A heart breaking read, with a plot twist that resulted in my staying up until 3:30am to finish it. A short spoiler free review of a beautiful piece of fiction.
Maddy has severe combined immunodeficiency, meaning that she is allergic ‘to the world’. She has never been outside of her home, and only spends time with her mum and her nurse Carla.
However then Olly and his family move in next door, and Olly and Maddy fall for each other. This book brilliantly captures the feelings of your first love. It’s really beautiful how they connect when they at first, only see each through the window and then later develops through emails.
The relationship between Maddy and her mum is also interesting. As her mum is also her doctor Maddy never has need of anyone else, so their relationship is close. They play games, watch movies and appear to tell each other everything. But when Olly enters in to Maddy’s life, she hides this from her mum. This felt so real, and so sad that Olly in a sense comes between them. It’s a sad reality that when you start to fall for someone for the first time, being so overwhelmed with the new type of love that you neglect the people around you. It’s a harsh truth that is described beautifully in this book. Of course, it’s amplified here as well because Maddy’s mum is also overprotective due to Maddy’s health complications.
Prior to Olly Maddy lives her life through books and learning things inside her bubble. I loved reading how Carla encourages her to live her life, even just inside her home. I love how well written the characters are, how everyone feels so real, and how heartbreaking the end of the book is.
I was so unprepared for the end of the book. It follows a predictable pattern, Maddy and Olly slowly taking more risks to get to know each other as they fall in love, and the feeling intensifies. Olly’s home life being on the face of it so opposite to Maddy’s, it is amazing how similar they really are. Then it hits, and the plot twist is a slow realisation that is so uncomfortable to read, but you can’t help but keep reading. It’s such a beautiful book, written so well, with different forms of writing inside – for example Maddy’s diary, and their chats being as we would read chats.
Overall this book was brilliant. I admittedly originally bought this book because the cover art was gorgeous, but the blurb was short. But the last line of the blurb is what drew me in, ‘Everything, Everything is about the crazy risks we take for love’.
5/5 – this book is brilliant and I read it so quickly. I really cannot wait to see the film adaption, and I cannot recommend this enough.