Reviewed by Vickie McDonough
Breathe by Lisa T. Bergren
"Breathe is a unique tale of power, romance, and faith in the Old West..."
Odessa St. Clair is near death from consumption when she arrives in Colorado Springs with her sister, Moira, and brother, Dominic. But the fresh mountain air and good care she receives at a sanatorium help to put her back on the road of recovery. There, Odessa meets rancher and painter, Bryce McAllen and his friendly neighbor, Sam, who are also suffering from consumption but are nearly recovered. A quick friendship forms between the trio, but when Sam dies suddenly, Odessa is suspicious there may have been foul play.
Odessa receives a poem Sam left her, and she believes it’s a map of sorts to his mine. If she’s ever to find the truth, she must get well. With Bryce’s constant encouragement, she fights her debilitating disease and grows steadily stronger. For the first time in a long while, she has hope for the future—a future that might even include Bryce. But with sinister forces at play, can Bryce’s and Odessa’s dreams come true?
Breathe is the fascinating tale of a courageous woman. Though she’s fighting an illness that killed four of her brothers, Odessa never gives up, even when all odds are against her. Bryce is a great hero—kind, generous, and protective.
As well as telling Odessa’s story, Breathe relates the tale of Moria, Odessa’s younger and impetuous sister, and Dominic, the only surviving son, who feels the pressure of following in his father’s footsteps when he’d rather do anything but that.
Breathe is the story of a unique time in Colorado’s Springs’ history when people from all over the world traveled there in hopes of finding a cure for what ailed them. There’s an interesting contrast between Odessa’s story and Moira’s. While Odessa is sick and slowly recovering, Moira is lively, energetic, and determined to become a singer, even though she knows her father is against it. Dominic must protect both sisters, while chafing at his father’s demand to open a book store. All the while, devious forces are at work behind the scenes, making life difficult for the siblings. The three story lines are deftly woven together and compliment each other, creating an interesting and intriguing novel. Future books, Sing and Claim will complete Moria’s and Dominic’s stories.
Breathe is a unique tale of power, romance, and faith in the Old West that is sure to keep your interest, keep your guessing who the bad guys are, and keep you wondering if Odessa will survive.
Vickie McDonough is an award-winning inspirational romance author. She has written four Heartsong novels and five novellas. Her stories have placed first in several prestigious contests, such as the ACFW Noble Theme, the Inspirational Readers Choice Contest, and the Texas Gold contest. She has also written books reviews for nearly five years and enjoys mentoring new writers. Vickie is a wife of thirty-one years, mother to four sons, and a new grandma. When she’s not writing, Vickie enjoys reading, gardening, watching movies, and traveling. Vickie loves hearing from her readers via e-mail.