Somebody Loves You

Narrated by Mona Arshi
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Pub Date 16 Nov 2021 | Archive Date 15 Nov 2021

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A teacher asked me a question, and I opened my mouth as a sort of formality but closed it softly, knowing with perfect certainty that nothing would ever come out again.

Ruby gives up talking at a young age. Her mother isn’t always there to notice; she comes and goes and goes and comes, until, one day, she doesn’t. Silence becomes Ruby’s refuge, sheltering her from the weather of her mother’s mental illness and a pressurized suburban atmosphere.

Plangent, deft, and sparkling with wry humor, 'Somebody Loves You' is a moving exploration of how we choose or refuse to tell the stories that shape us.

Perfect for fans of Avni Doshi, Ocean Vuong and Abi Daré. 

A teacher asked me a question, and I opened my mouth as a sort of formality but closed it softly, knowing with perfect certainty that nothing would ever come out again.

Ruby gives up talking at a...

Advance Praise

‘A sharply drawn world of wonder in elegant and lean prose. A fresh, innovative novel that is an ode to families, coming of age and sisterhood.’ - Roger Robinson

‘A truly enriching read, Somebody Loves You is a glorious debut novel. I took this book with me everywhere and kept returning to it. I loved every perfect choice of word and turn of phrase in this vivid and tender, poetic and beautiful book.’ - Salena Godden

‘Each sentence has the cadence of poetry, each phrase perfectly chosen, each word correctly weighed. This is a novel which reminds us memory and narrative are often not complete but rather are crystallised glimpses, which turn like a kaleidoscope through our mind.’ - Andrew McMillan

‘A sharply drawn world of wonder in elegant and lean prose. A fresh, innovative novel that is an ode to families, coming of age and sisterhood.’ - Roger Robinson

‘A truly enriching read, Somebody...

Available Editions

EDITION Audiobook, Unabridged
ISBN 9788728047606
PRICE £10.99 (GBP)
DURATION 4 Hours, 4 Minutes

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (AUDIO)

Average rating from 57 members

Featured Reviews

Somebody Loves You, (Audio Edition) by Mona Arshi, is a compilation of explosive emotions and powerful heartfelt dialogue from the depths within, perfectly compartmentalized into picturesque vignettes.

The listener's enjoyment is enhanced with the expertly applied dynamics of the author/narrator's own voice, easily echoing silent whispers and footprints for the listener.
This unique and creative debut earns 4 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐

My thanks to NetGalley, Saga Egmont Audio, and Mona Arshi for an advanced digital copy in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Somebody Loves you by Mona Arshi. #SomebodyLovesyou #NetGalley

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3.5 Stars

’Silence is the universal refuge, the sequel to all dull discourses and all foolish acts, a balm to our every chagrin, as welcome after satiety as after disappointment; that background which the painter may not daub, be he master or bungler, and which, however awkward a figure we may have made in the foreground, remains ever our inviolable asylum, where no indignity can assail, no personality can disturb us.’ ― Henry David Thoreau

The author, Mona Arshi, was a Human Rights lawyer before publishing ’Small Hands, her poetry collection which won the Forward Prize in 2015. This is her fiction debut, one which focuses on silence, the things that create that belief that we need to keep silent - mental health, family, physical and sexual assault, and more. It is heartbreaking at moments, but beautifully heartfelt and intensely felt by the reader.

I listened to this novel, narrated by the author which made these stories feel that much more authentic and which brought this collection and the portraits of these people vividly to life. This isn’t a light and fluffy collection, it is often profoundly disturbing, but it is, or seems to be a realistic portraiture of the affect that assault, physical violation, mental health have on one’s personal life and family. Memories that can haunt one throughout their lives.

A beautifully written, heartbreaking and powerful story.

Pub Date: 16 Nov 2021

Many thanks for the ARC provided by Saga Egmont Audio
#SomebodyLovesyou #NetGalley

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I could heavily relate to the struggle of wanting to please and fit into a multigenerational immigrant family with mental health struggles (as most people who have immigrated will tell you is true), so listening to the narrator recount Ruby's thoughts and feelings on her surroundings was beautifully explored. Ruby is mute, but she is in no way silent as the world around her still turns; she engages with every piece of herself and ensures that while she may be overlooked by those who think she cannot contribute verbally, her being is enough.

With Ruby being mute in mind, the author's works became more creative as they built up the world and showed how mental illness differs from disabilities and neglect.

I give this book 3.5 stars.

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Somebody Loves You was such a wonderful, if not bleak read. It was darkly funny at times and tender at others. It dealt with the themes of suburbia and its problematic other side, mental illness and the idea of silence as a refuge. It was full of astute observations about life and the living of it, as well as touching and brutal honesty. Watching a child cope with a mother who struggles was heartbreaking and important. I found this slim little book to be full of things to unpack. Loved it.

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Format: audiobook
Author: Mona Arshi ~ Title: Somebody Loves You ~ Narrators: Mona Arshi
Content: 4 stars ~ Narration: 5 stars

This is quite a unique work of fiction. Short and powerful vignettes that melt into a novel. Just like pieces of poems, words carefully chosen to sound just right. I’ve read a few similar works, where poems form a novel. But this one is still pretty unique in style.

Through these vignettes author tells us a story about Ruby and her family. Beautiful and sometimes heartbreaking. I didn’t know what to expect. But in the end, I liked it.

Narrated by the author, which is very good. Her voice is calm, and it suits these vignettes.

Thanks to Saga Egmont Audio the for the ARC and the opportunity to listen to this! All opinions are my own.

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I'm not the one for audiobooks as well as this type of genre, but somebody loves you by Mona Arshi did work for me. I liked that the book was narrated by the author herself. She does have the power to pull her audience in. The narration was soothing to the ear and clear as well.

The book is a collection of vignettes of a girl named Rudy who gives up talking at a very young age. Sparkling and heartbreaking with a wry humour the stories are an emotional riot.

A sure recommended book if you are someone who loves poetry and prose.

Thanks to the Netgalley, the publishers Saga Egmont Audio and the author Mona Arshi for this Arc.

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I've never read a book quite like this one. It felt like I was transported into the swirling mind of a girl trying to make sense of her world. Poetic in prose, the short stories opened into the emotion of the character, Ruby, more than the linear coming of age novels. Ruby decides not to speak and thus is quite attuned to picking up all that seems to go on around her with a deeper knowing I can only assume must come from not planning the verbal response to which I am so accustomed.

It took me a little bit to get into the style of this book. Once I did, I came to feel as though I was a chosen participant in someone's vulnerability. There were some really funny anecdotes as well as very poignant moments all shared with a particular succinctness that still lacked nothing. I enjoyed the family dynamics, specifically with her sister Rania, and how each member of the family was deeply affected by the others not least by the Mother who battled depression. I kept thinking this must be a memoir!

I enjoyed this picture of a book. I would absolutely recommend it to someone who is looking for a different type of story. This is a deeper look into another human being; an exercise in growing empathy. I will be thinking about this one for a while. Thank you, NetGalley for the opportunity to listen to this ALC. The narrator, who is the author, did a fabulous job and made it truly feel authentic.

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This is a very moving and unique book. The challenges of mental health needs, growing up and the relationships you have along the way. I listened to this as an audio book and found the narrators tones and intonations added even more emotion and feeling to this book - she was so amazing and told this story so well. The power of a mothers love was so perfectly encaptured in this story.

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Mona Arshi's debut novel about a young, mute girl called Ruby is told in vignettes, most of them short and sharp, with bursts of humour, wit and acidity.

It's a really innovative look at family life and sisterhood, and through Ruby's mutism, we explore ideas around silence; what we choose to talk about and what we choose to leave unsaid, and the sense of safety silence gives us.

The story lurches from different points in the timeline in a way I thought worked really well - the book becomes driven by themes, rather than a chronological narrative thread, so if that's not your cup of tea this may not be the perfect match for you, but I think the disjointed nature of the narrative makes for a really interesting snippet of family life and made me closer to Ruby as a character.

I think the narrator is perfect for this book - very reflective, with the perfect tone. At four hours long, it's a great little short read, and there are definitely chapters (like Ruby's sister's encounter with a dead neighbour's son), that I won't be forgetting any time soon.
Thank you NetGalley for my audio copy.

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A gentle story of Ruby and Rania who live with their immigrant parents in England. Delightfully narrated by the author, it tells the tale of Ruby and her selective mutism, her rebellious sister Rania and her mother who suffers from depression brought on by her loneliness and all the difficulties of daily life and being afar from her homeland. Day to day life of this family is realistic and enjoyable, with high and low points as with everyone’s lives, and the sisters manoeuvre theirs with style and honesty. Their mother’s sadness affects their daily lives as aunties and family from afar arrive to support the family, and they all learn to make accommodations for her, to support her.

An enjoyable audiobook
Thanks to #NetGalley for the opportunity to listen to this audiobook in exchange for an honest review

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This audiobook was amazing. This wonderful collection of stories follow a girl who can not speak and all the problems in her life some are rather devastating. The book was read by the author and she was amazing and brought so much life to the story. This literary fiction was so well wrote it brought laughter and chills, so many emotions held within each word. You instantly form a connection to the characters. The author worked wonderfully to incorporate details from everyday life. Writing about difficult issues such as rape and racism. I was left feeling like the main character was also autistic with all the different mannerism and thoughts etc.
The cover is beautiful, this alone made me want to read this book.
The story-line maybe a little disjointed but this made me feel it was the point the author was making about the main character and adding to the way she is. It didn't leave me confused and was in no way boring or depressing.
The authors use of words and lifting her tone really made the books atmosphere wonderful.
I would like to thank both the author and publishers for bringing thisperfect novel to life.

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This short novel is lyrical and poetic in its narration, a treat! Told from the perspective of a girl who has chosen silence to the bewilderment of her family, each chapter reads like a character study in vignette. The reader is given observations on love, race, mental health, sex, religion, immigration, marriage, friendship, etc, from a single perspective over the course of her life.

The audiobook is read by the author, who delivers her story beautifully.

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What a collection something I plan on getting in print as soon as I can financially.
I hope to be able to revisit regularly

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