Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker

Can an author have ‘street cred’? They sure as shit can if they reference only one of the best songs ever in the first four words of the book.

If you know Pink Floyd and you've read the book, you will understand me when I say Comfortably Numb is the first half of this book. Even before I read Ten Tiny Breaths, I always felt a sense of dread set in when I heard this song. Like I was swimming in the ocean and was suddenly pulled in by the strongest of undertows, unrelenting in its need to pull me under. If people could have their own theme songs, this would by Kacey and Trent's. In the end and metaphorically speaking, Kacey takes this song, and literally kicks it’s a** in with the sweetest of roundhouses.

I think I’ve said before that I really don’t like it when I can see the ‘surprise’ that the author is trying to cleverly revel before the actual grand event. There are certain books I’ve made exceptions for, because in those cases, the reveal is not the story. Ten Tiny Breaths is one of those exceptions. When it all comes crashing down for Kacey and Trent again, you really see the substance of what all the other characters are made of. Up until that point, you really like the secondary characters; you know that there is more to them that what scratches the surface.

When Kacey breaks, you realize that the author is like a trainer preparing a boxer for the fight of their life. That this is their moment to show everyone what they are made of; that they deserve to be in that ring; that they will take care if it. When the boxer knocks the crap out of their opponent in one blow, the trainer knows that they had helped the boxer prepare for this moment. Miss Tucker’s development of the secondary characters makes the concluding half of the story. She prepared them for that moment, and it becomes evident that calling them ‘secondary’ would be an insult. Kacey literally struggles to breathe, but a moment comes when she is no longer drowning. I’m sure it would have been easier to write a simpler ending, but it would have discredited all the recovery that Kacey and Trent worked towards.

I can throw some more cliches in here, but suffice to say, I love this book. And I might need another Billy bookcase, seeing as I NEED to own this in paperback as well and I'm running out of bookshelf space.

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