***Recommended for 16+ due to content.
Book of the Month for May 2018 | Shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal 2018 |In a Nutshell: love, truth and the power of release | A gripping, soulful novel about a life-changing day, which will surely change the lives of those who read it.
"Where on earth had this day come from? And where was it headed?" remarks 17 year-old Adam as a single day unfurls wave after wave of shattering disruption: first a revelation from his brother, next an ultimatum from his foul boss, then a destabilising announcement from his beloved best friend. And alongside Adam's unraveling, there’s the mesmerising narrative of the ghost of a murdered girl who’s risen from a lake in search of release.
Partly modeled on two of the author’s most admired books (Virginia Woolf’s Mrs Dalloway and Judy Blume’s Forever), with this remarkable novel Ness once again demonstrates his profound understanding of the complexities of being a young adult, and of the human condition more generally. Adam’s story is pinpricked with truly nerve-touching moments, perhaps most poignantly between him and the overbearing father he fears coming-out to. At one point his dad reveals that he wishes Adam could be honest with him, and then Adam begins to let go. While revealing truths can be excruciatingly painful, doing so might also bring refreshing, life-affirming release. Heartbreaking, intense and acutely honest, this novel casts a subtle spell of hope.
|Primary Genre||Children's & YA Fiction|
It is beautiful and personal and I may just be in love with it.
The story of one day. A boy with a world that may fall apart. A ghost and a queen intertwined on a mission. Everything might change. ‘Release’ is full of warmth and life, I am surprised this isn’t a true story. It is beautiful and personal and I may just be in love with it.
Incredibly personal and emotive, ‘Release’ details a heart-breaking day in the life of Adam Thorn. Beautifully written with characters that come to life, everything you'd expect from Patrick Ness.
Adam Thorn is about to have the hardest day of his life. He's about to be told devastating news, experience a scarring event at work, as well as find out who he truly is and tell both his family and the world. Detailing a day in his life, we experience Adam's daily struggles and insecurities. We feel him lose friends, lose family but gain family, love and acceptance. In ‘Release’, Patrick Ness deals with sexuality, loneliness and moving on from heartbreak. It's a captivating and quick read which is able to speak to the reader regardless of how different their circumstances are. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Ness's latest novel and although I don't tend to read many contemporaries, I'm definitely going to correct that!
A powerful, poignant punch of a book ... Raw, intense and moving, this is a book that draws the reader in, one they won’t want to be released from. Fans of Patrick Ness will not be disappointed.
Taking place over a single Saturday in summer, ‘Release’ is the story of a day that will change seventeen-year-old Adam Thorn’s life forever. He feels trapped in his devoutly religious family, his crappy job, his mixed up personal life…he yearns to escape and be able to really live. Meanwhile, across town, someone else is having an extraordinary day of their own… Ness has stated that Virginia Woolf’s ‘Mrs Dalloway’ and Judy Blume’s ‘Forever’ influenced this book. The opening line is a nod to ‘Mrs Dalloway’, as is the oneday structure and some of the style.