Adamsville wasn't a place that people came to. It was a place you were from, where you were born, where you were raised, where you stayed.
Before Carolyn Lessing arrived, nothing much had ever happened in Adamsville, Alabama. Each week, at dinner tables and in the high school assembly, everyone would pray for the football team to win. Each year the Adams High hotlist would be updated, and girls would rise and fall within its ranks. Each day everyone lived by the unwritten rules that cheerleaders did not hang out with the swim team, seniors did not date freshmen, and the blistering heat was something that should never be remarked upon. But then the new girl came.
All Carolyn's social media could reveal was that she had moved from New Jersey, she had 1,075 friends - and she didn't have a relationship status. In beach photos with boys who looked like Abercrombie models, she seemed beautiful, but in real life she was so much more. She was perfect.
This was all before the camera crews arrived, before it became impossible to see where rumour ended and truth began, and before the Annual Adamsville Balloon Festival, when someone swore they saw the captain of the football team with his arm around Carolyn, and cracks began to appear in the dry earth.
©2015 Sarah Bannan (P)2015 Audible, Ltd
"Riveting, agile and beautifully judged, this is one of those essential stories that will capture the imagination of different generations of readers. Sarah Bannan bears witness to the dark core of youth culture and yet manages to find meaning even in the anonymous corners. A superb debut novel" (Colum McCann)
"A provocative and timely novel that unsettles the reader and challenges our view of contemporary youth. Its subject matter is universal; parents and children around the world will recognise the difficult and fractured society it depicts." (John Boyne)
"Weightless is a remarkably accomplished debut novel, the work of a gifted storyteller with important things to say about the world we and our children inhabit. It is intelligent and nuanced but urgently relevant, and it's bravely and beautifully written." (Joseph O'Connor)
"There is nothing new about bullying, but many of the weapons are new. Sarah Bannan brings us right into the middle of bullying, 21st-century style, in a novel that is chilling, engrossing and very, very impressive." (Roddy Doyle)
"Complex and Gripping"
It's difficult to review a novel like this as the narrative isn't typical or formulaic.
Weightless gives an interesting insight into the mind set of a small town American High School in these technology driven times, focussing particularly on the young female students.
Many other reviewers have touched upon the role social media has in the book and whilst I agree this is a chilling aspect of the story which sheds light on the disruptive power of the online world, I think the bigger theme is about accountability. Everyone has a role to play and a level of responsibility to others, and this story examines what happens when everyone assumes that someone else will take action.
Truly excellent novel. Thought provoking plot deals with contemporary themes of bullying and social media. Presents a chilling depiction of teenage life in small town America. Very good reader adds to the pleasure. Highly recommended.
This will stay with me for a long time. I'm glad I'm not an American teenager if this represents some of the reality of those lives. Written in the first person plural it portrays a very vivid account of how social media can dominate and destroy lives. Their society is dominated by celebrity and conforming to norms dictated by the Internet and social
media. For someone with no children and in my forties its a very terrifying picture. Well written and chilling.
Nothing except the marketing - billed as a general title, it's surely written for kids at high school. I kept waiting for it to grow up, but it never did.
"Couldn't listen to it all"
The reviews were promising for this book so I tried it, however I found the narrator really difficult to listen to and I really can't get into the story. I got to the 4th chapter but can no longer listen to the narrator, and I don't find the story enjoyable at all. Very disappointing as it sounded a really good book.
No Time for Goodbye, by Linwood Barclay
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