#loveozya :: Small Spaces :: Sarah Epstein
Sarah Epstein’s debut novel Small Spaces – a YA psychological thriller about a girl with a ‘gruesome’ imaginary (or is he?!) friend – was on my list of most anticipated #loveozya for 2018, so I was absolutely thrilled when the lovely people at Walker Books sent me a review copy! Also, check out how cool the ARC looks *insert heart eyes emoji here!*
Tash Carmody has been traumatised since childhood, when she witnessed her gruesome imaginary friend Sparrow lure young Mallory Fisher away from a carnival. At the time nobody believed Tash, and she has since come to accept that Sparrow wasn’t real. Now fifteen and mute, Mallory’s never spoken about the week she went missing.
As disturbing memories resurface, Tash starts to see Sparrow again. And she realises Mallory is the key to unlocking the truth about a dark secret connecting them. Does Sparrow exist after all? Or is Tash more dangerous to others than she thinks?
The ‘real’ cover is also gorgeous!
This totally lived up to the hype for me – I loved it!
Enough so that I am doubting my ability to talk about it logically and without wild arm movements haha (I am so the reader not the writer!) so I’m just giving my top 3 reasons why…
- It was TOTALLY CREEPY! Like, I felt uneasy right from the start and couldn’t stop reading because I just HAD to know what was happening.
- The characters – and their feelings – felt pretty authentic to me. Trish’s constant doubts about herelf (and others), they way her best friend had her back, and her mum’s attitude of being frustrated with but protective of her daughter at the same time. I also liked the settings – they felt like places I have been.
- The ending was totally satisfying! I didn’t see it all coming, but when you found out what was happening it made sense (does that make sense haha?) – I can’t stand when you read a thriller and the ending comes out of nowhere. Like, literally nowhere – as in, you couldn’t possibly guess the end because there are no clues, and the solution just appears. This was not like that – I found the ending twisty and fulfilling.
Overall, I enjoyed this at least as much as I have any of the other buzzy thrillers I’ve ready in the last 12-18 months, and because of this I think it would make an excellent ‘gateway’ book for someone who hasn’t tried Oz YA because they “don’t read young adult.”
Small Spaces is out now – if you want to be creeped out of your mind by a clever YA novel get on it!