Title: Breathing Black
Author: Piper Payne
Genre: New Adult/Adult Contemporary Romance/Thriller
Release Date: December 2 2014
GRITTY. INTENSE. EMOTIONALLY HONEST.
A stunning debut novel that will leave you breathless.
A desolate childhood; a scarred, jaded, damaged girl. Larkin Grant knew she couldn’t end up like her mother … so she ran. All her belongings packed in the back of a rusted, brown Cadillac, her best friend June in the passenger seat as the co-pilot, she fled Aspen and never looked back.
A new life in a new city, Larkin was finally starting to breathe again, an unfamiliar sense of happiness seeping into her lungs. Landon Black, the boy she loved from afar, came back into her life despite leaving him and her awful memories buried hundreds of miles away. A weakened pulse brought back to life.
He said she was beautiful. She was starting to believe him. He pursued her and changed the course of everyone’s plans. Life had dealt Larkin a cruel hand, but maybe this was it. Maybe the boy that never knew she existed finally saw her and came to free her from the darkness of her past.
But we are never truly free. There are secrets that bind us and lies that unravel from the most beautiful of lips. Blackness that suffocates and makes us question everything we thought we knew. Larkin and Landon are intertwined in ways they never imagined, their future unclear as ghosts come back to haunt them.
Friendship. Revenge. Love. Drugs. Murder. Deceit.
The first in a two-book series, Breathing Black is a mix of suspense and breathless romance. It’s a provocative tale that challenges what one is willing to do to protect the ones they love. An emotional journey where trust isn't an option and falling in love never hurt so bad.
Wow, wow, wow! I really and truly LOVED Breathing Black. I was glued to my Kindle and TOTALLY engrossed from beginning to end. This had a bit of everything. It’s filled with great characters, shocking secrets, broken pasts, and phenomenal writing. It’s a bit of a darker read in the sense that the story is heavy and involves very broken characters with heartbreaking pasts. Breathing Black is a romance set against a suspenseful backdrop of lies and deceit.
Larkin left her past in Aspen when she was 18. She never looked back and swore never to let anyone from her past find her. But the past has a funny way of finding you when you least expect it…. like in the parking lot of the radio station where Larkin works as a DJ. One morning while making her way from her car to the station, Landon Black drenches Larkin in snow and icy slush when he drives into the lot. Looking up from her drenched clothes, Larkin recognizes him immediately, but Landon is unaware of who Larkin is. Despite not recognizing her, Landon is taken with Larkin and sets out to pursue her.
Landon represents a past Larkin closed the door on long ago promising never to unlock it again... EVER. But, the past can be tempting when it comes in the form of the one person you’ve been in love with since high school. Larkin has to decide if it’s safe to let Landon into her new life and go after what she couldn’t have in high school. Giving in to her heart, Larkin takes a chance on Landon. But once Larkin reveals their connection, the “chance” turns out to be more than she expected. Larkin and Landon’s pasts are more twisted together than they ever realized or could ever imagine. When secrets start to unravel and hidden truths emerge, Larkin may have been better to leave her past in the past. She unknowingly breathes new life into a powerful force of deceit and deception that runs deeper than anyone could have fathomed.
Breathing Black is amazingly written. The characters have depth and you feel their every emotion. Breathing Black wasn’t just a book for me. I was so engaged and almost hypnotized that it was an “experience”. The writing is incredible. It feels almost personal – I felt like I was reading Larkin’s journal and not a piece of fiction. And, I absolutely fell in love with Larkin’s “love interest”. He was quite an interesting surprise for me.
It’s hard to believe this is Piper Payne’s debut novel. Piper’s writing style is wonderful. The words flow beautifully. I’ve read a lot of well written books, but Breathing Black is a standout for me with the level of maturity and eloquence of thoughts and interpretation of events from Larkin’s POV. I cannot wait for White Lies to finish the great story started in Breathing Black.
Author’s Take on BREATHING BLACK Characters
By Piper Payne
I had one clear thought in mind when writing Larkin’s character; she had to be perfectly flawed.
Her past has molded her into the woman she is today even though she fights against it. She doesn’t want to resemble her mother, she doesn’t want to become what her past has entitled her to be, so instead she strives for normalcy even though she knows she’s far from normal.
Larkin is inexperienced in a lot of ways, I think it shows in her decision-making, which most of the time is hasty and fueled based on emotion. She also has this stubborn defiant nature I love. I wanted her to be an anti-heroine yet have these amazing redeemable attributes.
I wanted her to be a real person.
Landon, at first, is a stereotypical romance hero. Rich, confident, and handsome with All-American good looks. Larkin, however, sees through the mask of perfection he wears. Even though he has this influence of power, it’s his loyalty, rule following, and fearfulness of disappointing his father that continues to be his weakness.
Larkin is everything he thought he’d never find.
Landon is the guy she thought she could never have.
My favorite moment between Landon and Larkin is on the football field when they show each other little glimpses of themselves. It’s honest and affects both of them deeply. They relate despite their many differences and for years Landon hangs onto that night as if she’s the only person who truly saw and understood who he was and who he could become.
About the Author
My love for literature and writing is an addiction. My mind is continually telling stories and I have a queue of books I want to write being stacked up in my brain. I don’t know how to write pretty and perfect so I write perfectly flawed and unpredictable. Just like life.
I’m married to my best friend and I’m mother to three little miracles. I love going to farmers markets, bookstores, and long drives with my family in my ruby red Bronco. I also have an unhealthy love for makeup, Oreos, Halloween, queso dip, psychic readings, sushi, massages, and Redd’s Apple Ale.