November 29, 2012

Review: WORD AND BREATH by Susannah Noel

Title: Word and Breath

Author: Susannah Noel

Source: ebook from author for review

Riana has learned how to stay out of trouble. She spends her days studying written texts in the government’s Office of Readers, and she spends her nights taking care of her sick sister. She always—always—follows the rules. Despite her low profile, she has mysteriously become a target. Someone has kidnapped her sister. Someone else is trying to kill her. And someone has sent a Soul-Breather to beguile her out of her secrets.

Her help comes from the mythic leader of an underground rebel movement. A man who used to be her friend. A man who has silently loved her for years. He disappeared from her life without a word, and now he expects her to trust him again.

Then there’s the Soul-Breather, a man who can taste her spirit with only a touch. He makes her feel things she’s never experienced before, but she doesn’t know if the feelings are real. Hired to deceive and betray her, he offers to help her instead.

Without both men, she can’t rescue her sister. And she can’t discover the world-changing knowledge—buried in her memory—that has made her a target in the first place.

My take...
Riana leads a boring, home, sleep, repeat. She takes care of her wheelchair bound sister and is a Reader at her job with the Government. A Reader is a rare job in a world where most people do not read at all.

One day, Riana meets Mikel and they hit it off. Things are finally starting to look up for her and life is becoming a little less boring. But when her sister goes missing, Riana's world is suddenly raging out of control. Little by little Riana learns secrets about herself and the people after her. Riana actually wishes her life could go back to be boring once again. But it doesn't look like that is going to happen any time soon.

This book is full of mystery and suspense. I found that there was rarely a dull moment to be had with this read. So much happens you need to pay attention so you don't miss a thing. I really enjoyed the whole setting and loved that this book takes place centuries after a cataclysmic event that brought the world back to a time before any technology advancements. Of course in the present time lots of advances have been made but it was nowhere near where it once was.

Most people can no longer read. And this is where my problem with the book fell. I really didn’t understand how the advances in technology had been made if most people (especially those in the government) could not read. I don’t know if it was just me and I missed a part, but I don’t think that was explained very well. Other than that, I thought the whole thing was pretty good. It is definitely different than what I have read before in the dystopian genre.

As for characters, I loved Mikel…even though I didn’t know how to pronounce his name. In my mind I kept calling him Mickel (you know like nickel). Hubs thought it was pronounced like Migel. Anyhow, loved him and thought his character was so great. I loved when the story was coming from his POV more than the others. He was well written…so yeah, I just loved him. Riana was an ok character. I didn’t really connect well with her since her character was so untrusting of others. I did start to like her more towards the end when I noticed her attitude and look on life changing. I think that with the next book Riana will be a whole different girl and I will enjoy her more then. It’s just a feeling I have about her.

I really enjoyed the story and look forward to seeing what these great characters are up to in the next book. The possibilities are endless on where the author could take the series and the ending alone will have you excited to continue on. Word and Breath is perfect for those who are in need of a suspenseful read full or mystery and a little romance…this book is definitely for you.


  1. This sounds very different and interesting. I agree, the whole not being able to read thing would have to be done with a lot of grace and maybe some extra research. I don't even know how I'd go about a story like that. But kudos to her for coming up with it! This sounds like a great Dysto read. Great review!

  2. Sounds fast paced and I love a good dose of suspense. It does seem a bit of a whoopsident that technology boomed despite the inability for the majority to read. I could overlook that in exchange for a good read. Thank you for the great review.