Five Feet Apart by Rachael Lippincott with Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis. Simon & Schuster, 2018. ISBN 9781534437333
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4.5
Genre: Realistic fiction/romance
What did you like about the book? Teenagers Stella and Will meet in the hospital where each is being treated for cystic fibrosis. In alternating points of view, they tell of falling in love and wrestling with what their disease means for a relationship. Because of the stage of their illness, they hold a pool cue between them to keep their acutely damaged lungs from infection, hence the title. The romance is intense and lovely to behold, since the reader hears from both characters equally. The relationship is deepened almost immediately, as they have to have a conversation about mortality: neither has long to live with this disease, and their longing to touch each other is thwarted by the knowledge that if they get close, one or both of them could be furthered sickened and could die. Each character has serious family issues to deal with in addition to the CF, and watching them work them out is satisfying. In addition, the facts of living with cystic fibrosis are up close and presented in detail, which gives readers a view into a devastating disease that causes many to die just as they become adults. This book is a novelization of a screenplay of a film set to come out in the spring of 2019.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? For teen romance aficionados who liked John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars.
Who should buy this book? High schools and public libraries
Where would you shelve it ? Young adult fiction
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes, it’s a satisfying read.
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA
Date of review: January 10, 2019