SciFi Book Review: Breathe

Breathe by Sarah Crossan

The world is dead. The survivors live under the protection of Breathe, the corporation that found a way to manufacture oxygen–rich air.

Alina has been stealing for a long time. She’s a little jittery, but not terrified. All she knows is that she’s never been caught before. If she’s careful, it’ll be easy. If she’s careful.

Quinn should be worried about Alina and a bit afraid for himself, too, but even though this is dangerous, it’s also the most interesting thing to happen to him in ages. It isn’t every day that the girl of your dreams asks you to rescue her.

Bea wants to tell him that none of this is fair; they’d planned a trip together, the two of them, and she’d hoped he’d discover her out here, not another girl.
And as they walk into the Outlands with two days’ worth of oxygen in their tanks, everything they believe will be shattered. Will they be able to make it back? Will they want to?

This is an oxygen deprived world where humans are forced to live in an enclosed structure called a “pod” where synthetic oxygen is pumped in and controlled by the corporation Breathe. Of course, the wealthiest citizens have access to the most oxygen and live a fairly carefree lifestyle. The others are treated as second class citizens and have few freedoms. The lack of oxygen outside the pods gives the reader a distinctly suffocating feel. Crossan has created a fascinating and completely captivating world with likeable characters and an engaging plot.

Fans of dystopian science fiction will definitely want to pick this one up. Full of mystery, adventure, suspense, and a bit of romance – Breathe is a breath of fresh air in this popular subgenre. Fast-paced and impossible to put down, this novel will be making my favorite’s list this year. The climactic events build to an exciting cliffhanger ending that left me eagerly anticipating a sequel.

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