REVIEW: A Quiet Kind of Thunder


by Sara Barnard

Pages: 320 
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Publication Date: January 12th 2017
ISBN: 9781509810987
Received From:  Macmillan Children's Books


Steffi doesn't talk, but she has so much to say.
Rhys can't hear, but he can listen.
Their love isn't a lightning strike, it's the rumbling roll of thunder.
Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life - she's been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He's deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she's assigned to look after him. To Rhys, it doesn't matter that Steffi doesn't talk, and as they find ways to communicate, Steffi finds that she does have a voice, and that she's falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it. 


I've been DYING to tell you all about this one for months now! A Quiet Kind of Thunder is one of my favourite books in a long time and I honestly can not wait for you lot to read it!! I connected so much with the characters in this book and it is a story about celebrating the small things and finding love and courage in the most unlikely of places. 

A Quiet Kind of Thunder is about a girl named Steffi. Steffi doesn't talk very much and over the years has lost her voice to anxiety and fear but on the first day of Sixth Form she is introduced to Rhys. Rhys is deaf and can not hear which leads to the unusual pairing communicating through sign language and hand written notes. They create their own little bubble of communication and an unlikely friendship becomes something quite wonderful. Throughout the book we follow Steffi as she learns to use her voice in situations she would have found paralysing in the past and discover the impact the pair have on each others lives. 

The characters in this book are endearing and unique in a way I wasn't expecting. I love that YA is becoming a massive genre in its own right but it means character profiles are getting used and reused over and over. In A Quiet Kind of Thunder we are introduced to two characters that, in my opinion, were a refreshing change from the usual YA protagonists. There is a fragileness to Steffi I think most people can relate to in one way or another, she is strong in her own way but it is a delicate kind of strength that is built up over time with the help from the people around her. A kind of strength she will have to fight to keep hold of. 

Then we come to Rhys... I think I admired him because he was so completely and utterly honest that at times he doesn't cope with his disability. He isn't a character that has the confidence to take on the world with a single charming glance, he has moments where he throws a strop, acts like life isn't fair and throws the towel in. However, it's moments like those that adds to the believability of him, it is what makes Rhys Rhys. Both Rhys and Steffi are 100% honest, they aren't sugar coated into high school stereotypes and that just makes them all the more engaging as a reader. 

Something you notice as a book blogger is that a lot of people in this community suffer from anxiety in one way or another and I'm no exception to this. Dealing with anxiety in a world that still - for the most part - doesn't understand what you are going through everyday is hard! However, A Quiet Kind of Thunder delves into what it's like to suffer with anxiety in a way I could never explain. Anxiety is a condition that can completely tare a part a persons life and it was overwhelming being able to read a book that completely epitomises the fear of anxiety while at the same time delivering a compelling and interesting story line. 

Overall I adored this book. I could imagine Steffi and Rhys walking down the halls at my high school (back in the day) and the story is charmingly addictive. I couldn't put this book down and I'm so excited you guys get to read it soon!! 

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