Every Breath by Ellie Marney
Series: Every #1
Published: October 14th, 2014
Publisher: Tundra Books
350 pages (hardcover)
Genre: Young Adult Crime Thriller/Romance
Acquired this book: From the library
Warning: May contain spoilers
When James Mycroft drags Rachel Watts off on a night mission to the Melbourne Zoo, the last thing she expects to find is the mutilated body of Homeless Dave, one of Mycroft's numerous eccentric friends. But Mycroft's passion for forensics leads him to realize that something about the scene isn't right--and he wants Watts to help him investigate the murder.
While Watts battles her attraction to bad-boy Mycroft, he's busy getting himself expelled and clashing with the police, becoming murder suspect number one. When Watts and Mycroft unknowingly reveal too much to the cold-blooded killer, they find themselves in the lion's den--literally. A trip to the zoo will never have quite the same meaning to Rachel Watts again...
I wanted to read Every Breath from the moment I heard about it, especially after I saw the tagline: “What if Sherlock Holmes was the boy next door?” I will read or watch anything even remotely Sherlockian, so I knew this was a book I needed to read.
Rachel Watts is miserable living in Melbourne. She’s a country girl, and she didn’t want to leave the only home she’d ever known to move to the city, but her family didn’t have much of a choice. She’s made the best of it for the most part, but she’s becoming more resentful and bitter by the day, and the only thing keeping her relatively grounded is Mycroft. Eccentric, brilliant Mycroft, who lives two doors down and needs reminders to eat, and someone to take care of him and keep him from getting into too much trouble…or since that’s a fairly tall order, at least help him in the aftermath of the trouble he gets himself into.
Rachel had a great voice - snarky and sarcastic and smart. I loved her strength, but also her vulnerability. She had to grow up quickly and was thrust into the role of caregiver while her parents and older brother worked long hours to keep the family going. It seemed natural for her to take care of Mycroft. Oh Mycroft. *sigh* I loved him so much. It was easy to see him as a young Sherlock - intense, brilliant, socially awkward, easily consumed by things - but he was different, too. He didn’t have that cold distance that Sherlock sometimes exhibits, and while he was socially awkward, he wasn’t as anti-social as Sherlock. He spent a lot of time by himself and lived in his own little world, but he was also genuinely kind to people and made connections with people.
Together, these two were magic. Their interactions were my favourite parts of the book, whether they were being silly or serious or SWOONY oh my god so swoony. I was hoping there would be a romance, but with the Sherlock spin to the book, I worried it would be Rachel secretly longing for Mycroft while he was completely oblivious. Not so - thank god! The chemistry between them was electric, and I felt it from the very first chapter. There were a few scenes that were so ridiculously sexy while actually being quite innocent, and I loved them. LOVED THEM. I wished there were more, but I get that they wouldn’t really have fit in the story, so I’ll just have to imagine it myself…I mean, hope there’s more sexy-swooniness in the next book.
Rachel and Mycroft weren’t the only great characters. The side characters were equally well fleshed out, especially Rachel’s brother Mike, who reminded me of my own big brother - very protective and would do anything for the people he loves. Mai and Gus (Rachel and Mycroft’s school friends) were nice additions, and there were a few other characters that really stood out. All of the characters, whether they made a brief appearance or several appearances, were vivid and had a purpose, which I appreciated.
I suppose I should mention the mystery and not just gush and fangirl over Mycroft and Rachel, right? ;-) The whole thing was really well done - gruesome, exciting, chilling. There were parts that had me on the edge of my seat, wondering how things could possible turn out okay. Lots of twists and turns and surprises, and I loved how the mystery, while being a big part of the book, was seamlessly woven through the contemporary aspects like the romance and real life family/friend/school issues.
Every Breath is simply fantastic. It gave me the giggles, made my heart alternately ache and race, and it also made my stomach turn a time or two. Rachel and Mycroft practically leapt off the pages, and were wonderful separately and together. I loved their friendship, and I loved it even more when their relationship started to evolve. If you enjoy books with mystery, swoony romance, great friendships, strong characters, tons of chemistry, and lots of action, I highly recommend Every Breath.
Have you read Every Breath? What did you think? If you haven't read it, do you plan to? Do you like books that have a Sherlock-type character? Or the original Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes? Let's talk here or on Twitter!