Soundless by Richelle Mead
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…
I’m heartbroken at having to give this a two, but I’m afraid there is little to redeem this book, one for which I’ve waited since I knew of its existence. I adore Richelle Mead, she is among my favorite authors, but I have to say that her latest two series have let me down. The two stars is because I like Richelle Mead.
1. It was boring. It lost me almost since the beginning. Pretty much nothing happens in this book. The dialogue was dull. The main character has no character, no spirit.
2. There’s no world building. It’s supposed to be a Chinese-based fantasy, to which I screamed YES YES YES as soon as I heard about it, because there are so few books that revolve around Asian culture.
This book let me down.
There was little that was “Chinese” about this book besides the naming of the characters.
There is no explanation of the world.
I don’t know why the villagers are deaf. I don’t know why they’re starving.
Why are there only three classes of people? Artists, suppliers, and miners? Wouldn’t, oh, say, doctors and healers be needed, among others? I don’t know what is going on in this world at all.
The villagers are deaf. They communicate, supposedly, in sign language. It’s unclear and almost unportrayed. It’s more like they’re communicating telepathically.
The book pretty much gives us a setting and say “Accept it.” It was a very, very poorly built world.
3. The most standard love triangle in the world. Girl is betrothed to the handsomest boy in the village. Girl loves someone she shouldn’t. Guess who she prefers?
This book was a heartbreakingly dull letdown.