Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Review - Silenced

Silenced by Simon Packham

Silenced by Simon Packham
Chris is in Year Eleven and his best friend’s just been killed in a car crash. Chris is so distraught by the news that he becomes unable to speak -literally! He has become mute. Silenced. Everyone is trying to get him to speak again – his parents, the psychiatrist, people at school, Ariel, and Will.

At first, Chris being mute is a bit funny.  But then you realise that the car crash or events surrounding it could be important – and maybe Chris knows something about it? Or not? He’s not saying and you’ll probably find yourself shouting “tell us, tell us” at him. From here on, Silenced becomes a bit of a thriller.

But Silenced is also very much about dealing with grief, and losing and making friends. The thing that stands out for me is that it looks at how to be a friend.  What exactly is a good friend?

Was Chris a good friend – he starts to ask himself this? Could suave Will Hunt be a new friend? Ariel? Well her off-grid, green Honesty life makes her a very interesting possibility – and she knows things that Chris doesn’t! And was Declan as fabulous as everyone’s making him out to be?

Silenced is a bit like Martyn Bedford’s Flip in some ways (maybe because it’s a teen boy character considering issues of death) but Silenced is a lighter, quicker and easier read.

This is a very readable book and most teens would probably enjoy it. I’d recommend it. Some ten years olds might be happy with it too but it does deal with themes of death, crime and suicide – although not in a dark or violent way. 

Publication details:
Piccadilly Press, 2012, London, paperback

This copy: received from the publisher


  1. Fab review - I really enjoyed this one! I thought Ariel and Chris were superb characters. Have you read any of Packham's other books? Comin 2 gt u is very good and am just about to start The Bex Factor, which looks cool.

    1. No, this was the first Simon Packham book that I'd read. I hadn't heard of him before and I was very pleasantly impressed with Silenced.

  2. ooo this sounds interesting, Ive noticed a couple of books with the mute theme lately and it sounds like it'll make for a good read I will check it out!

  3. Oh I've had this book on the pile for awhile and really need to get a move on and read it, it sounds really interesting.


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