I’m going to be honest with everyone here. The few reviews that are already up for this book are glowing 4- and 5-star reviews. That’s what I thought I would be giving this book when I first read the description. A mute girl whose best friend is deaf? I was already sold. But I was extremely disappointed with this novel. If it hadn’t been an arc, I would have stopped reading around 35%.
I really disliked the third-person narrative that the author used throughout the novel. I feel like Portia's feelings and inner turmoil could have been much better described through first-person. I felt so detached from her throughout the entire novel, that I ended up not really caring what happened to her. You'll see from the description above that another author compared Portia to Katniss. NO . There is no resemblance whatsoever. Katniss actually had some character development and has only a few rivals in terms of badassery. Portia barely developed at all (view spoiler), and she isn't a badass at all. In fact, I found her wimpy and pitiable, and not in a good way.
You know how a lot of us that read YA are complaining about how women are treated by alpha males? Well, the roles are reversed in this book. Portia treats love interest Max like cheap dirt. Ladies, this is the kind of guy we've been waiting for in YA. He's sweet and kind, and it doesn't hurt that he's musically talented. Unfortunately, he just takes everything that Portia throws at him, and basically gets abused for the majority of the story.
The other characters were just so contrived that I couldn't get behind them. I am not trying to belittle any of the hardships the characters had to endure, but I felt like the abuse was just kind of thrown in to meet a certain quota of damaged characters. If it wasn't Max, it had to be Portia's best friend! Then we had Jaqueline, who was literally only in the story to be a quirky French friend who loved fashion and hated the American accent (hence why she hangs out with someone who can't talk).
Another issue I had was the slow-moving plot. I skipped 100 pages in the middle, and just kept reading. I literally didn't miss anything except for the worsening of Portia's condition. Even the climax of the novel didn't grab me. I just wanted to finish it. And I HATED the ending. Why would Portia decide to distance herself from Felix after everything that's happened?
So, if you're looking for a quintessential YA story with instalove, a love triangle, bad Greek mythology, and lots of angsty scenes, this might be for you. Unfortunately, I could stomach Portia and thought both Max and Felix could have done better without her.
An ARC was received from NetGalley