There are books out there in the world that have the ability to move you in a way that maybe you did not think was possible. Every book has something to teach its readers and sometimes one must dig deeper into the words on the pages to really dissect the meaning. This past week I finished reading the brilliant novel entitled Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon. It is a very quick read, but comes with a powerful message. In the novel we meet Madeline Whittier, an 18 year old girl that is allergic to the outside world. She lives her life stuck indoors with her main interactions being between her and her nurse, Carla, and her mother. Madeline seems to handle her predicament surprisingly well, especially since she has not truly known a life any different, up until a new family moves in across the street.
The Bright family consists of Mom, Dad, Kara, and Oliver (Olly). Madeline is captivated at first glance by Olly and his dark clothing and the mysterious look about him. Fortunately, for her, his room’s window happens to be right across from her own. Soon enough, they begin IM’ing and growing this bond between them without being able to see each other in person. After so long, Madi is able to convince Carla to allow him to come visit her, unknowingly to her mom, with the only exception being that they are not allowed to touch since she is sick. Now let’s be honest, when you put two teenagers with feelings for each other in a room together alone, something is bound to happen at some point. That’s exactly what happens and not much longer down the timeline, love blossoms.
I do not want to go into much more description of the novel because I want you to be able to read it for yourself and get the full experience. Some reviewers of Everything, Everything thought that the relationship between Olly and Madi made the story cheap and just like another YA romance novel. Yes, I am a sucker for romance, I admit it, but their relationship is not what this novel is all about. It’s about loving life and taking risks, if that means you are able to fully live and feel alive. If a part of that risk is falling in love, like it is for Madi, then so be it. I have always believed that you have to love what you do in life no matter if what you love makes you a lot of money or earns you grand recognition. It is your life to live so as long as you love how you are spending your time, then who can judge you? I greatly implore you to take on the journey that is Everything, Everything with your own eyes and mind. After putting my tablet down upon completion of the novel, I knew I had gleaned more knowledge on something I already believed in and I hope it fills you with that same feeling along with a newfound purpose. Everything, Everything, the movie version, will be hitting theaters on May 19th and you can bet ten-to-one that I will be there with my favorite movie snack, super buttery popcorn.
Below I have included some of my favorite quotes from the novel along with some lyrics from the song “It’s Not Right for You” by The Script, that is in agreement with my statement of loving what you do in life. If you have read Everything, Everything please comment your thoughts below about it, I would love to discuss it further!
There will always be bumps along the way in life, but if you love what you do, it makes those bumps all the easier to conquer.
With much love,
“It’s hard enough trying to live your life, but not following your dreams made you dead inside…”
“If you don’t love what you do…it’s not right, it’s not right for you…if you even have to think about it…You got one life to love what you do…”
“Everything’s a risk. Not doing anything is a risk. It’s up to you.”
“Spoiler alert: Love is worth everything. Everything.”
“Life is a gift, Don’t forget to live it.”-Carla
“Sometimes I reread my favorite books from back to front. I start with the last chapter and read backward until I get to the beginning. When you read this way, characters go from hope to despair, from self-knowledge to doubt. In love stories, couples start out as lovers and end as strangers. Coming-of-age books become stories of losing your way. Your favorite characters come back to life.” -Madeline Whittier
“Just because you can’t experience everything doesn’t mean you shouldn’t experience anything.”
“Q: Will I encounter turbulence? A: Yes. Into all lives a little turbulence must fall.”