I recently finished reading A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard, and as it was a book I found myself unable to put down, so I thought I'd share my thoughts on it with you.

So firstly, the storyline - this book is written in the perspective of a girl called Steffi. Steffi has struggled with anxiety throughout her life and is a selective mute - meaning she rarely speaks in social situations as her anxiety so severe. I love that the story is written in her perspective because it really highlights that quiet people have loud minds - if somebody is not speaking it's not necessarily because they don't have anything to say - which is something I sometimes struggle with in social situation - just on the opposite end of the scale to Steffi the character in the book, although this only a small issue for me, I feel I get it.

When Steffi's teacher introduces her to Rhys, you can see her anxiety rising - how is she supposed to make conversation with the new boy when she cannot make conversation at all - her teacher soon explains Rhys is death, and as she knows some sign it seemed right they should meet. Steffi is relieved and is able to communicate with Rhys more so than her other peers although her sign language is rusty and the story unfolds as the two characters get to know each other despite their difficulties.

Firstly, I loved pretty much all of the characters in this book. I felt I could relate to Steffi, Rhys I found charming, and then there's Steffi friend Tem seems very much like a girl everyone knows and likes who is slightly more lost than she lets on. Each character seemed relatable on some level, and all the character were very well written.

I format of the book made it very easy to understand, although it switches from speech, to sign language, to text messages and inner monologues I always knew what was going on.

I also found this book to be quite informative. I've not spent much time around death people or people who suffer from selective mutism - but I felt I learn about how these issues could impact daily life, the ignorance of a lot of people when it comes to these issues, and how we communicate by more than just English spoken language.

There was a part in the story where Steffi parents didn't quite act as I wanted, and I felt frustrated with Steffi and Rhys because they acted a little immature - however, the book is all about learning, so it was a keep aspect in the story.

I personally didn't love the ending of the book, although it tied up all the loose ends I wanted something more - however, I'm not quite sure what, maybe I was just a little gutted it was over.

This story covers tonnes of different themes beyond the obvious communication, hearing, and anxiety it also covers friendship, high school dynamics, bullying, virginity, rejection, family life, university, death, growing up, maturity and so much more. A lot is squeezed into the story - but it's a very easy read!

I'd definitely recommend giving this book a read if you into Young Adult Fiction - it was really enjoyable, informative and the character was all great.