(I was sent an ARC of this book in exchange for this review. My opinions haven’t been affected as a result.)
As a blogger, I hear about a lot of books that are upcoming, and books that I’m told that I simply must be excited about. But of all the books that I’ve been told about and have read recently, I definitely think this one’s one that you should be excited for as well. It may be Louise’s debut, but I couldn’t be happier that it’s being published.
Norah is confined to her house, having to live with agoraphobia and OCD. She looks upon the outside through glass, but then her new neighbour Luke turns up. Norah wants to be the girl she thinks Luke deserves, and ‘her skies unfiltered by mental illness.’ But instead, her newfound love and bravery opens her up to plenty of unexpected truths.
Any book that is able to talk about and feature mental illness in this way deserves a lot of recognition.
Norah is a fantastically written-about character, and so is Luke and every other character for that matter. You’re able to completely empathise with Norah, regardless of whether you struggle with OCD or any kind of mental illness, and I think that’s a really good quality about Norah; you can completely understand her.
Louise is a really amazing writer; she has a unique style filled with emotion, but a solid writing style that keeps you gripped on the plotline too.
This book really carries something even bigger than that though. This book is a great novel, but I think it serves a greater purpose as being an aid to those who are affected by mental illness. Holly Bourne called it “one of the most beautiful and unflinching depictions of agoraphobia” she had ever read and I think that’s more than fair to say, but to those who are facing a struggle, I think this book is perfect. A lot of people can gain a lot of understanding and a lot of insight into mental illness from reading this book, and that can only be a good thing.
Perhaps you should just read it, and see what I mean. Louise is a new voice in YA, and definitely one of my favourite UKYA’s of the year so far.