Told in the first person by fifteen-year-old Mika with lively spontaneity and disarming humour, Freak City is a sensitive and convincing portrait of teenage life – from the torments experienced by adolescent boys in their obsession with sex to the difficulties of relating to their parents.
Inconsolable after being dumped by his girlfriend, Mika retreats for hours to the solitude of his bedroom. His best mates lure him into town to distract him, where they see an attractive young girl step out into the road without looking, causing a huge lorry to screech to a halt and miss her by a whisker. Soon after, Mika follows his ex to a house called ‘Freak City’, where he overhears her in the bar sniggering about him to her friends. Retreating to another room, he sees the girl who had nearly got run over, playing billiards. Without a word she hands him a cue. An older woman joins them, and starts making hand gestures to the girl, who responds in the same way. Mika realises she is deaf.
Alongside the agonies of teenage emotions in the course of their developing friendship, this captivating book is also a perceptive insight into the isolation experienced by the deaf.