DiscoverMystery & Crime

Take a Breath



A young woman vanishes into the cold Glaswegian night. Ten years later, one man is forced on a journey into his buried past to reveal the truth behind her mysterious disappearance.

Take a Breath is set in gangster-ridden Glasgow. With razor-sharp pace and authentic urban grit, it charts the relationship of Paul and Lena, mining the darker side of love, as time and again they engage in a grim, obsessive dance. From their first tumultuous meeting, following their reconnections over several years, each encounter is more intense than the last. However, Lena is not the only one entangled with Paul. He has fallen in with notorious crimelord Manny Munroe, a name synonymous with drugs, prostitution and a ruthless lust for violence.

As the stakes rise ever higher, Take a Breath offers a chilling look at the organized crime realm of Glasgow, where everyone is connected and no one leaves unscathed. With searing narrative, complex characters, and the seamy backdrop of Glasgow’s mean streets, this arresting work of fiction will leave you hanging on every tautly written page.


Pulling her mirror compact from the depths of her overflowing carrier bag, the girl began to apply gloss to her glacé-cherry lips. As she balanced on the back of the bench, her booted feet resting on the seat, she smacked her lips together with a pantomime pout. Some of the men in hard hats downed tools, reckoning up if she was old enough for their wolf whistles to pass. Her unbuttoned denim jacket delineated her blossoming bosom; her skirt was hitched high up her suntanned thighs. All make-up, glitter and sparkle, penny-farthing earrings and sweet perfume. Her fingers jangled the coins in her pocket. The exact change for her bus. She waited, pretending to ignore the stir of excitement from the other side of the road. As she readjusted the earpiece of her headphones, the music screeched like tyres on wet tarmac. A surge of energy rippled through her and a smile stole across her face. She was sixteen years old and knew her power. The kind of girl boys worshipped, mothers hated and fathers wanted to fuck.

About the author

S.K. Paisley was born in Glasgow. She studied Law and English Literature at University of Glasgow before working as a school teacher. She wrote her first novel Take a Breath while travelling around South America and her second, Madness & Soil, in Amsterdam, Glasgow, Montreal, Ottawa and Hamburg. view profile

Published on July 01, 2020

Published by

80000 words

Contains explicit content ⚠️

Genre: Mystery & Crime

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