Title: No Filter
Author: Orlagh Collins
Published by: Bloomsbury
Publication date: 13th July 2017
Pages: 355, hardback
Genre: young adult, contemporary, romance
This is the story of THAT SUMMER … the one when everything changes.
Emerald has grown up in a privileged world – the beloved daughter of a wealthy family, friends with all the right people, social media addict. But Emerald’s family has secrets – and when Emerald finds her mum unconscious on the bathroom floor, no one can pretend any more. Now she’s being packed off to stay with her grandma in Ireland while her mum recuperates and her dad just works and works and works.
Grandma’s big, lonely house is set back from the beach, and there’s no phone signal or wifi. It’s going to be a long summer … Until she meets Liam.
When you’re falling in love, it’s hard to tell someone everything. Even if you’ve got nothing to hide any more. And when secrets and lies are all you’re used to, how do you deal with real love – brave and true – with no filter?
The fresh, funny and poignant debut novel from Orlagh Collins, a bright new voice in YA fiction. Authentic, down to earth and sweepingly romantic all at once, No Filter is perfect for fans of John Green, Rainbow Rowell and Stephen Chbosky’s The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
No Filter was one of the books I read last month, making it one of my first YA reads of 2018! I was lucky enough to be sent a copy of this book by Orlagh, the author of No Filter, as I am going to be interviewing her next month as part of the YA Shot Blog Tour. In the mean time, I read this book, and thought I would review it!
One thing I noticed immediately upon starting this book, was the distinction between Emerald and Liam’s narratives. Not only was the Irish dialect used in Liam’s narrative really interesting to read (especially as it is not something I have come across in YA before), but I just found that generally both of the protagonists were very well characterised, making it easy to make the switch between perspectives as I was reading. Both Emerald and Liam grew on me as the novel progressed, and I really appreciated the great depth to their respective backstories.
The romance itself was very cute, and Emerald and Liam were clearly very well matched as a couple. For readers who are not huge fans of insta-love, there is a fair amount of that in this book, but honestly, I found that it was quite understated, and it did not stop me from finding the romance adorable! It is very much a summer-romance book, and since reading it I have found myself missing the summer so much.
The more I read of this book, the more clever the plot became – as I mentioned previously, both Emerald and Liam have very interesting backstories, and not only were they very unique from one another, but I really enjoyed how they unexpectedly intertwined as the story progressed (although, of course, no spoiler). On the one hand, I wanted to hear more about her relationships with school friends back in the UK, but at the same time I also really loved the enclosed feeling of the plot, which highlighted the intensity of their relationship, and the entire book!
To top it all off, this book had some really great themes: self-acceptance in a social media age and forgiveness were prevalent throughout this book, and really helped to emphasise Emerald’s character arc. This was a really lovely read, and perfect for if you are missing summer! Make sure to look out for my interview next month with Orlagh Collins, where I will be asking her more questions about her writing and No Filter!