Title: Just Remember To Breathe
Author: Charles Sheehan-Miles
Publication Date: November 12th 2012
Publisher: Cincinnatus Press
Alex Thompson’s life is following the script. A pre-law student at Columbia University, she’s focused on her grades, her life and her future. The last thing she needs is to reconnect with the boy who broke her heart.
Dylan Paris comes home from Afghanistan severely injured and knows that the one thing he cannot do is drag Alex into the mess he’s made of his life.
When Dylan and Alex are assigned to the same work study program and are forced to work side by side, they have to make new ground rules to keep from killing each other.
Only problem is, they keep breaking the rules.
The first rule is to never, ever talk about how they fell in love.
This book caught my attention because of its cover photo and sometimes good cover follows that the book also has a good story.
The story was told in alternating point of view between Dylan and Alex. It starts in the present and an occasional flashback happens all over the book. I love how the author wove and put the story together. It's a whirlwind of emotions. It talks about first love, trust, dealing with guilt, death, accepting and loving yourself, family, and how the choice you make can affect your life.
DYLAN PARIS. I must say that I truly admire him. It takes a lot of courage for him to man up and leave his vice behind and try to fix his almost ruined life. He was from a fucked-up family. He was a highschool dropout. Both of his parents are drunk but when his mother saw the light, she sent her husband away and also sent her son away until he decides to go to school again. So Dylan became homeless for sometime and realize how it felt like to be so fucked up without any future. He realize he cannot have a decent job because of his educational background so he came around and enrolled again then went home to his mom. His mom pushed him to persevere harder and dang, he surprised everyone with his Straight As. Because of his efforts, he got accepted in a 2 month ambassador exchange program in Israel. Little did he know that he will soon meet the woman that will change his life forever.
ALEX THOMPSON. She's someone who always give her 100% when doing any school activities. She takes it seriously. She's the daughter of a Foreign Ambassador who is always used to seeing a Straight A on his daughters' report cards. So when she got accepted in an exchange program, she let go of herself. That;s where she met, Dylan. For two long months, she just let herself enjoy. She did not regret it for it had been the one of the best two months of her life.
They had not committed with each other but days after they got home, they broke up with the ones they were currently seeing. They continued to communicate through the internet. But all hell broke loose when they had their first major fight which ended up with Dylan enlisting to the US Army. But then they got back together again. Due to a stupid misunderstanding they broke up together for good this time which left Alex feeling pretty miserable and Dylan doing another impulsive action that brought some serious consequences and which led him to believe that he had caused the death of one his bestfriends.
6 MONTHS LATER. Enter the still trying to move on Alex and Dylan who is now a badly injured war veteran with a limp leg that he almost lost. As if fate was playing with them they both found themselves working for an author who is trying to write again. So since, they can't avoid each other they made rules to make their companionship less miserable.
First Rule: "We never, ever talk about Israel."
Second Rule: "We don't talk about what happened after either. Not when I visited you in San Francisco. Or the year between. Or the year after."
Third Rule: "You need to get different shampoo."
Additional Rules (by Dylan)
- No flirting.
- No excessive eye contact.
- Above all, nothing that could be misconstrued as a date.
DYLAN'S POST-TRAUMATIC DISORDER. As a war veteran, he returned as a different Dylan altogether. He's got a slight brain damage that affected his ability to solve math problems easily. Sometimes he forgets what he was supposed to say. He also has seizure attacks and the thing that I hate the most is his anger management. It's kind of alarming really and it's good that he's seeing a psychiatrist.
I hated him when I found out what prompted him to cut his communication with Alex. He's such an idiot! He should have confronted Alex instead of running away from her. When he wanted her back, I applaud Alex for standing up against him. It made him realize what he really lost by being an ass!
RANDY BREWER. Oh my God! I hate him! And I hated the police for judging Dylan based on his looks. Yes he looks like a criminal but looks could fool. He deserved that concussion from Dylan. I got annoyed with the police. This kind of people should be kept in jail and should not be allowed to roam around freely.
THE ENDING. Well, Dylan can be romantic when the moment needs it. Haha! I fell in love with him again when he followed Alex to her home. What he did was so sweeet! He bared himself to her. And when he brought out his index card, I had to let out a sigh. That's just to adorable and I can't help but stiffle a giggle. Remember that Dylan is having a hard time remembering words. I love how he reminisce their past by retelling their happy moments together.
I'm also glad that Alex finally settled her problems with her family. And I'm surprised when his parents welcomed Dylan to their family.
HOPING. Dear Author, I'm hoping that you also write about Carrie Thompson and Rey Sherman's story. :D
THE SONG LIST. The song list at the end was perfect for this book. I think I may have found a new author to look forward to.
"Alex, you're so beautiful, sometimes just looking in our eyes makes my heart stop. Even if I never see you again after today...even if I get to be ninety nine years old, and have a life that goes on without you...I will never, ever forget our first kiss."
"If you send me on my way today, if you tell me to get the hell out of your life and never come back...I'll accept it. But it will be the one and only permanent regret of my life: that we never made love. That we lost our future together."
"When I'm ninety, I want you to tell me that it's my turn to ask you a question, and if that miracle happens, then my question is going to be, 'Do you still love me?' and I hope the answer will still be yes."
"Alex, I don't need to keep myself safe from you. I don't want to keep myself safe from you. You mean too much to me. I'd rather have a lifetime of heartache, from you breaking my heart, than even imagine my life without you at all. Because a life without you wouldn't be a life at all."
"I can imagine a life without you, but it seems impossible dreary, imperfect, unhappy."
"Alex, I don't want to date you. I don't want you to be my girlfriend. I don't want us to be together for just a little while. I want you forever. I want us to look at each other, and say we love each other, and decide to be together forever. Alex...I want to spend our lives together. If we ever decided we want to have kids, I want it to be me and you."
Labels: Book Review, Charles Sheehan-Miles