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The Girl in a Cafe

Loving Books Since Before It Was Cool! All reviews can also be found on my main blog!

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Speechless - Hannah Harrington We’ve all heard that saying if you don’t have anything nice to stay, then don’t say it at all. I know that my parents drummed that into me, especially when my brothers and I would constantly bicker with each other.This is true of Hannah Harrington’s new contemporary novel, Speechless. Chelsea learns the hard way the price of what comes with not keeping your mouth shut. When a boy from school ends up fighting for his life after Chelsea’s gossiping mouth reveals a secret of his, Chelsea’s life is turned upside down. Horrified by what she did, Chelsea decides to take a vow of silence, despite losing pretty much everything that made her popular.I had a hard time getting into Chelsea’s mind. She’s shallow, vapid, rude and extremely bitchy. She’s the school gossip, and incredibly nosy. She’s the Gretchen Weiner of Grand Lake Senior High, and her red hair is so big ‘because it’s full of secrets.’ Hey, you can’t reference Mean Girls without quoting it! She spends a lot of the time after the incident not really learning from what has actually happened. Sure, she gets what she did was wrong, but that's just one isolated incident out of many. Chelsea is still quick to judge people and to make assumptions. There's nothing likeable about her, but this is where Hannah Harrington's brilliance comes into play. By the end of the book, you're not necessarily in love with her character, but you respect her so much more, and you're rooting for her. Harrington's characters are not perfect. That's one of the great things about her novels. She knows how to make an impact on a real level. Every single character has their flaws. And this is what I love the most. There's nothing twee about this contemporary. Life isn't perfect, and neither is the situation that Chelsea finds herself in. At first I wasn't impressed with Speechless. Chelsea's naivety and impudence irritated me to no end - I couldn't find a redeeming quality about her. And for some reason, people kept making excuse after excuse and I was just like, "No. Just no." The way that certain relationships were tied up - or not so - made me go "ridunkulous." And I had no idea what to write as my review, because I was like "I don't think I like this book.' But the thing about Speechless though, is that it leaves an impression on you for a long time after. And the more I thought about, the more understood. Speechless is about love, family, friendship. It's about knowing when to listen and when to shut up. It's about growing within yourself. While a completely different novel from Saving June, Harrington's amazing debut, fans will not be disappointed at all. The characters, even though they are only sophomores, surprised me a lot, in good and bad ways. Overall, this was a really enjoyable novel, and I'm sure that like myself and countless others out there, you'll be pleasantly impressed.