Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Review: One by Sarah Crossan

Title: One
Author: Sarah Crossan
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Verse
Source: Bloomsbury

Grace and Tippi are twins – conjoined twins.

And their lives are about to change.

No longer able to afford homeschooling, they must venture into the world – a world of stares, sneers and cruelty. Will they find more than that at school? Can they find real friends? And what about love?

But what neither Grace or Tippi realises is that a heart-wrenching decision lies ahead. A decision that could tear them apart. One that will change their lives even more than they ever imagined…

From Carnegie Medal shortlisted author Sarah Crossan, this moving and beautifully crafted novel about identity, sisterhood and love ultimately asks one question: what does it mean to want and have a soulmate?
Review by Nara

To be completely honest, I'm not the biggest fan of verse novels. I kind of don't see the point of them? If I wanted to read poetry, I'd go read some poetry. Besides, the few verse novels I've read seem to basically be normal novels where someone has gone and randomly pressed the enter key to break up the lines. Well, I can say that I must not have been reading very good verse novels, because the way that Sarah Crossan uses the medium of poetry is quite fantastic.

I don't think I've ever read a novel about conjoined twins, YA or not, and this one seemed to be very well researched, especially judging by the author's note. I did appreciate that Crossan perhaps didn't want to overwhelm the reader with knowledge, but I was a bit confused about how basic things were done, like even just walking and things like that. I guess since they've been doing it since they were young, they've kind of just made up their own gait? I can see why people like to make reality TV shows out of this stuff; it would be pretty interesting seeing how they compensate for the conjoint twin-ness.

I did feel like the storyline was a bit basic. I mean, it's kind of obvious even before reading the book that there's going to be a decision about whether they want to get surgery to separate. And you know that love is going to be involved somehow, considering they're teenage girls in a YA novel. But I didn't mind that the story wasn't super creative, since the book was so beautifully written.

If you haven't read a good verse novel before and want to give one a go, One is a pretty good start. The poetic nature of the writing greatly improves the story, giving it a lightness to balance the more serious themes. Definitely recommended.

Really liked it
Overall: 7/10
Plot: 3.5/5
Romance: 3/5
Writing: 4/5
Characters: 4/5
Cover: 3/5