I’m making my way through my summer reading list at a slow, but nonetheless steady pace and today’s post is another book review. This book is Silence is Goldfish by Annabel Pitcher. I’ve never read anything by this particular author before and bought this book without knowing anything about her or her style of writing so this is kinda like a first impression of the author (we should make that a thing- like beauty first impressions only for books!) and a review.
Fifteen-year-old Tess doesn’t mean to become mute.
At first, she was just too shocked to speak.
And who wouldn’t be? Discovering your whole
life has been a lie because your dad isn’t your
real father is a pretty big deal.
When Tess sets out to find the truth of her
identity, she uncovers a secret that could ruin
multiple lives- but how can she ask for help
when she’s forgotten how to use her voice?
The blurb of this book kinda gives a misrepresentation of Tess. She doesn’t actually forget how to speak at all- she becomes mute as more of a protest against her ‘father’ than anything else. Also, it gives the vibe that she discovers something that is dangerous and damaging. Fair enough, it’s probably damaging, but not as scandalous and scary as the blurb lets on.
Anyway, more about the book and characters… Tess is your typical fifteen-year-old girl, she has a nerdy best friend and a beloved pet (much like the rest of us). She’s a bit curvy (which doesn’t bother her at all- in fact she embraces it) and her ‘father’ is trying to make her a more ‘desirable’ figure (whatever that is (it’s actually kinda horrible how he goes about it too)). Oh yeah, and she gets teased a lot at school. I know bullying is a big issue and should be taken very seriously, but I don’t think it has to be incorporated into every novel about teens.
This book is about Tess discovering that her dad wrote a blog post about her birth, and about how he felt disgusted because they used a sperm donor and she wasn’t really his child. This is life altering news and she can’t look at him the same way ever again, so she goes mute. Stops talking to everyone. Mother, ‘father’, teachers, grandmother, friends… everyone. Everyone except a goldfish torch that she bought when she was planning to run away to find her real dad.
At first, I was a bit confused as to why she was talking to this goldfish inside her head. She could even see it floating in front of her as if it was physically there. I thought it was kinda weird and the more you read it, the more you begin to think that Tess may be suffering from some undiagnosed mental illness (but this is never actually addressed in the book).
I can’t say much more without giving a lot away and spoiling the book, but my honest opinion is that I wasn’t a huge fan of it. It was slow-moving and a slightly boring, only really getting interesting towards the end when she finds her voice and the truth about her own identity and the lies of other characters comes out. It wasn’t an awful book, I just think it’s one I won’t be reading again.
I hope you enjoyed this short book review. I have no idea if anyone is actually interested in these but I enjoy writing them and sharing my experiences of certain novels.
Have you read this book? Have you read any great books that you think I’d be interested in? Comment them below!
Until next time…