REVIEW: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon


Everything, Everything captured my attention as soon as I read the first page. The debut novel of Jamaican-American author Nicola Yoon, it was published in 2015, and a movie adaptation was released in 2017. The book is a coming of age story about 18-year-old Madeline Whittier, who has been diagnosed with a severe condition that does not allow her to leave her house or interact with anything that has not been sanitized. But, she is tired of having her doctor mom look after, and she wants to explore the world.

The book starts off when Madeline Whittier watches a new family move in next to her house. She begins to become more interested in the family, especially the family’s teenage boy, Olly. They get to know each other, and Madeline gets more curious about the world outside her house and starts to break rules set in place by her doctor mom.

Each of the characters have very specific personalities that are unique to them, just like everyone in real life. Reading about their personalities and how they react to different situations was quite interesting. Despite being stuck inside her home her entire life, Madeline Whittier has become a sweet but curious 18-year-old. Olly is a genius in math who likes to invent things on his roof.

The book is very easy and quick to read. The language is fairly simple but clearly meant for a teenage audience. I enjoyed when some chapters would focus more on illustrations (for example, medical charts of Madeline’s health or her journal entries). It would be fun to take time and read all the small details included in them even if they did not add much to the story.

There are very important topics discussed in the book. It mentions overprotectiveness and shielding of parents, grief over losing a loved one and others that make the book relevant to read. The balancing of problems and their solutions is good. Often, books are overloaded with issues and can be dragged on without a clear end, but this book has a good balance between the two.

I really enjoyed reading Everything, Everything. Its story is beautifully written and made me think of different issues in the world. All chapters were a good length to keep me guessing, and the language is easily understandable. The book is a must-read for anyone interested in romance or young adult books.