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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

BOOK REVIEW ❤ Breakdown by Amanda Lance

Breakdown (Crash Into Me #1)Breakdown by Amanda Lance
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I read this book without reading the synopsis. I wanted to go into the story without any preconceived ideas or expectations, needless to say I wasn’t disappointed but I was overwhelmed either. The blurb tells you exactly what the story is about and leaves out very few details.

A 20ish year old girl that has been dealing with depression for some time, makes the decision to commit suicide. Her attempt is interrupted by a handsome young man that introduces her to a world that allows her to forget her own problems and opens her eyes to world she never thought she could be a part of.
We know this young lady is hurting and depressed but we don’t know why. She never tells us what happened just that something did and it changed her. She doesn’t have any friends and her parents are just two people avoiding their relationship with each other much less have a relationship with her. She was so thorough and considerate in her planning that it was scary. She took into account so many scenarios- I shiver thinking about it.

While reading the first few chapters I began to identify with this young girl even asking the question of whether this story was about me. I could relate too well to what the character was going through. As I learned more about when the sadness started to overtake the more I could relate and the more real the story felt.

So while carrying out with her suicide plan a driver stops to ask for directions. After driving off he realizes that something is wrong and turns around to talk the young woman he finds wandering along the side of dark road. She meets Williams or “Billy” (every William is nicknamed Billy so no spoiler there) and he distracts her from carrying out her plans.
“Plan B. I’m supposed to be somewhere in like—” He glanced from me back to the car. “—five minutes ago. How about you come along with me and hang out with the lot of us? At the end of the night, I’ll take you anywhere you want to go.”

That first night as friends is the best she’s had in a while but at the same time as she is she still considers her “other” option.

I’m sure you’ve realized that I haven’t called her by name but that’s because I don’t know it. Our names are so tied to who we are that it seems almost intentional for the author to do this. We meet her like Billy does, an unknown girl in pain, acting on a decision to end it the only way she knows how, without actually confronting the problem. Or I could just be over- analyzing it. But either way it seems important to point out. If I had read the blurb I would have known her name was Charlotte but I didn’t so this technique seemed more psychological.

Their friendship grows and Billy becomes Charlotte’s lifeline. He checks in on her, invites her into his world and introduces her to his friends. With each interaction Charlotte begins to look at life, HER LIFE differently.

And this is where the story lost me.

Charlotte’s struggle with how she felt for Billy annoyed me. I understood why she did it but, I wanted her to get over it already. I know that’s mean and unfeeling but that’s how I felt. She was in her 20’s but acted more like a 16 year old girl than a college age woman. I’m sure my own college experience played a part in this reaction to her but I wanted her to grow up. Get a backbone and get out from under her mother’s thumb. I actually wanted her to tell her mother a few CHOICE words, but actions always speak louder. (cough, cough)

Overall the story was well written and well told. I connected with Charlotte in the beginning but we became disconnected as the story went on. Charlotte eventually started her transformation and became stronger but I wanted to see more of that. I wanted her to make new friends and have other experiences with people. I needed a little more evidence of her change. I loved Billy from the beginning to the end. He never bullshitted. There were times when the lie was better than the truth but he always chose TRUTH and I appreciated him for that. He also respected Charlotte’s boundaries, allowing her to set the pace of the relationship.

For the reasons listed above I gave Breakdown 3.5 Red Roses. I didn’t realize when I accepted the offer to review this book that it was the first in the “Crash Into Me” series. I know it was right there all I had to do was read a little more. But I’m excited to know more about the other characters and their relationships , especially Eggs and Frenchie. So I will be eagerly waiting to learn what direction Amanda takes with this series.

*I received an Advanced Review Copy in exchange for an honest review.*

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