Sunday, November 15, 2015


Everything, Everything
Madeline Whittier has been a prisoner in her own home for most of her life.  When she was less than a year old, she was diagnosed with SCID - Severe Combined Immunodeficiency disease.  Most recognize the rare condition if it is referred to as "bubble boy/girl" disease.  Exposure to even a tiny virus or bacteria could have deadly consequences to someone with SCID.

Madeline's mother is the only family she has left since a tragic accident claimed the lives of her father and brother.  Fortunately for Madeline, her mother is a doctor and able to manage her care so she has been able to reach her eighteenth birthday.  A nurse monitors Madeline's condition throughout the day until her mother comes home.  Her days are filled with online education, reading her vast collection of books, and then movie time and mind-challenging games with her mother in the evenings.

Life changes for Madeline the day a moving truck pulls into the driveway next door.  An curiously attractive young man is part of the family that moves in.  His window faces hers and communication commences almost immediately. 

Madeline and Olly communicate mostly via IM.  Keeping him a secret from her mother is fairly easy, but Carla, her nurse, discovers the relationship quite quickly.  It doesn't take much convincing for Madeline to get Carla to allow a series of short visits.  Olly agrees to the complicated decontamination process required before he can enter the house.  Madeline's secret is out as Olly learns that contact with the outside world's germs could kill the girl he is rapidly falling in love with.

EVERYTHING, EVERYTHING is author Nicola Yoon's first book, and it is an amazing treasure.  I was hooked by Madeline's independent voice and her incredibly positive outlook despite her limited life.  As her new experiences reveal facts she never dreamed possible, Madeline becomes determined to live life on her own terms.  This book will be a sure winner with my students.

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