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Posted January 17, 2015
I really love young adult dystopian stories. After reading Untraceable by S.R. Johannes, and loving it, I really wanted to read Suffocate. And while it is a novella, and very short, it is still an excellent read.
The story itself is more fast paced than most dystopian stories. It dives right in to the action and takes us for a ride immediately. Eria faces a very intense situation, and following that she learns some crazy things about herself, and about life in the Biome. Not only that but there's a nice little bit of sexual tension between her and Ash, her father's assistant, and you guys know how much I love that. Within a matter of a few hours, things change drastically. And when you reach the end, you want to know what will happen next.
Suffocate was a great start to the series. It got me interested right away. The only thing I would have liked to see is the story being more detailed. I know, it's a novella, but it would have been awesome to see a little more to it, like some build up to this day. But, if that's my only complaint, that's a good thing. I really enjoyed this and can't wait to see what happens in Choke, the second book in this series.
My Rating: Very Good
Posted February 20, 2014
The outside world is a barren desert. All Eria's dad and Ash want to do is build a suit so they can go outside again, out of the Biome. Eria hopes it will work too. Yet, mayhem ensues.
An action packed, fast paced, easy to read narrative fill this short narrative introducing the environment and characters. Characters are authentic for their reality and promise additional growth in future episodes.
Overall, a fun read.
Posted February 3, 2014
The story was engaging and the characters well-fleshed out. The fast pace of the story meant that I finished it in no time. I'm going to look for other books by this author.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 6, 2012
It has taken me way too long to read Suffocate by S.R Johannes. I really enjoyed this short story. It was just what I needed to get me back into my reading mood, though not quite my reviewing mood! ;) S.R. has done another amazing job with Suffocate. Sure, the MC in Suffocate seemed a lot like the MC in Untraceable, but that wasn’t that much of a big deal.
The cover is gorgeous. It takes some getting used to, but once you do it really is exceptional.
The book is so short that it is hard to get a feel for the story. Everything is thrown at you so quickly that you’re getting whiplash from one page to the next. It was very fast paced and everything happened right away. There wasn’t much suspense building, but that was what was good about the story. I didn’t have to worry about being kept in the dark, except it did have a nasty cliffhanger.
Eria is a very sweet girl. You start the book with her taking care of her grandmother, who doesn’t love that! You see her go through so much change and destruction in such a short amount of time that it is amazing that she doesn’t just collapse and fall apart. She keeps trucking along and I can’t wait to see what she is like in the next book after that cliff hanger.
Ash is the nerdy, sexy science assistant. He protects Eria with everything he’s got, even when he’s in a crappy situation himself. I really can’t add much about Ash without spoiling the whole book, so I’m going to stop there!
All in All:
Cute quick read! There were minor typos, but those were easily overlooked! I should’ve read this about two months ago, but better late than never!
Posted June 29, 2012
First in the Breathless novelette series, Suffocate does a wonderfully intriguing job of creating a future world, peopling it with characters, and seeding it with questions. The story has a pleasing completeness, like a single episode of a long-running TV series, which bodes well for further novelettes.
Eria’s father is about to be the first person in centuries to leave the Biome and walk in the hotly poisoned air outside. He’s tested and retested his suit, and everyone’s gathered to watch the spectacle. The story’s told through Eria’s eyes in a very convincing young teen voice. Hints of what’s to come are scattered gently between her thoughts, coming together very naturally as the story progresses. Tragedy and conspiracy loom in this fast-moving sci-fi action adventure with surprises at every turn. The world-building is convincing. Explanations are kept to a well-timed minimum. And the reader is quickly invested in Eria’s family, hopes and dreams.
I hope there’ll be more. I hope there’ll be more soon. This looks like a really fun series.
Disclosure: I received a free ecopy of this novelette from the author in exchange for my honest review.
Posted June 19, 2012
Suffocate is a fantastic and quick read! I didn't expect to feel so much from this short story and I wonder how S.R. Johannes was able to give readers so much action in such little time. The most significant aspect of Suffocate is the world building. I could not imagine living in a Biome where everything like air, clothing, and food are all genetically altered or artificial. Johannes puts much detail in the creation of the Biome, but not too much to bore readers. The Biome is boasted to be a perfect structure but there sure are many faults found within. Eria's life is centered on her father's research and his rise to fame. He's the big science guy on campus and everyone is rooting for him as he's the first person to step foot outside the Biome. What was supposed to be a safe experiment turns deadly and Eria spends most of the story investigating what went wrong with the help of her fathers assistant, Ash. I love that Suffocate takes the characters on a wild, dangerous investigation and leads Eria and Ash to hidden secrets and whole new line of suspicion. There are so many paths they could have taken and the one they chose has led them to a heart stopping ending. I won't call it a cliff-hanger because readers aren't stopped right in the middle of a tense scene, but Suffocate does end thought-provokingly with a big bang.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 21, 2012
Both a prison and salvation, the Biome has allowed the continued survival of mankind for centuries on an Earth that’s grown hostile, deadly and barren. However, Eria’s father, a brilliant scientist, has been working on a project that’ll let human begin moving beyond the Biome. It’s a project that promises hope, but that instead delivers catastrophe. In a single moment, Eria’s life alters forever, exposing the dark underbelly of her perfect, snow-globe world and revealing secrets that’ll challenge her perception of reality and put her life in danger.
Eria Stevenson dreams of a day when she’ll escape the Biome – to feel the sun on her face and the wind in her hair. At the outset, there’s nothing extraordinarily remarkable about Eria. She’s a normal teenager with a great sense of humor who can’t cook, hates her hair, and who’s nursing a longtime crush on her dad’s lab assistant/childhood friend, Ash. All in all, pretty relatable. I wouldn’t call her a kick-butt kind of girl, but more of a dreamer who shares her dad’s vision of the future. However, because of certain events and situations that arise, Eri is about to undergo an unavoidable change, a loss of innocence, and I’m extremely excited to see where Johannes will take her character in this series.
While an extremely fast read, Suffocate packs a lot of punch into its short page count. Eria’s world, though a bit vague, is detailed enough to satisfy, with sci-fi overtones and dystopian undertones. Even more impressive is how well Johannes develops her cast of characters with such limited page time – I was surprised how emotionally invested I found myself, considering I had literally just met these characters. The pacing was also very well done. Pacing is of utter importance in a novel of normal length, but it’s paramount in a novelette – not a word or moment wasted. There’s no time to wander or stray, and Johannes doesn’t disappoint here either. After a short introduction to the characters and the world, you are immediately thrown in the action and it doesn’t let up at all, right until the fantastic ending that left me staring at my Kindle saying, “WHAT?!” Which brings me to another aspect of Johannes’ stories that I’ve discovered in the two I’ve read so far: She’s willing to take risks with her story. I admire when an author is willing to do that which is necessary for the sake of the plot or the characters, and I absolutely love when an author manages to catch me off guard.
Overall, an exciting introduction to The Breathless series, Suffocate delivers an action-packed plot full of unexpected twists, an interesting and dangerous world, and a cast of characters that hold wonderful emotional resonance.