This innovative, heartfelt debut novel tells the story of a girl who’s literally allergic to the outside world. When a new family moves in next door, she begins a complicated romance that challenges everything she’s ever known. The narrative unfolds via vignettes, diary entries, texts, charts, lists, illustrations, and more.
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.
Hardcover, 307 pages
Expected publication: September 1st 2015 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
When I was thinking about this book and how I would describe it, the first thing that came to me mind was "Modern day Romeo and Juliet". Although Olly's parents weren't keeping him from Madeline. It still felt like Olly and Madeline were destined to be together and the odds were against them. I liked however that they communicated via instant messaging and through their bedroom windows. Although they did not have a close physical contact relationship, because of Madeline's illness, they grew close by talking. So I was able to get to know them both better and thus the connection between them felt real.
The book was told in first person narrative. Another thing that I thought worked for this story. I felt like I was experiencing everything through Madeline's eyes. From the first moment she saw Olly, to living her life with her disease, and first love. I am looking forward to reading the next book by this author.