.” - Kacey Cleary
A story of love and loss. Of tragedy and heartbreak. And new beginnings.
I don’t quite know where to start with this review. I guess I should seize Mrs Cleary’s advice and take ten tiny breaths…it may help with the hyperventilating and dislodge the lump that weaved itself up into my throat, especially within the last 10-15% of this magnificent book.
Ten Tiny Breaths is one emotional ride. It not only follows the story of a broken girl, Kacey, as tragedy touched her life four agonising years ago, breaking her body and shattering her soul, but it gives a clear and decisive message: People make mistakes. How a split second decision can have catastrophic consequences for everyone involved. But it also teaches us that empathy can lead to the path of forgiveness, and with forgiveness comes hope.
Losing her Parents, her best friend and her Boyfriend in a tragic road accident due to a drunk driver, was the beginning of the end for Kacey. Not only did she experience the loss first-hand, lying trapped within the confines of the mangled carnage witnessing the last breath of her Mother and the fading life-force of Billy’s hand as it gripped her own – her body was also broken. Four years later her rehabilitation is complete, metal rods holding her frame together. Her flesh and bone scarred. Yet Kacey is now strong and virile, her love of the gym and kickboxing giving her strength and an anger outlet as she struggles to accept what life has thrown at her. Her soul is shattered, her heart torn and her mind frozen with the images that haunt her daily. Her only saving grace is her fifteen year old sister, Livie.
After a tremulous couple of years, Kacey protects her younger sister from the grips of their over-attentive Uncle, as they flee their home and embark on a journey for Miami after both having dreamt of living by the sea.
Finding a cheap apartment wasn’t easy, and the Landlord is a little odd, considering his love for Batman Pyjama’s, but it’s clean and promises a new start. However, Kacey wasn’t expecting this new start to involve a run in with her new neighbour in the basement Laundromat. With his blue/turquoise eyes, golden brown hair and muscular appendage, he was a distraction she definitely didn’t need at this crossroads in her life.
Fate has a way of intervening though as Kacey and Livie make acquaintances with their neighbours. A five year old girl being the instigator, as Livie befriends the child and becomes her full-time evening babysitter as her Mother, Storm works at the local ‘adult’ club.
Kacey takes on a full-time evening bar job with Storm, after all the money is excellent, and she needs to save for Livie to attend Princeton, as it’s what her parents wanted.
Trent sits there, every night, watching her. Having already told her he finds her beautiful; Kacey can’t help but feel a connection to him. He’s good-looking, kind and wants nothing more than to befriend the broken girl with the red hair and fiery temper.
”Everything around me vanishes under the weight of his gaze as it strips me of my protective bitch coat, yanking it clean off my body, leaving me bare and vulnerable in seconds.”
”You hate me, don’t you? You must hate me. I can’t help it. I’m broken.”
Trent squeezes me close to him. “I don’t hate you. I could never hate you. Give me your heart, Kacey. I’ll take everything that comes with it.”
As friendship progresses into a love-affair, Trent makes his intentions clear. In order for them to develop further, she needs help and he believes he is the one to give it. The best person to fix her. But what if Kacey can’t be fixed? Harbouring hatred so pure for her parents’ death, she cannot let go, cannot forgive those that murdered her family and broke her body. Their own deaths in the accident still not providing solace due to the devastation they left behind. But… she is falling for Trent. No-one has succeeded in warming her heart since the accident, no-one until now. Except, Trent has a past secret of his own and if shared, it has the potential to destroy everything…
It’s true that one can be alive, and yet walk the Earth like the living dead. Shutting off every emotion and compartmentalizing all the anguish and hurt that takes its toll on the mind, body and spirit. K.A. Tucker has done a commendable job in translating that onto the page in the voice of a 20-year old girl.
Kacey’s story is not one I am going to forget very easily. This book, albeit at times was mesmerising-ly beautiful, it was also devastatingly difficult at others. Having lost a friend to a tragic road accident, the hurt and anger that resonated throughout the pages affected me more than I believed it could.
Trent on the other hand made this book absolute magic for me, can I just say that he has undoubtedly made the book boyfriend list – Oh yes he has! His compassion and supporting role for Kacey gave her hope of a fresh outlook, even though it took professional help to see her through to that last hurdle.
Although this is book one of a series, the ending of this story is true perfection and it gives a closure that is heart-warming and justifiable.
I loved it!