The Art of Not Breathing by Sarah Alexander

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I didn’t know what to expect when I started reading this. The synopsis caught my attention and I’m so glad I was able to read it early. The book was well thought out and written. I love that Elise, the main character, wasn’t perfect (tall, skinny, & stereotypically beautiful). She had flaws and was proud of them. I honestly really enjoyed most of the characters in the book, save for a few bad apples (Alisa and Lara). I also love how the author intertwined this coming of age story (Elise finding herself) with the death of her twin and mystery behind it.

Another thing I really liked about the book is that it dealt with so many issues. Tough issues that a lot of books don’t have. (Death, social isolation, anorexia, cheating, bullying, etc.) I know it’s hard for some to read books with these and other topics, but I think having them makes the story seem more real. It allows the reader to have a deeper connection.

I really enjoyed reading about free diving, which plays a major role in the story. I’ve heard of it before, but didn’t know much about it. It was fun learning a little about it and finding out how much work goes into it. I also liked that it took place in Scotland. When I finished the book I looked up the towns mentioned and now I want to visit them to see the beauty of the land and water for myself.

Overall I thought this was a great book. A little mystery, a bit of a love story, the struggle of family dynamics, and a coming of age story all rolled nicely into one lovely book.

Thank you NetGalley for allowing me to read this book early.

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