Small Spaces

Sarah Epstein

Walker Books

April 2018

$19.99 AU

384p pb

ISBN: 978-1760650117

from Walker Books Australia...

Tash Carmody has been traumatised since childhood, when she witnessed her gruesome imaginary friend Sparrow lure young Mallory Fisher away from a carnival. At the time nobody believed Tash, and she has since come to accept that Sparrow wasn’t real. Now fifteen and mute, Mallory’s never spoken about the week she went missing. As disturbing memories resurface, Tash starts to see Sparrow again. And she realises Mallory is the key to unlocking the truth about a dark secret connecting them. Does Sparrow exist after all? Or is Tash more dangerous to others than she thinks?

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Small Spaces, written by Sarah Epstein follows Tash as she battles with traumatic memories from the past, wondering if she really saw her ‘imaginary friend’ Sparrow lure a young girl from the carnival, or whether she made it up. 

Small Spaces is a psychological thriller, and is most suitable for those ages 15+, as it has mild coarse language, and deals with some intense themes. For example, it covers mental illnesses, kidnapping, psychological manipulation, drugs, trust/friendship and traumatic pasts (PTSD). 

I loved this book very much, as it explored Tash’s story from her point of view. It made me feel what she was feeling: scared, worried, unsure. I felt her pain and confusion. I also loved how Epstein covers important themes that aren’t usually covered in most books, or if they are, they are romanticised. This novel shows the reality of mental illnesses and traumatic pasts.  The book is very easy to read. I found it easy to follow, despite the constant confusion the protagonist was in. It was so good, I literally could not put it down - I read it in one day!

Kimberley, age 15

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