Extraordinary Means by Robyn Schneider
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Format: Print ARC, 324 pages
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
From the author of The Beginning of Everything: two teens with a deadly disease fall in love on the brink of a cure.
At seventeen, overachieving Lane finds himself at Latham House, a sanatorium for teens suffering from an incurable strain of tuberculosis. Part hospital and part boarding school, Latham is a place of endless rules and confusing rituals, where it's easier to fail breakfast than it is to flunk French.
There, Lane encounters a girl he knew years ago. Instead of the shy loner he remembers, Sadie has transformed. At Latham, she is sarcastic, fearless, and utterly compelling. Her friends, a group of eccentric troublemakers, fascinate Lane, who has never stepped out
of bounds his whole life. And as he gradually becomes one of them, Sadie shows him their secrets: how to steal internet, how to sneak into town, and how to disable the med sensors they must wear at all times.
But there are consequences to having secrets, particularly at Latham House. And as Lane and Sadie begin to fall in love and their group begins to fall sicker, their insular world threatens to come crashing down. Told in alternating points of view, Extraordinary Means is a darkly funny story about doomed friendships, first love, and the rare miracle of second chances.
*I received an advance reading copy from the publisher in an exchange for an honest review.*
When I first read the summary, it reminded me of The Fault In Stars. Two teens with an incurable disease who fall in love. But it seems terribly doomed. I've never read it so I can't say that readers will love Extraordinary Means as well. But they both seem to have the same premise so I think people should check it out.
I immediately didn't want to read it because it seemed like the ending would only lead to heartbreak. And it did, but it also makes you think about life in general. It really impacts your life in an inspirational way. I found the story to be so cute about two teens so young and who experience something beautiful together. But the odd thing is that if it wasn't for them being sick, they wouldn't have been brought together. It just makes me think how life is such a gigantic mess.
I was sucked in by the story and the writing from the very beginning. Even though I suspected what the outcome would be, I kept going. It was too marvelous to put it down. And I felt for the characters and all they were put through.
Some of my favorite parts were when the Studio Ghibli movies were brought up. I got so excited because it's one of my favorite films to watch. And I totally bonded with the characters over that! Like I've never read any books where they mention the famous Japanese animation studio.
While sometimes it felt like it was dragging in the middle, I sort of came to appreciate it because the ending brought so much heartbreak. And the middle was happy and filled with cuteness. And let me tell you now, it's no fairytale ending. It's very realistic and it tore my heart out. And I just wanted more!! I needed to know what was going to happen with the rest of the characters. Because it's left open-minded and not exactly made clear of the future for everyone.
Overall, Extraordinary Means will leave the reader reaching for tissues for all the feels. And leave you wondering what will happen to all the beloved characters. And lots of people will be able to connect with the theme of the book which is feeling like an outsider and not fitting in. I also wanted to add in that I actually cried which is not something I often do when reading. So far only like 7 have been able to make me cry and this is one of them!