Thank you to NetGalley and Sourcebooks Fire for providing this ARC.
“Sickness can be a story too, one that we can all learn from.”
The new high school transfer, Jonah, is a major hottie so it’s a big surprise when he falls in love with the invisible girl, April, who’s always been outshone by her BFF, Kris. The painter and musician duo experience their first romances together, but their joy is cut short when Jonah begins to spiral out of control. April watches her boyfriend enter a dark space in his mind as his past catches up to him. These teenagers have to deal with troubles no child should ever have to and are forced to sober up into adulthood before their time.
Kris is a girl filled the confidence of knowing who she is. She swaps from boyfriend to boyfriend with ease. It’s said she "will drop a guy because he didn’t like a movie she liked.” She’s model material with her blonde hair and legs for days. As of this year, she’s moved an hour away to attend a private school, thus leaving our leading lady, April, alone.
April on the other hand has never quite fit in well with the others with her social anxiety issues. Her mother describes her as fiercely loyal -“friendships mean more to you. And so will your relationships.” When she falls in love, she falls hard. And she’s head over heels for Jonah, her best friend.
Jonah once was a confident guy with a passion for art. He’s gentle, kind, vibrant, talented, but also mysterious. As the year spent at Fallstaff High School progresses, he begins to exhibit increasingly worrisome behavior. He’s schizophrenic.
The cast of characters in Your Voice is All I Hear are extremely realistic. They’re distinctly themselves, but I found myself noticing similar traits between the characters and people in my life. I felt like the events in the novel were something that could actually happen in my own life, just as they were told (if only I were still in my Sophomore year in High School). It’s raw and brutally honest about what it’s like watching your loved ones go down a dark road and how to cope with this strange new reality. It’s a quick read that will leave your heartstrings aching. You might even shed a few tears like I did. The writing style is easy to immerse yourself into as if each line flows into the next; once you pick this up, you won’t want to put it down. And look at that title! It’s a literal perfect fit for this novel!
Overall, I would recommend this. I think everyone should read this book. Schizophrenia is a topic rarely discussed even in books about mental illnesses and it’s important to see this side of life. This standalone novel blew all my expectations out of the water and I think you’ll all love it as much as I did. Especially since the novel deals with so many issues such as a multitude of mental illnesses, suicide, bullying, homophobia, family, and love. Pick this up when it releases on September 1st, 2015.
Writing Style: 5/5
All Around Idea: 4/5