The novel “so much to tell you” by john Marsden, explores the concept of change and growth of the main character marina. The novel is about her personal struggle to become whole again after the tragic events that have occurred prior to the beginning of the novel.
We see this through, the contrast of marinas character at the beginning to the end. We trace her personal journey and her healing through the novel and are given more insight as she develops.
John Marsden has written this novel in the first person perspective, this gives us a deeper connection to marina. We only get her perspective on the way things are, unless she chooses to write about what the other characters are saying, doing and behaving. From these journal style writings we can see that she wants to isolate herself from society, to hide her from the rest of the world.
Marina has become a selective mute, in reaction to the traumatic events that occurred before the beginning of the novel. Extract from novel “I have been sent here, to learn to speak again, because my mother can’t stand my silent presence at home” we can see from this example in the text that she has been sent away by her mother, who from marinas perspective, just wanted to get her out of the way. Throughout the novel, the tone changes, at the start marinas tone is dark, harsh, cold and blunt reinforcing her isolation and detachment from the rest of the world. She doesn’t want to be seen and gives everyone her “famous cockroach impersonation”, she “slinks along the walls and corridors”.
As the story progresses. Her tone changes as she learns to accept what has happened, and gradually begins to heal At the start of the journal entries, marina “play’s it safe” and just records daily observations the reasons behind this are that she doesn’t want anyone to find out about her, so she guards herself and her writings closely. As the novel progresses, marina’s writings become more complex and articulate, as she becomes more in touch with herself and her feelings. Marina thinks of her silence as her “fortress” but also refers to it as her “prison” this is a use of juxtaposition. It portrays how her “fortress” is a safe place for her and helps her survive, but is also contradictory as it is also her prison and conceals her, and her true feelings from others.
The reader can instantly relate to Marina’s character and how she feels through the use of this journal, she also brings life to the other characters in the novel, by telling us about how much of a part they have to play in her life and whether or not this is a positive relationship. Cathy. One of the girls in Marinas dorm never gives up on her. She is always supportive and encouraging. This has a positive effect on Marina and helps her to heal.
The author has used a variety of techniques to make this story interesting and engaging for the teenage audience. He provides a character that all young adults can relate to. Who tells the story with a realism that gets you hooked instantly. Through reading this novel I have grown fond of Marina and I can associate myself to her struggle to be whole again. This is an intriguing read that left me wanting more.