Publisher: Clarion Books
Release Date: January 3, 2017
Book Format: Hardcover
# of Pages: 320
Synopsis: Norah has agoraphobia and OCD. When groceries are left on the porch, she can’t step out to get them. Struggling to snag the bags with a stick, she meets Luke. He’s sweet and funny, and he just caught her fishing for groceries. Because of course he did.
Norah can’t leave the house, but can she let someone in? As their friendship grows deeper, Norah realizes Luke deserves a normal girl. One who can lie on the front lawn and look up at the stars. One who isn’t so screwed up.
I borrowed this book from work and this is my honest review.
Agoraphobia is the fear of places and situations that might cause panic, helplessness, or embarrassment. Norah suffers from this as well as a severe case of OCD. No longer in school Norah functions by homeschooling, never going outside unless completely necessary, and has her groceries delivered right to her door. What will she do when the cute new boy next door wants to come in and get to know her?
My first thought while reading is that this is very similar to Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon which follows a young girl who also cannot leave her house but due to allergies not fear. There is enough difference and enough similarities for me to love both books a lot.
I was nervous that Norah as a character was going to start to get to me, but being someone who also has severe anxiety; not to the extent that she does but pretty severe, I was able to connect with her. The few times when she was thinking about self-harming and then when she did, I felt connected because I felt her frustration. I know how frustrating it is to not be able to do something with everyone else because you’re just too afraid.
While reading, there is a part when Norah decides to go outside to enjoy the rain, and this scene made me enjoy her character that much more. For her to be afraid of almost everything to the point where she can’t even go outside but she’ll go outside a little to enjoy some rain that was great.
Luke’s character was cute, I was also nervous that he wasn’t really going to stand out as a character but he really did. His cute writing notes and slipping them through Norah’s mail slot on the door for her when she wouldn’t open the door and then when she was mad at him. I also liked that he had his own issues when it came to his dad that made him seem more real too.
The idea behind the story was definitely something I had not ever encountered before, and I am glad I jumped into the world. Being able to connect with Norah while she deals with her illness’ and watching her swoon over Luke was amazing and I would recommend this to anyone with these kinds of anxiety problems. Norah is one inspiring young lady.