Release by Patrick Ness
Release
by Patrick Ness
Published by HarperTeen
on September 19th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Fantasy, LGBTQIA, Young Adult
Pages: 288
Goodreads

 

Inspired by Judy Blume’s Forever and Virginia Woolf’s Mrs. Dalloway, this novel by award-winning author Patrick Ness is a new classic about teenage relationships, self-acceptance—and what happens when the walls we build start coming down.

Adam Thorn doesn’t know it yet, but today will change his life.

Between his religious family, a deeply unpleasant ultimatum from his boss, and his own unrequited love for his sort-of ex, Enzo, it seems as though Adam’s life is falling apart. At least he has two people to keep him sane: his new boyfriend (he does love Linus, doesn’t he?) and his best friend, Angela.

But all day long, old memories and new heartaches come crashing together, throwing Adam’s life into chaos. The bindings of his world are coming untied one by one; yet in spite of everything he has to let go, he may also find freedom in the release.

From the New York Times-bestselling author of A Monster Calls comes a raw, darkly funny, and deeply affecting story about the courage it takes to live your truth.


I received a copy of this book for review from the publisher. This does not influence my thoughts on the book or this review.

I’m a huge fan of Patrick Ness so when I saw that he had a new YA coming out, I knew I had to read it. I have to admit that I loved the contemporary parts of this novel, and reading about Adam’s story, but the fantasy parts completely went over my head and I found them unnecessary.

Adam is a preacher’s son and he’s closeted to his family. His secrets include his horrible work situation, his broken heart, the identity of his new boyfriend and more. On a day that seems to go horribly wrong, Adam debates if he should release his secrets.

I’ll admit that Adam’s story really drew me in and I really liked reading his POV. Adam’s perspective was compelling to read and I could definitely see Adam being a real teen. The only thing that I really didn’t like was the fantasy elements that appeared every other chapter. You get introduced to an unnamed queen and her loyal follower as she travels through Adam’s town and seeks revenge for the death of a young woman who’s body she’s currently inhabiting. The story of the young woman unfolding was interesting but I found that the longer the random interjections appeared, the more boring it got. I’m not sure if I really understood the point of those bits so it’s definitely more of a personal reaction to the book rather than a problem of the book, if that makes sense.

Overall, Ness’s latest novel was compelling and definitely a unique addition to the YA category. If you like his past novels or the work of A.S. King, I recommend it.

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