The story is about Madeline Whittier who has lived her entire life since early infancy inside a sterile environment. Cause she has a rare disease called SCID and due to this illness she’s unable to leave her house. She’s allergic to everything outside. She can’t even be around people unless they’ve been decontaminated first. So she stays resigned to her situation and hasn’t come into contact with the outside world all throughout her 17 years of living.
Maddy’s mom is a doctor and her life is all about taking care of her daughter suffering from SCID. For her education, she is home-schooled by the tutors through computer.
The people who can enter the house, (mostly/only) such as her nurse Carla, have to go through an hour of decontamination each time.
Oneday, Maddy sees an unhappy family moving in across the street which consists of an abusive father, a terrorized mother and two kids – Kara and Oliver. Oliver has immediately attracted Maddy’s attention.
Olly sees Maddy in her window. Over time, he writes his e-mail address on the window.
Olly and Madeline take small steps, they begin IM’ing each other.
When Olly and his sister came to give cake in a friendly courtesy as just moved-in to their neighbors, Carla made them wait a whole week before another, to ensure there were no deleterious health repercussions for Maddy.
The wait seemed endless to Maddy. She mused “I’m sort of convinced that time has literally, and not just metaphorically slowed down, but that’s the kind of thing that would make headlines.”
For the first time, Maddy begins to want more than she has.
Nurse Carla has her own 18-year-old and she takes Maddy’s longing to heart.
She arranges for Olly to meet and spend time with Maddy by going through decontamination and have visits during the day keeping this as secret from Maddy’s mom, who would never allow it.
They have more visits and chatting through mails thereafter and get closer.
Then one day, through her window, Maddy sees something that causes her to forget everything else and she runs outside to Olly’s rescue.
Later, Maddie even finally wishes to do anything to experience some outdoor life so she decided to go on a trip to Hawaii with Olly.
“Everything’s a risk. Not doing anything is a risk. It’s up to you.”
What happened when she gets out of her shell to experience the world follows the rest of the story.
A big twist near the end actually succeeds in turning the story into a different one.
All compile to make for an outstanding page-turner. The writing is completely charming and really funny. I adored Madeline and Olly together. I thought they were both great. Their IM interactions and e-mails always made me smile.
I watched the movie right after I finished the book and I quite liked it too. If you’re looking for a sweet YA read that will give you the feels – pick this one up!
Everything everything is full of heart and feels.
Spoiler alert: Maddy’s personal one-line review for the book “The Little Prince” is “Love is worth everything. Everything”. The story would explain how it is related to the title.