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The Whisper

The Whisper is the sci-fi middle-grade sequel to The Roar, by Emma Clayton.

You know the drill, bibliophiles. If you haven’t read The Roar, you don’t want to read a review on the sequel – it’ll just give stuff away. So, avert thine eyes.

All the rest of you who HAVE read The Roar, you’ll find a spoiler-free review below…

Mika and Ellie didn’t know if they’d ever see each other again – but the day has finally come. The circumstances, though, aren’t so good…

They’re mutants – a new kind of child that has special abilities, can do things ordinary children can’t do. And that has made them valuable to one devious man: Mal Gorman.

His plan is to take over the beauty of wilderness and riches on the other side of The Wall – where everyone behind The Wall has been told is scorched and impossible to live on.

It’s all been lies.

Mika and Ellie have to pretend to be submissive, to agree with his plan – it’s the only way they can figure out a plan on how to save the rest of the kids – Gorman’s brainwashed, micro chipped army.

But what Gorman doesn’t know is that Mika and Ellie can hear The Whisper – and they’re determined to keep any the war from starting…

I liked The Roar quite a bit. It flip-flopped about a bit, but it was consistently entertaining and held a different tone for a sci-fi novel. So, I was looking forward to where the story would go from here.

Yet right when The Whisper opens with an odd, standoffish third-person narration, providing background and recap in a way that made me think of a stiff voiceover, I was surprised to find a change. All the parts with the twins’ seemed normal, but everything else, especially involving Tom and the other kids, felt off.

Though The Whisper still has a compelling, intriguing story it felt clunkier and more uneven. Despite there being more disturbing moments that heighten the stakes, I had too many “but’s”. For example, one second The Whisper was more political than I prefer since it seemed like the author might be pushing her views in a non-subtle way when I just want to be told a good story and the next second the book was merging on cartoonish with the villain Mal Gorman. So, each time it seemed like it was improving, it changed course again.

Plus, some of the mechanics of The Whisper were bugging me. Like, I don’t understand how they kept birds and bugs from flying over The Wall – is this a gigantic plot hole, or did I miss something?

Sadly, I was disappointed in The Whisper. It’s really too bad because it clearly has good intentions, but it went beyond where I expected the story to go in a strangely pessimistic way, in my opinion.

But don’t listen to me! If you were a fan of The Roar too, read The Whisper! We are all different, and you may find that The Whisper meets all your expectations and more!!


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