Release Date: January 3, 2012
Joy Delamere is suffocating... From asthma, which has nearly claimed her life. From her parents, who will do anything to keep that from happening. From delectably dangerous Asher, who is smothering her from the inside out. Joy can take his words—tender words, cruel words—until the night they go too far. Now, Joy will leave everything behind to find the one who has offered his help, a homeless boy called Creed. She will become someone else. She will learn to survive. She will breathe... if only she can get to Creed before it’s too late. - Goodreads.com
Wow. This was such a sad book that it really stuck with me. What Joy has gone through with Asher was heart-breaking and just disgusting. It's no wonder that she goes looking for a way out. It's so sad to think that there might be girls her age in real life who go through similar situations, and you can't help but ask yourself if these families have any idea that this type of thing is going on right under their noses. How can they not see? But I think this relationship was probably portrayed pretty accurately, and that it truly does happen, probably every day.
When Joy decides to leave and lives on the street, and entirely different angle of the story is created. You get such a sad look into the lives of homeless people that really makes you think. When she finally locates three other homeless kids her age, including Creed, the story becomes even more interesting. It was amazing to watch how these kids work together and look out for each other and survive. The interactions between the characters was one of the high points of the story, but the highest point was watching Joy's character build and grow, watching her create some strength and power in her character and be able to stand up for herself. Her relationship with Creed really brought this out of her and built it even further, and these two together were so sweet.
The author's writing was poignant, sad, and yet hopeful. There were some beautiful moments in it that just broke your heart. The author had a way of pulling emotion out of you and making you really feel for her characters. I felt emotionally wrung out after it was over, but at the same time, it restored hope and optimism. It was a beautiful story.