Somebody Up There Hates You by Hollis Seamon
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I can hear the outrage now: how dare someone cover similar territory to The Fault In Our Stars and make it all about sex? Well... that's not the only problem here. It's not that John Green wrote a book that garnered so much love, it's that this one is trying to walk the line between "boy in hospital dying/wanting to be normal" and "normal boy dying in hospital" and just doesn't quite make it.
The premise is completely understandable: when you're 17, in and out of hospitals for your entire teenage life, there are things you miss, and when the opportunity presents itself to be normal, why not grab it? Richie does just that, packing quite a lot into his time in hospice with a "Cabbage Night", an escape to a bar on Hallowe'en, and, yes, sex with two different girls (depending on how you define sex). I could even buy his not caring about, or being aware of, the effect of his actions on the nurses and others. But Sylvie's father? I just didn't believe him. And Richie's family was just a little too kooky for belief.
ARC provided by publisher.