Nowhere Near You - Leah Thomas
Along the way they meet other teens like them, other products of strange science who lead seemingly normal lives in ways Ollie and Moritz never imagined possible: A boy who jokes about his atypical skeleton; an aspiring actress who hides a strange deformity; a track star whose abnormal heart propels her to victory. Suddenly the future feels wide open for two former hermits. But even as Ollie and Moritz dare to enjoy life, they can't escape their past, which threatens to destroy any progress they've made. Can these boys ever find their place in a world that might never understand them?
Star-crossed lovers move over! You've got nothing on Ollie and Moritz! And they're not even actually lovers (in the Shakespearean sense)!!
Let me start by saying that if you haven't read the first book by Leah Thomas, Because You'll Never Meet Me, you need to read it first or this book will make very little sense to you and your non-electromagnetic sensibilities. If you have read the first book, however, please feel free to continue with this review!
Okay, so Moritz has no eyes, and yet his echolocation/emolocation makes him incredibly intuitive, and Ollie is slowly but inevitably understanding all of what makes him so original and perhaps even dangerous. Dr. Aubern-Stache (not his actual name, of course) is flitting in and out of the story as Ollie and Moritz continue to writer letters back and forth across continents. Moritz's love for Ollie is brilliantly constructed and heartbreakingly real, whether Ollie wants to be a part of it or not. Their relationship across time and space would likely be terribly messy and unfulfilling in less capable hands.
Moritz: Oliver Paulot, you are so loved. This is your sickness and never you. You better every life you enter. God, can I attest to that. Please do not be rash. Please stop to breath. Please. I have been so happily lost in the woods of you.
Thomas's writing in this sequel is equally as impressive as her first novel, and the story is even more compelling (if possible)! I love that the first book's cover emulates dawn and the sequel's cover emulates dusk. The two together are a delightful, depressing, emotional, and perhaps even hopeful duology!
Highly Recommended (in conjunction with the first book!)
(NOTE: This review is from and Advance Reading Copy - Out Feb. 7, 2017)