Failure to Communicate by Kaia Sønderby is an indie published sci-fi novel that was recommended to me a few times and was bought for me by the wonderful Veronica. I just had to give it a go and I’m so glad I did!
This indie published Science Fiction is such a fun read. We follow Xandri, an autistic woman in a universe where humans selectively altered genetics to remove neurodivergencies, meaning that she is just as, if not more, misunderstood to neurotypical people as today. She works as a Xeno-Liason, communication between her crew and any new species they discover and her methods are unique.
I really adored learning more about the characters as we progressed throughout this book. They really develop, both individually and also as a cohesive group. The different cultures that were present on the various planets that they visited were also fascinating. I have to admit as well that I adored the ship, and that was what solidified the Murderbot-esque feelings I got from this book. If you liked one I definitely think you’ll like the other!
I was recommended this book by two autistic reviewers, Bekka and Veronica, and they’ve stated that they love the representation in here. It’s not something I can speak on, but as someone who isn’t autistic I can say that it’s a fantastic delve into the internal workings of someone’s thoughts. And knowing that my friends say the rep is good? It just added an extra level.
On CAWPILE I rated this: Characters: 9. Atmosphere: 9, Writing: 8, Plot: 8, Intrigue: 8, Logic: 8 and Enjoyment: 8 giving an average of 8.29 and a 4.5* rating.
Highlight here for trigger warnings: ableism (intolerance of autism & neurodivergence), bullying, childhood (sexual) abuse, disordered eating, genocide (mentioned), gore, gun violence (mentioned), violence.
I’m so glad that I was pushed to pick up this book because I enjoyed it so much! I will definitely be picking up the sequel to this, and I’ll probably try out anything else written by Kaia Sønderby because I just enjoyed this book so much!
Have you got any books with good autism rep that you recommend? Have you picked up this book or anything else by this author? Let me know!