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3.86  ·  Rating details ·  2,558 ratings  ·  312 reviews

Jonah is on a mission to break every bone in his body. Everyone knows that broken bones grow back stronger than they were before. And Jonah wants to be stronger—needs to be stronger—because everything around him is falling apart. Breaking, and then healing, is Jonah’s only way to cope with the stresses of home, girls, and the world on his shoulders.

When Jonah's self-destr

Paperback, 262 pages
Published August 25th 2009 by Simon Pulse
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Hannah The entire book is about someone who breaks their own bones, so yes.

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Average rating 3.86  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,558 ratings  ·  312 reviews

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June Helmsley
Jun 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Holy ballsweat! It's like a werewolf broke into my house and smashed the shit out of everything and then bought me dinner because GODDAMN, this book so owns my face now. Fucking property of Hannah Moskowitz on my goddamn forehead.

In a past review I decided Jay Bell's middle name was "Fuck yeah, bitch!" and so I will bestow such an honor on Ms. Moskowitz and from now on her middle name is "I came here to fuck bitches".

Artist's rendition:

So yeah, shit starts getting real because Jonah, the main ch
Jan 05, 2009 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
I wrote this book! Parts of it make me laugh.
Mar 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Did you know that when you break your bones, they grow back stronger? Well that's what Jonah figures he'd do. Get stronger. Since his life and the people in it is so messed up he figures that he'll be strong enough for all of them.....

Basically BREAK is probably the strangest book I've read thus far, but it's concept is crazy fascinating. And then when the book is all said and done it hits something so deep that it makes you wonder if it's an issue that really happening. This is a thought provok
shady boots
Apr 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
It's definitely very strange to finish an author's latest book and then proceed to their debut straight after. The six year gap is definitely clear in the writing, yes, but even despite that, Hannah Moskowitz never fails to impress me.

To put it bluntly, I just fucking love her goddamn books, man.
Jennifer Sommersby
Feb 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
What were you doing during your junior year in high school? Chasing boys? Cheering on the home team? Worrying about the perfect prom dress (or if you were even going to make it to prom)? Fighting with your parents because of their crazy restrictive curfews?

I don’t know what Hannah Moskowitz did to keep it real during eleventh grade. And considering she’s only nineteen, those days were, well, like, yesterday. I know one thing she did do, though. She got herself a little publishing deal with one o
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
If this book isn't proof that teenagers are fucking amazing, I don't know what is.

(Hannah wrote this when she was in high school.)

I am so impressed w/ her and w/ this book. Wow.

It'll BREAK (heh) you, but it's worth it.
Nov 24, 2011 rated it liked it
(Re-posted from

The first thing that struck me about Break was how nice it was to read a YA book that didn't revolve around or devote a huge chunk of itself to romance. Jonah already has a girlfriend, (well, kind of), and while he likes her a whole heap he doesn’t obsess over her or doubt her feelings or worry overmuch about the relationship or any of that standard YA jazz. Break is a book hugely concerned with relationships, just not the teenagers in love
Nov 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Read this shortly after it came out as I 'met' the author on a writer's site. I promptly went out and got it.

Intense and amazing. I was most worried about the little brother though, and felt my focus shift to him (and not the MC.) I kind of knew what was up with Jonah, who constantly breaks his bones so they'll re-heal stronger, but the baby brother? I kept reading hoping the baby would simply stay alive from one page to the next ...

A quick read, a good read, from a truly unique writer.
May 29, 2009 rated it really liked it
Three words: intense, fast-paced, awesome!

What an incredible debut! Moskowitz is an extremely talented writer! Break was full of fantastically portrayed three dimensional characters and an insane central idea. A goal to break every bone in your body? How does that not pique your curiosity. Well, it did mine and this lead to me completely devouring the entire novel in one setting.

Moskowitz did an outstanding job of creating that are relatable, they have problems, feelings, and circumstances tha
May 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book knocked my socks off. I don't even know where to begin because all I want to say is you need to read it.

Jonah is on a mission to break every bone in his body, because everyone knows that broken bones heal back stronger and he needs to be strong. Everything else in his life is absolute chaos. He has one brother who is allergic to everything, a baby brother who doesn't stop crying (literally), parents who seem to be hanging on by a string, and friends who have no idea why he is doing wha
Feb 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars | Blog

"Break a bone, grow a better body. The worse you're hurt, the stronger you get."

WOW. This was the first book I've read of Hannah Moskowitz's and it did NOT disappoint. Break was an easy read and it also (rather rudely) enjoyed toying with my feelings.

The minute I read the premise, my eyebrows shot up. Who breaks bones for fun? Well, ladies and gentlemen, let me present to you: seventeen-year-old Jonah McNab.

Break is about Jonah going on a bone-breaking spree and his best fri
Jessica (Step Into Fiction)
Jun 17, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-stars, autographed
I bought this book and Invicible Summer at the same by Hannah but I wanted to read this one first. The concept really caught my attention. As someone whose broken a few too many bones in her lifetime...I know the pain that comes with it. I could never ever imagine doing it to myself on purpose, so I was intrigued. (view spoiler) ...more
Dichotomy Girl
This book is really really hard to rate. On the one hand, it was well written; I started it about 20 minutes until bedtime, and stayed up late to finish it. On the other hand, I found that all of the characters pissed me off, for different, but spoiler-y reasons. (view spoiler) ...more
Aug 08, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: teen
Authored by a senior in high school, this debut novel would make a veteran author proud. Jonah worries about a lot. He worries about his parents, worries about the fact his baby brother cries all the time, but most of all he worries about his younger brother, Jessie, who is severe and life-threatening allergies. After being hurt in a car accident, Jonah has started trying to break every bone in his body to make himself stronger. He is helped by his best friend, Naomi, who films him breaking his ...more
Jul 04, 2010 rated it really liked it
The main character in Break and I virtually have nothing in common, except for our ages. I'm a seventeen-year-old writing girl who doesn't swear and is absolutely too terrified to get in any likely-bone-breaking situations...and Jonah is a boy with a complicated mess of a home life, the pressures of his world on his shoulders, and a habit of intentionally breaking bones. Nevertheless, I found him tremendously sympathetic and compelling. This book really explores the burden of the responsibility ...more
Tom Franklin
Feb 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
BREAK is a story about a family, each of is broken in very different ways. It's a difficult book to read on many levels and a brilliant book given that Hannah Moskowitz was still in high school when she wrote it.

The narrator, the oldest son, Jonah, feels responsible for protecting his younger, highly allergic, brother from all of the environmental and food elements that can kill him. There's a baby who cries incessantly and his mindlessly religious parents are quick to lash out verbally at one a
May 24, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, fiction, vine
Moskowitz is a talented young writer who effectively conveys teenage angst in a confident voice. Jonah purposely breaks his bones as a coping mechanism to his brother Jesse’s severe food allergies. Believing that his bones will heal stronger is his way of controlling the stress of his family, which includes a constantly ill Jesse, a screaming infant brother and feuding parents. But when the people who care about him find out his injuries are self-inflicted, Jonah has to face the repercussions of ...more
rachel ☾
Dammit, where do I even start with this story? I loved it. I don’t have that much to say about it, but that doesn’t mean I loved it any less. I just cannot find the words to say how much this story touched me. It’s one of those slow-building, soul-crushingly beautiful contemporary stories about brotherhood, family, pain and yes, love. It stole my heart. Broke me down. I loved Jonah and his relationships with Jesse. I adored Jesse. I loved Jonah’s mission – twisted and sickening as it was. The wr ...more
Feb 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
It frightens me to think that if by some chance I had not received an arc of Invincible Summer, I would've never discovered Hannah's awesomeness! I loved IS and can now say Break is equally made of awesome. I know Hannah has said she's never really considered writing a sequal to any of her books (correction only recently the exception of possibly a retelling of IS from a diff. pov) but seriously Break begs to be countinued with my prefrence of Jesse's pov.

So I have to put this out there:

3.5 stars

An interesting and unique read. Easy and quick to get through.

Jonah eventually figures out his reason for breaking his bones, but my reaction to it was probably similar to the psycologist's. It was a strange reason and didn't entirely make sense to me. (Although, I can kind of see why Jonah would think it made sense.) Another thing, I didn't understand what was up with those people in the psych ward. Why did they think that what Jonah did was so great? It was creepy. This book just made
Anna (Bananas)
Good concept. Nice start. However, halfway through my enthusiasm waned. The characters were alternately likeable and frustrating. The plot just seemed to go in circles. Jesse has allergies, Jonah freaks out and babies him. Repeat ad nauseum. I love this author but this wasn't my favorite of hers. See Gone, Gone, Gone or Teeth.
Jan 05, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Hannah Moskowitz is a a teenage Chuck Palahniuk. Her debut novel, BREAK, is clever, intense, and highly emotional. Absolutely one of the most original novels I've ever read.
Aug 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ownvoices
The ending felt a little rushed and there a few things that didn't sit well with me, but overall this was an amazing read. I can't wait to read more of Hannah's books.
Nov 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
Some teens play sports. Other drink and party. But Jonah breaks bones—his own. Sure, it hurts, but broken bones always grow back stronger, and that’s what’s important. Jonah’s on a mission to break every bone in his body, because he wants to be stronger. It’s not because of his younger brother, who’s severely allergic to practically every food and thus frequents the ER too many times. It’s not because of his parents, who can barely handle their own affairs, let along anyone else’s. it’s not beca ...more
Tabitha Olson
May 09, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: recent-reviews
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Matthew Francis
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was ok

What did I just read?

Okay so there should be some pretty strong arguments against spam-reading a novel in one morning because you don't want to go to sleep but damn Break is something else. Sometimes I thought it was great and interesting, other times confusing, inaccurate and in its own special way irritating as hell - I mean I broke my hands over the summer and the cathartic release was momentary but the pain was agony and I have one hell of a high pain threshold yet this kid doe
U.L. Harper
Apr 17, 2010 rated it liked it
Here's the thing with Break. First off it's a great read. The language is wonderful and the timing is great. I think this is young adult novel. That thought is neither here nor there but I thought I'd state it anyway. The pacing is almost spot on as well. Aside from that the author seems to be wise beyond her years. Hannah Moskowitz does a great job adding interesting information to the story at times when you don't expect it. Refreshing. This is a clever read as well. Our protagonist, is clearl ...more
Nov 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Why yes, this book IS just as aweosme as it sounds. Thank you for asking.

Jonah is one of the most complicated MCs I've read in a long time - in a good way. It would have been so easy to make him a vehicle for the plot, a boy who's into self-mutilation for no reason other than to drive the story forward. But Hannah has the incredible ability to make the reader fully understand Jonah's actions - which is no small feat when you're reading about a boy diving into an empty swimming pool.

I especially
Dec 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I always hate to rate a book like this because using a simple star system just doesn't seem to go in depth to describe how I felt about it. Break is the story of Jonah - a typical teenager, or so would you think - but as a way of dealing with the stresses in his life, he breaks his bones - his hands, his fingers, his ribs and many others. Because he knows that broken bones only come back stronger than they were to begin with.

Overall, I liked the book, but felt that it kind of glossed over the is
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Wild Things: YA G...: Break by Hannah Moskowitz 4 25 Sep 18, 2010 07:58PM  

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Hannah Moskowitz wrote her first story, about a kitten named Lilly on the run from cat hunters, for a contest when she was seven years old. It was disqualified for violence. Her first book, BREAK, was on the ALA's 2010 list of Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults, and in 2013, GONE, GONE, GONE received a Stonewall Honor. 2015's NOT OTHERWISE SPECIFIED was named the YA Bisexual Book of the Year. She ...more

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“At the Hospital, everyone thinks about dying.And I'd never been much for romanticizing death-especially not suicide. I'd always been a fan of staying alive.
After all, you basically do all you can not to die. All the time. The search for immortality isn't just from storybooks. every day you do it. You buckle your seat-belt, you take vitamin supplements, look both was before you cross the street. And you really think your doing all you can. Bullshit. We can lift weights for fucking hours and we're still going to die.”
“It's been about six months since I've had something in a cast. Kids at school laugh and call me a klutz. This girl Charlotte carries my books. My parents are baffled. Will cries. Jesse keeps getting sick.
You're broken, and you're fixed.
And you're better,”
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