I don’t know how to describe this book; this book completely took me by surprise.
I had been meaning to read this book for quite some time and I finally got around to reading it.
And I am so glad that I read it.
This is an epic book jam-packed with a lot of surprising twists.
The heroine, Maddy has been suffering from a form of SCID for as far as she could remember. Putting in a nutshell, she’s allergic to the world; the trigger can be anything –dust, food, spice, people, literally EVERYTHING can trigger a bout of lethal allergic reactions. She is really, severely, ill and has never left her house.
Only two people in the world come into contact with her – her mother and her nurse, Carla. Her father and her brother died in a traffic accident when she was very little and she’s been leading a monotonous, yet good life with her mother ever since.
Until, a family moves in next door.
The boy, Olly has some very intriguing quality – he always dressed in BLACK. Black pants, black T-shirt and black cap (or something, I totally forget.)
Although they cannot communicate face-to-face because of Maddy’s condition, they come up with other ways to hang out –Emails, Instant Messages, or even directly write on the windowpane. They instantly hit it off with each other and such interactions gradually make Maddy want to know Olly more and more – and see the world outside her house.
Well, that’s all I can tell you about the story; I think it’s best that you dive right into the story pretty blindly and see what happens with your own two eyes.
The way this book narrates the story is quite interesting as well. As I mentioned earlier, it’s got Emails, IMs, and a lot of interesting graphics and they reflect Maddy’s unique, winsome character very well.
The writing is also amazing and fantastic. Although it’s written in very simple sentences, It somehow has very literary quality which is kind of reminiscent of Classic literature.
The style is what I find most scintillating. Rather than weaving long sentences to express Maddy’s feelings, Nicola Yoon chops up the sentence in small bits and just throws them out. And those sentences sank in on me very naturally without a hitch and then hit me like a jolt. I felt for Maddy. I swear I did.
The cast of characters is also amazing. Particularly Olly is just lovable and as he says so himself, he is sexy! And gentle. He doesn’t come across as a red-blooded adolescent; he really cares about Maddy and understands they need to take their time instead of rushing things in the heat of passion. I really like him, he is special.
The fact that Olly himself has some issues in his family enriches the story, I think.
He must have been mentally bruised by such issues, and witnessing what exactly he has gone through is what exactly urges Maddy to risk everything she has.
My heart was screaming; Nooooooooo
The twist that’s in store later in the story came totally unexpected – I was talking to myself out loud, “What the heck?!” It made me so mad that I was all up for condoning what Maddy does to one particular character from then onwards. I have never felt so infuriated over a book. The anger literally consumed me.
That said, the story does end on a positive, uplifting note.
I was positively appalled and delighted to read the last page. The closing is just amazing, beautifully tying everything into one. It made me breathe a sigh of admiration. I couldn’t find words to describe my feelings other than ‘It was so beautiful!!”
I am so glad that I finally read this book. It is totally a gem for me.
I highly recommend that you pick it up.