Published February 25th 2016 by Harper Collins Children’s Books
“Hello. I hope somebody is listening.”
Be prepared for a crazy amount of quotes.
So, I didn’t expect to finish the last 300 pages of this book last night. But I did. I also didn’t expect to be completely drowned in this story. It took my feet and pulled and kept on pulling. A day later and I’ve yet to reach the bottom. That is how much it stayed with me. I’m beginning feel bad for people who haven’t read this yet.
I don’t even know where to start. *deep breath* Okay…
So, this is one of those books that I completely thought was different than it turned out to be. But it was a good surprise. Like Christmas morning and when you find a dollar in your pants pocket. The characters drive this story along. Oh, did I add that all of the main characters are queer? Not only that but there is so much diversity I almost ran outside and screamed for an AMEN.
There were so many geek references in this book. Game of Thrones. Scott Pilgrim. SPIRITED AWAY. On top of some pretty awesome music selections. I feel like I need to be best friends with the author. Like now.
The themes in this story include depression, sexual confusion, online bullying, and abuse but on top of that, you have friendships that wild horses could not pull apart, platonic love, long lost love, typical teenage problems like school and whether to check your Tumbler or not which made it so relatable. And even though Frances’ mother was awesome, not all of the parentals figures were so understanding. Which is something a lot of teenagers can relate to for sure.
“I stopped speaking. There was no point trying to argue. There was no way she was going to even attempt to listen to me. They never do, do they? They never even try to listen to you.”
I almost forgot to talk about the individual protagonists as a whole. So, there’s Frances, and she’s obsessed with a podcast called University City which is about a person stuck in a monster-ridden city set in the future. She meets Aled, who happens ot be the creator of the podcast. Cool? Yep. Only he doesn’t want the world to know that. He is a very private with some heavy family drama.
“…it felt like we were friends. Friends who barely knew anything about each other except the other’s most private secret.”
It’s a slow burn friendship and THANK THE SKIES, there is no romantic love between them. They have a beautiful, soul-mate type connection that feels so real and it makes me yearn for something like that.
“And I’m platonically in love with you.” “That was literally the boy-girl version of ‘no homo,’ but I appreciate the sentiment.”
Without giving too much away, Aled’s podcast and his persona, Radio Silence hit me in the feels. When it all comes together, and we realize who he’s speaking to and how deep his agony goes, it just ripped out my heart.
“I wonder – if nobody is listening to my voice, am I even making any sound at all?”
Sometimes, I think we all feel that way, and Radio’s pain is our pain. This book was written for you and for me.