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Breaking Point

Breaking Point - N.R. Walker Breaking Point is a fit title for the sequel to Point of No Return. Taking place approximately twelve months since the events of the first book, Breaking Point is charged with emotions and turmoil. No rainbow riding in this book, that's for sure.

This review will contain spoilers for the events of the first book. Proceed with caution if you have not read [b:Point of No Return|18301922|Point of No Return (Turning Point, #1)|N.R. Walker|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1375980085s/18301922.jpg|21452958].
Breaking Point highlighted something I completely missed upon finishing the first book: that while the proverbial gun was pointed at Kira (and the women) in the hostage situation, they weren't the only victims of Tomic's actions that day. Matthew Elliot was as much a victim to the events that day, triggering the emotional spectrum of guilt, anger and grief.

And in the twelve months since then, he has been living with the consequences of this emotional turmoil. However, that doesn't mean he's unhappy with life. Kira and his parents have become Matthew's family, and the happiness of their presence has made it a good year. But when certain events forces Matthew to live a lie to his new family, his emotional lifesaver isn't enough to save him from the violent storm of his own guilt.

I think judging from other reviews I have read, many readers were angry with Matthew. That the angst and emotional problems were due to stubbornness and his inability to just talk about his guilt with Kira. And objectively, that probably isn't too far off the mark. And for the most part, I was cross with Matthew at certain points of the book. However, there wasn't a character I didn't want to throttle with the exception of Yumi and Sal (yup, even Kira made me frown at certain points). I don't think ANYONE handled the situation for a victim (yes, I am labeling Matthew as a victim) very well.

The story also takes a violent turn from book one, with a major focus on mixed martial arts (MMA). Therefore, if you're one to hate violence, then this might be a difficult read. The majority of the story takes place in a "fight club" where cage matches are fought. Yet the focus of the story is inside Matthew's very troubled mind. It's not just a battle of bodies, but that of the guilt Matthew feels for Kira, violence from feelings of abandonment and the grief of what he has lost.

And the breaking point was indeed reached. It was a slow burn downfall of sorts. People were hurt, relationships changed, and decisions were made.

Breaking Point is not an easy read, but it sure was a satisfying one. While the book made me feel like a cracked pane of glass, I was happy with the ending of a satisfactory conclusion.