October Breezes (Two Pack)
by: Maria Rachel Hooley
★★★★ 4 StarsRead the Synopsis on Goodreads
I started October Breezes a few days after reading Ruining You and Ruining Me by Nicole Reed. About a third of the way in I felt like I had literally just read the same story. Turns out in many ways, these two series are almost mirror images of each other. Most of the plot lines are the same and the characters deal with the same drama, but that’s where it ends. The characters are unique and stand out in their own ways making it easier to separate all them and each story so amazing, it was like they never ended. This is more than a coming of age story, it encompasses so much more. Life may challenge us and treat us like crap but the world goes on and this is Skye’s story of picking up the pieces.
October Breezes gave me what the Ruining Series did not. In Ruining, we meet the main character after her assault, but with The October Breezes books we’re thrust right into the action from start to finish.
I loved both, probably more than I should.
You know something awful is going to happen and even when her friends warn her repeatedly, she’s too stubborn to listen. At times it’s hard to connect with Skye because she completely ignores every warning and just drives headfirst into her own personal hell. Especially with her best friend Devin, barley hiding his feelings, standing on the outskirts watching her push him away because she is too scared to face the truth. I wanted to throttle her sometimes, and the whole party situation, when the drama really begins, I could not believe how naïve and immature she was. If a drink tastes odd and clearly has alcohol in it, maybe you should not drink it or be smart. It’s common knowledge nowadays especially with teens in regards to date rape drugs and considering she was not in a group of people she could call friends, I was sort of disappointed she gave in so easily. And I could not understand why she did not go watch her date play beer pong but rather chose to stay alone in a corner amidst a room of bullies and popular kids.
I was pretty angry with the obvious denseness on her part. It was clear within a few pages after watching her and Devin interact that he felt more than friendship for her. She was so oblivious she pushed the obvious aside, mostly from fear and self-preservation. Her home life is not what I would call troubled but she sure knows how to throw a tantrum when her mother is dating. To say she has daddy issues would be an understatement.
It was extremely hard to read the party scene; you just knew something bad was going to happen. But poor Skye just wanted to be a teen for a little while and has to suffer some unfortunate circumstances. Considering the warnings she got beforehand from everyone it’s understandable why she resisted so bad, I mean who likes to be told they can’t or shouldn’t do something. Skye is all rebel and gets caught up in Kellin (whom I actually really liked) the popular jock who seems sincere and gives her the time of day.
The dynamic between her and her mother actually made me sad. Considering it was and has been just the two of them for so long I couldn’t believe how close they were not. Maybe it’s because I grew up with just my mother and we actually talked about everything, of course I still had my bi#@h moments but what I notice between these two is they tend to gloss over all the important issues and just aggravate each other more without delving deeper. After the party, the one person Skye should have been able to talk to, out of everyone, should have been her mother; instead she hides the truth from everyone and only gives in when there is no other choice.
“You see Skye, life isn’t about getting what we want. Sometimes things go the way we expect, but then again, maybe we’ll get a curve ball thrown in our faces and our only choice will be to duck. “
With all the other crap going on in her life the last thing she needs is for her father to suddenly show up out of the blue and pretend to care. But of course when life is going to hell, all the bad stuff seems to follow you around, and Skye is like a catalyst. When she was with him, though, this was finally a point when I was truly proud of her for being honest and holding nothing back.
There’s so much to say about her best friend Devin. Poor thing is around for every bad moment and even when he tries to let go, his heart just won’t let him. Why Skye doesn’t immediately jump on him is something I will never understand. When the time between them was up I could not wait for Devin to get his dues because though Skye was attacked I think Devin suffered just as much if not more. Even as helpless as he felt he was there for Skye no matter how much she pushed him away.
When this book delves into the bullying of the students at her school I was beyond sickened. My lord, the locker scene almost had me in tears. Poor Skye, it’s hard to comprehend how mean and evil people can really be.
I cannot begin to explain how happy I was that the second half is all from Devin’s POV. He deserved a voice and being in his head will give you butterflies. After everything, he is so devoted to Skye, even after being separated. He refuses to face the idea of a life without her and will do any and everything he can to make she is he. Lucky girl.
It’s hard not to compare October Breeze to the Ruining Series but even though the plot points and much of the drama is the same, the characters are completely different and each handle their situation in a different way.
I’m glad Skye does not completely self-destruct but takes the time she needs to recover and in many ways, grow up into the woman she is supposed to be. It just takes a while for her to see that Devin will and should be there with her.
Overall, I really enjoyed October Breeze. I would definitely recommend it, especially to teens in highshcool, it’s always better to be prepared and safe and this book is not only romantic and beautiful it helps warn young girls of the dangers out in the world. I would recommend buying both because you will not want to stop after book one.