As You Breathe Again (The Walker Boys #2)
Author: Molli Moran
Release date: Feb. 4th 2016
Genre: Romance, Interracial, Women’s fiction
Publisher: Patchwork Press
Book From: NetGalley
Rating: 3 Stars
Amazon | Goodreads
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
She’s never had the courage to hold on to anyone. He never learned how to let go of what he wants.
Delaney Shaw isn’t looking for anything complicated. After her teaching career is put on hold, she decides to spend the summer in Georgia with her best friend. Lanie lives for the here and now, and she isn’t thinking past the end of the summer. She’s never had any problem being unattached, because she learned a long time ago that life is safer that way.
Until Reece Walker decides to change her mind.
Almost a year after his ex-wife’s death, Reece is still reeling from her passing. He’s devoted himself to raising their son and working his family’s farm to keep himself grounded. Reece feels like he’s lost sight of the man he used to be, and he’s not sure how to find his way back.
Everything changes when the woman he’s unsuccessfully tried to forget walks back into his life.
Even though she’s fighting their sizzling chemistry, Lanie is losing the war. But love isn’t always like it is in the movies, and they have real issues. Lanie is terrified Reece’s small town won’t accept their interracial relationship, and she doesn’t know how to let him in.
Lanie has had years to build her defenses, but Reece isn’t the sort to give up without a fight. If he can counter Lanie’s fears with the future only he can offer her, maybe they can both learn to breathe again.
This book is considered New Adult and/or adult contemporary romance due to age range, subject matter, and tone.
So I’m going to just jump right into it. Do you know when someone tries to make a point by making a point, but ends up ruining said point? Those were my feelings about this book. Romancey type stories and books are not my thing, but one of my resolutions for this year was to break out of my normal shell of material and give a little bit of everything a go.
I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review and with the strong and enjoyable opening this book had, I was actually excited over the fact that I’d be able to start my first new-genre-quest off to a good start with the first book I chose. However, I soon realized how wrong I was due to the overwhelming blatant statement the author continues to protrude through the narrative: the main couple in the book are interracial and don’t you forget it world!
There were so many passages and conversations circling around this (even a whole chapter, where the author has both the characters talk about it and not in a normal observant way.)
I think a book which showcases such things is fantastic and wonderful and authenticity mirrors people in society today. However, I found that the author’s approach on this matter more acutely states: southerners couldn’t possibly understand, be kind or welcoming to such a union or the ethnic portion of the said pair and that every day they’re together it seemingly puts half of the pair or both in either physical, social or emotional embarrassment or harm.
Not to say that this was present in each chapter, but it was something that continuously came up when the topic of their relationship was in question or when Lanie examined her placement in Baylor.
Furthermore, since the other half of the pair, Reece, was born and raised there even the choice or discussion about living somewhere else to be happy and safe is out other question. Likewise, since the male protagonist is such a true devoted man, it’s okay for the independent and educated female protagonist to be “tamed” by the man and stifled, but that’s okay because he was raised to “treat women right,” while simultaneously interfering in the lives of his female counter parts without protest and without warrant or permission.
I had to put this book on hold. I honestly could not read another page after an incident a park and well before that I could not get over the concept that Lanie decides to run away to a place she knew on a certain level she’d be uncomfortable. I have close friends from the southern states who will shed light on the two perspectives the author tries to give in this story, but compared to what I’ve heard and the perspective of this story, there was just something about it that made me want to press pause.
Perhaps the forced animosity toward obvious baby-plot point statements made by some of the people in Baylor by the central characters on critical social issues? Maybe a disbelief in the story authenticity, I’m not sure. Paired with the book’s cloud of patriarchy, the turn of events felt more like a regression than a positive and progressive step towards a bright new future both the protagonists on a physical, emotional and in a way spiritual level. After getting through the layer rich and complexity of Graceling with Katsa to coming to this book, I had to give my mind a rest and my eyes (because I started rolling them so much.)
I will say this: it did start to seem as though Reece’s feeling came across as genuine. Likewise, Lanie and Quinn should have their own book series because I really enjoyed their friendship and Reece’s son, Jamie, was adorable. And I liked that even though this is the second book in a series, I did not feel lost in the narrative due to the lack of details from the first book as the author explains the important parts clearly. Although, I had to stop and take a breather from this book, I would like to continue to read it somewhere down the line.
As always, thanks so much for reading.
Until next time,