Title: Radio Silence
Author: Alice Oseman
Genre: Contemporary YA
Rating: 5 stars
Publication Date: February 25th 2016; published by Harper Collins Children’s Books
“Hello. I hope somebody is listening.”
And so begins this incredibly precious novel written by the lovely Alice Oseman about a boy stuck at university following a path he’s not passionate about, a girl described as a “study machine”, and how art and creativity binds these two.
Radio Silence follows Aled, the shy genius creator of an insanely popular podcast on Youtube of the same title, and Frances, the brainy girl who excels at academia and posts her art online for the world to see. Against all odds these two lovable teenagers meet and their friendship develops over the art each one of them create, and post, anonymously online.
This book is one of the most precious books I’ve read in a long time. I’m blown away by how young Alice Oseman is and how well-rounded these characters were. I feel like they were what really shined the brightest. My favorite character was Frances, the growth she went through over the course of the novel was refreshingly relatable, and the whole “figuring-out-what-to-do-for-the-rest-of-your-life” thing was handled incredibly well.
I loved how diverse this book was in terms of different sexual orientations and skin color. It never felt like the author had just thrown in some diverse traits just for the sake of diversity, the characters were well-developed and they never felt like token characters in the plot.
Another thing I really liked was how Oseman included excerpts from “Radio Silence”, the podcast that moves the whole plot. The snippets she chose to include were very interesting and now I kind of wish it were a real Youtube channel! The way she included snippets of text messages and tumblr asks really added to the whole authenticity of the novel. It goes without saying that nowadays our lives are heavily influenced by the internet and technology, and the fact that the author chose to incorporate these two elements into the story really made the whole plot more relatable and realistic.
All in all, THIS IS A GREAT BOOK GO READ IT! I can’t wait to read Solitaire and her new upcoming works!
P.S. Alice Oseman has a Youtube channel where she posts videos about her writing process (you can check it out here), and she’s the author of an ongoing webcomic called Heartstopper (you can read it here or here). I’ll devour her work this Summer.