Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon
Published: September 1st 2015 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
“If my life were a book and you read it backward, nothing would change. Today is the same as yesterday. Tomorrow will be the same as today. In the Book of Maddy, all the chapters are the same.”
You may have heard of the disease “Severe Compromised Immunodeficiency” or “SCID” after the movie bubble boy that came out in 2001. (That’s where I first heard about it.) That’s what Maddie has, that’s why she was always sick as a baby and that’s why she hasn’t been outside of her room since she was little.
I always find it interesting to read about people, things and situations that I know nothing about. To get a window into a life different than your own. And a disease like this special sparks interest. What would it be like to not be able to leave your house? What is it like to not be able to have human contact?
“This is why people touch. Sometimes words are just not enough.”
This book had enormous potential! Potential to be something really real and interesting. Then I remembered that it’s a YA novel and it probably wasn’t going to go into endless detail of decontamination processes and those things.
It’s actually a sort of love story combined with a coming of age story, filled with limitations and heartbreak.
What I love about it is this: it’s just an average story, about a not so average girl, who falls head over heels in love (like most teenagers) and defies her parents (normal). And she just so happens to be biracial.
I think we need more characters and stories about “normal” biracial people. It doesn’t always have to be about the fact that they are biracial and that struggle. In this case, it has nothing to do with the actual story! And I love that!! It takes away the fact and issue of race and just tells a story. It normalizes it. It bypasses the whole debate and struggle of race and just says “I’m gonna live my life now, and this is it!”
It’s no secret that I’m partial to biracial literature, I like finding words I can relate to and feel at home with. Just like I like finding dolls that are tanned.
Apart from that, I thought the story was cute. Not really surprising (but I am hardly the target audience) but still entertaining. I gave the book to a teenager, and she’s enjoying it a lot! I’m excited to watch the movie, and I’m so happy they didn’t whitewash the characters!
“Everyone thinks they’re special,” he says. “Everyone’s a snowflake, right? We’re all unique and complicated. “