I came across One by Sarah Crossan while on Twitter and as soon as I saw it I was very keen to read this book. There have been numerous TV documentaries about conjoined twins many of which I’ve seen and found quite fascinating. How must it feel to be joined to someone with a completely different personality? To share your life so closely with someone? To share a single body? Sarah Crossan has addressed everything you might wonder about here in this fabulous book.
Conjoined twins Grace and Tippi are unable to be home schooled any longer and so they must enter the school system and face a world they’ve never had to face before. It’s a frightening world of taunts, staring, cruelty. But the sisters find more beyond the safety of their home and learn that the world has so much more to offer and not all of it bad, some of it wonderful in fact.
It reminded me very much of Life on the Refrigerator Door by Alice Kuipers, written in very short sections of text, free verse style, it takes no time at all to read once you get swept up in it. The words are not just carefully written and thought out, but even how and where they are placed on the page has an impact in this book. It’s just beautifully written.
It always amazes me how books with so few words can tell you so much about a whole family. Sarah Crossan is an incredible wordsmith to be able to get into the souls of everyone in this family. There are no long descriptions or dialogue just the exact number of words necessary to tell their story with feeling. So clever and accessible.
One being told from the point of view of just one of the twins, Grace, was a real surprise. I was expecting Tippi, her sister to pipe up all the way through the book, but I really loved that we only heard from Grace, the twin with much less of a voice in life did all the speaking in the book. You fall in love with both sisters, you learn about them fully but from one girl’s point of view. They are extraordinary sisters plunged into very ordinary lives.
This book is not just about Tippi and Grace though. It’s about their whole family. Tippi and Grace are the focus of the book because their unusual situation makes them the centre of the family. But their sister, mother and father all have struggles of their own to overcome, not necessarily related to the sisters. This is so much more than a book about conjoined twins. It’s about family, friendship, love and life.
There are twists and turns through the story. I had come to love all the people in this book dearly so I admit to finding the ending incredibly emotional to read.
One is unique. There is no story like this out there at the minute. I loved it’s freshness and life. It’s absolutely one for your bookshelves!
To find out more about Sarah Crossan take a look at her website:
I will also be giving away a copy of this wonderful book between 24th October and 15th November on my Twitter @BookMonsterAlly so please take a look. 🙂
You can order One here:
Thank your for reading this Book Monster review.