In the suburb of Shyness, where the sun doesn't rise and the border crackles with a strange energy, Wolfboy meets a stranger at the Diabetic Hotel. She tells him her name is Wildgirl, and she dares him to be her guide through the endless night.
But then they are mugged by the sugar-crazed Kidds. And what plays out is moving, reckless...dangerous. There are things that can only be said in the dark. And one long night is time enough to change your life.
whoah - this was stunning and different and unexpected and just - wow.
I had no idea what to expect from this book and now it's hard to tell you all what to expect. In some ways, it's perfect going into it with no idea, but here's a small taste...
This is Shyness reads like a contemporary novel but there are fantastical elements.
Such as: the suburb of Shyness itself. It is a place where one day, the sun went down, and it hasn't ever risen again. It's in permanent night-time, but right next door (over the border) - the sun's still doing it's usual thing.
It's still set in our world, with mobile phones and school and India and everywhere else. But it feels different.
The novel takes place over one night.
There's are sugar-crazed kidds and tarsier's (wild monkey-type creatures)
It alternates between the POV of wolfboy (enigmatic, charming in an off-beat way, and hot ) and Wildgirl (fiesty, whimsical, a Girl You Will Absolutely Love) . Wolfboy and Wildgirl meet in a bar at night and end up wandering through the streets of Shyness and you never quite know just who they are going to bump into next.
Really these points still don't give any indication what to expect - but you should expect that you have never read anything like this book before.
It felt like a dream, reading this
One of those gorgeous dreams where everything is slightly different but you believe your dream world to be the truth.
One of those dreams that when you wake up you hold onto it hard, not wanting to leave the magical dream behind, wanting to savour the taste and sound and feel and essence of it.
Like some dreams, it's occasionally a little bit dark and creepy and some parts don't make absolute sense as it's all unfolding.
This is a dream you want to be a part of. And it's the kind of dream you won't ever forget.
I couldn't put this book down - it's a classic example of a book transporting you to another place and time.
It's also a writer's dream: prose that slips and slides over you in the most evocative of ways.
Descriptions and feelings nailed in a few well-chosen words.
Even the nondescript characters and locations are given their own distinct vibe.
Recommended: This is Shyness is a brilliant novel unlike any I have ever read before. Charming and fantastical, in some places, even cute - yet also gritty and scarily-feral in parts. It's a book for dreamers: imaginative and haunting and completely unexpected. Yay for novels that blow my mind while still making me grin.
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