A Review On Sing Like No One’s Listening by Vanessa Jones

Sing Like No One’s Listening by Vanessa Jones talks about the hardships of grief and the pressure to rise up and regain your voice.

Antoinette “Nettie” Delaney has been accepted into a prestigious performing arts school, one that her famous mother attended as well. But months before, her mother passed away due to cancer, leaving Nettie

Book: Sing Like No One’s Listening by Vanessa Jones
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: September 1, 2020
(Thank you NetGalley for this e-ARC in exchange for an honest review)
Tags: Young Adult, contemporary,
Links: Goodreads | Ebook | Paperback | Hardback | Audio
Read: July 7, 2020 to July 7, 2020


A moving story of grief and healing – sure to be a pure joy for any musical theater aficionado.

Nettie Delaney has just been accepted into a prestigious performing arts school–the very same school her superstar mother attended. With her mother’s shadow hanging over her, Nettie has her work cut out for her–and everyone is watching. To make matters worse, Nettie hasn’t been able to sing a single note since her mother died. Whenever she tries, she just clams up. But if Nettie’s going to survive a demanding first year and keep her place in a highly coveted program, she’ll have to work through her grief and deliver a showstopper or face expulsion.

All may not be lost, however, when Nettie stumbles upon a mysterious piano player in an empty studio after class. Masked behind a curtain, can Nettie summon the courage to find her voice? Or will the pressure and anxiety of performing come crashing down?

All about finding and raising your voice, and not throwing away your shot, Vanessa Jones’s well-crafted journey of grief and healing will pull readers along with its strong narrative voice and satisfying sense of mystery. 

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Sing Like No One’s Listening by Vanessa Jones talks about the hardships of grief and the pressure to rise up and regain your voice.

Antoinette “Nettie” Delaney has been accepted into a prestigious performing arts school, one that her famous mother attended as well. But months before, her mother passed away due to cancer, leaving Nettie to live with her grandmother who wants nothing to do with Nettie.

When Nettie officially moves into the dorms of Duke’s she is forced to come to terms with her deceased mother’s famous reputation throughout the school. But, throughout her stay, she makes amazing friends that help her and finds a romance that she didn’t realize she thought she would gain.

I loved the aspect of friendship and the way Nettie formed close bonds with Alec, Kiki, and Leon who helped her throughout her stay in Duke. They helped her slowly overcome her discomfort and fear of singing after the death of her mother. Though sometimes there were moments where they were quite irritating to read about, they supported Nettie and stood by her side through her rough times during her first year at Duke.

Alongside her friendships that she made, Nettie meets Fletch who is a year above her, a guitarist and pianist to be, handsome and has girls swooning at him. Nettie and Fletch have an instant connection with each other, talking about music, lyrics, and forming a deeper bond together when they better get to know each other. When they both agree to write music together, they slowly spend more time with each other, going on “dates” and meeting at restaurants and quiet places where they can work side by side together.

One day, Nettie comes upon someone playing the piano behind a curtain in an empty studio, Nettie is instantly entranced by the player who is sitting behind the piano. Torn between the mystery pianist, Fletch, and conquering her music to maintain her place in Duke, Nettie must figure out how to fight her fears.

My reasoning for giving this three stars and not higher is because of the amounts of verbal and physical abuse that Nettie had to go through that I completely disliked while reading this book. Nettie was basically treated like trash when she entered save for Alec, Kiki, Leon, and Fletch. Even some teachers treated her severely poorly.

Students and specific teachers used verbal abuse to fat shame and make Nettie feel uncomfortable and when reading these parts, I felt uncomfortable as well. This was a problem because Nettie was a normal girl and normal-sized. There was unnecessary fat-shaming throughout this book that made me cringe and feel excruciating to read.

Nettie was practically beat around my those students and teachers that physically and verbally abused her and it wasn’t just toward Nettie but others. And that was a problem because Duke’s is a prestigious performing arts school that is full of rich and well of students and families, so, these students could get away with anything, including all sorts of abuse.

This book also reminded me somewhat of Camp Rock. The way Nettie is trying to figure out this mysterious pianist is absolutely familiar and the way both settings had mean girls in them as a form of bullying. While Camp Rock was much tamer, The way Nettie was bullied was completely unbelievable to read and it felt understandable why Nettie had so many negative emotions and had trouble finding her voice throughout the book.

Those were the few specific things that I felt rather uncomfortable with while reading and was one of the reasons why I didn’t rate this any higher than a three-star. I enjoyed the character growth of Nettie and the way she grew stronger throughout the book was very nice to read and I did enjoy some parts of this book.

Sing Like No One’s Listening had some great moments that I did enjoy and while I may not have enjoyed it as much, you might so I do think that it is worth trying out!

Thank you again to NetGalley for this eARC in exchange for an honest review.

I hope you guys have a great day, please like and comment down below if you enjoyed this book as well or if you plan on reading it!

Loves,

Veronica Chen

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