I was afraid this book was going to be a Fault in Our Stars wannabe, but I was pleasantly surprised. Be warned that Richie, the narrator, is a dying teen who doesn’t mind talking about his urges and who uses very raunchy language to do so. His voice is utterly appropriate for a teen in his predicament, but not everyone will appreciate his smart mouth and rebellious spirit.
If you decide to give SUTHY a chance, and you get past Halloween night and don’t want to keep reading, it is probably not the book for you. It may not be for everyone, but I was hooked by the determination of Richie and Sylvie to LIVE, in their own way, by their own rules, while they still can.
P.S. The author wrote this as a short story in 2009 before John Green wrote Fault in Our Stars. In an interview with School Library Journal, she says,” … the real origins of this book go back much farther, to the many times that I stayed with my son in Babies Hospital … in New York City. There, I met all sort of kids—sick, wounded, all hurt in some way. The ones who have always stayed in my mind—and my dreams—are the teenagers, who were both heartbreaking and hilarious. Full of wit and spirit and rebellion, even in the face of devastating illnesses. I’ve never forgotten their voices. That’s really where Richie and Sylvie came from.”
Students, SUTHY contains mature subject matter and coarse language. As always, please adhere to your family’s values when choosing reading materials.