Breath Like Water
by Jarzab, Anna

Becoming famous for her early swimming talents, Susannah finds her Olympics dreams challenged by an injury, a new coach's revolutionary training strategies and an unexpected romance with a charming fellow athlete. 35,000 first printing. Simultaneous eBook.

Susannah Ramos, a competitive swimmer, was crowned World Champion at 14. Following her success, she lost her speed and title. Still, she continues to compete and train for the Olympic Swim Trials. Buoyed by a loving, supportive family, she has no intention of backing away from her dream despite a verbally abusive coach, a shoulder problem, and a blossoming romance with a fellow swim team member, the charismatic Harry Matthews. When her shoulder fails during a meet, she is sidelined with intensive physical therapy. She also learns why Harry is missing training: he's bipolar. Not wanting to give up on Harry nor her shot at the Olympics, Susannah must make important decisions about her life going forward. The dedication to the sport plus the rigors and hours of training are front and center in this novel, breathing life into the question of how much should one endure in order to win. Furthermore, Harry's struggles with his mental illness are handled without melodrama or judgment. Hand this to sports lovers with Olympic fever. Grades 9-12. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

When swimming is everything, what's left when your life doesn't go according to plan? A world champion swimmer at 14, Susannah Ramos' changing body has betrayed her; she struggles to maintain her edge in the pool just two years later. Now, a manipulative coach and crippling self-doubt feel like insurmountable hurdles as Susannah fights to regain both her self-confidence and a spot in the upcoming Olympic Trials. A handsome newcomer to the team turns into more than just a friend, and Susannah must rethink her priorities as she works to regain her elite athlete status. Blossoming romance is soon challenged by pressures from the swim team and difficult secrets coming to light. Jarzab expertly captures the intense pressures of high-stakes athletic competition and the complicated reality of loving someone with mental health struggles. Susannah's family's Mexican American heritage is significant to the plot, and themes of identity and feeling like an outsider in a predominantly white sport are explored authentically. Susannah is third-generation Mexican American and growing up in suburban Illinois. Readers will root for Susannah in her journey to find her place, both in and out of the pool. Racing action and tender romance shine in a story of hard love and harder competition. (Sports romance. 15-18) Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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