Author: Sarah Crossan
Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Contemporary
‘Deep down everyone wants to be a star and normal is the road to nothingness.’
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Conjoined twins Grace and Tippi share everything together – they can’t imagine it any other way. But when their health becomes at risk, being apart might be the only thing that can keep them together.
Beautifully moving, One is a truly epic piece of contemporary fiction. Told from Grace’s perspective, the book offers a wonderfully realistic insight into what life is like for conjoined twins. The best thing about the story is how the one thing everyone thinks is the worst thing – being conjoined – is really the girls’ smallest concern. They have much bigger problems – school, relationships, their dysfunctional family. It really challenged my assumptions in this way. That isn’t to say the girls don’t have issues of their own to face – the hardest decision of all must be made by Grace and Tippi, a decision that put me on the edge of my seat for much of the book.
I liked that Tippi and Grace, although always together, had very distinctive personalities. Grace is quieter and bookish, whereas Tippi is much more outspoken. The yin and yang of the twins’ personalities actually reminded me a lot of Jacqueline Wilson’s Double Act, which I remember finding fascinating as a young reader. It is immediately clear that Sarah Crossan has done a lot of careful research to be able to approach the topic with such sensitivity – she certainly does it justice. In fact, she states at the end of the novel that her characters were based on two real life sisters.
What really makes One stand out is its unconventional format. The words run down the page like verse, making every word more significant and powerful and making the one page that diverts from this rule completely devastating… there’ll be no spoilers here though!
Star Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆ (5/5)