Title: Only a Breath Apart
Author: Katie McGarry
Publication Date: January 22, 2019
Rating: 4 stars
**Thanks to the publisher for sending me a copy to review**
Synopsis (from Goodreads): 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.
Each midnight meeting pushes Jesse and Scarlett to confront their secrets and their feelings for each other. But as love blooms, the curse rears its ugly head… (
Thoughts: I love Katie McGarry’s past works and I enjoyed this one too. I have loved and enjoyed all of Katie’s books, but this one was different. This one took me longer to get into and it just had a different feel about it. Katie always manages to turn such serious topics and apply some happiness to them along with the idea that it doesn’t matter who it is that loves you, as long as they are genuine it doesn’t matter. This one might not be my favorite Katie McGarry but it is still worth the read!
Evangeline fans herself. “That boy is hot.”
Hot isn’t exactly the word I would use for him. Hot somehow feels…lacking. Hot is for some boy in our gym class who has recently grown facial hair. Jess Lachlin is no boy. He has fire-red hair, a sun kissed tan from all the hours working on his land, deep green eyes and a body made to handle rough, rugged days.
I might have been ignoring Jesse for years, but I’ve seen him. Every girl in this school has gone out of her way to drive or walk along one of the country roads to watch Jesse as he works his land. Living across the street, I’ve had a front-row view. His shirt off, drenched in sweat, muscles rippling as he moves, the way he sometimes pauses in his front yard and looks across the road as if he knows I’m watching. A fluttering in my chest and then—
“Would you date him?” Evangeline asks.
“No.” Camila’s answer is swift. “And it’s not like he dates anyone. Except for his friends, the boy is a recluse.”
“Why wouldn’t you?” The kneejerk question surprises even me when it pops out of my mouth. Camila and Evangeline look at me as if those were the first words I’d ever spoken. If I could hide under the circulation desk without making this moment worse, I would.
“Besides the fact he’s cursed and anyone a Lachlin falls in love with drops dead?” Camila walks toward me and Evangeline follows. Camila watches me with more curiosity than I care for, but it’s nice that she’s moving the conversation in my direction. “Jesse’s a train wreck, and he taints anyone in his vicinity. Dating him would be a social, emotional and literal death sentence.”
I’m familiar with the curse, and it’s no truer than Glory and her prophesies. “That sounds melodramatic.”
“It’s not.” Camila has a swear-to-God seriousness to her. “Mom and Dad had Bible study at our house last night, and Pastor Hughes came. Everyone thought I was in the basement, but I went to the kitchen for something to drink, and I heard Pastor Hughes ask everyone what they knew about Jesse.”
Eavesdropping. How Camila.
“Did you know that before Veronica started hanging with Jesse that she was on track to be a concert pianist?” Camila says.
“Seriously?” Evangeline tilts her head in disbelief, and I’ll admit to putting down my cell.
“Seriously. And Leo Wheeling was a star soccer player, predicted to be the first freshman to play varsity for our high school, and then he started hanging out with Jesse.”
Faint middle school memories of hearing Leo’s name over the announcements regarding soccer emerge in my mind.
“Then someone said that before Nazareth Kravitz moved here, he had taken the ACT in the seventh grade and received a perfect score. He moved here, met Jesse and the rest is history.”
Nazareth sleeps through most of our classes, that is, when he bothers showing for school.
I nibble on my bottom lip as I’m not sure how much I like the Jesse-is-the-devil enthusiasm. I may share the opinion, but that doesn’t mean anyone else should.
“Of course, then there’s Jesse himself. Drinking, drugs.”
“The fights,” Evangeline pipes in.
“Don’t forget the suspensions—”
“And he’s been arrested!” Evangeline finishes Camila’s statement like the two share a brain. Her eyes sparkle like that precious piece of scandalous gossip was just too good not to spread.
“The boy is a walking disaster,” Camila continues. “Anyone who hangs out with him wants to become a loser. It doesn’t matter he’s going to be a millionaire once he sells his grandmother’s land. Anyone who spends time with Jesse is asking for hurt.”
Would you dare to defy destiny? Are our destinies written in stone? Do we become nothing more than the self-fulfilling prophesies of other people’s opinions? Or can we dare to become who we believe we were born to be?
“A gorgeous, heartfelt journey of redemption and love” (Wendy Higgins), ONLY A BREATH APART is a young adult contemporary novel from critically acclaimed Katie McGarry. “Haunting, authentic, and ultimately hopeful” (Tammara Webber), order your copy of ONLY A BREATH APART now!
About ONLY A BREATH APART:
They say your destiny is carved in stone. But some destinies are meant to be broken.
The only curse Jesse Lachlin believes in is 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.
A fortuneteller tells Scarlett she’s psychic, but what is real is Scarlett’s father’s controlling attitude and the dark secrets at home. She may be able to escape, but only if she can rely on the one boy who broke her heart.
Each midnight meeting pushes Jesse and Scarlett to confront their secrets and their feelings, but as love blooms, the curse rears its ugly head…
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“Gritty and real, Only a Breath Apart is a story of hope conjured from pain, strength drawn from innocence, and love earned from self-respect. Beautiful, poignant, and fierce.”
―Kristen Simmons, critically acclaimed author of the Article 5 series
Katie McGarry Bio:
Katie is the author of the PUSHING THE LIMITS series, THUNDER ROAD series, SAY YOU’LL REMEMBER ME, and the upcoming YA novel, ONLY A BREATH APART. Her novels have received starred reviews, critical acclaim and have won multiple awards including being a multiple Goodreads Choice Award Finalist for YA Fiction, multiple RT Magazine’s Reviewer’s Choice Award Finalist for Best YA Fiction, including a win in the category, and she was a 2013 YALSA Top Ten Teen Pick.