Published by Delacorte Books for Young Readers on September 1st 2015
Also by this author: The Sun Is Also a Star
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, The Book Depository
My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.
But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly.
Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster.
I’ve heard some amazing things about this book so I was excited to finally pick it up for myself. It turned out to be more brilliant than I was even expecting. Madeline is a witty and fascinating character and she’s
probably one of the quirkiest narrators I’ve seen in a YA book for a long time.
The book follows Madeline, an eighteen year old girl who hasn’t left her house since she was a baby due to the rare disease SCID. Maddy is allergic to pretty much everything and has to live in a bubble. Her only contact comes from her nurse Carla and her mother, who also doubles as her doctor. Any visitors that she does have are forced to go through a serious examination and decontamination. Her whole safe world is turned upside down by her new neighbor Olly. What follows is a heartwarming love story between the two as they must face these real life issues.
The characters in this book were absolutely fantastic. Our heroine Madeline has many awesome little quirks, including the hilarious spoilers that she wrote about classic novels. She also draws entertaining illustrations that will certainly amuse readers. For someone who’s never been outside of her house, she is still extremely cultured and full of wit. Now that I’ve spent time talking about Madeline, I want to talk about the super swoon worthy love interest of hers. Olly is just as smart and witty as Madeline. He also is insanely charming and I love how protective he is of the people he cares about.
Focusing on the relationship itself, Maddy and Olly gradually begin a relationship that affectionately begins through instant messaging and slowly progresses into in person meetings. I love this relationship and the life experience that Olly teaches Madeline as he becomes her first love. The roadblocks placed in front of them seemed very real to me and not at all cliche like some Young Adult romances can get.
This is a very fast paced read due to the short chapters and how it isn’t always traditional chapters. Meaning, some will just be illustrations, Madeline’s book spoilers, or emails between Madeline and Olly. It’s a book with a totally unique plot filled with heartwarming character to match. What more could you ask for from a Young Adult book? I strongly recommend picking this book up in September when it’s officially released!