This is such a good YA read! I almost instantly empathized with Skylar and her family’s trials. I appreciated the very raw emotions the family was going through, due to Skylar’s accident and injury. And I absolutely loved Cam and his sometimes awkward but honest conversations about God.
I cannot freely recommend this to all YA readers. It is so good for its intended audience, which I would say is more for teens in less-sheltered lives. Yes, it deals with anger, bitterness, rejection of God, and so many good subjects, but it also deals with drugs, meth, alcohol, and teen pregnancy. I thought it was super well done, portraying a very real picture (and in a negative way, not at all condoning it) without going into too many gruesome details in each subject, but teen readers should use discernment whether or not this is a fit for them.
The Christian message in this was very good when it came to a real picture of Who God is and how He doesn’t prevent bad things from happening, but He is still good, loving, and faithful. Skylar and her family are not believers, so the Christian thread was given through Cam. I don’t know if this is a book one of a series. I almost hope so, because it left things very open-ended. A plain salvation message was not presented. Instead, there was a scene where Skylar couldn’t “run away from” God’s love so big. But it was really not clear if this was supposed to be her salvation experience (in which repentance is not mentioned) or just a stepping stone to get her there. That would be the main thing I was disappointed in with this book, just because it wasn’t super clear.
All in all, I am super impressed with Olivia Smit and look forward to reading more from her someday!
*I received this book from Celebrate Lit and happily provided my honest review*
Skylar Brady has a for her life—until a car accident changes everything.
Skylar knows exactly what she wants, and getting in a car accident the summer before twelfth grade isn’t supposed to be part of the plan. Although she escapes mostly unharmed, the accident has stolen more than just her hearing from her: she’s also lost the close bond she used to have with her brother.
When her parents decide to take a house-sitting job halfway across the province, it’s just one more thing that isn’t going according to plan. As the summer progresses, Skylar begins to gain confidence in herself, but as she tries to mend her relationship with her brother, she stumbles upon another hidden trauma. Suddenly, she’s keeping as many secrets as she’s struggling to uncover and creating more problems than she could ever hope to solve.
Click here for your copy!About the Author
Olivia Smit loves baking, visiting small towns, and writing stories that face hard truth with hope and encouragement. Olivia has an Honours Specialization in Creative Writing, English Language, and Literature and lives in Canada with her family. Seeing Voices is her first novel. Learn more at https://oliviasmit.ca/
More from Olivia
Although “Seeing Voices” is not the first book I ever wrote, it is the first one that felt like it held a little piece of my heart. Skylar and her older brother, Mike, popped into my head one afternoon, both coping with the aftermath of a car accident in totally different ways. It took me ages to figure out what kind of story they belonged to, but right from the beginning I knew it would be a story about siblings and families, pain and guilt, and also (perhaps most importantly!) togetherness and love.
In so many ways, “Seeing Voices” was for me, before it was for readers. I wrote the rough draft when I was 18, fresh out of high school and still figuring out a few tricky situations within my own family. As I wrote about Skylar and Mike, I poured a lot of my own confusion and emotion into the pages, trying to make sense of my own feelings of responsibility, frustration, and ultimately, hope. Words from the book still float through my mind when I’m in certain situations, little reminders of lessons I learned once and need to hang onto with both hands.
I prayed my way through the writing process, trying (and failing) to find a story that fit with Skylar and Mike, who felt so much like real people. I prayed through querying, trusting that if God wanted this story out there in the world, He would find it a home … and if He wanted Skylar and Mike to be a story just for me, I would be okay with that, too. In so many ways this process has been a team effort, and I feel convinced that this isn’t my story, after all — it’s God’s, and I’m just doing my part to help tell it.
To celebrate her tour, Olivia is giving away the grand prize package of coasters and a book sleeve!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
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