Radio Silence

Alice Oseman. HarperTeen, $17.99 (496p) ISBN 978-0-06-233571-5
Oseman (Solitaire) explores sexual identities, the weight of expectation, and the intensity and fickleness of fandom in a story revolving around a mysterious, Welcome to Night Vale–esque podcast called Universe City. Frances Janvier, a high-achieving but largely friendless British student, has been a fan of Universe City since its first episode, even creating fan art for the show under the online persona of Toulouse. Aled Last, the boy next door, turns out to be Universe City’s creator, and, soon after each realizes who the other is, the two collaborate on the podcast and develop a much-needed friendship. Frances and Aled both identify as queer, and their intense friendship—as well as relationships with their mothers that couldn’t be more different—are central to the story. Oseman gives Frances an honest, insecure, and occasionally meandering voice, as she considers the stresses, joys, and letdowns of her high school existence. Oseman vividly illustrates that the world and its technologies offer opportunities for connection and fulfillment that go far beyond traditional definitions of success. Ages 13–up. Agent: Claire Wilson, Rogers, Coleridge and White. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/23/2017
Release date: 03/28/2017
Ebook - 496 pages - 978-0-06-233573-9
Compact Disc - 978-1-4708-6196-4
MP3 CD - 978-1-4708-6197-1
Downloadable Audio - 978-0-06-247461-2
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