Thursday, 9 January 2014

Breathe - Sarah Crossan (2012)

5 stars

I got this book as a christmas present after finding it on goodreads and putting it on my christmas list on a whim. As it turns out it was a really good choice.

I read a lot of dystopian novels and although the overall plot of an unlikely trio forming and starting a rebellion isn't new, I really enjoyed this book. The concept of having to pay for air was both really enjoyable and really freaky at the same time and I really liked that although the resistance base was separate from the main population, it was still accessible and easy to locate once they tried. This book is told from the three different perspectives of the main characters which is really good for parts of the book where they're separated and really interesting seeing how they react to the same people. My favourite character in this book is Maude, at first I thought she was a creepy old lady, then I pitied her, then I thought she became pretty badass and I'm looking forward to what she'll do in future books. I would recommend this book to any fans of dystopian novels.

Quinn, Bea and Alina live in the Breathe pod where everyone must pay for oxygen and any heavy breathing activities like exercise are illegal unless you've paid for the excess oxygen you need to do it. Quinn is a premium, someone whose family has enough status and money to afford all the oxygen they like, Bea is an auxilary, someone whose family has to scrape to pay for the oxygen in their apartment, and Alina is part of the resistance. When Alina has to escape the pod she runs into Quinn and Bea crossing the border at the same time and they help smuggle her across, she then tries to leave them behind but they save her life from Maude, an old drifter who wants a portable oxygen tank instead of the solar powered stationary oxygen tank she has and they make it to The Grove, the resistance's base, together. Bea and Quinn decide to help Alina and the resistance because they learn that Breathe gives them much more oxygen than they need so they're dependant on them and couldn't leave into the outside world which has 6% oxygen, which they keep at that level by killing any trees they see that are starting to regrow. In doing so they inadvertantly start a war with the Breathe officials and Quinn and Bea must go back and lie to the officials to give the resistance time to ready themselves for an attack. Breathe attacks the Grove and Alina, Maude and some others escape the attack and head to the next closest resistance base they've heard of. Quinn then tells the citizens inside the pod of what the officials are doing to them and he starts a civil war inside the pod. His dad kicks him out of the pod, but gives him some air tanks so he knows he'll survive and he and Bea meet up at the destroyed Grove to find Jazz, a survivor who knows where Alina and the others are heading, so they set off there together.

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