Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Place Between Breaths” as Want to Read:
The Place Between Breaths
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Place Between Breaths

3.28  ·  Rating details ·  398 ratings  ·  127 reviews
From master storyteller and Printz Award–winning author An Na comes a dark, intensely moving story of a girl desperately determined to find a cure for the illness that swept her mother away, and could possibly destroy her own life as well.

Sixteen-year-old Grace is in a race against time—and in a race for her life—even if she doesn’t realize it yet…

She is smart, responsible
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published March 6th 2018 by Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.28  · 
Rating details
 ·  398 ratings  ·  127 reviews

Sort order
Yusra  ✨
Jun 14, 2018 rated it did not like it
I’ll be honest. This was a very important book, the mental health rep was great, the cover is beautiful.
but i legit didn’t understand anything . like, nothing. i thought i would figure it out by the end but i’m just so confused. I DIDN’T UNDERSTAND ANYTHING. this is the most confusing book ever and i’m not pleased.
Alice Cai
Jun 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 3-star
I mostly understood what happened, but I don't really know how to explain it. I liked the plot twist. The ending was depressing.

(view spoiler)
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 14, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 4, 2019, ya, starred-2018
There must be a better way of writing a novel about schizophrenia, without making it a guess-which-character-is-a-figment-of-my-imagination mystery. Describing this story as "full of twists and turns" felt offensive somehow. Are you really trying to entice readers by a mystery, when a book is about a mental illness?

I guess I could give some points for presenting a disordered mind, but overall I found this novel unnecessarily convoluted and relentlessly depressing. The only thing that did keep m
Holly McGhee
Apr 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
mind blowing / raw / brilliant / couldn't put down
Feb 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: very-much-yes
Terrifying. This book is non-linear and confusing, and I'm not even sure what really happened in the end, but it immerses you in the dread and uncertainty of schizophrenia in a way that is chilling. I'm going to remember this book for a long time.
❄Elsa Frost❄
I can't read this. I cannot. Honestly, the first 15 pages in and I'm already cringing. Nope. Just no. I can't stand this book.
Elizabeth Bernhardt
May 30, 2018 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 05, 2018 rated it liked it
I received an ARC of The Place Between Breaths from Simon & Schuster in exchange for an honest review. You can read that review on Culturess.

To summarize my feelings on this book, I think it was fast-paced and intense. I liked that the reader could never be certain about what was happening due to the protagonist's delusions and hallucinations. The author also did a fabulous job including small details to signal that Grace was indeed seeing things that weren't there.

My main gripe with this no
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a cover grab from the library and I went into it not having any idea what it was about because I mean who reads synopsizes....Anyway, it totally blew my mind during certain parts. The writing was beautiful. Even though I figured out what was going on before it was really revealed it still played as a good representation for schizophrenia, at least to this individual with no mental illness experiences. I did have an issue with the males being all protective and helpful towards the female ...more
Melissa Pierce
Jul 16, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018, 3-stars
3 STARS (for now)

I thought I was understanding everything, even the plot twists, but by the ending I was utterly confused. I think I will definitely be rereading to get a better understanding and analyze everything closer. I still thought it beautifully written and I do think once I understand it more my rating will go up.
Jul 01, 2018 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 19, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2018
2.5 stars

I enjoyed the story for the most part. I liked the language. But it was just really confusing. I think I get everything that happened, but I am not entirely sure.
Apr 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Grace King's story is told with an urgency reflected throughout the book in both pacing and form. The chapters are often short bursts of information and the sentences careen between short and clipped or long and rushed, drawing readers into Grace's spiraling state as she fears that she will be just like her mother with a diagnosis of schizophrenia. This style fits perfectly with the topic and character, focusing emotions onto the page and making readers invest in the story outcome.

However, the b
Apr 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sixteen-year-old Grace's mother disappeared when she was young after waging a long battle with schizophrenia. Grace's dad, a doctor, spends every waking minute either recruiting brilliant researches who might find a cure for schizophrenia, or searching for his missing wife. Even Grace works in the lab as a high school intern in genetic research. They are all racing against time as Grace herself begins battling hallucinations.

Intense, vivid and emotional, The Place Between Breaths is told in alte
Feb 17, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, ya
I liked the story a lot. It took me longer than it should to figure out what was going on with the alternating chapters labeled as seasons. Some of the dream-like sections (to avoid spoilers) were confusing and overly long. The characters were interesting and I would have enjoyed more time with them.

There is a neat small side story where a character is trying to find a cure for a disease as a doctor and realizes that he will never be the one to find that cure. So he becomes an professional recr
Mar 19, 2018 rated it liked it
This is a surreal exploration of schizophrenia--how it runs in families and what it can do to someone who feels themselves slipping away. There's denial that there is anything wrong and fear of even the smallest symptom. It's a powerful story, but one I was unprepared to embark on. I picked this book up sight unseen and just started reading it, without exploring the subject matter beforehand and having just slogged through The Astonishing Color of After, another powerful story that contains ment ...more
Katelyn Wolfe
May 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wow. This book is beautifully written. It is an exploration of schizophrenia that is quite dark, but leaves a sliver of hope. I feel like I need to reread it to make sense of the nonlinear plot, but I know that by doing that I would be missing the point. I have never experienced a book quite like this before.
May 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Will mull over this one for awhile, already re-reading to see how it was done.

Reviewed in the Sept/Oct 2018 issue of Horn Book.
Ms. Yingling
Feb 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Lots of issues. More YA than this author's other works.
I think I like 80% of this novel overall, but it was hard to get into and even harder to get out of. Even as I type I am uncertain how I feel about it. All I know is that my feelings are not ones of distaste. So I'm just going to write everything in my brain and I want you to know it as not a harsh defamation - these are my observations.

It started slowly. Flowery language. Protagonist: Grace, smart high school student. A single dad. Parent-child relationship feels backwards. Grace is biracial -
✮ Read this review and more like it on The Last Page

“I see the cliff’s edge drawing nearer. I must jump or I will fall.”

I expected this book to be a quick read and while the writing style is engaging I ended up taking my time to absorb this novel to try and understand the events that take place. Even after some reflection I can honestly say that the plot for this novel is difficult to pin down and there are a lot of questionable holes in the plot that won’t be wrapped up nicely. The writing in
Adriana Baldelli
The Place Between Breaths By An Na
I really enjoyed this book. It kept me on my toes throughout the whole book. Grace was an interesting character because she searched throughout the book for the one person in her life that she couldn't live without. This was her mom who had disappeared out of no where due to her illness of schizophrenia. This took a major toll on Grace and her dad, as they fought to cure this illness and many other illnesses in a prestigious lab that her dad worked in, which w
Feb 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really en joyed this book. When Grace's mother left her and her father became distant. He wasn't the same when her mother was around. Her mother had a disease and she left because she was scared she might hurt them. A few years have past and they are still looking for her. Grace's father is a scientist and he is trying to find a cure to help his wife. He is scared that Grace might/will get the same disease. She is trying to doing anything she can to help. Due to the fact that the her father is ...more
Caitlin Hoffer
Oct 13, 2018 rated it it was ok
I have no clue what happened in this book.
Jul 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018

I loved this book. Absolutely loved it. The emotions in it are so raw and the author writes the main character as being so vulnerable it makes you want to jump in and help.

I feel like it was meant to be confusing since that’s what schizophrenia is and that is what it does to those that are suffering from that terrible mental illness. It portrayed the mood swings and ups and downs and overall confusion in a way that left me breathless like I was actually going through all of those emotion
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was ok
*2.5 stars
I enjoy the writing style but what the heck happened
Jul 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
DNF. This book was all over the place, especially with the switching of time periods.
Lisa Kramer

Honestly, by the end of the book the confusion is real.
I can't really say anything without revealing a plot.
Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens-and-ya
Wow. I need some time to process this one. I think I understand what happened now, but I want to think about some things. This would make an excellent book club selection.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • All That I Can Fix
  • Lovely, Dark, and Deep
  • Fire Song
  • Heart Transplant
  • Being Fishkill
  • Girls on the Line
  • After The Shot Drops
  • Learning to Breathe
  • As the Crow Flies
  • The Science of Breakable Things
  • The Traitor Game
  • The Vine Basket
  • Light Years
  • Home and Away
  • A Land of Permanent Goodbyes
  • Price of Duty
  • Scream Site
  • On the Spectrum
An Na was born in Korea and grew up in San Diego, California. A former middle school English and history teacher, she is currently at work on her third novel. She lives in Vermont.

(from Web site)
“There are many versions of a story. Many sides and lenses that can distort, change, illuminate what is seen and unseen. What is heart and unheard. What is felt and unfelt. In the end, truth is but a facet of a diamond, a spark of ray from the sun, a forget-me-not flower seen from the eyes of a bee. What lives and breathes as reality is a perception, so who is to say what is possible and impossible?” 1 likes
“You know how to end your life.
Hers could be another story.
We cannot help you with this decision.
Yet when all is sifted, what remains?
More quotes…