A Quiet Kind Of Thunder: Review

Screen Shot 2019-09-03 at 9.08.59 pmSteffi doesn’t talk, but she has so much to say.
Rhys can’t hear, but he can listen.
Their love isn’t a lightning strike, it’s the rumbling roll of thunder.

 Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life – she’s been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He’s deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she’s assigned to look after him. To Rhys, it doesn’t matter that Steffi doesn’t talk, and as they find ways to communicate, Steffi finds that she does have a voice, and that she’s falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it. 

A tiny preamble before the review begins. This is my first ever book review, and I am really nervous. I mean, I review books in my head all the time, and out loud to Ngoc, but putting it on the internet is scary. I hope you enjoy the review (or at the very least, don’t hate it) and I welcome any feedback in the form of compliment sandwiches.

Onto the review!

I don’t really fall into reading slumps – I fall into re-reading slumps. When life gets too stressful or busy, I find solace in the arms of my favourite books, and the comfort of knowing what’s going to happen next. So yes, I had been trapped in a re-reading slump; when I came across this book in the discount section of a bookstore, it grabbed me from the synopsis and pulled me right out of it.

I love Steffi Brons. She’s been dealt a rough hand in life, and she’s an absolutely hilarious character to be in the mind of as she goes through sixth form (I will be completely honest, I am a clueless Aussie and do not know what this means, but I think it’s her final high school year). Her character development is great, and it feels genuine. It’s not like she progresses to a completely different person by the end of the book, but you can still look back at the start and see the differences and strides she has made.

Rhys’s whole face lights up into a surprised grin. Oh yeah, strange new boy. The silent girl is FUNNY. Who knew?

The story follows Steffi and her growing relationship with Rhys Gold – and no spoilers, but I’m sure you can presume how said relationship goes. Rhys. Is. A. Gem. (Some might say he’s golden, but I won’t pull you in with cheap puns like that 😛). He does have his frustrating moments (as does Steffi, to be fair) but I love him. He is so kind and wholesome. The way that Steffi and Rhys are able to connect over their shared disabilities is beautiful, and difficult at times, which made it more real.

The book is definitely not what I would consider a complex plot, but I don’t think that’s what it is trying to be either. Despite the humour sparkled throughout, A Quiet Kind of Thunder delves quite deeply into mental health issues, such as anxiety. Barnard explores these real issues in both factual and anecdotal ways, so that someone with limited experience could understand, and someone with more experience could heavily relate to. Steffi does not shy away from expressing how she feels about anxiety, or how society feels about her anxiety too.

…as if I were diagnosed at fourteen instead of five. And part of me always wants to say, Would that make it better? Would that make it easier, if I could point to something as obvious as that to explain myself?


My only major negative is Steffi’s relationship with her best friend Tem. Compared to the growth of Steffi as a character, as well as Steffi’s relationship with Rhys, her relationship with Tem felt a little stagnant, and I just wish there was a bit more there.

This book is a little juvenile in writing style, so keep that in mind if you pick it up. However, it does allow it to include fun elements like text messages, or snippets of sign language throughout, that I don’t think would work with a more mature style. My copy even had the chapter numbers as a hand signing, which I thought was brilliant.

The ending was a little rushed for my liking – I am picky with endings, as you will come to learn – but the overall feeling when I finished was like I’d just had a hot chocolate under a woollen blanket – one of warmth, comfort and contentment. Will definitely be giving this one a re-read in the future.




Hope you enjoyed my first ever review! Let me know if you want to read A Quiet Kind of Thunder, have already read it, or know of any good books that feature mental health – I am definitely seeking out more!

Happy reading!


16 thoughts on “A Quiet Kind Of Thunder: Review

  1. Well for a first review, it’s such a FANTASTIC ONE, I loved it so much. You should read my first reviews, they’re a mess 😂 I’m so happy to hear you overall enjoyed this book, it’s one of my favorite reads and I loved the main character’s growth and how it dealt with mental health, too, there were lots of aspects I could relate to, into it ❤
    Wonderful review! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Marie you are TOO KIND! And I highly doubt that, especially since I’ve been on your blog and seen how beautiful your reviews are!!

      I actually really loved the book too, it was such an unexpected gem 😊

      💚 Nish

      Liked by 1 person

      1. OH 😭 thank you, this is so sweet of you to say 😭
        I’m so happy you enjoyed it, really, I hope you’ll read more from the author. I know I really want to 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  2. This can’t seriously be you’re first review, Nish! GET OUTTA TOWN BECAUSE YOU WRITE LIKE AN ACTUAL PRO. ❤ You have such a great voice and that's something that takes aaaaaages to prefect. Keep up the good work! x

    [Also after A Court of Mist and Fury I will read ANYTHING with a character called Rhys 😂]

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Omigosh that is so nice I don’t know how to respond to that, thank you!! 😊

      I need to get on A Court of Mist and Fury I own it on my kindle AND the hardcover back home, but if there is also a character named Rhys you have me tempted…

      💚 Nish

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Awww – you’re most welcome! ❤

        But, I can't belive you havn't read ACOMAF yet!!! I mean WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN GIRL??? I wasn't the biggest fan of a Court of Thorns and Roses but trust me when I say that everything turns around! I'd be down for a buddy read too if you needed the motivation! 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  3. This sounds like such a cute book ❤ I love the premise and that they include sign language for chapter headings etc… this book is my cup of tea. You've written a really engaging review – so congrats on that! I look forward to reading more of them in the future 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. WOW Nish!! This is your first ever review?! HOW?! It was fabulous. I enjoyed this book a lot. I love when the struggle of a disability is showcased. I really appreciated the things you didn’t like though. I wondered about her friend too. 100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons is a mental health disability combo book that I recently read and loved. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much Dani! It took me a long time to write hahaha ☺️ and exactly, I think it’s so important to have books that showcase the effects that mental health struggles can have!

      I will be adding that to my TBR, it sounds right up my alley.

      💚 Nish

      Liked by 1 person

  5. okay excuse you, but your review is fantastic. it can be scary sometimes voicing your opinion but you did such a great job describing the book and giving your thoughts (and very thoughtful and coherently i might add. im a total mess with my reviews lol)

    i really enjoyed this book too. i don’t remember all the DETAILS bc i read it a couple years back (wow i feel old) but i remember LOVING rhys too and thinking the relationship they developed was so sweet and cute

    i also love the representation of mental illness. i really love the way sara barnard handles sensitive topics (her other books tackled it really well too) and the text messages & hand signing included, i love 😭

    im so glad you enjoyed this book. great review!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much May!! Definitely scary but it’s been so nice reading comments like yours, they give me a lot of confidence.

      Hahaha don’t feel old I’m just useless at getting to things on time! And Rhys is so wonderful, so glad you like him too! I’ll have to keep Bernard’s other books in mind now!

      💚 Nish


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