Release date: May 26th 2015
Lane is new to Latham House, a sanatorium for teens with tuberculosis. He had his whole life planned out and now it’s at risk for falling apart as he learns that pushing himself as hard as he used to puts his health at risk. Sadie, a girl from his past, draws his attention. She and her group of friends seem different from all the other kids there. They’re rule-breakers and Lane finds himself slowly becoming one of them and falling for Sadie. Sometimes it’s even easy to forget why they’re all at Latham house, that they’re all sick, that their strain of TB is incurable. Then they’re forced to remember.
This book ended up being a surprisingly enjoyable read even with the main subject matter being sick teens. There were many light-hearted moments and a lot of humour sprinkled in with the more serious moments so I found myself laughing just as often as tearing up. Some characters used a lot of dark humour to cope with what was happening to them, some stopped caring about the little things like getting out of PJs, some broke rules. It was interesting to see the different ways the characters used to get through their days.
The characters were all great. Lane and Sadie were the main two with their alternating POVs. Lane was an overachiever struggling to adapt to the fact that his body couldn’t handle his workload along with his illness. Sadie was sarcastic and bold and seemed untouchable but she was also really sweet and loved her friends. Nick was the comic of the group, Marina was the artist, and Charlie was the quiet musician. In the world outside Latham house they probably would have never been friends but inside, they were inseparable.
There was a lot more to this book than a tragic love story. Lane and Sadie’s love story was a part of the book, a major part, but it was also about their group refusing to give up like so many of the other occupants of Latham house who shuffle around in their PJs. Their group wanted to keep living even as they were getting worse. It was about love and friendship and living and dying all at once.
I wouldn’t say it was an easy read, nor did I expect it to be. It still ended up being a fast read because I couldn’t put it down and the author did a great job of making it so I always wanted to know what would happen next. There was a lot of ‘just one more chapter’ before there were suddenly no more chapters left.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.