EVERYTHING EVERYTHING BOOK REVIEW

Everything Everything is a novel about an 18-year-old girl, Madeline Whittier who lives in California Suburb with her mother, Pauline and her nurse, Carla, who takes care of her in the absence of her mother. Madeline has Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID), a rare autoimmune disease that blocks the body’s immune system from operating normally, making it receptive to even mild infections. Madeline’s mother, being a doctor forbids her from going out, narrowing her interactions with the outside world only to online schooling. Her overprotective mother maintained a sterile environment in the house to protect her daughter from a supposed illness as all she had was Madeline after the death of her husband and son.

The book proceeds further with a fresh character named Olly Bright. Olly moves into the house next door with his family. The two gradually develop a friendship through gestures, texting and looking at each other from bedroom windows. As the friendship blooms, Madeline opens up about her illness and Olly uncovers more about his haywire childhood and his abusive father. Madeline is drawn to Olly and seeks permission from Carla to allow Olly to visit her without letting her mother know. Carla tardily allows Olly and both, Madeline and Olly generate passionate emotions for each other.
Madeline for the first time decides to keep a little secret(Olly) from her mother which hampers the beautiful relationship she had with her mother and they go on becoming distant.
Madeline, annoyed, of course, because of her no exposure to the outside world takes a huge step to risk her life and leaves the house to take a trip to Hawaii with Olly in order to live a normal life.
The two try to make the most out of the trip but everything comes close to nothing when the illness of Madeline takes a toll on her. She faces breathing issues and is rushed to the nearest hospital. Madeline’s mother reaches the hospital and brings her back home, adding another restriction in Madeline’s unfair life- she cannot talk to Olly anymore.
Madeline starts to ignore messages of Olly. Daughter-mother relationship enhances and she gets back to reading books. By-and-by, Olly’s mother leaves her alcoholic husband, and she and her daughter move away to New York.
In the fulfilment of time, Madeline receives an email from the doctor who treated her in Maui saying that she likely does not have SCID. Madeline defies Pauline about the doctor’s message. Pauline denies the claim saying why would she snatch her daughter’s life. Convinced, Madeline shrugs off the thought of her being normal. Multiple things happened subsequently(contains spoiler*) and the book ends.

I highly recommend this book to beginners. However, Avid readers can totally skip this book, no issues. I cherished how this book made me laugh and smile at so many points but I cannot deny that the ending was disappointing. A beautiful mom and daughter relationship getting affected because of a boy is the last thing I would want to read but as this is a fictional book, I’ll take that. Talking about the other aspect of the book, I really liked Carla. She treated Madeline like her own daughter and that was adorable to read. In a nutshell, the book is amazing except the ending.

*Spoiler

Madeline told Carla about the mail. Carla admits that she suspects Pauline and begins investigating. Hopeful but sceptical Madeline examines the medical files her mother keeps in the house. She discovers that there are just common baby health issue documents and no formal evidence of her getting diagnosed with SCID as a baby and forthwith concludes that Pauline’s anguish over losing her husband and son, and her desire to protect her baby daughter, led her to deceive herself into believing that Madeline had the disease and demanded to be kept inside. This disintegrates Madeline’s final remainders of trust in her mother, and their relationship becomes increasingly strained. Agitated without Olly, New-independent Madeline uses her freedom to follow him to New York, where they are rejoined.

Some beautiful quotes from Everything Everything:-

  • “Sometimes you do things for the right reasons and sometimes for the wrong ones and sometimes it’s impossible to tell the difference.”
  • “You’re not living if you’re not regretting.”
  • “Wanting just leads to more wanting. There’s no end to desire.”
  • “Everything’s a risk. Not doing anything is a risk. It’s up to you.”
  • “In my head I know I’ve been in love before, but it doesn’t feel like it. Being in love with you is better than the first time. It feels like the first time and the last time and the only time all at once.”
  • “Life is a gift. Don’t forget to live it.”
  • “Just because you can’t experience everything doesn’t mean you shouldn’t experience anything.”

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Dancing and writing all night, looking for a taste of real life.

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Sakshi Sharma

Dancing and writing all night, looking for a taste of real life.