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Small Spaces

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  1,514 ratings  ·  326 reviews
We don’t pick and choose what to be afraid of. Our fears pick us.

Tash Carmody has been traumatised since childhood, when she witnessed her gruesome imaginary friend Sparrow lure young Mallory Fisher away from a carnival. At the time nobody believed Tash, and she has since come to accept that Sparrow wasn’t real. Now fifteen and mute, Mallory’s never spoken about the week s
Paperback, 378 pages
Published April 1st 2018 by Walker Books Australia
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Sarah Epstein Hi Tiffany. The age recommendation is 14+ and it has crossover appeal for adults too. Hope that helps! :)
Yashvi it's not clarified if she's les/bi/pan, but she likes girls…moreit's not clarified if she's les/bi/pan, but she likes girls(less)

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Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,514 ratings  ·  326 reviews

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C.G. Drews
Okay and WOW this one definitely glued my entire face to the page. It's seriously one of those thrillers were I was like, "Eh I'll read a few chapters before working on stuff" and then it's like an hour later and I'm flipping pages anxiously after shouting at the sun a bit and checking under my bed 57 times and saying, "whAt iS GoING ONNNN."

Solid stuff here. Am a fan.

Also two things to note: (1) I CAN'T check under my bed because my bed is on the floor?!??!!? So look what this book has done to m
Jun 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
A solid psychological thriller that had me feeling jumpy, so I guessed this book did it’s job of keeping me thrilled!

A great debut book with a complex storyline, one that reeled me in with it’s characters and creep factor. When the lead character is questioning her own sanity and you realise she’s an unreliable narrator you know this is going to be a fun ride. The ending was eventful and I enjoyed the way the story played out. I’ve not read many exciting psychological thrillers by Australian au
Brooke - One Woman's Brief Book Reviews

**4.5 stars**

Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein. (2018).
*Young Adult*

Tash has been traumatised since age eight when she witnessed her gruesome imaginary friend Sparrow lure six year old Mallory away from a carnival. Nobody believed Tash and now she accepts Sparrow wasn't real. Mallory is now 15, mute, and has never disclosed what happened during that week she was missing. Tash begins not only having disturbing memories but also starts to se
Whispering Stories
Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Book Reviewed by Cara on

Natasha Carmody is trying to live a normal teenage life, but due to dark childhood secrets, she is starting to confuse reality with imagination.

When the Fisher family move back into town, all those thoughts and fears she had tried to forget in the last ten years come flooding back along with Sparrow, the imaginary friend she watched lure six-year-old Mallory Fisher away. Determined to find out what really happened all those years ago, Natasha bef
Alice (Married To Books)
Apr 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
For anyone living outside of Australia, the easiest way to get a copy is through Book Depository!:

HOLY HECK, ASJGKSJAJWK. No seriously, what just happened? Like, those last 30 or so pages were just... plot twisty so cue more ASJGKSJAJWK. Small Spaces is an outstanding YA debut psychological thriller that kept me hooked. I had lessons most of the day today but honestly, this book kept calling me. I FLIPPING LOVED IT!

OK, so Small Spaces follows our main cha
Zitong Ren
Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein is YA thriller set in good ol’ Australia. It focusses on Tash Carmody, who is still reeling from events nine years ago during her childhood where some messed up traumatic stuff happened involving a lot of things that I won’t mention because of spoilers. Now, if you know me, I don’t read thrillers, ever, I mean, I rarely even delve out beyond fantasy. So, this was nice for a change, and I enjoyed myself. It was fast paced, and the ending was exciting, and tense and I ...more
Aug 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
This brilliant thriller is aimed at 14 year olds + but I recommend it to adults too. I would like to thank walker books for sending me Small Spaces paperback to review.
My full review
Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
Apr 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
Trigger warnings: child abuse, drug use, animal cruelty, mental illness

A fantastic, deliciously creepy read from an unreliable narrator who is being haunted by her childhood imaginary friend. The mystery constantly kept me guessing and I loved the psychologist reports from the past being interchanged with the present, as Tash learns to navigate the traumatic thoughts of her past.

As I was reading, you were constantly thinking - is she mentally ill? Is she just seeing things? Is her imaginary fri
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.

A Melbourne author's debut novel about not being able to trust your own mind, and wondering whether it was yourself or your imaginary friend who perpetrated bad acts? Yes, please!

So many times while reading this book, I wondered where the author had been lurking when she recorded my childhood, what with the hunting for tadpoles, the strained maternal relationship, and constantly finding things moving in the shadows.

At times I found it easy to get distracted and put the story down (mostly in
If you're looking for a book to just relax with and read a few chapters before bed, this is not that book. Small Spaces is twisty, intriguing and creepy, and once you start you won't want to put it down. This psychological suspense thriller is a debut so I'm really excited to see what Sarah Epstein has coming up ~ a must read for fans of the genre. ...more
Tracey Allen at Carpe Librum
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Small Spaces was published in April 2018 and this debut novel by Australian author Sarah Epstein created quite a stir when it hit the shelves. A young adult psychological thriller for readers aged 14+, it was longlisted and shortlisted for no less than six awards. I missed the buzz last year, but thought it was time I picked it up.

Set in Port Bellamy NSW, our protagonist Tash Carmody was eight years old when she witnessed her imaginary friend Sparrow, lead six year old Mallory Fisher away from a
Dec 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
"I'm far too good at imagining things that don't exist."

Small Spaces is a creative mystery story, and the synopsis caught my attention as soon as I heard about it. I loved the formatting of this book - there are psychiatry transcripts, and it was cool to see what was going on with the main character when she was younger.

The book loses some steam in the middle, and felt a little too long overall. I wasn't wild about the ending, but the book as a whole was still intriguing enough to keep me ente
Tamsien West (Babbling Books)
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, australia
A dark, twisted YA thriller that definitely lived up to the creepy hype. The book was pitched by the author at an event I attended with something like "As a child Tash had a gruesome imaginary friend, years later Sparrow is back to finish their game..." and that was all I needed to be hooked.

I really enjoyed the structure of the book, with flashbacks in the form of transcripts from psychologist appointments that Tash had when she was a child, after the traumatic experience she had when another l
Kelly (Diva Booknerd)
Mar 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The New South Wales coastal town of Port Bellamy is synonymous with Mallory Fisher, abducted from the promenade carnival and discovered wandering the surrounding forest physically unharmed. Natasha Carmody wandered the carnival alone, visiting the small rural community as her brother was welcomed into the world. Child psychiatrist Ingrid Ballantine believes Sparrow is a manifestation of isolation, a fabrication created by a child displaced by a sibling. Natasha has endured the degradation and re ...more
Oct 23, 2019 rated it really liked it

Um…creepy imaginary friend?! I’m in! That’s all it took for me to hunt this book down. I mean COME ON! That says “Laura” all over it. :)

Small Spaces is full of eerie moments, frustration, and paranoia!

“I feel like I’m losing myself. I’ve forgotten how to trust my own mind, ensnared in a net of unreliable memories. I need the cold, sharp blade of truth, no matter how brutal.”

But that’s just it! What is the truth? And who can you trust?

I enjoyed the mystery here. All the doubts and questions and
Clare Snow
So I was thrilled by this creepy thriller. I worked out who Sparrow was when Tash described him. (view spoiler) But there were more twisty surprises that I didn't see coming. So yes, for once a thriller didn't let me down.

Did I really read this in 5 days?? That's a record when I have 10 books on the go.
Ruby Granger
Jul 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
'Small Spaces' is a YA psychological thriller set in the bush of Australia and following the life of Natasha Carmody (17/18). After the disappearance of Mallory Fisher at a carnival ten years ago, Tash was psychologically broken, convinced that she had seen her imaginary friend Sparrow kidnap the six-year-old. With her claims dismissed as attention-seeking, Tash, still convinced that what she saw was real, is forced to accept that she made it all up. But now, a decade later, she keeps on catchin ...more
Sep 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-showcase
AMAZING!! I'm lost for words for how to even begin to explain how incredible this book is.

I was left guessing until the very end. I was constantly changing my mind with figuring out what the hell was going on! I discussed with my husband the scenarios in great length but we never come up with the right idea. There were so many people to think who could be suspects, and with a main character who is extremely unreliable and sees creepy imaginary friends doesn't help at all. But this is what I love
Fleur Ferris
Apr 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A beautifully crafted psychological thriller. I couldn’t put it down.
Jul 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great debut book book Sarah. Really enjoyable creepy read.
Highly recommend grabbing this one
Neil (or bleed)
Aug 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Actual rating: 3.5 stars
Craig Hildebrand-Burke
Apr 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It’s often difficult to accurately recall just how subjective teenage experience can be. We all like to think we grow up with increasing sense of awareness about ourselves, about our place in the world and the people have around us. But so much of childhood is constructed out of fractured, distorted memories, formed not just by our own attempts to grapple with our own story, but also by the conscious and unconscious influences of friends, peers and family.

And we can lose sight of this when deali
Wing (bibliomeds)
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.5/4 stars.

i'm always up for a good old Aussie YA thriller! this one was pretty good! I kind of guessed most of the plot oops - but I still enjoyed the thrill and suspense :))

though the MC really annoyed me at times
Nadia King
May 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Small Spaces is a spooky, suspenseful read from Australian author, Sarah Epstein. It’s Epstein’s debut book and the kind of YA psychological thriller guaranteed to have you wishing you read it in the safety of daylight and not into the small hours of the night when every sound scares you silly.

Seventeen-year-old, Tash Carmody lives in a small town on the New South Wales coast. Nine years prior, at the age of eight, Tash witnessed the abduction of her friend’s little sister. The catch is that the
Pavitra (For The Love of Fictional Worlds)

Disclaimer: A Physical Copy was provided via Penguin India. The Thoughts, opinions & feelings expressed in the review are however my own.

Actual Rating 4. 25 Stars

This psychological YA thriller is a debut by Sarah Epstein – but sure doesn’t really read like one. Small Spaces had me hooked and glued to the pages and even when I had to keep the book aside to wallow in reality (ugh!) I couldn’t stop thinking about the book nor the characters.

Told in Natasha Carmody aka Tash’s POV; it’s easy
Renita D'Silva
Dec 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Thrilling and twisted
Tonile {My Cup and Chaucer}
Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-release
Completely brilliant. I loved this from start to finish.

I don't read psychological thrillers all that often but this one was great, it was very intense and kept me up well past my bedtime. I was on edge through a lot of this, my empathy with Tash was strong and I wondered as did she, what was the truth? At times I wanted to skip to the end and find out without going through the agony of the journey, but then what would be the point of that. This book had me guessing right up until the truth and horror of the situation was revealed. I definitely re
Shannon Castle
Apr 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
Have you ever read a book where you have really despised a character? found her completely unlikeable? Look no further than Tasha’s mother. Awful woman. Dreadful. Wanted to reach into the book and tell her to actually care about her daughter. Aside from that, this was certainly a page turner that kept me guessing.
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Sarah Epstein is an award-winning Australian author, illustrator and designer who grew up in suburban Sydney and now lives in Melbourne with her husband, two sons and a rescued dog called Luna. After achieving a design degree and enjoying a 25-year graphic design career, Sarah returned to her first loves of writing and illustrating. Her debut novel, Small Spaces, is a CBCA Honour Book, winner of t ...more

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