Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Book Review: 'Just Breathe: Chin Up, Tits Out Book 3' by Miranda Oh

Just Breathe by Miranda Oh


‘Love is enough and will conquer all’

Author Miranda Oh lives in the corporate world – with escape hatches available as a storyteller treasured by her friends and family. She loves life and it shows in her writing. REMEMBER, NO MATTER WHAT was her first volume of a Chick Lit series she titles CHIN UP, TITS OUT, followed by WHEN ALL ELSE FAILS and now JUST BREATHE – volume 3 that not only lives up to the previous two standards, but surpasses them!

Miranda writes well, able to create an atmosphere of contemporary real time inextricably bonded to the spectrum of love – both found and longed for – and related with a naughty verbiage that is so appropriate to the story she creates. She has sculpted a unique central character in Hadley Hope McLeary, a girl who seems strangely familiar to the readers without being a stereotype. And following the precedent of her first volume, Miranda drops a bit of suggestion about the story’s direction as the book opens – ‘You know those moments when you tell yourself that you are totally right in your thinking, and you attempt to convince yourself, but really, truly, you know you’re wrong? The first week after Riann left, no one could convince me that he wasn’t coming back. No one even dared…’ And with that bit of a reminder about the closure (or rather the pause) of Book 2, Miranda’s novel just plugs on. 

With Miranda’s skills she manages to dish up another fine Prologue that finds Hadley with a new ‘sleep-over’ male. Then the direction of this continuation of the life of Hadley McLeary proceeds as distilled in the synopsis: ‘Hadley is now recently divorced and wending her way down the path of life in anticipation of her rapidly approaching 30th birthday as a single woman. Testing waters and wantonly accepting new and exhilarating scenarios, Hadley wisely chooses each path carefully before diving into the quagmire which is life - a humorous, oft times sexy, look at life from a young woman's standpoint.’

After three volumes of a fine survey of love and lust and other ‘profanities,’ Miranda Oh has proved her stature as an artist of note. Yes, her genre is Chick Lit, a very popular arena for many readers, but other authors who elect to titillate their readers with such shallow naughties don’t pay as much attention to life twists as Miranda has demonstrated. She has successfully sculpted a trilogy that is at once hilarious and sexy and engrossing, but at the same time she has offered insights and lessons about life as we live it. As a closing thought she offers, ‘Love is enough. It won’t be easy, and it will be messy and most of all confusing. But always trust your gut, follow your heart, and be kind to yourself and to others.’ That adds a tug at the heart and tear duct while eliciting a Brava! from her admirers. Well done, Miranda Oh!









Editor's note: This review has been published with the permission of Grady Harp. Like what you read? Subscribe to the SFRB's free daily email notice so you can be up-to-date on our latest articles. Scroll up this page to the sign-up field on your right.