A big thank you to Little Island for sending me a copy of Still Falling to review. I’m a big fan of Sheena Wilkinson’s gritty YA novels Taking Flight and Grounded, and her new book did not disappoint.
Little Island, 2015
Luke has epilepsy, on his first day at a new school he has an attack. Esther is shy and lonely, but Luke makes her feel special. She quickly falls for him, and he can’t help but fall for her too. But things couldn’t be more complicated. Esther’s family don’t approve of Luke, and she feels he’s hiding something from her. When tragedy strikes, and Luke can’t escape his past, will they make it through together?
Sheena Wilkinson’s previous novels have proven that she’s not afraid to tackle hard-hitting and dark subjects. Still Falling is no exception, and as always the issues she addresses are handled in a realistic yet sensitive way. The novel alternates between Luke and Esther’s point of view, enabling the reader to connect with both characters. They are both credible characters – flawed but likeable – and their story is a very memorable one. They grow as the novel progresses, and I think this line from the blurb describes the book beautifully: ‘A story about the struggle it can be to love someone who doesn’t love themselves – and why it’s worth it.’
This is a compelling story and one which will stay with me for a long time. Highly recommended for older teens and adults who are fans of contemporary YA that doesn’t shy away from tough topics.
Still Falling will be launched in No Alibis bookshop in Belfast on March 10th and in Books Upstairs in Dublin on March 12th.