Author: Sarah Crossan
Genre: Contemporary, Young adult
Grace and Tippi. Tippi and Grace. Two sisters. Two hearts. Two dreams. Two lives. But one body.
Grace and Tippi are conjoined twins, joined at the waist, defying the odds of survival for sixteen years. They share everything, and they are everything to each other. They would never imagine being apart. For them, that would be the real tragedy.
But something is happening to them. Something they hoped would never happen. And Grace doesn’t want to admit it. Not even to Tippi.
How long can they hide from the truth—how long before they must face the most impossible choice of their lives?
Where to start? Oh, where to start….I just don’t know. I actually read One because Kathleen from verbeelding mentioned it in her favorite books of 2017 video. When Kathleen gives her approval of a book I tend to run to the bookstore or library and pick it up. Hidden gems have been discovered because of her. I am pretty certain that One will be on the “books I loved because of Kathleen list”.
Going in I was pretty hesitant. I never read something that was written in free verse and for the first couple of chapters it actually spooked me. The verse style demanded some getting use to, but all of a sudden I was so deep into the book that I didn’t even notice I was reading poetry. One is written as a linear narrative told from the perspective of Grace. Because of the verse style Grace her words are limited, but that gives them even more power. As a reader you have to fill in a lot of blanks, because the story is broken down to its bare essentials. But that makes it all the more compelling and real. Everything Grace says is important and profound.
I absolutely loved Grace as a main character. She was a flawed character, who at times could be quite bitchy and rather gloomy. But just because of those times, I liked her even more. She felt so incredibly real, as a normal teenager. Another reason why I applaud Sarah Crossan, you never feel sorry for Grace or Tippi. One could have very easily been a completely different book. It wouldn’t take much to make it a “sick” book, with a main character who asks for sympathy. But none of that in One, it’s not a “oh sad little me story”. It is also not a sensation searching story. I really felt that Sarah Crossan wrote One with a lot of respect and love for Tippi and Grace. She wasn’t writing a sensational story about conjoined twins. No so wrote a really small, intense story about sisters.
The main focus of the story is of course the fact that Tippi and Grae are conjoined twins, but this book is about so much more. It is a coming of age story, about falling in love and making friends. About trying to find yourself outside your family and the expectations that everyone has about you. But mostly it is about love. A very strong love for someone who is actually, literally a part of your life.
One is absolutely thought provoking.It confronted me with a disability I was never confronted with before. It made me rethink certain things and made me question aspects of life I had never considered. It was heart-warming and heartbreaking at the same time!
One is a very quick read, because of its verse style writing. But at the same time its a book that will stick with me for a very long time. It is absolutely compelling read and an stand out among YA contemporary books these days!