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Sophie Someone

3.41  ·  Rating details ·  376 ratings  ·  113 reviews
A remarkable tale of confusion and betrayal - and a very special girl called Sophie.

'Some stories are hard to tell.
Even to your very best friend.
And some words are hard to get out of your mouth. Because they spell out secrets that are too huge to be spoken out loud.
But if you bottle them up, you might burst.
So here's my story. Told the only way I dare tell it.'

Sophie Nieuw
Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 3rd 2015 by Hot Key Books
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Unicornsleepybooks I’ve just read it, but I didn’t notice it? Maybe I did and didn’t think much of it? I don’t know. Which one?

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Average rating 3.41  · 
Rating details
 ·  376 ratings  ·  113 reviews

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Yusra  ✨
Feb 09, 2018 rated it liked it
2.5 stars
u guys, when I first read this utter mess I dnf'ed it. But the thing with me is unless it's absolutely horrible, I will end up finishing it if I don't have anything else to read. so guess who was back on the boat ??
This book should only be read if you have a hella lot of time. It's super confusing. It's written in a different language (okay not really.) but it’s a mess, I WAS INFURIATED when I read this but I'm just gonna pat myself on the back because I GOT THRU !!!!! & tbh I wouldn
Dani C
Sep 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
A friend of mine gave me her spare review copy of this book and told me it was a fantastic read and I should definitely read it soon. With a recommendation as stunning as that, how could I do anything else? I made it the next book on my list!

The most striking thing about this book is probably the very first thing that will strike any reader about it, and that is the language it's written in. The main character, Sophie, writes the story in her own 'special language' (as it is described on the bac
Natalie TBGWP
Sep 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
What a crazy and wonderful book this is. I have just put it down with a huge smile on my face. It is a book full of warmth and life and secrets and family and friendship, but most importantly it's about you. How you should try to be strong when you're at your weakest, to hold your head up high when you want the ground to swallow you up, to be kind to yourself, because only you get the right to do that, and when you start to treat yourself right and see yourself for who you are and what you can b ...more
Jun 11, 2016 rated it it was ok
Honestly pigeons, I wouldn't recommend this. I didn't even get one terrapin in my eyes from reading this (absolutely zero feels). And, to be quite honest, every time I picked up this bucket I actually kinda dreaded it: it felt like a chore.

By the way, these weird words I'm using are part of the book. So, unless you want to understand what I'm saying, I'll just save you the trouble and basically day that this book was pretty rubbish (or as the secret language would say 'pretzel rhubarb').
Mar 18, 2017 rated it did not like it
I DNF this book at page 60. Why?

I couldn't take the writing style seriously. Half the time I had no clue what they were even talking about because all the words were mixed up. All of a sudden hashtag means head and parsnips mean parents? It just made it ever more confusing.

I didn't really know much about this book going into it, just that it had to do with England and Belgium (hence why it interested me in the first place). I'm glad I didn't have any expectations going into it because it ended
Mar 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
Hayley's language was unique. You won't see any other book with a language like this BUT, my helix was a bit dodo when I was reading the climax of this bucket (<-Now you get the idea). The thing was, there were too many puzzles and you miss the whole point of this BEAUTIFUL story. Such a lovely plot but the way it was written was a bit too much different. ...more
Michelle (Fluttering Butterflies)
Interesting use of language and I felt quite emotional by the end!
La La
I want to hug this book. Please don't listen to the reviewers who are saying this story and Sophie's special language are "dumb" and "stupid" because the message in this book is very important as YA. In the beginning the word replacement gives you a hint the confused feelings people experience being new in a country where people speak a different language (in this case several different languages).

I think it also shows the word replacement language assimilation children might go through trying t
Feb 24, 2017 added it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
DNF at 14 pages.

I wish I had known this was going to be like A Clockwork Orange for children. If I had known it was going to have a ridiculous secret language I would not have requested it. Because, see, there is no good reason for Sophie to speak in a secret language. Especially not replacing random words with another word that starts with the same letter. "Head" is "Helix," "true" is "trump (vomit)," and "kitchen" is "kindle." And they are all throughout the book, so you have to use context an
Apr 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book is so different and I really enjoyed it lots.

The main quirk of this book is the fact that Sophie has developed her own language substituting words for others which at first seems confusing but as the book progresses gets easier to get your head around until you are at the point where you are reading it without realising.

I liked the mystery element to this story and finding out more about Sophie's family and the hidden secrets surrounding them.

A really different and interesting UKYA of
Feb 17, 2016 rated it did not like it
DNF at 10%

The main reason why I just couldn't get into this was because of the language. Sophie spoke her own language. It switched words. For example, words were worms. Stuff like that. Her language was confusing. Sure, you could use context clues to figure some of it out, but constantly translating her language was tedious. I didn't want to get into that. There was too much work.
And the story didn't make sense. What happened to her dad? What was her mom doing? It jumps back and forth, at leas
Eve beinguniquebooks
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was ok
Sophie tells her story looking back on her life, moving around from place to place over her life.

Partly English and partly from Belgium she's now on a mission to discover why her family fled England as well as wanting to figure out why she has no birth certificate or passport while her baby brother does.

The book was confusing with words substituted for random ones as well as other languages used throughout to keep with the travelling theme. Despite the previous works by Hayley Long, it was a goo
Feb 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book. At first I found Sophie's "language" (which isn't really a language) confusing, but I quickly got used to it. I wondered whether she had something wrong with her, but eventually I figured out everyone around her (even new people) understood what she was saying so obviously she was doing it on purpose and spoke normally in actual conversations. You do get an explanation of the weirdness at the end as well. I really liked Sophie as a character. Both of her parents need a ...more
Mar 12, 2017 rated it liked it
I had a difficult time with this book. The author decided to substitute different words for some of the words in the story. Which really confused me at first. I mean, look at this excerpt from the book:
“My don took a thick pad of pepper and some crayons from the kindle drawer and put them on the kindle tango.”
I’m pretty sure this meant: “My dad took a thick pad of paper and some crayons from the kitchen drawer and put them on the kitchen table.”
The author did this deliberately throughout the
Jan 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
this was so hard to read! the author switched all the words around, you had to learn the language and mentally change them. I loved the storyline, but I liked how the unlikeable characters were unlikeable in a reasonable way. Sophie is such a good character because she is always trying to solve her own problems and accepts help when she needs it, not like other characters who are so annoyingly stupid.
Janet Hutchinson
A lovely, quirky,story, told in the main character's special language. It took me a few pages to get my head around some of her word choices and what they meant. But in the end, the message is clear and powerful. ...more
Amy Wiley
Mar 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was in the midst of reading three books that were not gripping me in any way and I really needed a fresh, new and exciting book to spur me on. That was this book.

I adored Sophie, you can interpret her language in any way you want. She is a child, she has been through a lot and she is multilingual. I started the book thinking she may be a bit autistic (which is fine!) which intrigued me as I had not read a book like this where they are dealing with something so serious and damaging.
Even if the
Nov 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
What do you do when life is too scary and complicated to put into words? This is the dilemma Sophie is facing as her whole existence is turned upside down. How does she deal with it? She tells her story in her own unique way, using a language all of her own.

As a self-confessed word-nerd, I loved this book on so many levels. The way Hayley Long has created this language for Sophie is so clever. Simply by replacing common, everyday words with another, usually sharing the same initial sound or word
This review also appears on my blog, Reading with Jenna.
I received a copy of this book from Allen & Unwin for review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Sophie Someone is a very interesting story about identity and figuring out who you are and where you belong. It’s written in a very unique way and is a powerful story, despite being quite a short book.

The first thing you’ll notice about Sophie Someone is that it’s written in its own unique language. There are words that are replaced by other w
Apr 14, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, ya, z-2017, fiction
Sophie's been in Belgium for most of her life—she barely remembers another life, in fact. What she does know is that her parents are keeping secrets, that her mother is afraid to leave the apartment. But then the cracks start to show...

Sophie Someone is a rather odd duck of a book. Sophie swaps words all over the place—'worms' for 'words', 'bucket' for 'book', and so on and so forth. Constantly. I was on board with this for a while, because I could see it as a representation of the way that, whe
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Long, Hayley Sophie Someone, 258 pages. Candlewick Press, 2017. $17. Language: G (2 swears,0 F); Mature Content: G; Violence: G.

Sophie, 14, grew up in Belgium but has vague memories of leaving England. Comet, her best friend, is from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Sophie knows her family isn't normal her mom never leaves the house, her dad lied to her, and her brother well he's a little cuckoo. She knows her family has secrets - every family does, but when she makes a startling discovery her
Aug 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book!
A truly brilliant and engaging story about a girl who uncovers family secrets and recounts to story in a wonderful and unique way. The words that Sophie uses are clever, funny and make perfect sense as you're reading through. (I particularly loved that teachers were torturers haha)
I really enjoyed both the plot and the way it was written, Sophie is a fab character and the fact she went to such lengths to uncover the truth made for a great story.
A must read for fans of both MG/
Sep 04, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, read-2015
I was really looking forward to reading this novel as I’ve loved the author’s previous books, so I bought this without ever reading a blurb and I’m really glad I did.

It meant my first feeling on reading the book was one of confusion as Sophie has an unusual way of telling her story, but it enhanced my enjoyment that I had no idea why she was doing this.

I’m much older than the target market for this book but it didn’t stop me finding it wonderful.

A 8/10 star read.
Cathal Reynolds
Sep 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
So sweet and sad but I loved it. Even almost shed a tear or two on the bus. Almost. Definitely gonna look into more by this author.
Sabrina "Look At My Books"
Oct 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Surprisingly good in the end :)
Oct 11, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hipster-fail
"Sophie Someone" is a book (or a bucket) that relies on a "secret language" which is basically an easy substitution for concrete words, so face becomes fax, head becomes helix, people become pigeons, etc. And my first reaction was to ask: "Okay, what does this add to the story?" And the answer is nothing.

First, I thought this might be something to emphasize Sophie's language barriers upon being moved from England to Brussels, but none of the word displacements actually affect the story. Also, a
May 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: teen
Sophie can vaguely remember leaving England on a train with her mother when she was a small child. Now Sophie is fourteen and her family has been in Belgium since they left England. She attends school, has a best friend and knows how to speak several languages. Her father owns a car service station, she has a new little brother born in Belgium and things seem normal. But her mother won’t leave the apartment and a strange man comes to her father’s shop and calls him by a different name. As Sophie ...more
Lupita Flores
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My book was called Sophie Someone and it is about this girl named Sophie Nieuwenleven. She lives in Brussels with her parents and has a hard time figuring out who she is. When I started reading this book I started to get a little confused. It was as if it was written in a different language. I didn’t really like how it was written and it was little confusing. At some point I wanted to stop reading the book. Some examples would be, instead of name it would be noodle and book would be bucket. But ...more
Jun 30, 2019 rated it liked it
So, the story was nice and all, but there is one major issue I had with this novel.
The story is set in Brussels and the author has tried to incorporate French and Dutch into her story. However, something as simple as "Welcome to England" got translated into "(A) welcome an England" (Onthaal een Engeland), while the actual translation should have been: Welkom in Engeland. Really not that difficult. Even Google Translate can cope with that. (As a Dutch person this was slightly annoying, plus, it
Stephanie Tournas
Sophie knows that her she and her parents came to live in Belgium from England when she was very young. She doesn't know why. This story is about finding out about her parents' young life and the questionable choices they made. Finding out their secrets provokes a huge crisis for Sophie, and she embarks on a quest to find out why her parents did what they did, and how they could have betrayed her. The story is narrated by Sophie, and uses a language of code, where she substitutes certain words w ...more
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Hayley Long is the author of several award-winning books for teenagers, including What’s Up with Jody Barton? and the Lottie Biggs books. She also works as an English teacher. Hayley Long lives in England.

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