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Extraordinary Means
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Extraordinary Means
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John Green's The Fault in Our Stars meets Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park in this darkly funny novel from the critically acclaimed author of The Beginning of Everything.Up until his diagnosis, Lane...
John Green's The Fault in Our Stars meets Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park in this darkly funny novel from the critically acclaimed author of The Beginning of Everything.Up until his diagnosis, Lane...
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Description-

  • John Green's The Fault in Our Stars meets Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor & Park in this darkly funny novel from the critically acclaimed author of The Beginning of Everything.

    Up until his diagnosis, Lane lived a fairly predictable life. But when he finds himself at a tuberculosis sanatorium called Latham House, he discovers an insular world with paradoxical rules, med sensors, and an eccentric yet utterly compelling confidante named Sadie—and life as Lane knows it will never be the same.

    Robyn Schneider's Extraordinary Means is a heart-wrenching yet ultimately hopeful story about the miracles of first love and second chances.

About the Author-

  • Robyn Schneider is the bestselling author of The Beginning of Everything, Extraordinary Means, and Invisible Ghosts. She is a graduate of Columbia University, where she studied creative writing, and the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, where she earned a master of bioethics. She lives in Los Angeles, California, but also on the internet. You can find her at www.robynschneider.com.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    March 2, 2015
    It’s hard to imagine a story about terminally ill teens that isn’t depressing, but Schneider (The Beginning of Everything) has created just that. Set in the not-too-distant future after a deadly strain of tuberculosis has swept across the U.S., the novel is set in Latham House, a residential facility for young people infected with the disease. There, 17-year-old Lane reunites with an old acquaintance, Sadie. Despite their illnesses, the two start falling in love as they test their limits inside the facility and reinvent themselves. Lane and Sadie’s alternating viewpoints sensitively trace how their experiences affect their perspectives of both life and death: Lane, once a serious and disciplined student, learns to live for the moment, and Sadie, an unpopular “disaster in middle school,” is becoming a leader, surrounded by friends. When the residents learn that a cure may become available, they are left to ponder what they will gain and lose by getting well and re-entering society. Balancing the hope of new beginnings against the uncertain fates of victims, it’s a novel that should prompt thoughtful discussions. Ages 13–up. Agent: Merrilee Heifetz, Writers House.

  • Kirkus

    March 1, 2015
    When Lane's drug-resistant tuberculosis lands him in a sanatorium, he finds that one of the other residents is a girl he met at summer camp years ago. College-bound Lane is in denial about his illness, assuming that he can keep up with his AP work and go home soon. Sadie's condition is neither improving nor getting worse; she's been at Latham House long enough to have formed a group of friends who go on nighttime excursions to buy contraband in the nearby town. In alternating chapters, Lane and Sadie narrate their gradual interest in and eventual love for each other as they await an upcoming drug trial that could mean an end to their quarantine. The teens' voices are authentic, and there's enough humor to keep this from becoming maudlin, even though the miracle drug doesn't quite make it in time. A lengthy author's note spells out Schneider's intention to write about a nonexistent form of TB to "fix" what she sees as teen literature's lack of medical narratives "that humanize the illness experience." Unfortunately, this approach doesn't necessarily make for good storytelling, as the message takes over, leaving readers to muse on Sadie's philosophy that "living and dying are actually different words for the same thing, if you think about it." Readers will do better to seek out The Fault in Our Stars. (Fiction. 14 & up)

  • School Library Journal

    March 1, 2015

    Gr 8 Up-After being diagnosed with a drug-resistant form of tuberculosis, the cute but nerdy Lane is sent to Latham House, an isolated boarding school where there is plenty of fresh air, no homework or tests, and long rest periods between classes. Lane, who has been more focused on getting into his dream college than making meaningful friendships and high school memories, connects once again with the eccentric Sadie, a former summer camp intrigue who has already been quarantined at the school for over a year. With only a narrow chance at recovery, as romance unfurls, neither teen has fully come to terms with what it means to be terminally ill. Sadie, who has had a chance to reinvent herself with her close friends of TB misfits, isn't sure what life outside of Latham would mean for her, whereas Lane, who always felt fun could wait until college, is forced to slow down and now sees how little he has lived. Even with the grim setting, funny dialogue, especially among Sadie's close knit group of friends, carries this story through its predictable paths. The novel is told in alternating voices, and Sadie's characterization often feels a little weak in comparison to Lane's. Still, their struggles will have teens wanting to read to the finish. VERDICT Schneider's subtlety, combined with themes about learning to live life fully, makes this an easy recommendation for those seeking titles similar in premise to John Green's The Fault in Our Stars (Dutton, 2012).-Danielle Jones, Multnomah County Library, OR

    Copyright 2015 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • School Library Journal "Schneider's subtlety, combined with themes about learning to live life fully, makes this an easy recommendation for those seeking titles similar in premise to John Green's The Fault in Our Stars."
  • Publishers Weekly "Balancing the hope of new beginnings against the uncertain fates of victims, it's a novel that should prompt thoughtful discussions."
  • Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) "Clever banter, self-deprecating humor and the distinctive characters ensure that this captivating book about life, death, fear, and second chances will fly off the shelves."
  • Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books "The perfect read-next for fans of the sick-lit trend and readers looking for a tear-stained romance.
  • Kirkus Reviews (starred review) Praise for THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING:"Smart writing and a compelling narrator raise this book above ordinary depictions of high school drama. Efficient use of language, evocative descriptions and subtle turns of phrase make reading and rereading this novel a delight."
  • Booklist (starred review) "This thought-provoking novel about smart kids doing interesting things will resonate with theJohn Green contingent, as it is tinged with sadness, high jinks, wry humor, and philosophical pondering in equal measures."
  • Publishers Weekly (starred review) "Schneider shows remarkable skill at getting inside her narrator's head as his life swings between disaster and recovery."
  • New York Times Book Review "Robyn Schneider can write."
  • School Library Journal "This is a wonderfully told story. The dialogue moves the plot along at a fast pace, and Ezra, with all his flaws, is a character to whom readers can relate. Teens won't want to put this one down."
  • Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA) "THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING is a tragic romance of the best kind that leaves the reader feeling as though they are part of the story, and wishing there was more."

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