29 August 2012

Review: A Voice In the Distance by Tabitha Suzuma

A Voice in the Distance (Flynn Laukonen #2) by Tabitha Suzuma

Published: 1 May 2008 by Definitions

Pages: 256 (paperback)

Genre/s: Mental Health, Contemporary

Source: Own library

Check It Out: Goodreads ~ Amazon ~ Amazon UK ~ The Book Depository

This is the sequel to A Note Of Madness and therefore may contain spoilers. 

Synopsis (Goodreads)

In his final year at the Royal College of Music, star pianist Flynn Laukonen has the world at his feet. He has moved in with his girlfriend Jennah and is already getting concert bookings for what promises to be a glittering career. Yet he knows he is skating on thin ice - only two small pills a day keep him from plunging back into the whirlpool of manic depression that once threatened to destroy him. Unexpectedly his friends seem to be getting annoyed with him for no apparent reason, he needs less and less sleep, he is filled with unbridled energy. Events begin to spiral out of control and Flynn suddenly finds himself in hospital, heavily sedated, carnage left behind him. The medication isn't working any more, the dose needs to be increased, and depression strikes again, this time with horrific consequences. His freedom is snatched away and the medicine's side-effects threaten to jeopardize his chances in one of the biggest piano competitions of his life. It seems like he has to make a choice between the medication and his career. But in all this he has forgotten the one person he would give his life for, and Flynn suddenly finds himself facing the biggest sacrifice of all. 

My Thoughts

This was my third book by Tabitha Suzuma, and following on from A Note of Madness, when I couldn't help but fall a little bit in love with Flynn, I was excited to see where his story would go next. Of course, I knew this would be another emotional read, and I was quite surprised to find that the story was told in alternating POV between Flynn and Jennah.

But it really couldn't have been written any other way - and in fact the whole feel of the book was more Jennah's story than Flynn's, which was perfect. I liked Jennah in the first book, but this time around I could completely feel her pain, her confusion and her soul-wrenching sorrow as Flynn's illness spiralled out of control. Everything that happens to Flynn, Jennah and their families and friends feels completely real and imaginable. Their relationship is incredibly touching and their love is convincing, with realistic dialogue.

The ending is, in the typical style of Ms. Suzuma, not neat nor pretty. It's another bittersweet tear-jerker that had my heart breaking as I read with something akin to mania through the closing stages, but still maintained that little spark of hope that things really could get better for Flynn and Jennah.

Although this is a quick read, it's not a light one and once again Ms. Suzuma has written an emotional, compelling book that is impossible to put down.

As I said at the end of my review of A Note of Madness, if you are put off reading Forbidden due to the nature of the plot, this series perfectly showcases Ms. Suzuma's fantastic, emotional, compelling writing and I can recommend it to anyone.

1 comment:

  1. Just stopping by to say that I really need to try her books!



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