Release by Patrick Ness

Publisher: Walker Books
Release Date: 4th May 2017
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

Release is one day in the life of Adam Thorn, 17. It’s a big day. Things go wrong. It’s intense, and all the while, weirdness approaches…

Adam Thorn is having what will turn out to be the most unsettling, difficult day of his life, with relationships fracturing, a harrowing incident at work, and a showdown between this gay teen and his preacher father that changes everything. It’s a day of confrontation, running, sex, love, heartbreak, and maybe, just maybe, hope. He won’t come out of it unchanged. And all the while, lurking at the edges of the story, something extraordinary and unsettling is on a collision course.

IMG_20170531_192954_896With the events of just one day in a small town boy’s life, Release is definitely a story that speaks volumes as much as a trilogy might.

A Patrick Ness book is always one that can be eaten up in a day or two. With cliff hangars, plot twists and hilarious and realistic dialogue, I often struggle to put the book down. Release is no exception, and has firmly earned it’s placed in my little Patrick Ness collection that dominates my shelf.

Adam Thorn experiences a lot in one particular day in his life. Being gay while coming from a family of evangelical Christians, life hasn’t always been an open and honest conversation. But, he has friends, prospects, and a string of love interests that may or may not have lingered a bit longer than they should have. Seeing Adam grow in just one day is incredible; realising he is worth so much more than he thought and learning to love himself despite the subtle (but also explicit) disappointment that exudes from his family life. It was powerful see him go from a boy to a man in just one day, and carrying on into the next step of his life.

While all this good stuff was happening however, there was another plot running through at the same time. It had it’s own separate passages and was not directly linked (if at all) to Adam’s story. I didn’t really understand it’s significance, and I found it easy to skip those few pages to get back to Adam’s chapter. I assume it had something to do with the book’s overall theme but *shrug*, I dunno. It was also magical realism which threw me off a little, considering the rest of the novel was clearly contemporary. But again. I dunno.


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  1. Lauren @ Wonderless Reviews

    June 18, 2017 at 11:16 am

    I’m really looking forward to reading this one!! I keep hearing great things. Glad you enjoyed it, Hollie 😊 Great review!!


    February 26, 2018 at 7:03 pm

    […] beautiful and powerful novels with some fantastic LGBTQ+ characters! Books I’ve read include Release, The Rest Of Us Just Live Here, and More Than […]

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