So, this is it, the Winner of the Carnegie 2016! Finally I have got round to reviewing it. This book is the second book that I have read by Sarah Crossan written in poetry form or free verse. This makes the book flow quite nicely and it feels like you race through it, but in a good way.
Tippi and Grace are conjoined twins and are joined at the torso, this means that it would be extremely difficult to separate them and most of their organs are shared. They have lived at home and been home schooled but have decided that it’s time to join the world and go to Hornbeam high school. There they meet Yasmeen and Jon and the bullying that they expected doesn’t really happen. They start doing all the usual teenage things, bunking off, drinking and smoking etc. and start to feel that they have a place in the world. Tippi even starts to fall in love with Jon and suspects that he feels the same.
The clever thing about this book is that although you know that they are conjoined twins the way the book is written makes you feel as though they are definitely separate characters and, speaking as a twin myself, this is really important. Each one has their own personality.
Grace starts to become ill and there are some tough decisions to make; a road trip with friends and some truths are told. I can’t guarantee you won’t cry at this one either! Well worth reading and a worthy winner but I can’t help feeling that if they book was written in prose it would still have been as hard hitting. My only criticism might be that I would like to have heard from the other characters in the story; what is was like for Jon and how he felt towards the girls; especially how he would have felt about Tippi and her feelings about him. Did he feel the same? Some idea of what it must be like to physically be joined to someone all the time and the problems that must inevitably bring perhaps? Their sister Dragon could also have been explored a bit more.
I enjoy Sarah Crossan’s writing though and would definitely read another.
Further Reading: The Weight of Water by Sarah Crossan and, if you really want to push yourselves Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese – this book is a really amazing tale of twins and their connections.