The greatest risk is not taking one.
In Nicola Yoon’s debut novel, Madeline Whittier suffers from Severe Combined Immunodeficiency, which basically means she’s allergic to the world. Her mother and nurse are the only people she is allowed to have contact with. Her house has a special type of air filter and anyone who comes into the house must be sterilized in the air lock before entering.
One day, a new family moves in next door, completely changing her life forever.
Written in Maddy’s point of view, in more of a diary or journal format, I was really able to connect with her as a character and understand more of what she was going through. I loved that it wasn’t written in numbered chapters, but more like different sections, which are quite short in length, making it a short, but fantastic read.
The illustrations, hand-written lists, and online chats between her and Olly help make the story feel more personal.
When it comes to characters, Yoon does an amazing job. Maddy is a huge book lover and a bit sarcastic. One might think that Maddy would be depressed or act unhappy about her situation, but she is determined to make the best it. Olly is sweet, caring, and funny. He doesn’t look at Maddy like she’s weird because of her disease; in fact, he actually wants to be there for her, instead of running away.
Carla, her nurse, cares for Maddy as if she’s her own daughter. Sometimes I got the feeling that Carla cared more about Maddy’s feelings than her own mother, Pauline. Her mother is very strict and overbearing. Of course, looking at her daughter’s situation, it’s understandable as to why, but sometimes it’s a bit too much.
The last half of the book had me on the edge of my seat and I had to resist the urge to read ahead to find out what happened next. Now, I won’t spoil anything for you, but there is a huge plot twist towards the ending!
Overall, I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it for anyone who loves a good contemporary young adult read. Even if you don’t typically read young adult, don’t let that cause you to miss out on this amazing story.
Movie News! Everything, Everything is currently being made into a movie adaptation, starring Amandla Stenberg and Nick Robinson. A premiere date has yet to be released.
Nicola Yoon is releasing her second novel, The Sun Is Also A Star, on November 1st, so be sure to add that book to your list as well!
Books Similar To Everything, Everything:
- The Anatomical Shape Of A Heart by Jenn Bennett
- Written In The Stars by Aisha Saeed
- First & Then by Emma Mills
Keep reading book lovers!
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Featured image via The Story Sanctuary