Oh, my heart is still fluttering after reading this book! Without a doubt, Breathe, Annie, Breathe is my favorite of the Hundred Oaks series so far. Miranda Kenneally does YA contemporary romance so well, I already knew I would end up enjoying this latest book of series, but I just never expected to love it THIS much!
I was in the perfect mood for reading a sweet, heartfelt story, and Breathe, Annie, Breathe gave me all that and more. It’s a quick read, but it packs powerful emotions within its pages. I felt every emotion Annie felt–I laughed when she laughed, I ached when she ached, and I loved when she loved. This book is about loss, but it’s also about hope. It’s about trying to find your way through life, and Miranda Kenneally does an excellent job of conveying this in Annie’s journey.
A quarter mile more.
One foot after the other.
Breathe, Annie, breathe.
After the loss of her boyfriend and love of her life, Annie signs up for the Music City Marathon. Her boyfriend, Kyle, was training for it until he died, so Annie decides to honor him by running the race for him. She hires a trainer, and every practice is brutal–Annie has to practice running for miles and miles before she’s ever ready for a 26.2 mile marathon. But what I loved best about Annie is that even when she wants to give up, she doesn’t. She keeps on going. And I loved that fact that she hated running–because I can completely relate to that. I am awful at running, but reading about Annie and her perseverance made me want to pick up a pair of jogging shoes and go out running.
Annie is easily relatable–she’s lost her sense of direction in life, and doesn’t know how to move on from Kyle’s death. She’s about to attend college in the fall, but doesn’t know what to do. It’s like she’s going through the motions in her life, but running is the one thing that makes her feel alive. She meets new people, new friends, while training. We see Matt, from Things I Can’t Forget, who is her trainer. And Annie becomes especially close to Matt’s younger brother Jeremiah.
Jeremiah is a total sweetheart. He’s cute, funny, and cheers Annie on throughout the entire book. Jeremiah wholeheartedly believes in Annie and believes that she has what it takes to finish the marathon. He’s also peculiar in that Jeremiah’s an adrenaline junkie–he’s always looking to find a new challenge to feel a rush. I loved how supportive he is of Annie, and I loved the tension between them. Sparks fly between Annie and Jere–they’re so perfect with each other, for each other. Their banter is hilarious and their friendship is rock-solid.
“Aren’t you gonna run up front and try to win?” I ask.
“I’d rather run with you.”
“You want to come in 5,094th place?”
His mouth quirks into a smile. “I don’t care.”
“Jeremiah? You make me happy.”
“You make me happy too,” he says quietly.
I just can’t get enough of these two! They had me smiling for the entire book. They’re absolutely adorable together!
But Annie, understandably, holds back. She loved Kyle, and finding new love is a scary thing. I loved seeing them grow close to each other, to learn to lean on each other. They fall in love slowly, and my heart was bursting for them.
We get cameos of other characters from the other books in the series, which totally made me squeal!
Overall, I had the most wonderful time reading Breathe, Annie, Breathe. I never expected to love a book about running, but I do! I was cheering for Annie the whole way through. I loved seeing her grow, both as a runner and as a person. The whole book is so emotional, and Annie’s journey warmed my heart.
If you don’t put yourself out there, if you don’t take risks, you can’t truly feel.
And I’m ready to feel again.
I was honestly so sad to get to the end of this book–I never wanted it to end!
Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.
Reading Order: Hundred Oaks series
#1 ~ Catching Jordan: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Stealing Parker: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Things I Can’t Forget: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Racing Savannah: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Breathe, Annie, Breathe: Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#6 ~ Jesse’s Girl: My Review • Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Goodreads
#7 ~ Defending Taylor: Shirley’s Review • Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
2x 50$ B&N Gift Card
3x Signed copy of Breathe, Annie, Breathe