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The Silence Between Us

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  809 ratings  ·  226 reviews
Deaf teen Maya moves across the country and must attend a hearing school for the first time. As if that wasn’t hard enough, she also has to adjust to the hearing culture, which she finds frustrating—and also surprising when some classmates, including Beau Watson, take time to learn ASL. As Maya looks past graduation and focuses on her future dreams, nothing, not even an ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published August 13th 2019 by Blink
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Average rating 3.86  · 
Rating details
 ·  809 ratings  ·  226 reviews

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Rachel Reads Ravenously
4 stars

Many of you don’t know this, but my grandmother and stepgrandfather were deaf. My parents and I are hearing, but I grew up around the deaf community and it has a very special place in my heart. What I loved most about this book was it captured very well what it is like to be deaf (as it should since the author is hard of hearing). When the characters spoke ASL, it was true ASL and not a hearing person thinking how deaf people speak.

This book made me miss my grandparents a lot. I wish my
Susan's Reviews
Apr 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
My thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Maya Harris is 17 years old and was rendered deaf when a bout of meningitis left her profoundly deaf at the age of 13. Her mother's job relocation forces Maya to leave her special hearing impaired school and move to Colorado, to a regular high school. Maya's young brother is also afflicted with cystic fibrosis and her mother is a single parent, having to cope with two children with chronic
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
***Thanks to NetGalley for providing me a complimentary copy of THE SILENCE BETWEEN US by Alison Gervais in exchange for my honest review.***

Maya is less than thrilled to beginning senior year at a hearing school half way across the country. Deaf for four years, leaving her secure previous school, where everyone signed to one where she’ll be the only Deaf student and need an interpreter scares her.

When Beau, a cute popular guy starts learning sign language, Maya is certain he’s either pitying
Sara (Alicorn Feathers)
Mar 31, 2019 rated it did not like it
I'm almost done with my second semester of ASL, and I love and appreciate the language. So I was very excited to read this book, from the perspective of a deaf high schooler, and I perked up when I realized that the ASL would actually be written as ASL instead of just translated into English like in most the other books I've read with a deaf character.

But the book left me wanting, in so many ways.

Without even getting into my problems with how certain aspects of Deaf culture were displayed, the
I got this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

You know those stories where you fall in love with everything after just a few pages?
That, for me, was this book.
The Silence Between Us was, in a nutshell, some of the best disability representation I’ve *ever* read. I am not deaf, but, as someone with hydrocephalus, right-sided cerebral palsy, and partial blindness, I am always looking for good representation, and this book was It. The Silence Between Us celebrates disability
I’ve been waiting so long for a book like this. Like our protagonist Maya, I was born hearing and have slowly lost bits of my hearing over the years in addition to dealing with Auditory Processing Disorder, both of which require me to wear hearing aids. While Maya is immersed in the Deaf community, I’ve remained a part of the hearing community into which I was born, but I can relate to so many of the experiences Maya has all throughout the novel.

I’ve seen some people say in their reviews that
Update 12/14/19: Okay ... so I’m a little behind on my ARCs because I had a baby. Thanks to Netgalley and Publisher for the review copy.

I went into this book expecting to feel seen, to feel validated. And that’s not what I got. In this, I did mildly see a reflection of my experience of being a deaf kid in a hearing school. I didn’t have an interpreter so my experienced differed from Maya’s. I also communicated exclusively verbally not did I have friends willing to learn sign ... heck my own
Stephanie Roxane
Jul 07, 2019 rated it liked it
*I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*


This review may contain very mild spoilers.

The Silence Between Us is a book about a girl who is deaf and transfers to a hearing school for the first time since becoming deaf. I enjoyed parts of the story, but overall was kind of let down.

One thing I really loved was the writing. The author wrote sign language in a really cool way that I've never personally seen before. She also wrote parts where the main character Maya is
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Maggie Carr
#OwnVoices is quickly becoming my favorite part of YA Lit. Having lost a lot of my own hearing just out of high school, I really related to 'The Silence Between Us' (pub. August 13, 2019). Maya was born hearing, but lost it due to Meningitis; however, she gained her confidence; embracing her deafness. "There was one thing I knew for certain. I was happy being Deaf, and I was not about to change that just because a cochlear implant might make my life easier."[280] I loved that Maya's character, ...more
Aug 31, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I am so surprised I didn't enjoy this one at all. I was so excited to read this. The main character was obnoxious. She was so guarded that she never gave anyone a break including Beau. Beau who was always willing to apologize and see her side of things, but she couldn't do the same for him. I thought it was out of character for Beau to do what he did at the end of the book which immediately made me think less of this book than I already had. He is so open and understanding of her so why did his ...more
Lisa Mandina
Aug 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A great story about a deaf girl who moves and has to now attend a regular, as she calls it, "hearing" school. As a hearing person, there was a lot that hadn't known about, and I always enjoy a book that makes me learn things. It took a bit to read and get used to the way sentences were cut out or cut short based on how she lipread and obviously couldn't always catch every single word sometimes. Or also just the way they signed they didn't use all the words we use as we talk, because that would ...more
Nicole M. Hewitt
Aug 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review and many more can be found on my blog: Feed Your Fiction Addiction

I fell in love with this book easily, mostly because Deaf culture has always been a topic that's near and dear to my heart. Growing up with a Deaf uncle, I was always fascinated by the chasms and bridges between Deaf and hearing culture, which is the main focus of this book. (Things have gotten much better since my uncle's days of growing up---but that's a whole other topic). I honestly believe that every teen should
Jul 08, 2019 rated it liked it
**I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review**

The Silence Between Us follows a Deaf girl named Maya as she navigates a hearing school for the first time in many years. I was initially excited for this book because of the disability rep. The author, Alison Gervais, is hard of hearing, and I think that she did a great job at representing a Deaf main character. There were so many little things that added to the experience, from the choppier way conversations in sign were
Kasey Hebert
Apr 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc
I enjoyed this book because I've never read anything like it before! I loved that this story is from the perspective of a female high school student who is deaf and confident with who she is as a person. The discussions characters had regarding cochlear implants were necessary and a delight to read. I loved that the conversations in sign remained in ASL syntax on the page! This novel only dipped its toe into the culture of the Deaf community; there's so much left to explore, and I can't wait for ...more
Afoma Umesi
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Silence Between Us is a rousing young adult novel with a Deaf protagonist who never lets her disability set her back. It explores the challenges of a Deaf/hearing relationship and addresses the strain a sibling’s chronic illness can have on a family.

I wholeheartedly recommend this novel to everyone, but especially those wanting to learn more about the Deaf community and how to be respectful to people with a disability.

Read my full review on my blog.
Dec 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
Just like author Alison Gervais states: "it is time we see more deaf characters in Books. n books. It’s time we see more books celebrating sign language and Deaf culture."

The YA-genre indirectly leaves room to educate its readers, makes topics like sexuality, mental health problems, physical disabilities more open for discussion. But it is quiet hard to find books with deaf main characters (even blind ones). The Deaf culture and community is quiet intriguing, the shared language intimate. It's
The Reading Raccoon
Thank you to NetGalley and Blink Publishers for the copy of The Silence Between Us for review.
This is a solid coming of age story of a 17 year old deaf girl who moves from New Jersey to Colorado and has to attend her first hearing school. Like most coming of age stories there was some growth with Maya’s character even though it takes place over a year. Unfortunately, she still kind of came off as needlessly stubborn and arrogant sometimes. I understand as someone coming from a group that is
Apr 02, 2019 rated it really liked it


Maya is a Deaf teenager who moves to Colorado before her senior year of high school. It's a big adjustment for her, as she's leaving behind her school for the Deaf to attend a hearing school. Gradually, Maya befriends classmates Nina and Beau who demonstrate interest in learning ASL to better communicate with her. With encouragement and support from her friends, her interpreter Kathleen, her single-parent mother, and her younger brother Connor who has cystic fibrosis, Maya
Samantha (WLABB)
Aug 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Maya lost her hearing after an illness at age 13. She found herself cut off from the world she knew, but thanks to the amazing Deaf community at her school, she was flourishing. However, her mother's new job forced the family to move across the country, where she had to attend a hearing school. Once again, she was pushed into isolation, but things improved, when she opened herself up to some new friends and some new possibilities.

•Pro: This was an #OwnVoices novel, and I really appreciated the
Jun 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.7 stars
I’m so so so grateful I was able to receive an ARC for this book, it was definitely unexpected favorite of the year.

Maya Harris is deaf and when maya has to leave her school for the deaf in her senior year to go to attend a hearing school things change drastically for her.

This was such a simple yet emotional and educational read. it was funny and romantic and had so many different layers. Maya is charismatic, witty and relatable and I absolutely adored reading from her point of view of
Mar 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Net Galley for providing a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Finally. FINALLY. This is the first book I’ve read with a Deaf character that accurately portrays the experience of a Deaf student in a hearing high school. As a CODA and former teacher of the Deaf, I have worked with many students in both the residential and mainstream settings. Although there were times I wished Maya weren’t quite so angry, I quickly realized that her feelings were entirely honest
Carro Herdegen
Apr 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: kiss-the-book
Language: G (0 swears, 0 “f”); Mature Content: PG; Violence: G
After moving halfway across the country, Maya found herself wary about going to a new school for senior year. Maya is not as worried about having to transfer to a new school as she is that the new school is a hearing school—which she hasn’t attended since becoming deaf a few years ago. Fighting discrimination, family issues, and her own self-doubt, Maya has a long year ahead of her.
While I found it difficult and somewhat frustrating
The plot of this book just seems unrealistic. What parents would uproot a kid with a chronic illness and bring him to a high-altitude location that's almost guaranteed to worsen his health? For that matter, what parents would toss their deaf daughter into the deep end of a hearing school when she's only been in mostly deaf communities so far? Honestly, none of this makes sense and it really detracted from my ability to enjoy this book.

*Book received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest
Jul 23, 2019 rated it liked it
Thank you so much Blink publishing for sending me this eARC to review through Netgalley.

3.25 / 5 stars

Maya is crushed when she learns that she must move to Colorado for her final year of high school. Maya must transition from a Deaf school to a hearing school. Maya lost her hearing at a young age, but she is not sad by the outcome of her loss of hearing. Maya is proud to be deaf and the community that welcomed her in with open arms. As Maya navigates a hearing school and new environment she must
Carly Faith
Dec 15, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2019-dnf
DNF @70%

I tried so hard to finish this book and power threw but my brain is turning to mush trying to push my way through it's not even worth it anymore.

There are so many things that I didn't like about this book. If I were to of finished, it would've gotten a 2/5 stars. No point in finishing if im not having a good time or I know it's going to be only 2 stars.

1. I absolutely disliked the main character Maya. She was every way unenjoyable and down right annoying and selfish. I get being angry
3.5 stars. I can't remember having read a book with a Deaf main character so this was an interesting read for me and I enjoyed the representation.

Things I liked:
- the portrayal of ASL - I don't know much about it so it was interesting to see how the sentence structure works
- Learning about the struggles Deaf and Hard of Hearing people can face - going to school, applying for jobs and college etc - things that hearing people might not even realise they take for granted
- Maya's self-acceptance -
Alicia (Tranquil Pages)
Jan 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
Took me a while to finish the book, I blame college. But I finally did it.

Like her debut book 'In 27 Days' I loved it. I have never read a book where the main character is deaf, there isn't a whole lot of books with deaf characters in them, let alone a deaf main character. I learned some things about the hearing impaired, and that tidbit of information about Cochlear Implants in the back of the book was a nice touch.

I love Maya's spunk and her independence despite not hearing. Her drive to be
Sandy Brehl
I learned so much during the year in which a profoundly deaf student spent in my classroom. This was pre-internet days, and even though I knew finger spelling and a few ASL signs before he enrolled, the learning curve was steep. "Deaf culture" was totally unknown to me, and I'm so grateful for the patience of the student's family and his academic interpreter. So many of the perspectives and specifics within Maya's story echoed my learning and I'm excited to think this well-told, compelling novel ...more
I loved this story and it did what it was intended to do - show hearing people a glimpse of what it is like to be deaf. Although I have not experienced this life, I learned from this story. I too wondered about the plausibility of moving a child (her brother) to an area where the altitude would worsen his health but this was secondary to Maya’s story. I was intrigued by the abbreviated language used in the book and thought that life may be simpler with fewer words. I fully understand Maya’s ...more
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