Book Review: Don’t Breathe a Word by Holly Cupala

Hi guys!  So today I’m FINALLY {I read it a few months ago} posting my review of this absolutely AMAZING book!  {Seriously.  AMAZING!}  Now I have lots of important links at the bottom.  Not only can you {and you should!} follow Holly on all her networks, you can also enter to win a copy {ends Jan. 3rd, release day}, get a downloadable FREE preview and check out the tour info where there are more giveaways and goodies.  I very highly recommend you click them all and THEN, feel free to preorder the book! {I receive no proceeds through those links, but please, order it anyway!}  I hope you all give this book a try because I think you’ll love it!

Don’t Breathe a Word by Holly Cupala
Scheduled to be published January 3rd, 2012 by HarperTeen
Reading Level: Young Adult
Source: Author

Joy Delamere is suffocating…
From asthma, which has nearly claimed her life. From her parents, who will do anything to keep that from happening. From delectably dangerous Asher, who is smothering her from the inside out.
Joy can take his words—tender words, cruel words—until the night they go too far.
Now, Joy will leave everything behind to find the one who has offered his help, a homeless boy called Creed. She will become someone else. She will learn to survive. She will breathe…if only she can get to Creed before it’s too late.
Set against the gritty backdrop of Seattle’s streets and a cast of characters with secrets of their own, Holly Cupala’s powerful new novel explores the subtleties of abuse, the meaning of love, and how far a girl will go to discover her own strength.

 You ever read a book and think that this is ‘your’ book?  A book that you can connect with on so many levels it’s like the author took it straight out of your head?   That was this book for me.  There are a few other contemporaries I feel this way about, Ballads of Suburbia by Stephanie Kuehnert and I Heart You, You Haunt Me by Lisa Schroeder.  These books are different from each other, but if they were smooshed together it would be my book.  Perfectly.
There were so many things I connected with in this book.  I ‘got’ the main character, Joy, and understood her actions and decisions.  I’ve been in an abusive relationship, I had overprotective parents and I lived on the streets.  My story is not really anything like Joy’s.  Not really.  My abusive boyfriend was different, my parents were overprotective for religious reasons and I lived on the streets after I’d moved out and well, my situation was different.  And my experience on the streets was different because it wasn’t Seattle.  But still, I connected, truly connected with everything in this book.  I’ve spent lots of time in Seattle and some of it was with the homeless teens and in the areas they run.  So the territory was familiar to me.
There was so much in this book I loved.  I loved the characters, the setting, the story line and situations.  The writing was phenomenal (of course!) and I thought everything was just beautiful.  It was heart breaking, heart wrenching, painful and real.  It was real.  It was all so freaking real.  I appreciate that in a book.
I loved Holly’s first book, Tell Me a Secret, but I loved this one even more.  Holly isn’t afraid to get to the nitty gritty and keep the truth real.  I mean honestly, she walks a line that some would be afraid of.  The street life ain’t pretty.  The situations are tough and scary and the things those teens do for money isn’t something that most any parent would want their child to do.  But that’s how it is, and kudo’s to Holly for writing about it. I don’t think I’ve read a book that really took place on the streets.  Where we really see the life of a homeless teen.  So this was something different and refreshing for me.
I couldn’t recommend this book any more highly.  Honestly, this is one of my most favorite contemporaries of the year.  Either in first or second place, it’s up at the top though.  Seriously LOVED it.
Disclosure: I received an advance copy of this book for review purposes.  All opinions expressed are my own.  I was not paid or influenced in any way.
Don't Breathe a Word preview
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  1. I really love the sound of this one! It’s not often I come across one of those ‘my’ books, but it does happen and it’s amazing when it does! I’m glad it was one of those for you. 😀 I’ll definitely have to look this up and put it on the to-read list. Sounds great!

  2. I’m so excited! Ballads of Suburbia is one of my all time favorite contemporaries that I really connected with, and since you say Don’t Say a Word is up there with that one, this is a MUST read for me! So glad I found an ARC in my mailbox a few days ago. Yay!

  3. I also loved this one, I don’t have a personal connection as I never went through anything like Joy did but I loved it anyway. I’m sorry you had a rough past but I’m glad you are where you are today.

    Thank you so much for letting me borrow your copy of this, I greatly appreciate it. I hope there is something I can do for you in the future :)

    Thanks for the amazing review.

  4. We talked about this one on Twitter some :)

    Great review, and I almost completely agree with you. Still really disappointed in the way it ended, but Holly is most certainly an author that I’m going to be watching forever. If she can tighten up those endings (I had a similar problem w/ TMAS) she would be on my list of favorites EVER. Still love tho :)

  5. FINALLY its coming out! i have been waiting FOR SO LONG! i mean the cover is GORGEOUS and i just want my own copy to stare at!!! and it seems everyone is in love with it!!

    great review!

    – juhina

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