Radio Silence – by Alice Oseman

Oh yes, yet another of the books belonging to the wonderful Osemanverse has been quickly devoured – and this time it was Radio Silence

Blurb: 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.

A YA coming of age read that tackles issues of identity, the pressure to succeed, diversity and freedom to choose, Radio Silence is a tour de force by the most exciting writer of her generation.

Rating: 5/5

My thoughts: This is a wonderful tale about friendships, understanding, and being true to yourself. Frances’ entire life is centred around her education – getting into the right university is the ONLY thing that matters and she is risking working herself into the ground to achieve it. Yes she has some friends, but she is never fully comfortable in their presence, they don’t quite fit, or maybe she doesn’t quite fit with them.

And then there is Aled (a supporting character in Heartstopper – the books, not the show). Frances has always known Aled, but it was his sister who she really had the friendship with. When a chance meeting brings Frances and Aled together they being the sort of friendship that they both need, a friendship with someone who truly understands them, a friendship in which they can finally be themselves. A friendship – not a romance!

When Frances discovers they also share a passion for her one, non-educational, hobby – a youtube series called Universe City – their friendship grows even stronger. But it could also risk ripping them apart for good. When Aled goes silent and no one can contact him Frances knows she has to risk everything to find him, to save him.

A great read, loved it

Solitaire – by Alice Oseman

Oh my it’s been some since I posted on this blog and, to tell the truth, I rather fell out of love with reading and writing for a while… how funny that a TV show has started bringing me back…

So, the Neflix show Heartstopper was released just over a month ago now… and I may have watched that a few times since then – It also made me want to discover the graphic novels that gave the story life (more of that on another post) – and following that I wanted to discover the other books which feature Nick and Charlie… my first stop was Solitare – the story of Tori Spring… did I like it? Was it as good as Heartstopper? Will I read more now… Let’s find out shall we??

Solitaire by Alice Oseman

Blurb: The acclaimed debut novel from Alice Oseman, the author of the 2021 YA Book Prize winning LovelessSolitaire features the characters that inspired the beloved webcomic and graphic novel series Heartstopper – now a major Netflix series.

The Catcher in the Rye for the digital age” The Times

My name is Tori Spring. I like to sleep and I like to blog. Last year – before all that stuff with Charlie and before I had to face the harsh realities of A-Levels and university applications and the fact that one day I really will have to start talking to people – I had friends. Things were very different, I guess, but that’s all over now.

Now there’s Solitaire. And Michael Holden.

I don’t know what Solitaire are trying to do, and I don’t care about Michael Holden.
I really don’t.

This incredible debut novel by outstanding young author Alice Oseman is perfect for fans of John Green, Rainbow Rowell and all unflinchingly honest writers.

My thoughts: Tori Spring is not happy. With herself. With other people. With life in general.

While this book features a number of characters from Heartstopper it is told with a very different tone. From the very start you can feel Tori’s “teen angst” – and that isn’t to say it’s all black wallpaper and woe is me – there is real feeling behind her pain and it does make you want to offer a helping hand, although I think that would just be slapped away!

Tori feels a pointlessness in her life, and the people in it – with the possible exception of her younger brothers, especially Charlie – and by extension his boyfriend Nick.

When unexplained pranks start being pulled around the school by the strangely named “Solitaire” Tori doesn’t care, she has no interest in how or why these things are happening…. and even the intriguing and confusing Michael Holden are not enough to really tempt her to get involved… until they are!

Things are getting serious, and worrying, if Tori doesn’t step up and do something then who will?

A really gripping read – I am loving this Heartstopper world – and cannot wait to discover more!

Fully recommend this read 🙂