This book was given to me by Kayla and was my inspiration for turning August into a month of synesthesia-themed reading for myself. It was my first exThis book was given to me by Kayla and was my inspiration for turning August into a month of synesthesia-themed reading for myself. It was my first experience reading a book with a MC that has grapheme-color synesthesia, and so I was very excited. Sadly, this book was only so-so for me. I liked the exploration of synesthesia between the MC and the new friend he makes. I loved the grandmother, who seemed to be the only decent adult in the whole book. The plot was overall much too angsty and contrived for me. I felt that the MC’s synesthesia was blown way out of proportion (in terms of it being a disability and/or making him a social pariah), but it could just be that my own experience wasn’t at all like that, so I can’t relate. Sigh!
When I saw this book on NetGalley, the cover instantly caught my attention, and as soon as I realized that the main character has synesthes(3.5 stars)
When I saw this book on NetGalley, the cover instantly caught my attention, and as soon as I realized that the main character has synesthesia, I requested it! I was thrilled when my request was approved, and delighted when I was contacted to be a part of the blog tour! This book was part of my synesthesia reading theme for August, and it was just a pleasure.
It's somewhat common to come across a YA protagonist who's an artist (always scribbling in his/her sketchbook, etc.), but this was a different take on the whole thing, likely because of its historical setting instead of contemporary. Giulia is an artist, but one who is junior and learning under a maestra. She's the lowest one in the hierarchy of painter nuns at her convent, and I found this a refreshing change. I enjoyed the familiarity of her creative passions, ambitions, and obvious skill, coupled with her feelings of inadequacy due to her position, age, and gender.
It's clear that the events in Color Song come after those in Passion Blue, but it truly felt like a companion novel; there was just enough back-story explanation to help me understand the current situation without being too much of an info-dump which would bore readers who were already familiar with Passion Blue. I was able to immediately connect with Giulia and her predicament(s), and easily felt engaged and invested in what happened to her and the choices that she made.
Giulia's synesthesia was a lovely touch that didn't overtake the story, but added a note of beauty in an otherwise rather hopeless situation. To me, it felt very realistic, and I was able to relate to it easily, even though I do not have the same type of synesthesia that Giulia has. It was something about herself that she had to learn to accept and become comfortable with, but it didn't stop her from living her life, and it brought her comfort when she was pretty down.
Color Song was an interesting look into 15th century Italy (and I found myself somewhat comfortable with visualizing the surroundings and the people, thanks to the Assassin's Creed video games!). Life was hard, especially for women, but I enjoyed the rays of hope that shined from a few of the good people who came into Giulia/Girolamo's life. This was a wonderful story that explored themes of introspection, self acceptance, honesty, perseverance, ethics and morality, and personal growth. Yes, Guilia was the focus of this story, but what made it even richer was that many other characters in this book were rich with their own personality and growth....more
I wanted to read this book because the main character has synesthesia, and the overall premise seemed like a sort of fantasy type that I might enjoy.I wanted to read this book because the main character has synesthesia, and the overall premise seemed like a sort of fantasy type that I might enjoy. Sadly, this book was just not for me. The main character was (I assume) supposed to be clumsy and quirky, but she ended up just grating on my nerves with her ridiculous personality. I was expecting to see more of her synesthesia, but all I got was a few mentions of color here and there that were so vague I wasn't sure what was going on (and this is coming from a synesthete). Meanwhile, all of the characters seemed to be preoccupied with sex and couldn't seem to interact with each other without wanting to debauch constantly. Maybe if they'd been more believable and less self-absorbed, maybe if there was more depth to the story, I could have stuck with it all the way to the end. As it is, I had to mark this one as DNF (did not finish) about halfway through....more
Ultraviolet was quite a trip. At first I thought they’d gone a little overboard with the extent of Alison’s synesthesia and types of synesthesia, butUltraviolet was quite a trip. At first I thought they’d gone a little overboard with the extent of Alison’s synesthesia and types of synesthesia, but I was quickly proven wrong. This book had a lot of elements that kept me reading, aside from the synesthesia. I’m always fascinated by characters who are seemingly thrown into a mental institution without cause, and the dynamics that play out among the other patients and the staff. I loved the mystery and solace Alison found in Dr. Faraday, who went a long way in helping her understand and accept herself. I have to admit that at a certain point in the story, when things started being revealed, I was VERY unhappy. But, thank goodness, my fears were relieved once again and the book ended on a really strong note. What a ride!
Types of synesthesia included: grapheme-color, sound-color, sound-feeling (and probably others I can’t remember)
How well was it executed? Really well, especially considering the vastness of Alison’s suite of synesthesia types, and how debilitating they were in combination with each other....more
This book has probably been the best and most accurate representation of synesthesia that I’ve read in a novel so far. Like in many other books, the MThis book has probably been the best and most accurate representation of synesthesia that I’ve read in a novel so far. Like in many other books, the MC hides her synesthesia because she’s initially ridiculed for it — and I think that is very true for many synesthetes. I’ve heard complaints that this book treats synesthesia like a disease, and I don’t think that’s accurate. Yes, Mia’s parents initially think it is a disease (because they don’t know any better), but they help their daughter figure out what is actually going on, and eventually understand it enough to accept it as a part of her that is special and different and a bonus to her life. Aside from the synesthesia bits, I thought the rest of the story was a bit tragic, but kept me engaged. Mia was a bit self-absorbed most of the time, but she grew and learned by the end, which I appreciated. Definitely recommended for synesthetes or anyone wanting to learn what it’s like!
Types of synesthesia included: grapheme-color, sound-color/shape, feeling-color/shape
How well was it executed? Quite well. I liked that it was portrayed as a significant (and sometimes difficult to deal with) part of her life, without being over-the-top dramatic about it....more
Definitely the most comprehensive book on synesthesia that I've read thus far. It was a great, interesting read all the way through. I love that so maDefinitely the most comprehensive book on synesthesia that I've read thus far. It was a great, interesting read all the way through. I love that so many images were included as well - it really drives a lot of the points home (and I loved comparing my experiences to those in the pictures/drawings). This book is an excellent resource for every synesthete, or anyone who is simply curious about synesthesia....more