The Breathless by Tara Goedjen: A Captivating Southern Gothic Horror Novel for YA Readers (Book Review)

Book Review, Young Adult Books
The Breathless by Tara Goedjen. A young adult Southern Gothic horror romance novel about a girl who's sister recently died. Beautifully written horror novel for teens and YA readers. YA novels that take place in the south. Southern books for teens. Scary books for teenagers. Books about death. | batchofbooks.com

The Breathless by Tara Goedjen

Age Range: 12-18 | Hardcover: 368 pages | Publisher: Delacorte Press (October 10, 2017

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I mentioned The Breathless in my recent post about trends in children’s books and young adult books for 2018. Keep reading to find out more about the book, get a copy, and see my book review.

 

About the Book

For fans of the dark family secrets of We Were Liars and the page-turning suspense of The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer, The Breathless is a haunting tale of deeply buried secrets, forbidden love, and how far some will go to bring back what’s long dead.

No one knows what really happened on the beach where Roxanne Cole’s body was found, but her boyfriend, Cage, took off that night and hasn’t been seen since. Until now. One year—almost to the day—from Ro’s death, when he knocks on the door of Blue Gate Manor and asks where she is.

Cage has no memory of the past twelve months. According to him, Ro was alive only the day before. Ro’s sister Mae wouldn’t believe him, except that something’s not right. Nothing’s been right in the house since Ro died.

And then Mae finds the little green book. The one hidden in Ro’s room. It’s filled with secrets—dangerous secrets—about her family, and about Ro. And if what it says is true, then maybe, just maybe, Ro isn’t lost forever.

And maybe there are secrets so dark, they should never see the light of day.

 

Find the Book

The Breathless by Tara Goedjen. A young adult Southern Gothic horror romance novel about a girl who's sister recently died. Beautifully written horror novel for teens and YA readers. YA novels that take place in the south. Southern books for teens. Scary books for teenagers. Books about death. | batchofbooks.com

Amazon | Goodreads | Book Depository

 

My Book Review of The Breathless

I think I liked it? I have mixed feelings about this book, but most of them are good feelings, so we’ll go with that.

Mae’s older sister Ro died almost a year ago.

Nobody knows what happened, but everyone thinks that her boyfriend Cage killed her. But then Cage shows up, looking for Ro, claiming that he remembers nothing of the past year. When Mae stumbles across an old family book her sister was obsessed with, she knows it has the power to change everything.

I adored the setting.

Blue Gate (the house Mae lives in) is this gorgeous, old mansion that’s beginning to crumble. Set in the woods outside of New Orleans, the story is full of lore, legend, and magic.

The entire book takes place on the property of Blue Gate and the cast of characters is very small. However, the author managed to create an engaging and haunting mystery even with a small cast and a localized setting.

While the writing is lush and descriptive, it’s not boring. The beautiful prose gave the book an eerie, romantic ambiance that I adored.

My complaint about the book came at the end.

Some of my questions didn’t get answered. Like, BIG questions. I don’t need a perfectly happy ending, but I do want to have my questions answered. Unfortunately, some of my biggest questions about the story remain unanswered.

Sometimes it felt like the story was running in circles, but that didn’t seem to matter to me. I eagerly gobbled up the story and I hope to see more books from this author in the future.

If you like horror novels, creepy stories, and books about folklore and magic, I would definitely recommend this book. It’s worth the read and it’s not terribly disturbing as far as horror novels go. It’s creepy and haunting, but shouldn’t make you lose sleep.

Content: Some curse words and scary scenes.

Source: Thank you to Penguin Random House and Blogging for Books for sending me a copy of this book.

 

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4 Comments

  • Reply
    Savings InSeconds
    January 16, 2018 at 8:52 pm

    Ooooh, how come I didn’t see this on Blogging for Books? I LOVE that cover.

    • Reply
      Dena at Batch of Books
      January 16, 2018 at 9:05 pm

      It was only on there for a short time. I happened to check the site when it was there.

      And yes, the cover is gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Vani | Off-Color Literature
    February 20, 2018 at 9:27 am

    Ugh that’s one of my biggest pet peeves! I don’t need things wrapped up in a little bow but I definitely need my questions answered.

    • Reply
      Dena at Batch of Books
      February 20, 2018 at 9:31 am

      Mine too! I wish my questions had been answered because I really liked this book otherwise.

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