Sunday, 24 April 2016

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman Review and Giveaway

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What if everything you set yourself up to be was wrong? Frances has always been a study machine with one goal, elite university. Nothing will stand in her way; not friends, not a guilty secret – not even the person she is on the inside. But when Frances meets Aled, the shy genius behind her favourite podcast, she discovers a new freedom. He unlocks the door to Real Frances and for the first time she experiences true friendship, unafraid to be herself.

Then the podcast goes viral and the fragile trust between them is broken. Caught between who she was and who she longs to be, Frances’ dreams come crashing down. Suffocating with guilt, she knows that she has to confront her past… She has to confess why Carys disappeared…

Meanwhile at uni, Aled is alone, fighting even darker secrets. It’s only by facing up to your fears that you can overcome them. And it’s only by being your true self that you can find happiness. Frances is going to need every bit of courage she has. (Publishers' blurb)

Publisher: Harper Collins (25th Feb 2016) 
It goes without saying that I read a lot of YA. Most of it is excellent (because I’m very picky) and some of it is not so much. ‘Radio Silence’ is by far the best YA I’ve read this year and in my top 5 of all time. I loved it so much that I bought an extra copy to give away and share the joy (details below).

I was slow to jump on this one because I’d read so much hype about it. Sometimes I find hype really off-putting, as I build a book up only to find that I just can’t get into it. ‘Radio Silence’ is deserving of all the hype and more.
My favourite part about this was the voice. I can’t remember another book for teens that so accurately captures the teenaged voice. This authenticity goes for the first person narrative and the dialogue, all of which struck me as super realistic. I remember those feelings of working out who I was and who I wanted to be all too well and this book captured that beautifully. ‘Radio Silence’ delved into issues like gender, relationships and identity in a way that felt really authentic and honest.  
I usually have mixed feelings about social media in YA. It can make a book feel current and authentic but too often feels forced in or in danger of dating a book. In ‘Radio Silence’, social media was woven into the narrative in such an integral way that the book would’ve fallen apart without it. Rather than making the book feel dated, Radio Silence’s use of social media has created a snapshot of what it’s like to be a teenager in 2016.
I like to say something that I didn’t like about a book to give a balanced perspective but for once I can’t think of a single thing. I loved everything about this book and I can’t wait to see what Alice Oseman will write next!

Now for the giveaway! Simply follow me on Twitter (@yaundermyskin) and retweet the pinned tweet about this review for a chance to win. The giveaway is open internationally and ends Sunday 1st May, on which date I will let the winner know and announce it on my blog.
Good luck!

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