Newt lives in Bearmouth, a labyrinth of mines ruled through toil and tradition, populated with the aid of hardened boys and men (Newt has been told they're a eunuch). But the arrival of a brand new boy named Devlin forces Newt to question the whole lot approximately Bearmouth, freedom or even Newt’s personal identity.
Newt narrates this story with striking frankness and originality, elaborating on the way of life of Bearmouth and providing personal evaluations on the mine, the miners and their place amongst them. Newt’s first-rate friend, Thomas, is beginning to educate Newt to study and write, which the textual content itself reflects—Bearmouth is written nearly phonetically. “Learnin letters is hard. My eyes strayne at the quit o lessun wi the bryteness o the candul lyte,” Newt explains within the commencing pages. Readers shouldn’t hesitate to read Newt’s words aloud as they begin Bearmouth, as doing so brings us in the direction of the manner Newt is working to uncover reading, writing and new ideas.
Bearmouth drapes a mysterious and fantastical veil over well-trodden young grownup themes. Gender, identity, rebellion or even revolution are shrouded in literal darkness in Bearmouth’s caverns, and readers will share in the characters’ confusion as the tale twists and winds like the mine’s passages. Rest assured, there’s mild at the stop of its tunnels.
Newt’s discovery of the truth approximately Bearmouth and about who they absolutely are makes for a clean tackle coming-of-age tropes. In this stunning debut novel, Liz Hyder spins a satisfying net of tension, action and revelation, rooted in a clearly unique narrative voice.