4.5 Hearts · New Adult Contemporary

In This Breeze by Kathleen Mareé

A nerd. A quiet art student. A nobody.
Or perhaps, just some girl.

These are the non-spoken titles I’ve been known as since I started at Lake Shore Uni almost two years ago now. When given the chance to leave my horrific childhood behind – I didn’t hesitate. In fact, I was ecstatic to have the door hit me on the ass on my way out of town; because the only two things I actually loved in my traumatic life…

Were coming with me.
And whilst the three of us shared the same beat-up truck when we moved here – that’s where the similarities unfortunately end.

Ethan ‘The Mule’ Jones, is kind of a super star on campus. Everywhere he goes he seems to draw attention. I guess that’s what happens when you’re headlining papers as the star basketballer for the LS Eagles. But to me, he’s just Eth. A boy who still spends his Friday nights snuggled up watching movies with me, and who walks me to classes just to make sure I get there okay. He is my best friend in every way, and I can’t imagine my life without him in it.

And then there’s Jase.

The truth is I knew from the moment I met Jase at the local skate park, when he was smoking a cigarette and teasing Eth for his poor skating ability, of how fiercely protective he was about those he cared for. From the time he blew his warm breath over my injured knee, to when he thankfully intervened on the most horrific day of my life. A day, that still haunts me when I am alone in the dark.

He saved me.
But Jase has his own demons too. Even if he doesn’t go looking for it, trouble always seems to find him. Which is why he has been absent from our lives for the past two years.

Sometimes I wonder what he’s doing.
Quite often I worry if he’s okay.
And I always, always, think about him.
Even though I shouldn’t.

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Received and ARC from author in exchange for an honest review.

One girl, two boys, unconditional love.

One she can’t live without the other her heart can’t beat without.

Breanna (a.k.a. Bree and Breezy are nicknames for her) has grown up with her two best friends for years. Ethan (Eth) and Jason (Jase) are her world. They are the two people who protect her from everything and anything. Bree is shy and keeps to herself. She hides in her art and under the arms of Eth. Growing up the three of them did everything together. Bree didn’t have it easy growing up. Her father was abusive. She was saved before her father could take anything to the next level. Her saving grace was Jase, but with saving Bree there were repercussions. Jase was sent to juvie leaving Bree and Eth. When Jase got out of juvie, the three of them went to San Francisco. Eth and Bree began attending the university, while Jase tried to find a job.

During this time, Jase disappears for two years. With no real word or idea where he may be. It tears Bree apart.   She worries about him nonstop and ask Eth, if he has heard from him. One evening Jase returns into her life in an unexpected way. Bree becomes caught up in Jase’s world of secrets, lies, and illegal dealings because she wants to keep him close and safe. Jase’s only concern becomes protecting Bree and keeping her out of his crazy life. Only that isn’t as easy as it may seem.

Ethan is “the mule.” He is known around campus as the hotshot basketball player. Not only is he handsome, smart, and athletic, he is aloof. Which makes him desirable to majority of the women on campus.  Regardless of girls throwing themselves at him, he spends all his free time with Bree. Constantly holding her under his arm, cuddling with her while watching movies, giving her endearing caresses. Bree thinks that it is normal behavior for best friends, she doesn’t think anything of it.  Eth is very affectionate with her and makes her feel special in his eyes. He is the good guy that wants to do right by Bree. He cannot see his life without her in it and neither can Bree.

Jase doesn’t regret what happened that night he saved Breezy from her father. He would do it again in a heartbeat, but he is bad news. He can’t keep out of trouble. Trouble follows him everywhere.  He wants to be the man Breezy says she sees in him, but it is difficult when you have a criminal record. He has got himself caught up in some shade business and he knows that the only way to keep Breezy safe is to stay away from her.

My thoughts are all over the place. I enjoyed this story and was gripped into it by each of the characters. I would get frustrated with each of them and fell in and out of love with all of them too. I will be honest, I am all the way team Ethan! I SOOOOOOOO want her to be with him.

It is hard to understand who she ends up with because we are left on a CLIFF HANGER! Aggggg, so mad and yet so smart on Ms. Mareé’s part. She knows we are hung over from this book and are waiting for our next fix.

I love her writing. She writes captivating stories with real strong characters. Each character has their own set of problems that they struggle with. I love that no one in her stories are perfect. Each one has good and bad parts. Parts we love about them and parts you just hate. This story will make you feel all of those emotions and more.

I give it a 4.5 hearts. Only because I was slightly made on how it ended. I cannot wait to read book 2 though. Crossing fingers!

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Kathleen grew up in the south-western suburbs of Sydney, where family holidays by the beach and tormenting her two younger brothers, was how she spent her early years. But at the young age of 11, when she submitted a short story to a talented writing competition through the NSW schools program, not only did she win it, but she quickly found a love for it as well.

Throughout her schooling, writing was a hobby, along with sketching and various sports. But fast forward to her adult years when she moved to Europe to follow her husbands field hockey dream, and her love for writing surged to the surface.
Her debut story, Cut, was penned over two years where her hobby seemed to lead to the completion of Pennys’ world. The rest of the series came the following year.

Kathleen enjoys writing stories full of self-discovery, emotional journeys and of course, love.
Something else she loves is hearing from her readers, so feel free to follow her blog or drop her an email.

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