UPDATE: Giveaway winners are Petrina F, Victoria R., Shakerra J. & Heather M. Congrats!
Young adult literature has been full of kick-ass heroines lately. With the onslaught of sci-fi and supernatural thrillers as of late, it’s no surprise that there are a ton of them. I’ve read and reviewed so many of them. However, when I was 15 or 16, most YA books were like Before I Breathe by Jenelle Jack Pierre. They were stories that revolved around every day girls and their trials and tribulations. Therefore, it felt so refreshing reading Kalena’s story in Before I Breathe.
Kalena is an average teenager living in the suburbs. She’s not too crazy about school, but she still gets by. When she meets Isaiah, the first boy to ever focus his attention on her, she can’t help but be whisked away by his charms. Unfortunately, Kalena gets pregnant, and bad decision after bad decision follows each other until she realizes that she needs to get a grip on her life.
The story is written in first person, which gives it such an intimate feel. I felt as if I was in Kalena’s head experiencing or remembering all these things with her. The author paints this story with authentic situations and real emotions. I felt all of Kalena’s emotions. When she was sad, I was sad. When she was angry, I was angry. I couldn’t remember feeling so enraged by a book, when I was reading about her time staying with Isaiah’s family. Everything she goes through can happen, or actually does happen. I mean, look how popular shows like 16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom are! Teen pregnancy is a big issue, and the author handles it with such poignancy. She doesn’t glamourize or condemn it, but just shows all the problems that can arise in a situation such as this one.
I’m very happy that I had the chance to read Before I Breathe. Kalena may not have supernatural powers or literally kick butt, but she’s a heroine in her own right. She made some bad decisions, got herself in a bad situation but she picked herself up and turned it all around. That’s the kind of person that girls should look up to.
Rating: 4/5 stars
Since I very much enjoyed this book, I want to give our readers a chance to enjoy it too! Luckily, the author, Jenelle Jack Pierre, gave us four copies of Before I Breathe to give away! To enter to win a copy, just fill out the form below. You will gain one entry just by filling out your name and email. However, if you follow, tweet or blog about the giveaway and the book on various social networks, you’ll gain extra entries! This contest is open internationally and ends at 11pm EST. Thanks to Jenelle Jack Pierre for writing a great book and providing this giveaway! Good luck!
You can purchase Before I Breathe at our TYF Store, powered by Amazon. Also, check out other short stories from Jenelle Jack Pierre. Her latest one, Note to Self, will be free today (3/9) and tomorrow (3/10) on Amazon!