Whisper has a cleft palate. In this young adult dystopian tale, she and other deformed children are cast out of society because of their abnormalities.
This story is about how she survives and holds her new family, made up of other rejected children, together despite obstacles at every turn.
Whisper was a far darker story than I expected.
Terrible things kept happening to Whisper and I kept telling myself that it would turn around soon. And it didn’t.
If she wasn’t running from someone who was trying to harm her, she was freezing or starving. She’d get a modicum of security and then lose it.
I was really cheering for Whisper to embrace her special abilities, but she never seems to manage it.
Honestly, I was disappointed by the heroine’s decisions at multiple times in this story.
As one of the children tells Whisper: “You will never go far in this world if you don’t know how to rescue yourself.” And, in my opinion, she never did what was best for her own survival.
The author describes the setting as “near future” but if she had taken out the cars, refrigerators, and indoor plumbing, it could just as easily have been the recent past.
It wasn’t too long ago that superstitious people believed birth defects marked someone who would ruin the crops, bring bad luck, or comets shooting across the sky spelled misfortune. In fact, in some parts of the world, this type of thinking still reigns.
I think it’s human nature to try to explain the unexplained and to condemn others for their differences, the physical differences being the easiest to pick out. That doesn’t make it right.
My main complaint about this read was the repetitiousness. After short bursts of frantic activity, Whisper’s life would settle into a routine that was really uninteresting.
If I had to read about her messing up the homemade bread one more time, I was going to put the book down.
Maybe the author was trying to get the reader invested in the process, but I simply wanted the story to move on. I was already interested in Whisper- I was just over the baking and cleaning.
The same feeling hit me during the multiple music lessons and the days spent playing violin on the streets for change. I guess I prefer my dystopian novels with more explosive action and less daily slogging.
I received a free copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads. Thanks for reading!