Broken Silence: Natasha Preston

I nearly decided not to review this book after reading the first book! See my review at https://mylittlebookblog.wordpress.com/category/reviews/. As a quick round up in a sentence of my review of the first book, I did enjoy it however the grammatical errors and lack of passion and intensity left me feeling a little cold. However, I had prematurely downloaded the second book, and seeing as the first ended so swiftly I thought that this book deserved at least a go! Despite my reservations about this book I did finish it and that’s why there is a review today! (Additionally, there are a couple of tiny spoilers in terms of the first book so don’t read on unless you want to know!) Enjoy (or not?)

It has been four years since Oakley, her mum, and brother fled to Australia. With the trials looming, she makes the decision to return to England. Oakley is desperate for closure so she can put the past behind her and move on with her life. How will she cope when she comes face to face with the two people that hurt her the most, and the one person that she hurt the most?
Her love for Cole never faded, but how will he react to her return after so long? Will they be able to put everything behind them in order to have a happy ending?

Unfortunately, Broken silence for me was not even as good as the first book. The book follows Oakley and her new life in Australia; without Cole. However, due to the impending trial Oakley returns to Britain and is re-united with Cole, her first love. However, a major downside is that Broken Silence lacks the layer of Oakley’s ability to speak. In the first book Oakley not speaking creates a sense of mystery and mystery and the unfamiliar. The relationship that her and Cole develop is only understandable through actions that are accepted through the two of them in their own personal relationship. However, in Broken Silence, this is lost, which I felt meant the book lacked focus and the depth that it gained during the first book. Although I understand the need for Oakley to talk in which to continue the plot line, the book lacked the depth that it created in the first book which was unfortunate. Additionally, the book relies on the impending trial *spoiler* of Oakley’s family member. The book revolves around Oakley’s fears and tribulations about the trial and although this is expected as this is a big decision for Oakley and she is in a very difficult situation, it seemed drawn out. Additionally, for me it didn’t seem as if the book had enough content to be a new book. It lacked the drive to the end that it needed and seemed to waver in limbo for too many chapters. I had assumed that due to the increase in drama, seen in the use of the trial, and the strain that appears between Oakley and Cole I thought that there would be an increase in feeling and excitement. Seems as a reader I was asking a little too much. However there were positives; the trial was handled extremely well and really showed the pain that was affecting Oakley. As with the first book it was handled this gently but showed the importance of family support and relationship that stand throughout everything. I thought this was done with a delicate touch and really helped to show what Oakley and Cole and her family were going through. The ending was also better, although was unfortunately clichéd and a little dated which was a shame; it could have ended with a open ending in which to make the book stay in the readers mind. However, the ending was a big improvement.

Overall I really didn’t enjoy this book and found myself just reading it for the sake of finishing it. I think it’s a real shame because the thought behind the book was strong, the characters had real potential and the plot had a brilliant premise. The problem was that the book wasn’t executed correctly and lacked precision and honest feeling in it’s writing. A number of extra interweaving character stories would have left the reader wanting more and reading forward to discover what was eventually going to happen and this would have lead to a more cohesive and interesting plot seeing as the plot seemed to dwindle for a number of chapters. Additionally, I thought that the book just lingered rather than really dealing with the issue that it had started and I felt myself feeling tired and bored towards the end of the book. However, the book did have a tidy ending and it did leave me feeling better about the book. I wouldn’t recommend this book as I feel I could have spent the time reading something else, however I would never tell people not to read the book, it just wasn’t right for me!Image

 

 

Silence: Natasha Preston

I bought these books a while back when I was low on money (when aren’t I) but wanted something to read when putting of my dissertation, (yet again, when aren’t I?) The story is told in two books and I dutifully sat down the devour the first book ‘Silence.’ Needless to say as the end of the book I was eager to read on but also doubtful whether I would finish the second. When reviewing these books I was tempted to put them together and do a longer definition, however the books rely on very different ways of telling the story due to the main character and I feel pushing them together would not allow me to discuss them fully. Therefore I am reviewing them separately. So here it is! my review! 

For eleven years, Oakley Farrell has been silent. At the age of five, she stopped talking, and no one seems to know why. Refusing to communicate beyond a few physical actions, Oakley remains in her own little world. Bullied at school, she has just one friend, Cole Benson. Cole stands by her, refusing to believe that she is not perfect the way she is. Over the years, they have developed their own version of a normal friendship. However, will it still work as they start to grow even closer? When Oakley is forced to face someone from her past, can she hold her secret in any longer?

Something has stopped Oakley talking; this small and delicate character is not speaking a word and no-one knows why. Although there are no spoilers here, it does become evident what the problem is, or what has happened in the past. However, this doesn’t detract from the story and it does continue to pull you along to the very end. One of the most genuine parts of the book is the emotion that is felt between Oakley and Cole. The way that their friendship develops is simple but beautiful. You can see from the very beginning the feelings that are slowly creeping out and growing between the two of them. However, it is written so that you keep waiting for it. Oakley also draws it out, making you wonder whether she will ever be ready to accept that she is good enough for him. Even though at times it seemed a little clichéd, it is dealt with minimally and honestly making it even more clear and lovely. Additionally, I found that the romance was a little too naïve and immature; and although I understand it is because they are young adults there could have been more of a fever to their impending relationship change. However, the way that they communicate and the way he gets her, whilst not being uptight or challenging about her inability to talk is written in a lovely way. The characters are well thought out and they all bring something to the story however I felt that their traits were downplayed. If you have read any of my reviews you will know that this is important to me as a reader and I felt that the characters lacked conviction, passion and fervour. I don’t know whether I am picky or I like expressive characters but I felt like the entire book lacked anything. It needed some oomph.

Towards the very end of the book we learn why Oakley is not talking and although I thought it was handled with dexterity and thought it felt rushed and sudden which was unfortunate as the whole book was reaching for the moment when we found out what was really going on. Instead of a rush I felt confused. However, I must state that it was handled really well. Another additional problem was the book needed another edit; at time there were a number of grammatical errors that could have been ironed out with another edit. Although often I can look past the errors, this had so many tiny errors that at time it was a little to aggravating! However, another edit and this could definitely be improved. Additionally, I thought that although the story had a plot and a definite idea, and a plot line and a good solid set of characters it lacked the pull, the desperation, the feeling that you need to make a book like this work. When you are dealing with such an interesting twist, mainly a character that doesn’t speak and needs impressions and expressions in which to interact, you need to push the emotions to get the reader to really understand. Finally, I felt that the ending was too quick and snappy. I won’t spoil it because it will ruin the reading of the book however I felt that it didn’t wrap up the book well enough. However, there is a second book! However, it still would have been nice for a more drawn out ending. I know I have probably put this book down a little, I still enjoyed it, but just know that for it me it wasn’t a great read! 

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