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Max, Sidcot School



Release is a compelling story of a young adult questioning his sexuality. The book takes us on a journey with the main character (Adam), presenting great struggles and interesting characters along the way. Unlike many teen novels, it is not set in an idealistic world; Adam lives in a very small, sheltered town in the USA, his parents are disapproving Evangelical priests and the boy he loves believes that their relationship is just a phase. We learn about all these issues within just one day, yet the book is very well paced. This gives the story a sense of urgency, a feeling that time is a precious thing for people facing these difficult situations and choices.

Patrick Ness is a beautiful writer, using many metaphors and a wide range of vocabulary to create a unique and touching writing style. He focuses on the thoughts and emotions of Adam and the rest of the main characters, allowing a special bond to form between the characters and the reader.

As with many Patrick Ness novels, Release has two story-lines. The other follows a girl murdered by a meth-addict; a surreal and psychedelic story taking place in an alternate dimension between the living and the dead. This story, I find, is not as interesting as the main one. It does however, create a metaphor for Adam’s confusion and his feeling of not belonging. At the very end, these two different parts come together, making a substantial and satisfying ending to an amazing book.

Posted on: 18th April 2018 at 05:43 pm

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