The Things I didn't say
Author: Kylie Fornasier
Publisher: Penguin Teen Australia
Pages: 311 pages
I hate the label Selective Mutism- as if I choose not to speak, like a kid who refuses to eat broccoli. I've used up every dandelion wish since I was ten wishing for the power to speak whenever I want to. I'm starting to wonder if there are enough dandelions.
After losing her best friend that night, Piper Rhodes changes schools, determined that her final year will be different. She will be different. Then she meets West: school captain, star soccer player, the boy everyone talks about. Despite her fear of losing everything all over agin, they fall in love without Piper ever speaking one word to West. B can a love mapped by silence last?
Though on the book: Before I start my review about The Things I didn't Say I have something to admit. Last year I recieved a copy of Kylie Formaiser's first book, Masquerade for review however I was never able to finish it. I tried and tried time and time again and just couldn't seem to get into the story, the writing just didn't do it for me. When requesting this book for review I had no idea that it was by the same author and luckily I didn't notice otherwise I might not have read it and that would have been a tragedy.
The Things I Didn't say tells the story of Piper Rhodes, who on the outside looks quite normal but she is anything but. You see Piper has Selective Mutism. What is Selective Mutism you may ask? Well like you, I did the same thing. Before reading The Things I Didn't know I had no idea what it was, so here is a quick explanation that is in the book which I think explains it well:
It's thought Selective Mutism is linked with social anxiety. For me they're more thank linked, they're like flotsam and jetsam. The only people I can speak to are my immediate family, Dr Hayes and, until that night forced us apart, Cassie. Whether I'm being greeted by the bus driver, being asked a question by a teacher or standing at the counter at McDonald's, the words good morning, x=14, a Big Mac please, are always on my tongue but that's where they stay.
I think this is a fantastic description of it and is a disability that many people wouldn't be familiar with. I love books with disabilities or issues in the plot line that I have never heard of before of thought of in that concept. It's one of the reasons I love reading is because I find out so many interesting things that I never would have know about otherwise.
The story starts out with us learning that Piper has had a fight with her previous best friend and that she feels she can never go back to her old school because of this. So in her final year of school Piper decides to jump ship and start at a new school. Now many people wouldn't think this would be very hard but think about doing it with Selective Mutism. You can't ask for directions on where to go and it would be hard making new friends or even introducing yourself. There are a few hiccups along the way but suddenly Piper is making new friends and even gets a boyfriend. Everything is running smoothly until suddenly one comment turns everything on its head and then suddenly everything that Piper feared comes to be.
The Things I Didn't Say is a fantastically, fast paced written book, with fascinating relatable characters and situations that everyone can relate to, that had me reaching for the tissues towards the end, so keep them handy.