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The Fiction Conniption

Proud book geek and YA enthusiast. Can also find me at my other book blog home www.tyngasreviews.com




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Speechless - Hannah Harrington This was one of those books that I requested off Netgalley thinking it would probably be just a light high school summer read, and the idea of a teenage girl taking a vow of silence as a way to atone for her gossiping habit and how much hurt she's caused intrigued me. Except, that's not really how the story went. Between Chapters 1 and 2, we miss the most important part of the whole dynamic - which is when she actually commits the act that provokes the vow of silence... and when she takes the vow of silence itself.It's like... all of a sudden, she's just a silent person. We're never really told the reasoning behind it, what she hopes to accomplish, nothing at all. And her attitude doesn't seem to change at all. It's not a vow of silence because she's feeling so contrite over the lives she's ruined. It seems to just be a ploy for some attention while she paints herself as a martyr. If she was truly sorry, she'd apologize to the people she hurt, not pout in a corner. Sorry, I just don't buy it. I can't help it, I just really didn't like Chelsea, the main character. Nothing about her seemed sincere. Even after she's well into her vow of silence, and she finds herself wondering about the victim of her gossip, she's still completely self involved. Here's a little quote to show what I mean about why I just could not like this girl: "Or maybe I'm just scared to find out if he's not doing well. That would make things even worse for me than they already are." - Chelsea Like, okay. How nice of you to be so concerned about... yourself. And how your own actions have consequences. That's just life - I'm not going to feel sorry for her when she doesn't feel sorry herself. Like I said at the start, if this vow of silence was somehow motivated by her feeling guilty or wanting to make what she had done right - I could have respected that. But that's not at all why she takes the vow. It seems she just doesn't feel like having to explain what happened to people, so instead she just refuses to talk to anyone. And is kinda bratty about it, to be honest. The story had some potential, I definitely have never read a character who was silent through 90% of the book - but still. Chelsea just was NOT for me. Luckily, she did have some character development and by the end was a bit more redeemable - but it was in the most predictable way possible which kinda ruined it for me. I don't know. We wouldn't get along in life, I don't think. But who knows, maybe you'll feel differently about her, you never know.