Tag Archives: young adult

Book Review: “Everything Everything” by Nicola Yoon

Everything Everything

Title:  Everything, Everything

Author:  Nicola Yoon

Pages:  352

Synopsis (from bn.com): 

Risk everything . . . for love.

What if you couldn’t touch anything in the outside world? Never breathe in the fresh air, feel the sun warm your face . . . or kiss the boy next door? In Everything, Everything, Maddy is a girl who’s literally allergic to the outside world, and Olly is the boy who moves in next door . . . and becomes the greatest risk she’s ever taken.

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.

Everything, Everything will make you laugh, cry, and feel everything in between. It’s an innovative,  inspiring, and heartbreakingly romantic debut novel that unfolds via vignettes, diary entries, illustrations, and more. 

My thoughts:

As I sit here on the couch recovering from a trio of “itis”s – pharyngitis, laryngitis, tonsillitis, I figure there is no time like the present to get caught up on my book reviews – and I am really, really behind at this point – WOW!

I am normally a cozy mystery/mystery/psychological suspense reader, but ever since joining the “Thirteen Reasons Why” craze recently (the review on that is coming later as I really have to formulate my thoughts on that one), I am completely addicted right now to Young Adult Fiction of a certain kind.  I’m not even sure what to call it – it is those books based on characters that are dealing with a particular problem such as a medical issue, mental illness issue, death/dying, grieving, drug problem, etc.  I am not interested in normal “boy meets girl, boy falls in love with girl” fiction or any science fiction/dystopian type of young adult fiction.   Totally addicted to lets call it young adult problem literature right now – so if you are reading this and know of great books, please comment as I’m looking for more!!

Now on to Everything, Everything.  I saw a commercial that this was going to be a movie, read what the theme was about, and knew I needed to try it.  I am glad that I did.

I truly enjoyed almost all of this novel.  I loved the plot line of a young girl dealing with a disease that basically kept her inside, isolated away from the world, and how she dealt with this along the way.

I loved the themes in the book of resilience, isolation, relationships, and risk.

What I didn’t enjoy at all was the overall pace of the book particularly toward the end.  I thought the way the story ended was fantastic, but right before the end the book felt like it went from 0 – 60 mph not in any good way.  For me I felt that the book was rushed at the end with little explanation or closure for me – I wanted much,, much more in depth about this storyline.   I was left wanting more – again not in a good way – but feeling as if I had been cheated of a great story.  Perhaps the author can do a sequel so I feel more satisfied 🙂

Overall, a strong book worth reading in my opinion.  Great plot, great themes, and I want a sequel for that great ending twist.

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

 

 

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Filed under Book Reviews, Fiction, Young Adult Fiction

Book Review – “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak

    Title:  The Book Thief

Author:  Markus Zusak

ISBN:  9780375842207

Publisher:  Random House

 

Synopsis (from bn.com):

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.

 

My thoughts:  Well a huge thank you once again to my book club for introducing me to a book that I didn’t even know existed and hence would have never read without them!  My book club chose this is as our September selection and just discussed it tonight in fact.

I really enjoyed this book.  Don’t let the fact that it is technically characterized as a young adult book fool you, the topic and themes are heavy and thought-provoking.  This novel is set in Nazi Germany in 1930s – 1940s.  Liesel, a young orphan becomes intrigued with books, reading, and all that words have to offer.  The story, narrated by Death itself, follows her as she comes of age in Nazi Germany.

This is a novel about friendship, love, loss, connection, the power of words for good and evil, grief,  . . . and so much more!

It truly is a heartwarming, if not at times gut-wrenching book as it portrays quite vividly scenes from Nazi Germany!

As you are reading consider the following question/thoughts:

“How is the narrator, Death, characterized in the book?  Does it change as the book progresses?”

“Consider how much of our daily lives, thoughts, and beliefs are truly built simply on someone elses words.”

“Consider how guilt is a prevailing theme in this book.  What role does it play?

Truly an enjoyable book!

And remember,

Books Are Life,

Heather

 

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Filed under Book Club, Book Reviews, Fiction