So I recently received some very exciting news…I’ve been added to Macmillan’s (@MyKindaBook) YA blogger list! I feel so lucky, and I just thought I’d mention it because you’ll probably be seeing some more books from them over the next few months. Though don’t worry – I definitely won’t be bombarding you with them! Most of my books will still be self bought 🙂
Anyway, this book was one of the first ones to be sent my way. And though I’d not heard much of it beforehand, I’m SO glad it was sent to me because…well, let’s just say this is DEFINITELY a positive review.
Let’s talk about A Quiet Kind of Thunder!
This book suits my aesthetic perfectly. Just saying.
Title: A Quiet Kind of Thunder
Author: Sara Barnard
Series Status: Standalone
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Number of Pages: 305
Release Date: 12th January 2017
(Found on Goodreads)
Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life – she’s been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He’s deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she’s assigned to look after him. To Rhys, it doesn’t matter that Steffi doesn’t talk, and as they find ways to communicate, Steffi finds that she does have a voice, and that she’s falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it.
*Thank you to the publisher for sending me an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review
I’ve not read Sara Barnard’s previous book, Beautiful Broken Things, so I had no idea what this book might be like when going into it. Having now finished it, I’m considering going out and buying it because this one was so flippin’ great!
Right off the bat, I knew I was going to love Steffi as a main character. I can’t even explain what it is about her. She just has a voice I can relate to, even though I’m not in the same situation as her. Not only that, but she actually does sound and act like a teenager, rather than one of those pretentious know-it-alls that seem to be the new brand of “teenager” in a lot of books recently. She gossips with her friend. She adores animals. She doesn’t always get along with her family, but it’s obvious she loves them. She’s a teenager.
And like all teenagers, she made mistakes. Some would be mortifying but also kind of funny. Some she would take to heart and learn from. And I absolutely loved this. Because when Steffi meets Rhys – the other main character – she not only has to learn how to communicate with a deaf person, but she also makes mistakes when it comes to things she might not have considered before. And the message? That’s OK. People don’t expect you to know how to manage everything, but you can learn. And it’s really wonderful to see all this at work when reading about Steffi and Rhys.
There’s so many important things in this book. We see the main characters struggle with mental health and disability. We see diversity. We see different beliefs in what sex should be, and the message that there’s absolutely no pressure for you to do it until you’re ready. And even then, it’s not always what you expect. We even see a break in gender norms for little kids.
And you know what?
I feel like I really need to applaud this book. Because even though all these things are included in a 300 page book, it doesn’t feel like a bombardment of shouting from the rooftops. It still feels somewhat lighthearted. It still made me smile all the way through. It feels like real life – because IT IS.
Unsurprisingly, this turned out to be a really quick read. Even if it wasn’t quite short anyway, I’d have gobbled this right up. Partly because of Steffi’s way of telling the story through her eyes, partly because of how cute it was to see the story progress, it’s hard not to fly through the pages.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I’m so glad I read this book. If anything, I’d have liked it to be just that tiny bit longer, to see more of the after, but maybe that would have made it an entirely different story. Who knows?
I think everyone should read this book. Especially if you’re a fan of cute stories or looking for more diversity in your reading materials!
Note: Possible trigger warning for anxiety
Rated 4.5/5 stars!
Share your thoughts!
Do you plan on reading this book once it’s released?
Have you read Sara Barnard’s other book, Beautiful Broken Things? Would you recommend it?
Let me know in the comments!
Until next time…
Come and visit me!