Release Date: February 18, 2014
Publisher: Intermix (Penguin)
Series: Between Breaths #2
Review Source: Netgalley
Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
A sexy, emotional New Adult romance about a bad boy on the edge and a good girl about to lose control...
A college baseball star isn't supposed to have skeletons in his closet. But Daniel Quinn is hiding a guilty past so dark he refuses to let anyone get close. Except there's something about gorgeous, studious Ella Abrams that goes beyond the electric attraction between them--something that makes him want to open up.
Ella has suffered enough heartache and guilt to fill one of her psychology textbooks, but she keeps that part of herself hidden behind a bubbly exterior. Until she receives an anonymous call while working a suicide helpline and the voice on the other end touches something inside of her that she can't ignore.
Soon Ella and Quinn's physical connection heats up, even as their deep and revealing hotline talks intensify. But by the time Ella realizes that her seductive jock and her sensitive caller are the same guy, it might be too late to save him--or to stop herself from falling too far...
Before You Break is a very emotional story that centres around the romance between Ella and Quinn. Both characters are dealing with traumatic events in their pasts. Ella is a bit more removed from the situation, still feeling sadness and moments of guilt over her brother’s suicide, but she’s a little more past it, using her experiences to help other people. Quinn, on the other hand, is a bit removed from his own life. He’s walking on a path that was never supposed to be his in the first place. He’s dealing (or not dealing, really) with massive guilt, feeling like what happened to his friend is his fault.
All these emotions in the story could be overwhelming, but instead Christina Lee fashioned some very well rounded characters. They felt real and the situations they were going through felt real as well. The side characters in this story were also great. I liked checking in with Avery and Bennett from the first book, but I especially enjoyed Ella’s family.
Before You Break is a great book of romance, friendship, and family. It contains a real journey of discovering self worth, focused on the male main character for a change. I also enjoyed how Ella’s indirect influence led to Quinn’s changes, but that he really made those choices for himself. It was about positivity and choosing the right path with the support of loved ones, but making those choices for yourself. Overall, a beautiful story that I recommend.
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At the theater, we bought popcorn, Milk Duds, and large sodas. After we settled in our seats in the crowded room, I opened the box of chocolate caramel confections and dumped them in the large tub.
“Um,” Quinn said, scratching his chin.
“Sweet and salty—it’s a must-have for movie watching.”
“Yes, seriously.” I picked up a Milk Dud, flanked it with two pieces of popcorn, and then brought it to his lips. “Here. I guarantee you’ll fall in love. You’ll never watch a movie without them again.”
“If you say so. . . .” He dragged the sweet and salty mixture into his mouth but kept my fingers enclosed between his lips. I held in a gasp while he ran his tongue over my thumb and then sucked on my forefinger before releasing my hand and chewing what remained.
“Agree,” he said around a mouthful of popcorn. “Wouldn’t want to be without them ever again.”
Quinn’s gaze latched on to mine. It felt like a bundle of feathers had been let loose in my stomach. “Guess you’ll have to come to every movie from now on. So I don’t forget.”
Speechless wasn’t even the word for what I felt in that moment. Dumbfounded might have been more like it, or maybe just struck stupid, because I couldn’t even move my lips to form any coherent words.
When the movie previews began, he turned toward the screen and reached for my fingers, interlacing our hands. Then he leaned close to my ear and said, “I expect you to feed me just like that the entire movie.”
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