Names don’t have colours. Music does not look like wisps of rainbow floating around. Every letter, number, and sound does not have a separate colour and texture. Right?
Mia Winchell, a thirteen-year-old girl, would not be able to agree to any of this.
Her childhood, lived in fear and ignorance, was spent with her thinking she was crazy.
However, after confessing to her parents about her problems, a whole new world of self-realization opens up to her. She discovers that she has a rare medical condition called synesthesia.
Synesthetes (a word to describe people with synesthesia), can see shapes, colours, and textures when hearing certain sounds or words. To Mia, every word and sound had its colour, which made her daily life somewhat of a struggle.
Wendy Mass’s unique novel takes us through Mia’s journey of self-acceptance as she slowly begins to accept her condition as a gift, rather than a disease. She begins to embrace it, supported by her parents and best friend, Jenna Davis. Mia slowly begins to accept herself as who she is and connects with fellow synesthetes. She develops a unique bond with them, but at the price of a strong friendship.
This author covers themes like friendship, art and culture, self-acceptance, identity, and so much more.
I loved this book because it highlighted a unique and rare condition and captured its beauty by portraying it in words so that the reader has a captivating experience.
The author’s descriptive approach to this book illustrates the visions and colours that appear in front of Mia when she hears a sound, in an alluring manner through words, and paints a beautiful picture that hooks the reader as if they’re experiencing a myriad of colours floating through their head as they read.
It is a beautiful book to read and really gives you a new perspective of life where everything isn’t just one-dimensional.
One of my favourite parts in the book is when Mia tries taking a bath with music playing, and how she describes the way the steam makes the music and its colours, shapes, and textures, come to life in a way she’s never seen before.
This is one of my favourite excerpts in the book, from the same scene:
“I switch off the light and admire the way the candle illuminates the steam. Right away all the colours of the music have more dimension. The steam makes them more solid somehow. The violins are hundreds of shimmering gold lights, the horns are cubes of green, and the drums are a bright aqua blue. It feels like I can almost reach out and touch them. It’s like I’m a part of the fabric of the whole universe- the air, the water, the music, the colours, the shapes, and me right in the middle.”
Wendy Mass takes the reader into the mind of a bright and artistic teenage girl and portrays the ups and downs of her (literally) colourful life in a magical way.
By, Trisha Simhachalam, Grade 10A, Ekya JP Nagar