21 July 2015
Rating: 4 / 5 stars
I received an ARC of this novel from the publisher for an honest review.
I have to admit, I was a little bit skeptical about this novel when I found out they had an ARC of it on NetGalley. After all, about 95% of the novel I've been able to find/receive from NetGalley have been huge disappoints and I'd all but given up on using the site. But Everything, Everything turned that around for me.
Everything, Everything is not your typical contemporary coming of age young adult novel. Sure, Madeline is a lot like other teenagers. She likes to IM and surf the internet. She digs architecture. She has a Gilmore Girls type relationship with her mother that is a little further from the norm, but it's believable considering what they've been through. And when the hot, rebel seeming stranger moves in across the street, Madeline is definitely feeling the romantic butterflies.
There is one thing, however, about Madeline that makes her a little unusual and makes Everything, Everything an unique tale (and it isn't the fact that she's home-schooled). It's her incurable disease that leaves her allergic to the world. Though Everything, Everything is another sappy YA romantic tale, it's told with quirk and charm (there are even pictures!) which give Madeline an interesting voice and make the romance tolerable. The fact that Olly's life isn't perfect either and that his character isn't one dimensional either helps too. The love at first sight also allows interesting developments between Madeline, her mother, and Carla.
The ending was a little disappointing, I will admit. I even had a suspicion that it was going to play out something along these lines, but I never could have guessed the extent of it or the full unraveling of the plot. Other than the slightly disappointing ending, this novel is a gem. The style adds humor to a sad, dark topic that is our main character's life. And sure, it is a little sugar sweet romantic/teen angsty, but it at least stems from a deeper, meaningful subject, so it's a lot easier to stomach than most of the YA romance out there.