In a village without sound…
For as long as Fei can remember, no one in her village has been able to hear. Rocky terrain and frequent avalanches make it impossible to leave the village, so Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom.
When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink. Many go hungry. Fei and all the people she loves are plunged into crisis, with nothing to look forward to but darkness and starvation.
One girl hears a call to action…
Until one night, Fei is awoken by a searing noise. Sound becomes her weapon.
She sets out to uncover what’s happened to her and to fight the dangers threatening her village. A handsome miner with a revolutionary spirit accompanies Fei on her quest, bringing with him new risks and the possibility of romance. They embark on a majestic journey from the peak of their jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiguo, where a startling truth will change their lives forever…
And unlocks a power that will save her people.
Genre: YA Fantasy
This review was originally posted on The Bluestocking Review, and the book provided courtesy of Writers Write
Richelle Mead is no stranger to the young adult fantasy scene. However, while her Vampire Academy series was a hit because of its fresh take on angst-ridden paranormal teens, a different author might as well have written her latest novel, Soundless. At first glance, Soundless follows the extraordinary journey of a girl determined to destroy the curse of deafness that blankets her village. Unfortunately for Mead, one-dimensional characters, poor plotting, and pitiful world building destroyed any hope she had of carrying out such an interesting premise.
For a novel supposedly steeped in Chinese folklore, Soundless reads like it was written in the basement of a Hollywood warehouse by somebody whose core understanding of Chinese culture comes from The Karate Kid. Mead’s characters are only Chinese by name, and her story is riddled with Western clichés. Possibly the most disappointing aspect of Mead’s story is its total lack of fantastical elements – that its, until she has to turn to magic and folklore to pull her characters out of impossible situations. This lazy plot device coupled with dull dialogue, a flat love story and bottomless plot holes made for a frustrating read.