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Radio Silence
Cover of Radio Silence
Radio Silence

The second novel by the phenomenally talented Alice Oseman, the author of the million-copy bestselling Heartstopper books—now a major Netflix series.

What if everything you set yourself up to be was wrong?

Frances has always been a study machine with one goal: elite university. Nothing will stand in her way. Not friends, not a guilty secret—not even the person she is on the inside.

But when Frances meets Aled, the shy genius behind her favorite podcast, she discovers a new freedom. He unlocks the door to Real Frances and for the first time she experiences true friendship, unafraid to be herself. Then the podcast goes viral and the fragile trust between them is broken.

Caught between who she was and who she longs to be, Frances's dreams come crashing down. Suffocating with guilt, she knows that she has to confront her past...

She has to confess why Carys disappeared...

Meanwhile at university, Aled is alone, fighting even darker secrets.

It's only by facing up to your fears that you can overcome them. And it's only by being your true self that you can find happiness.

Frances is going to need every bit of courage she has.

A coming-of-age read that tackles issues of identity, the pressure to succeed, diversity, and freedom to choose, Radio Silence is a tour de force by the most exciting writer of her generation.

The second novel by the phenomenally talented Alice Oseman, the author of the million-copy bestselling Heartstopper books—now a major Netflix series.

What if everything you set yourself up to be was wrong?

Frances has always been a study machine with one goal: elite university. Nothing will stand in her way. Not friends, not a guilty secret—not even the person she is on the inside.

But when Frances meets Aled, the shy genius behind her favorite podcast, she discovers a new freedom. He unlocks the door to Real Frances and for the first time she experiences true friendship, unafraid to be herself. Then the podcast goes viral and the fragile trust between them is broken.

Caught between who she was and who she longs to be, Frances's dreams come crashing down. Suffocating with guilt, she knows that she has to confront her past...

She has to confess why Carys disappeared...

Meanwhile at university, Aled is alone, fighting even darker secrets.

It's only by facing up to your fears that you can overcome them. And it's only by being your true self that you can find happiness.

Frances is going to need every bit of courage she has.

A coming-of-age read that tackles issues of identity, the pressure to succeed, diversity, and freedom to choose, Radio Silence is a tour de force by the most exciting writer of her generation.

Available formats-
  • OverDrive Read
  • EPUB eBook
Languages:-
Copies-
  • Available:
    0
  • Library copies:
    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    5.0
  • Lexile:
    760
  • Interest Level:
    UG
  • Text Difficulty:
    3 - 4


About the Author-
  • Alice Oseman was born in 1994 in Kent, England. She completed a degree in English at Durham University in 2016 and is currently a full-time writer and illustrator. Alice can usually be found staring aimlessly at computer screens, questioning the meaninglessness of existence, or doing anything and everything to avoid getting an office job. Find out more about Alice and her books at www.aliceoseman.com.

Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from January 23, 2017
    Oseman (Solitaire) explores sexual identities, the weight of expectation, and the intensity and fickleness of fandom in a story revolving around a mysterious, Welcome to Night Vale–esque podcast called Universe City. Frances Janvier, a high-achieving but largely friendless British student, has been a fan of Universe City since its first episode, even creating fan art for the show under the online persona of Toulouse. Aled Last, the boy next door, turns out to be Universe City’s creator, and, soon after each realizes who the other is, the two collaborate on the podcast and develop a much-needed friendship. Frances and Aled both identify as queer, and their intense friendship—as well as relationships with their mothers that couldn’t be more different—are central to the story. Oseman gives Frances an honest, insecure, and occasionally meandering voice, as she considers the stresses, joys, and letdowns of her high school existence. Oseman vividly illustrates that the world and its technologies offer opportunities for connection and fulfillment that go far beyond traditional definitions of success. Ages 13–up. Agent: Claire Wilson, Rogers, Coleridge and White.

  • Kirkus

    February 1, 2017
    Two teens connect through a mysterious podcast in this sophomore effort by British author Oseman (Solitaire, 2015).Frances Janvier is a 17-year-old British-Ethiopian head girl who is so driven to get into Cambridge that she mostly forgoes friendships for schoolwork. Her only self-indulgence is listening to and creating fan art for the podcast Universe City, "a...show about a suit-wearing student detective looking for a way to escape a sci-fi, monster-infested university." Aled Last is a quiet white boy who identifies as "partly asexual." When Frances discovers that Aled is the secret creator of Universe City, the two embark on a passionate, platonic relationship based on their joint love of pop culture. Their bond is complicated by Aled's controlling mother and by Frances' previous crush on Aled's twin sister, Carys, who ran away last year and disappeared. When Aled's identity is accidently leaked to the Universe City fandom, he severs his relationship with Frances, leaving her questioning her Cambridge goals and determined to win back his affection, no matter what the cost. Frances' narration is keenly intelligent; she takes mordant pleasure in using an Indian friend's ID to get into a club despite the fact they look nothing alike: "Gotta love white people." Though the social-media-suffused plot occasionally lags, the main characters' realistic relationship accurately depicts current issues of gender, race, and class. A smart, timely outing. (Fiction. 12-16)

    COPYRIGHT(2017) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    February 1, 2017

    Gr 9 Up-British teen Frances Janvier is a study machine, focused on doing whatever it takes to get into Cambridge. Her public persona is academic nerd, but in private, she is a rebel. Frances is a fan of offbeat podcasts, and her favorite by far is Universe City, whose agender main character (who is also the show's creator) goes by the name of Radio Silence. Frances has joined a fandom Tumblr account, using the moniker Toulouse, and occasionally posts sketches that reflect how she thinks the characters and settings might look. When she receives a message from the creator asking if she is willing to provide graphics for the show, she can't believe it. Frances is even more dumbfounded when she discovers that the mysterious Radio Silence is, in reality, Aled Last, who lives directly across the street from her. Likewise, Aled can't believe that his graphic artist, Toulouse, is Frances. They become fast friends and spend the majority of the summer working together on the podcast. But as the start of Frances's senior year in high school and Aled's first year at university approach, a revelation changes their close relationship. With their friendship in ruins and Aled miles away and spiraling into a dangerous depression, Frances must face long-buried fears and desires to find a way to save him. Oseman is a master at combining sardonic wit with angst to create believable characters and a compelling contemporary story that will resonate with teens.

    Copyright 2017 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Booklist

    Starred review from March 1, 2017
    Grades 8-11 *Starred Review* I was study machine Frances Janvier. I was going to Cambridge . . . Uni, job, money, happiness. That's what you do. That's the formula, Frances mulls to herself as she spends an uncomfortable evening with friends, trying to relax and enjoy herself. Not that there's much chance of relaxation or enjoyment, ever. Frances is a superstressed British teen, and the only thing she really loves is drawing and Universe City, a mysterious YouTube podcast with a haunting voice and a story that echoes her pain. Anonymous narrator Radio Silence describes a bleak world, seemingly a university campus that he or she is trying to escape. When Frances is invited to add her online fan art to the podcast, the story moves into high gear. Turns out the creator is neighbor Aled Last, twin brother of Frances' former friend Carys. What emerges is an intense, highly engaging, well-plotted story of relationships, explorations into gay and bisexual identities, family trauma, a straitjacketlike education system, and, mostly, kids yearning to be their truest selves despite it all. Though a companion title to Oseman's Solitaire (2015), this story stands alone and features believable characters in a unique setting. Readers this side of the pond will enjoy the school system comparisons and identify with the stress their witty, cyberworldly peers undergo as they hang on for dear life.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2017, American Library Association.)

  • The Horn Book

    July 1, 2017
    Friendless, schoolwork-obsessed Frances Janvier's only nonacademic interest is her favorite sci-fi podcast. Universe City may be a monster-infested university, but it's the one place Frances can be herself. Then she meets Aled, the podcast's anonymous creator and fellow queer teen. Frances and Aled together explore a pathway to happiness that celebrates non-traditional identities and definitions of success.

    (Copyright 2017 by The Horn Book, Incorporated, Boston. All rights reserved.)

  • Publishers Weekly (starred review)

    "Oseman vividly illustrates that the world and its technologies offer opportunities for connection and fulfillment that go far beyond traditional definitions of success." — Publishers Weekly (starred review)

    "An intense, highly engaging, well–plotted story of relationships, explorations into gay and bisexual identities, family trauma, a straight-jacket education system, and, mostly, kids yearning to be their truest selves despite it all." — Booklist (starred review)

    "Keenly intelligent. A smart, timely outing." — Kirkus Reviews

    "Oseman is a master at combining sardonic wit with angst to create believable characters and a compelling contemporary story that will resonate with teens. VERDICT: A top pick for any YA collection." — School Library Journal

    Praise for SOLITAIRE: "A fascinating debut from an author to watch." — ALA Booklist

    "Oseman's debut could put her among the great young adult fiction authors." — Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA)

    "Tori's voice makes this story into a poignant yet blackly funny and even lively emotional journey. A deeply absorbing read." — Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

    "Oseman proves herself a clever, witty writer." — Publishers Weekly

    "Honest and authentic... with appeal to fans of John Green." — Bookseller (London)

    "In [Oseman's] punky, depressive, epigrammatic, mordant heroine Tori Spring we have a Holden Caulfield for the internet age." — The Times (London)

    "Intrigue, suspense, and a fairly spectacular climax will appeal to teens asking the big questions." — ALA Booklist

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