©picture by scribbles (Marye McKenney)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Post Within a Post

This is supposed to be a post about Elizabeth Camden's book With Every Breath, and it will be. But first, I need to share some information about why this book affected me the way it did.

Nearly eleven years ago, I was diagnosed with a chronic illness--one of those rare conditions that no one has heard about and doctors don't know enough about. I've had two major surgeries in connection with my disease, five minor procedures, radiation treatments, and monthly injections just to keep this under control. As you would guess, there is no cure for this, no real remission, and untreated, it could destroy my heart. However, the treatments destroyed my gall bladder. You might think there is no upside to this, but you'd be wrong. I meet incredible people, I have around me a wonderful group of doctors who have dedicated themselves to researching my disease and to being my advocate, and most importantly, I have grown spiritually.

When I started reading With Every Breath, I was captivated from the very first page. When I got a little more into it, I found that one of the main characters, Dr Kendall, was fighting to cure a very contagious, debilitating, chronic disease. He hired a spitfire woman that he competed against all the way through school named Kate Livingstone to be his research assistant. Kate was taken completely by surprise when she showed up for her interview with Dr Kendall to find he was the horrible Trevor McDonough, the one who beat her out of the college scholarship when they were graduating high school. When she began working for Trevor, it was hard for her to look past the past and see what was before her. She was having a hard time trusting Trevor, getting over the scholarship test, and not falling in love with him. She was also having a hard time with fear, fear that he would catch the disease he was trying to cure, and fear that if she fell in love with him that he wouldn't be around for long. When things start happening to discredit his research, his practice, and his treatments, Kate's whole family gets involved--false evidence is planted in Kate's room at her parents' boarding house, Kate's brother becomes one of the guards trying to find out the culprit behind all the events.

One of my favorite parts in the book is when Kate is trying to get Trevor to understand her fear for him, she dares him to take on researching something else instead. Elizabeth has written a moving, elegant book with competition, romance, and a bit of mystery thrown in to boot. The characters are sympathetic and easily relatable. The plot lines completely involve the reader--it is so hard to put this book down.

Five Stars, Two Thumbs Up, and a double dog dare!

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